Roccaverano’s ancient history dates back to Roman times. Way before we arrived here to start an Agriturismo. As the centuries progressed our territory saw lots of changes in territorial control by many different dinasties.
The castle you now see in Roccaverano’s main square was built in 1505 and during the war of Monferrato, in 1615, was partially destroyed by Spanish troops. That’s why now you see only the facade, the majestic tower recently restored and parts of the side walls.
The castle tower dominates the territory from the top of the highest hill and affords inspiring panoramic views all around: from the Ligurian sea near Savona to the Alps and the Appennines. Around the tower, within the castle’s perimeter there is a park, lined with trees and green, a little playground for children, benches and tables for anyone appreciating peace, fresh air, the pleasure of a good book or a picnic.
The front wall features four openings that afforded the troops on site chances to defend the castle against invaders. The castle structure was entirely built with local stone (arenaria), the same stone used to build any type of structure in Roccaverano and surrounding area, because it is easily found on the ground when preparing the land for crops.
The castle tower is circular, with a circumference around 25 meters and a height of about 30 meters. Around the base the wall is about 2 meters thick. After the cleaning and restoring work done to the casle a few years back you can climb to the top of the tower by accessing the door on the outside. The key to this door is available to Cascina Rosso’s guests at the bar in the Piazza. Mind the parapet at the very top, especially in windy days.
Roccaverano’s ancient history also features the prominent building that is the Church of Maria ss Annunziata, right in front of the castle. Indeed Roccaverano’s piazza is a center of history, art, beauty, all appreciated when savoring a glass of wine while sitting at the bar on the south side.
Our church was a wish by bishop Enrico Bruno. Started in 1509 and consecrated in 1516. All built in local stones with a project by Bramante. The best view of the entire church architecture is appreciated from a castle window or from the top of the castle tower. Both inside and outside the church you can see testimonials of the Bruno’s family, the sun with 8 pointed extensions.
The parochial church of Roccaverano is considered one of the most important monuments of the Renaissance period in Piedmont. It is shaped like a greek cross, a special characteristic of Bramante’s insight.
One other testimony of Roccaverano’s ancient history is the Vengore tower. You can easily see it from the top of the Castle tower. From Cascina Rosso you pass this tower on your way to town. You can easily see it from the valley, coming from Savona or Alessandria. Many of our guests love to walk to the tower to watch sunrise and then be ready for a nutritious breakfast.
Arriving at the tower you can park your car and then proceed to climb it (ask for the key in the bar in town). This tower was part of a chain of towers that had the function of lookout posts; in fact you can easily see how it interacted with other towers in the territory since it easily affords open views over the Bormida valley, the Acqui Terme area, a good part of Langhe and Monferrato.
This is just a brief description of Roccaverano’s ancient history. You can really enjoy it while strolling around, following the trail leading out of Cascina Rosso, passing by Vengore tower, maybe stopping at the Church of San Giovanni and the magnificent frescoes from the 1300s, then reaching Roccaverano for wine and snacks at the bar, right in the middle between the castle and the Church. What a way to spend a day, relaxing, enjoying life, breathing in the fresh and clean air of Roccaverano.