Day Trips in Italy Photo of the Day Veneto

My First Glimpse of the Sanctuary of Madonna della Corona

Sanctuary of Madonna della Corona - Spiazzi di Ferrara di Monte Baldo - Verona, Veneto, Italy -
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A long held wish of mine finally came true a couple of weeks ago.

I have been reading about the Sanctuary of Madonna della Corona for close to three years now and every time that I looked at pictures of the basilica which is partly rock-hewn, I had a strong desire to see it for myself.

It is only about an hour away from Vicenza too and the right day to go there came at the end of August this year.

It is true what they say: the Sanctuary really seems to be half-way

between Heaven and Earth

It is organically built into the Baldo rocks at 774 metres above sea level and it overlooks from this tremendous height the meanders of the river Adige.

It is a very peaceful place. To reach it, you need to follow a steep curving road alongside which are placed bronze cast sculptures by Raffaele Bonente depicting the different stages of Christ’s Golgotha and Resurrection.

Walking down the road, starting from the picturesque village of Spiazzi, is quite the

contemplative experience

Being surrounded by massive outcrops and incredibly high green hills hurtling down to the deep valley of Adige, you begin to ponder the power of nature and the size of human life.

You don’t see the Sanctuary until you have nearly reached it. Walking without seeing your destination, at first fills you with doubts and questions along the lines of:

  • Am I on the right road?
  • How long do I need to keep walking? and even
  • Is the Sanctuary really there, as everyone says?

Then, you relax into the road, start to admire the stunning views and every new bronze sculptural group you come across, gives you food for thought.

Just then, right as you have turned the last sharp bend, you

glimpse the Sanctuary

for the very first time. You feel like you need to stop and take it all in.

The moment when we walked round that last bend and saw the Basilica of the Sanctuary was made even more special by the fact that the tall bell tower started ringing a melodious tune. It filled the deep valley below with its silver tones and then rose up and up towards the sky lifting us with it.

If you are looking for

a beautiful and spiritual place

to visit in the Veneto, consider spending a day making a pilgrimage to the Sanctuary of Madonna della Corona. It is a memorable experience. The Sanctuary is also very close to Lake Garda and there are lots of hikes in the surrounding hills.

I have written a detailed blog post about my visit there in order to give you as many details as possible about the history and the beauty of the place. Here, I just wanted to share with you the first moment when I glimpsed it.


This post is part of my blog series ‘Photo of the Day’. I use it to share with you several times a week photos which reveal the beauty and the reality of living in Italy and travelling in Europe. These are usually short posts (sometimes more of a caption, really), so that you can enjoy them on the go and use them to bring a ray of colour into each of your days.

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1 Comment

  • Thank you, Madam !

    The german poet Goethe wrote about the usual suspects in Bologna 1786: T
    “Toward evening I got out of this ancient, venerable, and learned city, and extricated myself from its crowds, who, protected from the sun and weather by the arched bowers which are to be seen in almost every street, walk about, gape about, or buy and sell, and transact whatever business they may have. I ascended the tower, and enjoyed the pure air. The view is glorious. To the north we see the hills of Padua; beyond them the Swiss, Tyrolese, and Friulian Alps,—in short, the whole northern chain, which at the time was enveloped in mist. Westward there stretched a boundless horizon, above which the towers of Modena alone stood out. Toward the east a similar plain, reaching to the shores of the Adriatic, whose waters might be discerned in the setting sun. Toward the south, the first hills of the Apennines, which, like the Vicentine Hills, are planted up to their summits, or covered with churches, palaces, and summer-houses. The sky was perfectly clear, not a cloud to be seen, only on the horizon a kind of haze. The keeper of the tower assured me, that, for six years, this mist had never left the distance. Otherwise, by the help of a telescope, you might easily discern the hills of Vicenza (…)
    The Leaning Tower has a frightful look, and yet it is most probable that it was built so by design. The following seems to me the explanation of this absurdity. In the disturbed times of the city, every large edifice was a fortress, and every powerful family had its tower. By and by the possession of such a building became a mark of splendour and distinction; and as, at last, a perpendicular tower was a common and every-day thing, an oblique one was built. Both architect and owner have obtained their object: the multitude of slender, upright towers are just looked at, and all hurry to see the leaning one. Afterward I ascended it. The bricks are all arranged horizontally. With clamps and good cement one may build any mad whim…”

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