Knowing Milan and its province
Visconti castles and noble villas along the Naviglio grande
The first itinerary in search of the area within the province of Milan, its hidden treasures and most important monuments, follows the historical route of the Naviglio Grande at Abbiategrasso, an old centre just six kilometres from Ticino and known for the Visconteo Castle and its historical palaces and villas. This is the landscape where you can still perceive the strong indications of a past linked to the Visconti, the Lombard family that held power in Milan from the end of the Third century and the first half of the Fifth century.
In this part of the Milanese plain, the land with an abundance of water, has maintained a strong agricultural vocation and a natural and historical heritage of considerable worth. The Naviglio Grande, whose origins date back to the XII century, played a significant part, right from the outset, in the development and evolution of the irrigation system in the Bassa Milanese countryside and as a navigation route for trading. Its waters were also used to transport Candoglia marble, coming from Lake Maggiore and used in the building of the Cathedral in Milan. Still close to Abbiategrasso, around Castelletto, another Naviglio, the Bereguardo branches off the Naviglio Grande that stems from the Ticino above Turbigo, and heads towards Pavia, linking up again with the Ticino. The countryside is a wealth of delightful, splendid, luxury villas and holiday homes that become more numerous, from the middle of the Sixteenth century onwards, on the banks of the Navigli along the trail of the historical water networks. The water routes acted both as essential communication ways as well as corridors
suited to the development of an intense agricultural and commercial activity.
The project of itineraries is by AIM - Association of Metropolitan Interests - and was developed for the site in association with provincial editorial staff of visitamilano.