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Aosta | Aosta Region

AOSTA | AOSTA REGION

Aosta is the principal city of Aosta Valley Region, a bilingual region in the Italian Alps, north-northwest of Turin. It is situated near the Italian entrance of the Mont Blanc Tunnel, at the confluence of the Buthier and the Dora Baltea, and at the junction of the Great and Little St. Bernard routes. Aosta is not the capital of the province, because Aosta Valley is the only Italian region not divided into provinces. Provincial administrative functions are instead shared by the region and the communes.

Aosta was settled in proto-historic times and later became a centre of the Salassi, many of whom were killed or sold into slavery by the Romans in 25 BC. The campaign was led by Marcus Terentius Varro, who then founded the Roman colony of Augusta Praetoria Salassorum, housing 3,000 retired veterans. After 11 BC Aosta became the capital of the Alpes Graies ("Grey Alps") province of the Empire. Its position at the confluence of two rivers, at the end of the Great and the Little St Bernard Pass, gave it considerable military importance, and its layout was that of a Roman military camp. After the fall of the Western Empire, the city was conquered, in turn, by the Burgundians, the Ostrogoths, the Byzantines. The Lombards, who had annexed it to their Italian kingdom, were expelled by the Frankish Empire under Pepin the Short. Under his son, Charlemagne, Aosta acquired importance as a post on the Via Francigena, leading from Aachen to Italy. After 888 AD it was part of the renewed Kingdom of Italy under Arduin of Ivrea and Berengar of Friuli. In the 10th century Aosta became part of the Kingdom of Burgundy. After the fall of the latter in 1032, it became part of the lands of Count Humbert I of the House of Savoy. After the creation of the county of Savoy, with its capital in Chambéry, Aosta led the unification of Italy. Under the House of Savoy, Aosta was granted a special status that it maintained when the new Italian Republic was proclaimed in 1948.

Exploring Monte Cervino in the Italian Alps

MONTE CERVINO (MATTERHORN) | ALPS

Photo of Monte Cervino

Know in Italy as Monte Cervino, the Matterhorn is instantly recognisable by its pyramid shape.  Monte Cervino is perhaps the most recognised mountain peak in the world. The mountain is in the form of a four-sided pyramid, with the sides conveniently facing the points of the compass.

Monte Cervino is located in the Pennine Alps above the Valtournenche Valley in the Aosta Valley region.  The mountain forms the Italian border with the Zermatt region of Switzerland. At its peak the Matterhorn stands 4,478 metres tall. Although it is not the highest mountain in the Alps, its relative isolation from the surrounding mountain peaks make it one of the most impressive.

You can only reach the peak of the Matterhorn by climbing one of the technical routes. The first ascent of the Matterhorn was in 1865, an adventure where four out of the seven in the original group died during the return journey.  There are still routes being explored today, but most of the direct routes were all climbing by 1931.

Most visitors are content to admire the view from the surrounding valleys and trails. The best way for the casual visitor to get a feel for the mountain is from Breuil, the large resort upper plateau . Cable cars will take you to almost 3,500 metres to enjoy some stunning views across the Matterhorn and surrounding landscape. Further options and views are found if approaching the Matterhorn from the Swiss side.

The area around Monte Cervino is primarily an outdoor region. You will find that mountain climbing, skiing and hiking are the most popular activities, and many of these will provide further opportunities to appreciate the size and drama of the mountain. If the time permits there is a trek that completes a circuit around the Matterhorn and takes about 10 days to complete.  This route is a substantial challenge and experience and thorough preparation is required.

There are also various small villages to explore in pretty settings around and near the base of the Matterhorn, particularly Nus and the nearby Castello di Fnis.

SKI RESORTS ON MONTE CERVINO

Exploring Monte Rosa the Italian Alps

MONTE ROSA | ALPS

monte rosa alps

Monte Rosa is Italy's second highest mountain and is located about 10 kilometres south-east of the Matterhorn in the Alps of north-west Italy. Although the summit of Monte Rosa itself, at 4634 metres above sea-level, is in Switzerland most of the Monte Rosa Massif is within Italy's Aosta Valley Region.

It is a great mass of a mountain at the head of the Valsesia, Gressoney and Ayas valleys. You can see Monte Rosa from many places in north-western Italy and from near the western Lombardy lakes such as Lake Maggiore. The name of the mountain means glacier mountain not pink mountains, as you might have guessed. The word 'Rosa' comes from the word 'rouése' which is a local word for glacier.

Guide to Exploring Monte Rosa

As with the other important mountains in the region, a popular way for 'non-mountaineers' to explore is to follow one of the marked routes.  One of the most popular routes is one that contours the base of Monte Rosa, a trek that usually takes around ten days. Although you avoid climbing to the summit on this route it is still reasonably challenging with several mountain passes to be crossed.

For those who don't want to spend 10 days trekking there are plenty of opportunities to get good views of the mountain from the valleys below.

MAJOR PEAKS OF THE MONTE ROSA

Dufourspitze 4,634 metres (15,203 ft), Ostspitze 4,632 metres (15,197 ft), Grenzgipfel 4,618 metres (15,151 ft), Nordend  4,618 metres (15,151 ft), Zumsteinspitze  4,563 metres (14,970 ft), Signalkuppe 4,554 metres (14,941 ft), Lyskamm  4,527 metres (14,852 ft), Silbersattel 4,515 metres (14,813 ft), Grenzsattel 4,453 metres (14,610 ft), Parrotspitze  4,432 metres (14,541 ft), Ludwigshöhe 4,341 metres (14,242 ft), Corno Nero 4,322 metres (14,180 ft), Vincent-Pyramide 4,215 metres (13,829 ft), Balmenhorn 4,167 metres (13,671 ft), Punta Giordani 4,046 metres (13,274 ft), Jägerhorn 3,970 metres (13,025 ft), Cima di Jazzi 3,803 metres (12,477 ft)

WHAT TO DO AND WHERE TO STAY NEAR MONTE ROSA

Alagna is the most popular place to stay among hikers and outdoor enthusiasts who visit the region. Of course many of the walks are challenging and need proper equipment and experience. Alagna is a major Freeride resort during the winter months.

The village standing at the bottom of the sheer cliff to the east of Monte Rosa is Macugnana.

The villages in the valleys below Monte Rosa are more Germanic than Italian in character, and occupied by the Walsers.  The people have a fascinating history within the valley, that you can learn about at the museum in Pedemonte, a short walk from Alagna. Wherever you travel in the region around the mountain you will see the unusual wooden houses that the Walsers occupy, much unchanged since their arrival in the 13th century.

A couple of cable cars in the vicinity allow access to the high mountains, for example the cable car that operates from Champoluc to Testa Grigia (more than 3300 metres above sea level) or another from Alagna to Punta Indren (3260 metres above sea level).

Other popular villages and resorts in the Monte Rosa region include those at Champoluc, Brusson, Gressoney-St-Jean (which also has a small museum about the wildlife you might encounter), Issime and Riva Valdobbia, with its church having a very colourful frescoed facade from the 16th century.

SKI RESORTS ON MONTE ROSA

Falesia di Donnas/Bistecca-Cubo | Guida di arrampicata in Valle d'Aosta

FALESIA DI DONNA | GUIDA DI ARRAMPICATA IN VALLE D'AOSTA

La falesia di Donnas si compone del settore Donnas e del settore Bistecca-cubo. La parete principale, Donnas, è strapiombante e abbastanza alta da permettere tiri di resistenza, la chiodatura è ottima e non lontana e il settore è anche provvisto di vie più rilassanti che non superano i 15 metri.

Oltrepassata la parete di Donnas si trovano la Bistecca, che richiede un'arrampicata tecnica sui piedi ma di difficoltà abbordabile, e il Cubo, il quale è ancora in via di creazione.

Questa guida vuole aiutare i novizi arrampicatori. Per informazioni più aggiornate consigliamo sempre di prendere la guida della zona.

GUIDA ALLA FALESIA DI DONNAS

REGIONE Valle d'Aosta
PROVINCIA Aosta
ZONA IN CUI E' SITUATO Donnas
PERIODO IDEALE da marzo a novembre
TIPO DI ROCCIA gneiss
CHIODATURA ottima a resina
NUMERO DI VIE 62
GRADO DI DIFFICOLTA' da 4c a 8b
ALTEZZA PARETE 25m
ATTREZZATURA CONSIGLIATA 15 rinvii
GUIDA  

VIE DELLA FALESIA

Da sinistra a destra

Pioggia di luce 6c
Baby yar 7b
Doctor Larduss 7c
Atto di forza 7b
Buon compleanno 7b+
Non sono un fachiro 7b+
Black angel 7b+
Faith 8a
Mephisto 7c
Giudecca 7c/7c+
Shining 7a
Possession 7b
No ai murales 7b
Istambul 6c+
The walk 6a+
Il fungo magico 6c
The end 6c+
La imalaika 6b
Gaspacio 6c
Maneggiare con cura 6a+
Magna zita 6a
Servizio incivile 6b/6b+
Passo felpato 6c+
Brevetto di volo 6c/6c+
Sakè 7a
Mani bucate 6c
Diedro spompato 6a
Locale gay 6a+
Volpini volanti 6b+
Fagiolini volanti 7a
Confessioni di una novizia 7b+
Lipstik 5c
Stati di allucinazione 6b+
Wild bunch 6b
Sogni proibiti 4b
Diedrino 4c
Poliestere 6c
Delirium tremens 6c
Senza nome 6b
J.S. 5c
Senza nome 6a
Adrenaline 6a
Pane per il ghiro 6b
Sasquash 7c/7c+
Progetto ?
La creatura 8b
Progetto ?
Progetto ?
Asintoto obliquo 8a+
La foufouille 7b+
Come un anelide 6c
Tomba la bomba 6b

Falesia di Leverogne | Guida di arrampicata in Valle d'Aosta

Falesia di Leverogne | Guida di arrampicata in Valle d'Aosta

La falesia di Leverogne, un tempo in voga tra i climber professionisti, è oggi una falesia di tutto rispetto sulla quale testare i passaggi a blocco su piccoli appigli che tanto avevano interessato i climber del decennio scorso.

Questa guida vuole aiutare i novizi arrampicatori. Per informazioni più aggiornate consigliamo sempre di prendere la guida della zona.

GUIDA ALLA FALESIA DI LAVEROGNE

REGIONE Valle d'Aosta
PROVINCIA Aosta
ZONA IN CUI E' SITUATO Arvier
PERIODO IDEALE da marzo a novembre
TIPO DI ROCCIA gneiss
CHIODATURA buona
NUMERO DI VIE 28
GRADO DI DIFFICOLTA' da 6a a 8a+
ALTEZZA PARETE 10-18m
ATTREZZATURA CONSIGLIATA 15 rinvii
GUIDA  

VIE DELLA FALESIA

Da sinistra a destra

Specchio dei tempi 7a+
Hell's bells 7b+
Dark cristall 7a
Metallica 7b
Coca cola  kid 7c+
Tragicomicart 6b+
Mimica comica 7a+
Cocuna 6b+
San Pedro ?
Ugo a go go 7a
Equilibres fugaces 6a
Antartica 6c
Super alkolica 6c
Pablos 7a
Legend 7b
Summer time 7c
Fantascienza 7a
La prova 6c
Physique du role 7a
Di Marino ?
Orion 7c+
Rank xerox 8a
Fever of power 6b
Heroes 7a+
Vampirella 7c
Jerico 8a+
Anpi danpi 7c+
Yomo 7a

Falesia di Mon Ross | Guida di arrampicata in Valle d'Aosta

 FALESIA DI MON ROSS | GUIDA DI ARRAMPICATA IN VALLE D'AOSTA

La falesia di Mon Ross ha subito un notevole lavoro di rifinitura e manutenzione: le vie sono state attrezzate con ottime chiodature a resina, ma soprattutto è stata messa in sicurezza la base della parete, con tronchi piazzole per assicurare e corde metalliche fisse per raggiongere senza pericolo alcune parti un po' scoscese.

Questa guida vuole aiutare i novizi arrampicatori. Per informazioni più aggiornate consigliamo sempre di prendere la guida della zona.

GUIDA ALLA FALESIA DI MON ROSS

REGIONE Valle d'Aosta
PROVINCIA Aosta
ZONA IN CUI E' SITUATO Ozein
PERIODO IDEALE da aprile ad ottobre
TIPO DI ROCCIA calcare
CHIODATURA ottima a resina
NUMERO DI VIE 50+
GRADO DI DIFFICOLTA' da 5c a 8a
ALTEZZA PARETE 15-25m
ATTREZZATURA CONSIGLIATA 15 rinvii
GUIDA  

VIE DELLA FALESIA

Da sinistra a destra

Super 5c
Per incominciare 5c
Clessidre 5b
La diagonale 6b
Relax 6a+
Senza nome 6b
Pensieri 6a+
Balla coi buchi 7b
Ambra calcarea 7b+
L'iguana 7b+
I discorsi del presidente 7a
Paprika 6c
Tramonto tremante 6c+
L'intrusa 6a
Dove osano le rondini 7a
Pan di zucchero 6b+
Tira molla 6c
Fatelo con gas 6b
Shampoo in polvere 6a+
Prima via 6a+
Gambe in spalla 5c
Petardi a colazione 5c
Buco fasullo 6b
Sembra facile 6b
Samba 6b+
Ramba 6b
Rimba 6a+
Rebus 6b+
Doppio malto 6b+
Stress 7a+
La danza del sorcio 6c
Ultima chance 7a
New Sila 7b+
Il muro di Lamezia 7c
Le travers du blond 6a+
Black Jack 7a
Fior di bosco 6c+
Piccolo nose 6c+
Poker 6c
Sapore di marcio 5c
Evi 92 6a
Il canto del Greup 6b+
Sudoriparo 6b+
Bananarama 6b
Tempo grigio 6b+
Hemmental 6a+
Corinne 6a+
Falangi roventi 6c
Cenere 7b
Ghost dancing 7a+
Paragnosta 6b
Piedi di fata 6a+

Falesia di Tetto di Sarre | Guida di arrampicata in Valle d'Aosta

FALESIA DI TETTO DI SARRE | GUIDA DI ARRAMPICATA IN VALLE D'AOSTA

La falesia di Tetto di Sarre era inizialmente una palestra artificiale,trasformata ora in una difficoltosa parete da scalare. Le vie richiedono infatti un'arrampicata particolarmente atletica e sono strutturate a rate, con difficoltà progressiva.

Questa guida vuole aiutare i novizi arrampicatori. Per informazioni più aggiornate consigliamo sempre di prendere la guida della zona.

GUIDA ALLA FALESIA DI TETTO DI SARRE

REGIONE Valle d'Aosta
PROVINCIA Aosta
ZONA IN CUI E' SITUATO Sarre
PERIODO IDEALE da marzo a ottobre
TIPO DI ROCCIA gneiss
CHIODATURA ottima a resina
NUMERO DI VIE 9
GRADO DI DIFFICOLTA' da 7a a 8b/b+
ALTEZZA PARETE 10-25m
ATTREZZATURA CONSIGLIATA 15 rinvii
GUIDA  

VIE DELLA FALESIA

Da sinistra a destra

La pista degli elefanti 7a
Madre Coraggio 7b
Sogno 7c/c+
Hell 8a+
Smalto 7b
Parsifal 8a/b
Sarre 2000 7a+
Kabuki 7c
Cruditèes perverses 7b

Falesia Pilastro Lomasti | Guida di arrampicata in Valle d'Aosta

FALESIA PILASTRO LOMASTI | GUIDA DI ARRAMPICATA IN VALLE D'AOSTA

La falesia di Pilastro Lomasti è una parete che si slancia senza interruzioni per 200 metri, che grazie alle sue mille sfaccettature offre ai climbers un coktail di varietà di movimenti che rendono l'arrampicata sempre stimolante.

Questa guida vuole aiutare i novizi arrampicatori. Per informazioni più aggiornate consigliamo sempre di prendere la guida della zona.

GUIDA ALLA FALESIA DI PILASTRO LOMASTI

REGIONE Valle d'Aosta
PROVINCIA Aosta
ZONA IN CUI E' SITUATO Arnad
PERIODO IDEALE da maggio ad ottobre
TIPO DI ROCCIA gneiss
CHIODATURA discreta
NUMERO DI VIE 12
GRADO DI DIFFICOLTA' da 6a a 7a+
ALTEZZA PARETE 60-200m
ATTREZZATURA CONSIGLIATA 15 rinvii
GUIDA  

VIE DELLA FALESIA

Da sinistra a destra

Nouvelle saison 6a/b+
Coda di fango 6a+
Pilier Parlier 6a/b
Framarin-Arcaro ?
Passaggio a nord-ovest 6a/c
Choc-o-drill 6a/b+
La Rossa e il Vampirla 6a
Control...e vai tranquillo 6a/c
Lomasti 5b/6a
Sylvie 6b/c+
Verde Milonga 6a/7a+
Vertigine 6b/7a
Mamma li turchi 6a+/7a+
Cliffremiti 6b/7a

Food and Wine | Aosta Region

FOOD AND WINE | AOSTA VALLEY REGION

The cuisine of Aosta Valley is characterized by simplicity Food and wine at Valle D'Aosta official tourism website, www.lovevda.it and revolves around "robust" ingredients such as potatoes, polenta; cheese and meat; and rye bread. Many of the dishes involve Fontina, Fontina: DOP stamp for the Valle d’Aosta’s prince of cheeses at Valle d'Aosta official tourism website, www.lovevda.it a cheese with PDO status, made from cow's milk that originates from the valley. It is found in dishes such as the soup à la vâpeuleunèntse Seuppa à la vâpeuleunèntse( Valpelline Soup). ( Valpelline Soup). Other cheeses made in the region are Toma and Seras. Fromadzo ( Valdôtain for cheese) has been produced locally since the 15th century and also has PDO status. Regional specialities, besides Fontina, are Motzetta (dried chamois meat, prepared like prosciutto), Valléed'Aoste Lard d'Arnad (a cured and brined fatback product with PDO designation), Vallée d’Aoste Jambon de Bosses (a kind of ham, likewise with PDO designation), and a black bread. Notable dishes include Carbonnade, consisting of salt-cured beef cooked with onions and red wine served with polenta; breaded veal cutlets called costolette; teuteuns, salt-cured cow's udder that is cooked and sliced; and steak à la valdôtaine, Steak Valdaostan style recipe, Consorzio Produttori e Tutela della DOP Fontina. a steak with croutons, ham and melted cheese.
Wine growing

Notable wines include two white wines from Morgex (Blanc de Morgex et de La Salle and Chaudelune), a red wine blend from Arvier (Enferd'Arvier), and a Gamay. D.O.C.

Guide to Bouldering Sites in the Aosta Valley Region

BOULDERING AREAS IN THE AOSTA VALLEY REGION

Bouldering Guide to the Aosta Valley

 

There are new sites being opened in the Alps of the Aosta valley.

Bouldering sites in Aosta Valley

 

BOULDERING SITES IN THE AOSTA VALLEY

Cubo (Arnad) - Arnad (AO)

Blocchi del Furgg - Plan Maison (AO)

Area Pont - Pont Valsavarenche (AO)

History of Aosta Valley

HISTORY OF THE AOSTA VALLEY | ITALY

The first inhabitants of the Aosta Valley were Celts and Ligures, whose language heritage remains in some local placenames. Rome conquered the region from the local Salassi around 25 BC and founded Augusta Prætoria Salassorum (modern-day Aosta) to secure the strategic mountain passes, and they went on to build bridges and roads through the mountains. Thus, the name Valle d'Aosta literally means "Valley of Augustus". After the Romans, the valley preserved traditions of autonomy, reinforced by its geographical isolation, though it was loosely held in turns by the Goths and then by the Burgundians in the 5th century, followed by the Franks, who overran the Burgundian kingdom in 534. It was also ruled by the Byzantines between 553 and 563 and then by the Lombards between 568 and 575 before the Franks finally conquered the area.

At the division among the heirs of Charlemagne in 870, the Aosta Valley formed part of the Lotharingian Kingdom of Italy. In a second partition a decade later, it formed part of the Kingdom of Upper Burgundy, which was joined to the Kingdom of Arles — all with few corresponding changes in the population of the virtually independent fiefs in the Aosta Valley. In 1031-1032 Humbert I of Savoy, the founder of the House of Savoy, received the title Count of Aosta from Emperor Conrad II of the Franconian line and built himself a commanding fortification at Bard. Saint Anselm of Canterbury was born in Aosta in 1033 or 1034. The region was divided among strongly fortified castles, and in 1191 Thomas I of Savoy found it necessary to grant to the communes a Charte des franchises ("Charter of Liberties") that preserved autonomy — rights that were fiercely defended until 1770, when they were revoked in order to tie Aosta more closely to Piedmont, but which were again demanded during post-Napoleonic times.

The Aosta Valley was the first government authority to adopt Modern French as official language in 1536, three years before France itself. In the mid-13th century Emperor Frederick II made the County of Aosta a duchy (see Duke of Aosta), and its arms charged with a lion rampant were carried in the Savoy arms until the reunification of Italy in 1870. During the Middle Ages the region remained strongly feudal, and castles, such as those of the Challant family in the Valley of Gressoney, still dot the landscape. In the 12th and 13th centuries, German-speaking Walser communities were established in the Gressoney, and some communes retain their separate Walser identity even today. The region remained part of Savoy lands, with the exceptions of French occupations from 1539 to 1563, later in 1691, then between 1704 and 1706.

As part of the Kingdom of Sardinia it joined the new Kingdom of Italy in 1861. It was also ruled by the First French Empire between 1800 and 1814. During French rule, it was part of Aoste arrondissement in Doire department. Almanach Impérial anbissextil MDCCCXII, p. 392-393, accessed in Gallica 18 February 2015 Under Mussolini, a forced programme of Italianization, including the translation of all toponyms into Italian and population transfers of Italian-speaking workers from the rest of Italy into Aosta, fostered movements towards separatism. Many Valdostans chose to emigrate to France and Switzerland (where Valdostan communities are still present). The region gained special autonomous status after the end of World War Two; the province of Aosta ceased to exist in 1945.

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