Bobbio

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It is the main city centre of the Trebbia Valley and it lays on the left shore of the Trebbia river, at the feet of Mount Penice. 

Not so far from Liguria, it enjoys the beneficial influence of the sea air, especially at its highest altitudes.

It stands in the centre of a large area called “The Four Apennine Provinces”, where the mountains of the provinces of Piacenza, Genoa, Alessandria and Pavia meet.


Why visit it

Bobbio is famous for being a very important cultural centre since the early Middle Ages and it was called “the northern Montecassino” for the renowned fame of Saint Columbanus’s Abbey. 

The Abbey was founded in 614 by the Irish monk and was one of the main spiritual and religious centers of Italy.

In 1014, Bobbio also acquired the title of City, which was assigned by an imperial seal from King Henry II and became the Seat of the Bishop, maintaining its autonomy as a Diocese until the 1980s.

Among all its past glories, Bobbio retains still today its medieval flavor, made by narrow streets, houses made of stones and stately mansions standing around the Monastery. Together with suggestive natural landscapes of the valley, it makes Bobbio one of the main holiday destinations in the province of Piacenza. 

Bobbio holds several awards: since 2005 the Orange Flag of the Italian Touring Club, since 2006 it belongs to the Most Beautiful Villages of Italy and in 2019 it won the contest of Rai 3 Kilimangiaro broadcast,  winning the title Best Village 2019.


When to go and what to see

All seasons are suitable for enjoying the medieval village for its landscapes characterized by the scenographic background of the Trebbia Valley. Interestingly, summer is the best season to see Bobbio in its surprising role as a summer holiday destination, teeming with bathers attracted by the cool and refreshing waters of the river and by the opportunity to enjoy the sun.


Do not miss

The unique Hunchbacked Bridge is the symbol of the village and its history is closely linked to the legend of Saint Columbanus fighting against the Devil. It welcomes tourists.

During the village visit, the must-visit destinations are:

  • The former Monastic Complex of Saint Columbanus, which in the past housed the cells of the monks and the famous Scriptorium. There Saint Columbanus Abbey still stands, which encloses in the crypt the sarcophagus of the Saint and the wonderful mosaic pavement, and  other parts of the monastery, which have become three museums. The Abbey Museum preserves finds ranging from the first centuries of the Christian age until the middle of the sixteenth century; the City Museum offers the possibility of a multimedial experience on Bobbio’s history from the past till present times and the Mazzolini Museum, which consists of a collection of 872 works and 27 sculptures and shows a cross-section of the art of the second half of the 1900s including artists such as De Chirico, Fontana, Rosai and Giò Pomodoro.
  • The Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Assumption already built in 1075, and the suggestive Cathedral Square surrounded by stately mansions.
  • The Malaspina Castle which dominates the higher area of the village.


On the table

In the town and its surroundings, on the Route of wines and tastes of Piacenza hills, you can try local maccaroni prepared Bobbio style, made with  knitting needles and served with a slow-cooked meat sauce. 

In April 2019 maccaroni and other products such as Bobbio-style snails, “bracchettone” (a local cold cut), almond cake and “croccante” (local dessert with almonds and honey), got the DE.CO. certification (a municipality certification) which attests to local origin and authenticity of each product.


Keep Fit

In Bobbio and in the nearby areas there are many opportunities to practice sports in dedicated structures and outside. 

Not far from the town there is a sports centre with football, tennis, volleyball, beach volley camps and an outdoor swimming pool.

During the summer, the area surrounding Bobbio offers many opportunities: for those who want to hike or simply admire the landscape there are a lot of trails with different levels of difficulty, for cyclists there are many kilometres of not busy paved roads and for those who practice mountain biking there are many mountain paths.

After the village Coli, in the pine forest of Saint Augustine, there is an Adventure park that offers acrobatic paths up high and mountain bike rentals. During wintertime (from December to March), the ski resort on Mount Penice (km 12) offers slopes accessible at various levels thanks to artificial snow. The town of Ceci is known for cross-country skiing and snowshoe rental, and it is equipped with a circular path 10 Km long. 


Main events

Bobbio is renowned for the several local food & wine fairs that take place during the year: Saint John’s (in June), the Pinolo Party (in August), The Market of Mushrooms and Truffles (in October) and the Snails’ Fair (in December).

In addition to local fairs, it is also famous for the Bobbio Film Festival (during summer) and for the Cinema School “Farecinema”, both curated by movie diector Marco Bellocchio, whose family has its origins in Bobbio. 

Many cultural initiatives enliven the city throughout the year, here are a few of them:  Flowery Castle on the first weekend of June, the “Palio delle Contrade”, the secular contest between the village’s neighborhoods, with the picturesque parade in medieval clothes in the month of June, the Irish Music Festival in the month of July, the Book Festival in August and many concerts of the Bobbio Classical Festival during the summer. 


Information offices

Tourist Information Office Bobbio
Piazza San Francesco Bobbio (PC)
telephone:+ 39 0523 962815 iat.bobbio@sintranet.it
Last update 09/04/2021

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