The Val D’Arda is one of the splendid valleys in the Piacenza area, which gets its name from the Arda torrent; a tributary on the right bank of the river Po, stretching up to the boundary with Parma. This territory offers several interesting historical, food and wine places to visit during a weekend or with a walk through the Colli Piacentini hills.
The itinerary we have prepared starts in Castelvetro Piacentino, where the only original Roman relic was found in 1878, the silver Roman tankard “Gutturnium”, which our DOC is named after, and continues towards the province of Cremona among castles, villages and abbeys. You start in Castelvetro Piacentino and get to Fiorenzuola, Alseno and continue towards Bacedasco Alto, then after a stretch of pleasant flat land in the plain, you head towards the vine-covered hills where you can taste some wine and tour the family-run wineries.
If you are in the vicinity of Alseno, we recommend a visit to the Abbey of Chiaravalle della Colomba. Then continuing from Bacedasco, you come to Castell’Arquato, a magnificent and fascinating medieval town where you can see the Farnese Tower, the Ducal Palace and the splendid Monumental Square which represents the three powers of the Middle Ages: religious power (the collegiate church), military power (the Visconti fortress) and political power (the Palazzo Podestà)).
Castell’Arquato is considered to be one of the most beautiful medieval towns in Italy and we recommend you take a look on the website to find out about all the events held in this wonderful town full of history, art and culture. Also the town of Vigoleno is worth a visit, where small local vinegrowers make a Vin Santo wine aged for 6 to 7 years. From the panoramic position of Castell’Arquato, you can see the different wineries, all in the area known for the DOC Monterosso Val D’Arda wine, Gutturnio, Malvasia and Ortrugo. When you leave Castell’Arquato and head towards Piacenza, you can stop off at the small village of Vigolo Marchese just 6km away, which boasts a Romanesque basilica from 1008 and “la Pusterla”, the magnificent castle of Vigolo which is now a winery.
It is a valley full of history, culture, tradition and the typical hospitality of the Emilians; open, sincere and frank. Every producer has close ties with his roots and tradition: he puts all his sacrifice in his work and investments in the cellar in order to give the consumer a quality product and to carry on the family tradition and history. The wineries in Piacenza are the result of history and family traditions that are kept alive over the years by the current owners who try to protect their DOCs with innovation, while respecting the traditional production processes.
The itinerary is about 90 kilometres long and can be finished off with a tour of the town centre of Piacenza or by staying at one of the wonderful farmhouses to enjoy the breathtaking view of the valleys.