Breno and surroundings
Enjoy your vacation in Valle Camonica!
Art and culture in Breno
The municipal territory, mostly mountainous, is delimited at west by the main furrow of the Valle Camonica, while at east it extends to the mountains on its left orographic side, including the highest part of the Valle del Caffaro, up to the border with Trentino.
THE CASTLE OF BRENO
It stands on a hill in the centre of the village of Breno. The castle walls contain an area of 0.525 ha, about 120 metres above the village.
Underneath the Ghibelline tower, the remains of a Neolithic dwelling have been found, trapezoidal in shape, 5 metres wide resting on lateral rock pillars. The walls were made of grating plastered with mud, a typical way of building walls in Valle Camonica until a few decades ago.
Nearby, artefacts such as tools, vases and two graves were found. Few traces of a Copper Age dwelling remain, while it seems that during the Roman period the site was completely abandoned (perhaps due to the proximity of the Civitas Camunorum).
A restored and wide medieval historical centre witnesses the ancient history of Breno. Pedestrian areas where you can stroll among suggestive views and small shops.
The church of Sant’Antonio in Breno is a remarkable building, known mainly for being one of the stops on Romanino’s artistic journey in Valle Camonica. The church was built in 1334 following a testamentary disposition by Giacomo Marone Ronchi, who gave the structure overlooking the square of the town of Breno to the friars of Sant’Antonio of Vienne with the obligation to celebrate a daily mass there. The magnificent red sandstone portal dating back to the end of the 14th century is one of the very few examples of neo-Gothic architecture in Valle Camonica. It owes its fame to the frescoes on the vault of the presbytery.
Villa Gheza is the result to the stubbornness and imagination of an extraordinary and bizarre character in the history of Breno: the lawyer Maffeo Gheza. Born in Pian di Borno on 30th April 1875, he graduated in law at the University of Torino at the beginning of the 20th century. He then settled in Breno, where he began working as a civil lawyer and entrepreneur in the field of iron and steel, real estate and banking, as an effort to redeem Valle Camonica from its centuries of marginalisation.
We do not know how the idea of building a house in the centre of Breno in oriental style came about, but it is significant that Gheza undertook the entire project and execution of the building using local workers. The result of a commitment that lasted from 1929 to 1935 is a three-storey architectural complex, designed for his children’s flats, surrounded by large terraced gardens and crowned by a panoramic balcony with a belvedere overlooking the castle of Breno and the valley. A building that, because of its special features and importance in the architectural context of Breno, should be listed as an architectural asset and preserved with proper maintenance.
Sanctuary of Minerva
The Sanctuary of Minerva is a temple of the Roman era, located in the area of Spinera. It rises up against a rocky spur on the banks of the River Oglio, opposite a natural cave where a spring used to flow. The site was already a place of worship in the Iron Age and it housed a sanctuary, of which some stone fences and a brandopferplatz, i.e. a paved space that hosted ritual bonfires, have been found.
(Source Santuario di Minerva)
Nostalgia Club Nostalgia Club was founded in 1992 by some friends who had already started collecting with the aim of bringing together enthusiasts in the sector, to promote the knowledge, conservation and restoration of motorbikes and motor vehicles of special interest and to establish social relationships with other bodies and associations with similar social aims.
Our goals have been realised with the establishment of a permanent building used as a dynamic museum which also serves as a meeting place for fans and collectors.
On the first floor of the Club’s new headquarters, which covers about 1000 square metres, there is a hall for exhibiting cars, a showroom, vintage accessories and a library; on the second floor there is a motorbike exhibition, a video library and a conference hall.
(Source Nostalgia Club)
Antica Strada Valeriana
The Antica Strada Valeriana is a 140 km route with departure from Pilzone d’Iseo and arrival at Passo del Tonale. This route used to be the only road connecting Lake Iseo and Valle Camonica. Nowadays the road is rediscovering a new value thanks to its incredible panoramic views and its historical importance.
It has been recently mapped officially and added to the list Cammini d’Italia, proof of the increasing interest in this route.
Capo di Ponte, Naquane, Luine, the rock art centres, the civilisation of the ancient Camuni and the experimental and educational archaeology parks.
(Park of rock engravings Capo di Ponte)
It takes about 20 minutes to reach the shores of Lake Iseo, where you can spend wonderful days on the boat or taste the traditional fish from the lake. Don’t miss a trip to “Montisola”, the largest lake island in Europe.