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Stage 4. Châtillon to Verrès

  Here you take up the path again along the Roman road “delle Gallie”. On leaving Châtillon there is a quite challenging steep ascent before taking the path flanking a “ru” through to Saint Vincent, where you pass by the well known spa centre and reach the Roman bridge in Cillian. From here, staying on the left side of the Valley you reach the Castle of Saint-Germain, perched on a hill in the municipality of Montjovet, and then on towards Verrès, along the state road, or alternatively along the secondary parallel road that starts in the old hamlet of Montjovet. On reaching the village of Torille the path runs alongside the River Dora to then cross over the bridge leading to Fleuran, after which it passes through Issogne and alongside the famous castle, open to the public all year round. Worth noting are also the cast-iron pomegranate fountain and the paintings on the portico, depicting scenes from life in the 1400s, the magnificent Baron’s hall and the chapel. 

The route then leads on to the hamlet of Verrès. This hamlet is dominated by a castle dug out of the rock, open to the public, and standing on a raised ridge of rock at the end of the Ayas Valley.
 

Courtesy of www.lovevda.it

 

Distance Time Elevation in meters

Km
Elapsed
Hrs-Mins
Moving
Hrs-Mins
Gain Loss Min Max
19 6H15 6H15 570 740 391 549

   

   

 

 

Original map courtesy of "The Via Francigena Terre De Mezzo by Roberta Ferraris ISBM978-88-6189-491-4"

4.1 0.8 km Through Conoz village to Montjovet Church
4.2 2.4 km La Sournere village
4.3 4.6 km Rue de la Pleine
4.4 6.1 km Cillian village
4.5 7.0 km Champ de Vigne village
4.6 8.0 km Chenal Castle
4.7 10.4 km Clearing
4.8 12.0 km Berriaz de Montjovet village
4.9 13.4 km Reclou village
4.10 16.8 km Houses at Torille

 

 

After leaving Châtillon, the trail climbs the steep mountain, and then runs along a “ru” down to Saint-Vincent, a renowned spa town. The itinerary continues along the left side of the valley towards the Castle of Saint-Germain, perched on a promontory near Montjovet. After walking a stretch of the ancient Gaul consular road, you will reach Verrès.

Saint-Vincent medieval parish church was erected over the remains of a Roman building dating back to the 300-400 A.D. that has recently been dug up on the occasion of renovation works.
This amazing church boasts a strong contrast between the simple interior and the rich pictorial decoration of the apse. This religious building also houses a museum that displays rare exhibits of religious art – sinopie, frescoes and wooden sculptures. An archaeological site under the church is evidence of human presence in this area since the Bronze Age/Iron Age.

In Montjovet, the Castle of Saint-Germain and its massive tower dating back to the 10th-11th centuries overlook the gorge dug by the river Dora; the castle was built to defend the valley, the so-called “plaine”.

Verrès, the ancient Vitricium, is dominated by its castle, built on a rocky promontory; unlike other castles in the Aosta valley, which are composed of a series of buildings enclosed with a circuit wall, Verrès castle was constructed as a single structure. The fortress looks like a cube, thirty metres long on each side. The village of Verrès is also known for the provostship of Saint-Gilles, which includes the 18th century collegiate church and the provostship buildings – including a stopover for pilgrims.

Issogne, with its pilgrim legacy shaped through the centuries, is situated just opposite to Verrès, along the cycle trail of the Francigena.

The medieval castle, famous for the wrought iron pomegranate fountain and a series of frescoed lunettes depicting scenes of ordinary life and workshops, houses some ancient graffiti, evidence of an ancient transit of pilgrims.

 
     

Saint Germain Castle

Central tower of Saint Germain castle

Verrès

Verres Castle

Issogne Castle and the Fortress of Bard