Sanremo and surroundings to visit
Sanremo and surroundings to visit: Apricale, Bussana Vecchia and Dolceacqua
If you have decided to treat yourself to a holiday at the Royal Hotel Sanremo, in winter, as in summer or spring, you might be wondering what the most enthralling surrounding villages are. Did you know that just a few kilometres from the heart of the city, there are several historic centres of rare beauty that deserve to be toured even during a single weekend? We have picked three destinations near Sanremo for you that absolutely should not be missed: Dolceacqua, Apricale and Bussana Vecchia. So let's discover each of these villages, to give you the gist of what these extraordinary Ligurian realities of the hinterland are hiding.
Sanremo and its surroundings: Dolceacqua
Through the lines of this article, the first village near Sanremo that we take you to is Dolceacqua. The landscape is particular because it seems almost like the village is sitting on the fence between being a place of mountain or sea.
Dolceacqua is located right in the heart of Val Nervia and the homonymous river runs along its entire length. What makes this village unique is that it seems to have stood still in time and, the Romanesque bridge built in medieval times, was even the subject of a painting by Claude Monet.
Once you arrive, in addition to the bridge, you will surely spot the imposing presence of the Doria Castle and walking through the streets of the village of Dolceacqua you will realise the beauty of this village near Sanremo. To better discover this small town, we invite you to sit at a table in a local bar or restaurant and taste a glass of Rossese di Dolceacqua, which is a delicious, typical local wine.
The village of Dolceacqua is quite small but breathes history everywhere, we recommend you visit the parish of Sant'Antonio Abate dating back to 400, where history meets art, and the church of San Giorgio that still houses the tombs of the members of an ancient and noble family of Oneglia, whose history is part of the History of the Republic of Genoa - Stefano Doria and Giulio Doria.
Villages near the Royal Hotel Sanremo: Apricale
Another village of particular interest in the surroundings of Sanremo is undoubtedly Apricale. This small village perched on top of a mountain, with its spiral shape facing the sun, seems to want to protect all the surrounding villages below. When you arrive here, you will certainly be in awe of its geographical location and the fact that almost all the houses are made of stone. Walking along the ancient mule track that starts from the old Levatoio Bridge and going into the streets, you will find the fortress church of the Madonna degli Angeli, the house, or Tower, of the Executioner where even today we can admire a tuff headrest where the condemned to death would spend their last moments, plus the square of the parish church with a mosaic floor that will undoubtedly charm you.
Continuing to the top of the Rock of the village of Apricale, you will find the Castle of the Lizard which today hosts exhibitions, theatrical performances and meetings. You can not forget a particularly significant event that animates Apricale for about a week; given the beauty of this village that is easily visited on foot, the famous Cough Theatre of Genoa with its company, every year chooses this location to stage its itinerant show, which takes the audience through discovering numerous small stages set up everywhere in the village.
What to see near the Royal Hotel Sanremo: Bussana Vecchia
Lastly, an absolutely unique village that deserves to be known if you go on a holiday in Sanremo is Bussana Vecchia. It was 1887 when a violent earthquake severely damaged the entire town and numerous buildings were reduced to rubble. Since then the village of Bussana Vecchia has become a village of Artists.
The community was reborn on the ruins of the medieval village affected by the earthquake and did so thanks to the numerous artists, painters and artisans who decided to move their homes there. The new inhabitants thus began, slowly, to recover all the abandoned houses of the village starting obviously from the most accessible ones and renovating the buildings respecting the characteristics of the place. Bussana Vecchia is still a magical place, a wonderful bridge between the past and the future. It is like visiting an open-air art workshop and, strolling about, you will find many workshops of artists and breathtaking views like the one given by the old never renovated Church of Sant'Egidio.
We have only listed three sites around Sanremo to visit and discover, but the hinterland offers countless other dream places and the Royal Hotel Sanremo is the perfect place from which to explore the history of ancient Liguria.