Hiking to Castello Baradello in Parco Spina Verde in Como… In the afternoon we fly back home. Still plenty of time to take a trip this morning. We don’t have to think long: we are going to Castello Baradello, a military defense tower perched on a hill some 430 meters higher overlooking Como and Lake Como.
The hill on which Castello Baradello is built is part of the Parco Regionale Spina Verde: the green hilly spine that runs along the Italian-Swiss border all the way to Como. We look at the park’s website and discover the area over which the park extends. There are about 13 signposted walks through the park. You can also combine some walks. In short, anyone who puts on the walking shoes can enjoy themselves here. We’ll be back!
Anyway, back to today, Castello Baradello… We drive by car to the parking in Via Teresa Rimoldi. From there we start walking on a gravel path that winds up through the forest. After half an hour of walking we reach the small plateau: benches and a closed cafe-restaurant, a pond where the fallen soldiers rest on the bottom, a dilapidated turret and otherwise nobody else…
A little higher to the left is the watchtower of Castello Baradello. A square stone tower 28 meters high and about 8 meters wide. The first stones of the site date from the 6th and 7th centuries. During the wars between Milan and Como, the site served as a refuge for the inhabitants of Como. In 1158, Emperor Frederico Barbarosso built the watchtower. The Spaniards destroyed the site in 1527. Only the watchtower is more or less preserved.
What we didn’t know is that Castello Baradello can only be visited from April to September and only on Saturdays and Sundays. The watchtower is closed with a gate. There are a remarkable number of security cameras. A visit to the tower will cost you five euros… Too bad!
There will be no attack by Milanese troops today. We decide to attack the tower ourselves! When we walk left between the bushes around the tower, we reach the rear. There we clamber over a low wall and we are inside the defensive walls of the tower. We climb a little further and eventually walk up the stairs of the tower. Ok, the door to enter is locked but we still had a nice view.
And now back down quickly because in a few hours we will be back in Brussels.