The hermitage of Santa Caterina del Sasso, Leggiuno, Varese, Italy

The hermitage of Santa Caterina del Sasso is a monastery built overlooking the eastern shore of Lake Maggiore in Leggiuno, Varese. The construction of the complex is from the twelfth century; Alberto Besozzi of Arolo, dealer and lender, survivor of a shipwreck during a lake crossing, vowed to St. Catherine of Alexandria to settle there for the rest of his life in prayer and solitude in a cave on this stretch of coast. He built a chapel to the saint that we can still see at the back of the church. The relics of Blessed Albert, are inside the church. In the fourteenth century there was the construction of two churches dedicated to St Mary and San Nicolas, which were added to the complex. On the church’s facade, we find four arches that are the remains of a fresco cycle and, seen from the lake, there is the bell tower of the fourteenth century. The oldest part is the chapel from 1195, located at a lower level compared to other parts of the church, which took the size of the tomb of St. Catherine in the Sinai and on the outside, near the window there are some pictures of the transfer of the body of the saint (by the angels) at Mount Sinai. The complex is considered a national monument since 1914. It was restored and reopened in eighty years. It is currently supported by some Benedictine Oblates. The present church has five parts, initially separated, are now they’re four chapels, while the fifth is the chapel where lies Alberto Besozzi. The church is covered with many beautiful frescoes. There is also an organ and a statue of the Virgin and Child (seventeenth century). The hermitage is accessible by foot through a staircase that connects the Quicchio on one side, small group of houses, with parking for cars and a place to eat something, with the other, recently completed, that gives service from the navigation of Lago Maggiore.

Tips

If you can not take the stairs, there is a lift (0.50 euros), built into the rock, which brings you to the church.
The place is very nice for a walk and to take wonderful photos of its beautiful surroundings.
In summer, there is a direct bus from Laveno. The nearest train station is Sangiano on the Luino-Milan line (3km). You can also reach the place with the lake navigation service.

 

International Exhibition of Tourism and Travel, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Are you passionate about travel? You think about your next trip, but you are not sure where to go? You are counselor or travel agent and are looking for more information for you customers? So take advantage of the International Exhibition of Tourism and Travel (SITEV) held in Montreal from 20th to 22nd October 2017 at Place Bonaventure. You will meet many exhibitors who will be pleased to talk to you about different destinations, travel enthusiasts like you. You can find lot of information, advice, lectures, tours, news, catalogs, etc.

Tips

Look at the programme if you want to attend conferences or presentations.

For a better visit, leave your coat in the cloakroom (price $ 3.00).

If you are a counselor or travel agent, present your business card to the accreditation counter and you will receive your free ticket.

Kawachi Fuji Garden, Kitakyushu, Japan

Located in the city of Kitakyushu, Japan, straight from an impressionnist paint, Kawachi Fuji Garden is home to an incredible 150 Wisteria flowering plants spanning 20 different species. The garden’s main attraction is the Wisteria tunnel that allows visitors to walk down an enchanting tunnel exploding with colour.

Tips

Located about 6 hours from Tokyo, the best time to visit it, is from late April to mid May, typically peaking at the end of April. The garden is private so there is an entry fee. Stay in one of those typical Japanese guest’s house, you will be enchanted.