Monte Berico is a hill, a little more than 100 meters above sea level, which is the northernmost part of the complex of Colli Berici, located a short distance from the historic center of Vicenza and overlooking the city. On its summit stands the shrine of Our Lady of Monte Berico, patron saint of the city and the diocese.
Monte Berico is also the name of one of the most elegant residential areas of the city, built on the slopes of the hill in the first half of the twentieth century and consists almost exclusively of villas and detached houses. In front of the sanctuary stands the Piazzale della Vittoria with a wide balcony over the entire city, the northern part of the province, and the Vicentine Prealps.
We suggest you to park comfortably in one of the guarded parking lots near Campo Marzo, here at Parcheggio Verdi
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Parcheggio+Verdiemail@example.com,11.5367782,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m12!1m6!3m5!1s0x477f317c9d8ca45d:0x50d46073ee1d8ff5!2sCampo+Marzo!8 m2!3d45.5432749!4d11.5413946!3m4!1s0x477f31636b24d4e3:0xc987631c60ae682a!8m2!3d45.5444778!4d11.5385923 for example you will be very comfortable both to leave towards Monte Berico, and then to go towards the center if you want to go for a walk.
The parking is inside Campo Marzo from where we will start to discover Monte Berico.
Cross all of Campo Marzo, until you reach the state highway on the other side and start to climb towards Monte Berico.
Once you reach the junction with the state highway, it is important that you go straight up in front of you to avoid the busy roads leading to the top, crossing the arcades of Monte Berico where it will be easy to find kids training with their respective sports clubs.
The climb is short but intense and after a while you will find yourself at the Sanctuary of the Madonna.
The sanctuary directly overlooks Vicenza and in its grandeur seems to have full control of the city.
Over the course of the centuries the church – the Sanctuary of the Madonna of Monte Berico – was increasingly enlarged and embellished, in particular for the interventions of Palladio around 1578-79 and the rebuilding by Borella between 1688 and 1703, when the large Baroque body surmounted by the dome was added to the first Gothic church.
From here the view is wonderful and 360° on the city and the mountains that at the bottom of the horizon circumscribe the whole huge valley.
Following the Giardini della Vittoria and continuing along Viale Dieci Giugno I continue our itinerary moving further and further away from the city in the direction of the historic villas and hills that characterize these areas. The Gardens are a place of peace surrounded by nature, returned to the city completely redeveloped in recent 2018.
You’ll generally find few cars on the boulevard, but there is a very wide sidewalk that conveniently serves as a bike path for pedestrians and runners in the area.
A little further on you pass by the Risorgimento and Resistance Museum, but from the road you can barely see inside.
Continuing along the avenue will be a succession of period villas, one more beautiful than the other that give the place the real added value.
How not to mention Villa Margherita, perhaps one of the most immense villas along the way. There are so many villas, even of private individuals who now live here that it is impossible for us to photograph them all, but at least we are sure to stimulate some curiosity and you too can take a tour to discover this place.
The complex of Santa Margherita dei Berici consists today of 3 main buildings. It is built on the site of a Roman post which, thanks to its dominant position on the plain, controlled at a strategic point the Via Postumia (traced in 148 BC) that led from Genoa to Aquileia.
When you arrive at Villa Colonnese we are sure that you will think about staying there without hesitation. You can only see it from the outside through the boundary wall, but I would say that is enough to linger a moment longer.
After passing the last villas our little tour of Monte Berico is coming to an end when we arrive in the middle of the vineyards and from there we would soon enter in the middle of the countryside. But we will leave it for another itinerary. After all, it is not far to the Euganean Hills!!
For the return trip, it’s enough to turn around and retrace your steps, aware that other beautiful places will be waiting for you with another perspective on the way back.
Trail Type: asphalt
Water: in Vicenza at the start