The village of Alagna Valsesia in Piedmont (Im Land in the Walser; Alagna in Piedmont; Lagna in dialect valsesiano) is situated at the foot of Monte Rosa, the second highest mountain in the Alps, at about 1200 mt of altitude. In its territory is located part of the Alta Valsesia Natural Park, whose boundaries arrive up to Punta Gnifetti and then the hut observatory regina Margherita to over 4500 mt of altitude. The peculiarity of the share is defined the "highest park of Europe".. Is famous for mountaineering and especially for that of off-piste skiing (freeride) where he became a point of reference of international relevance, attracting enthusiasts from all over the world. The Germanic origin of the local population has certainly influenced the toponym that, according to some historians, derives from the German Land, in Italian land or country.
Alagna is one of the "German sentinels around the Pink", thus Horace Benedicte De Saussure defined the Walser settlements during his journey in the second half of the eighteenth century. The colonization by the part of the people coming from the swiss Valais dates back to the end of 1200. The newcomers took in rent lands used only as summer grazing by the populations more downstream and made permanently inhabited. This population was devoted to sheep farming and agriculture, and with its culture, its traditions and its characteristic rural buildings left a deep mark in many areas of the Valsesia. Year after year the settlers founded more than 20 fractions, still inhabited today, where the Nordic architectures in wood create color spots between the mountain vegetation at the foot of Monte Rosa. The warm hues of the larch centenary of the houses perfectly blends with the green of the meadows and wooded valleys and the white of the rushing waterfalls of crystal clear waters. Alagna is located at the base of the valleys Otro, Olen, Sesia, Mud and from here you numerous trails including those of connection with the Lys valley and then Gressoney and that of the Turlo that leads to Macugnaga. Born in that period the will to make habitable the Terre Alte and for this purpose the landowners rely on "colonizers of high altitude". So are remembered even today the Walser because they were the first to build villages inhabited stably over the 1000/1100 meters a.s.l. with their change the history of alpine anthropization. The Walser Community remained relatively isolated until the middle of the sixteenth century, but were not lacking contacts with the population valsesiana. This people brings with it the history, customs and language of origin alemanna, different with respect to the gentiles romance already present in the valley. For a long time it creates a wall between the two cultures and a consequent isolation of Walser that will customize increasingly the territory.
Toward the end of the sixteenth century a family of Varallo, the Scarognini, began the exploitation of gold mines nearby Alagna, activities which also involved the local population. The extractive activity including also silver and copper causing a substantial immigration of workers from the Valsesia, from Biella and from other areas of Piedmont. The language of the Walser is a particular variation of the dialect of southern German, called "highest alemanno", and is very similar to the dialect of Swiss German in its most archaic: The titzschu of Alagna Valsesia and Rimella in Valsesia is one of its three variants still existing in Italy.
The settlements near the parish church in the course of 1800, know a new development with the arrival of the first alpine tourism. Arise then the first hotels and elegant houses in masonry in liberty style. Alagna is experiencing a new era while maintaining their own culture. Its history is clearly legible on the territory and often merges with the present. Just walking among the ancient roads and paths you will meet numerous eco museum sites, as the Walser Museum, the Alagnese Union Theater, the sixteenth century watermills of Uterio, the old sawmill of Resiga, the sixteenth century parish church dedicated to Saint John the Baptist, the many fractional ovens present in the heart of every inhabited center. It is also part of the ski resorts of Monteroski that connects it to the Gressoney Valley and the Champoluc and is known as the Freeride paradise.
The Municipality of Alagna Valsesia
Province of Vercelli
Altitude center: 1191 m a.s.l.
The Municipality is part of:
Borghi Sostenibili del Piemonte
Unione montana della Valsesia
Orange Flag - Italian Touring Club
Protected Natural Areas:
Ente di Gestione delle Aree Protette della Valsesia
Frazione Centro 1 - Tel. 0163-922944
The highway 299 for Alagna is easily passable and without too many curves. On almost all the road there is the speed limit of 50 km / h. From Varallo to get to Alagna are 36 km and can be covered in about 40 minutes. From the exit of the Romagnano Ghemme highway, 65 km are covered in about 90 minutes.
ON THE TRAIN