La Verna Sanctuary. This remarkable calcareous height in the Casentino Valley, between rivers Tevere and Arno, was donated to Saint Francis of Assisi by Count Cattani da Chiusi and recalled also by Dante Alighieri as the "Crudo sasso intra Tevero et Arno...”. Francis, together with a few companions, built here a small cluster of huts.

In September 1224 he received the stigmata and since then the place became an important sanctuary. The Verna Sanctuary rises just below the mountain top, and includes the small Church of Santa Maria degli Angeli, the Sanctuary Museum and the Chiesa Maggiore or Basilica of the XIV-XV Century, which preserves the beautiful terracottas by Andrea della Robbia. The Church of the Stigmata harks back to 1236, and a stone set in the floor marks the spot where the saint received the stigmata.

A visit to Saint Francis’cave and to the “Sasso Spicco”, a gigantic overhanging rock, is worth the many stairs. The Saint used to go there to pray and still today the silence of the site immerses the visitor in a deep peace and spirituality. Through an ancient forest of beeches and fir-trees Mount Penna (1289 meters above sea level) is reached, from which there is a breathtaking view of both the Tevere and Arno Valleys.

The Sanctuary is placed just a few km from the village of Chiusi della Verna (Arezzo province), in the heart of the Casentino National Reserve (Parco Nazionale delle Foreste Casentinesi, Monte Falterona e Campigna). A thriving tourism industry has developed around these places that attract pilgrims and visitors from around the world, both for their spirituality and the beauty and majesty of their mountains and forests.

Come to Tuscany to visit La Verna and the green Casentino Valley, book a villa with us!!!

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