Varese Ligure is the main centre of the Val di Vara. This village combines urbanistic and historical features that cannot be found elsewhere. The centre of the village is developed around the fort of the Fieschi family, who were once lords of this area. It is called Borgo Rotondo (Round Hamlet) owing to its concentric layout. The village was developed in medieval times, when traders and artisans were given lands on which to construct their businesses as a gift. Traces of this town planning still remain today, and give the village a special appearance; the houses almost appear to have been built inside one another.
At Varese: the baroque church with the twin bell towers is dedicated to Saints Teresa of Avila and Filippo Neri. Inside there are many works by baroque painters. In front of the church are the two towers, "Piccinnino" and "Landi". Others works are housed in what is a masterpiece in its own right; the parish church of San Giovanni Battista.
In this village you should try the vegetable tarts, the most famous of which is called the "pasqualina". In August, don't miss the fete of the "sciuette", delicate sweets shaped like mushrooms, flowers and fruit.
How to get there
By car, taking the Livorno-Genova and exiting at Brugnato.