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The heart of Parco delle Alpi Marittime

Valasco and Valscura

Valasco Plain (A. Rivelli/PNAM).

A great plain of pasture, the bottom of a lake transformed into an expanse of green grass in the middle of a basin of broken stones, rocky crags, snowy peaks. The heart of the Park. This is where in the mid-nineteenth century Vittorio Emanuele II had his hunting lodge built, an unusual "castle" with a square outline and crenellated turrets.

Animals out grazing, marmots' whistles, lazy water, occasional larches lost in the meadows: Valasco is a peaceful oasis which, as though by magic, opens out at the base of an impenetrable valley, dug out of the harsh sides of Monte Matto and the rocks of San Giovanni.

From the plain a magnificent track built by the Alpine troops at the beginning of the twentieth century, leads to the Valscura lakes area, a paved stretch leads over a heap of blocks and scree: a perfectly crafted surface, still intact a century after its construction.

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