Suspended on a cliff like an eagle’s nest, the Castle of Gropparello strikes its visitors with its imposing group of towers and its impressive complex, whose visit offers to the eye a succession of widely scenically diverse landscapes. The sober elegance of its medieval halls, the monumental grandeur of its fireplaces, the light peeking lightly from the large windows suspended on a wild ravine: all this gives the environment the atmosphere of what is typically imagined as a ‘mediaeval castle’.
Now a key example of perfectly preserved Guelph castle, Gropparello was built on a rocky cliff of volcanic origin, overlooking an impressive gorge of great geological interest. The Castle was first built on the site of a former Roman fort, probably erected to defend the road leading to the ancient Velleia, and it was subsequently fortified with walls. In recent years studies have proposed that the spot was originally a Celtic settlement, due also to the presence of an original artefact, on the verge of the cliff, now believed a stone altar.
The entrance to the fortress was possible only through two drawbridges, one for carriages (still perfectly functional), which was lowered only for the passage of horses or military carriages, and one footway.
The castle is part of the circuit of Castles of the Duchy of Parma and Piacenza and s on the Wine route of the Placentia Hills.
Gropparello Castle has an old music room with a huge variety of instruments available for professionals who want to practice even on holiday.