Baradello Castle

Como, Italy

The Castello Baradello is a military fortification located on a 430 m high hill next to the city of Como. The castle occupies the ancient site of Comum Oppidum, the original settlement of Como, dating from the 1st millennium BC. Later it was one of the last Byzantine strongholds in the area, surrendering to the Lombards in 588. The castle was restored during the War of the Lombard League, with the help of emperor Frederick Barbarossa (1158). Barbarossa officially donated it to the citizens of Como in 1178.

Napoleone della Torre died here in 1278, having been imprisoned here by Ottone Visconti after the Battle of Desio; his nephew Guido was able to escape in 1283, as well as his brothers Corrado and Enrico the following year. Azzone Visconti restored and enlarged the fortification after conquering Como in 1335, and built another castle, the Castello della Torre Rotonda ('Castle of the Round Tower', now lost) and a citadel.

In 1527, by order of emperor Charles V, the castle was dismantled, with the exception of the tower, to prevent it from falling in hands of the French troops that had invaded the duchy of Milan. After belonging to monks and then to private individuals, the castle was restored in 1971.

The most preserved element is a square tower. It once had Guelph-type merlons. The walls are of Byzantine origin (6th-7th century); these were later heightened and provided with Guelph merlons, while another external line of walls was added.

Also from the 6th century are the Chapel of St. Nicholas and quadrangular tower, which was used as the castellan's residence. Napoleone della Torre was buried in the Chapel of St. Nicholas.



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Via degli Alpini, Como, Italy
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Founded: 6th century AD
Category: Castles and fortifications in Italy

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4.2/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Kayleigh Mills (3 years ago)
Although Castello Baradello was closed when we made our hike here, the rest of the journey was worth it. Don't be disheartened if you find this closed, if you carry on your hike you'll come across an ancient settlement (pre-Roman), replica Roman farm house, and astonishing views from Monte Croce.
Jennifer Evans (3 years ago)
Beautiful place but very restricting open hours. Still a nice hike though! Wish we read the reviews before going so that we knew when it was open!
Otrek Wrona (3 years ago)
Check opening hours! Nice hiking path, there are at least to ways to get to the to so you can walk different one both ways. There's a nice small camping spot beneath. It's sad that the tower is open only 1 day per week (not the day I was there unfortunately). It would be also nice if they cut some of the bushes around the camping spot to allow taking a glimpse of world when castello is closed but I guess it's fine.
Colman Ó Cathail (3 years ago)
The hike up is good for the views! But the castle is rarely open, so I wouldn’t get my hopes up! But as you can see, you do get a stunning view of Como and the lake from the top of the hill so if that’s what you fancy, it’s well worth the walk.
Diego Gopen (3 years ago)
Amazing view. It's incredible that it was close in a week day though. So we couldn't pass the door :(
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