Useful advice Travelling on foot
Suspended between the ground and the sky, clinging to the rocky wall of Mount Baldo, the charming Sanctuary of Our Lady of the Crown is a sacred site made beautiful by both its spiritual character and the originality of the surrounding landscape. The Sanctuary, belonging to the Diocese of Verona, is in Spiazzi, a hamlet of Ferrara di Monte Baldo.
The small and simple church was built to celebrate the miraculous appearance of the statue of the Lady of our Sorrows, called Our Lady of the Crown, who is said to have appeared on 24 June 1522. Over the centuries numerous restoration and enlargement works were carried out and today this extraordinary Sanctuary attracts worshippers from across the world.
Set in the rock face, the façade and the bell tower are in Gothic revival style, while the interior of the church is in the classic style, in the shape of a Latin cross surmounted by a large dome.
More than three quarters of the building are below the rock, sections of which are visible from inside the building. The complex, hanging over the Etschtal, can be reached by mini-bus and even on foot, by following the old pilgrims' path (2 hours to go up and 1 down): starting from Brentino, in Etschtal, you continue up a very long stairway of 1540 steps cut into the rock until arriving at the fantastic Sanctuary.
Immersed in the alpine atmosphere of Mount Baldo and wrapped in a natural silence, the Sanctuary of Our Lady of the Crown seems suspended in a void. Religiosity pervades these sites and those who visit them, while amazement is a natural reaction to such daring feat of mankind.
How to get there: on foot or by minibus.
Don't miss: The left wall and the apse are shaped by the natural rock of the mountain, sections of which are also visible, such as the ceiling from the building's interior. Midnight Mass at Christmas and New Year are both unforgettable experiences.
Useful tips and information: The Sanctuary of Our Lady of the Crown, in the Diocese of Verona, is open all year long with the following timetable: from November to March from 8 AM to 6 PM and from April to October from 7 AM to 7.30 PM.
The left wall and the apse are formed by the natural rock of the mountain, which is also visible in parts as the ceiling from inside the building. Midnight mass at Christmas and New Year is certainly an unforgettable experience.