Visit the small village of Aurigo during your holiday in Liguria, Italy.
A town steeped in history with old castle ruins and wonderful walkways
The roads that lead between the farmsteads through vineyards and olive groves and can be crossed by mountain bike form a thirty-kilometre network around the town. As you walk through the terracings along the roads leading to the various municipal districts, you will come across votary poles, which were placed there to protect crops against witches and evil spirits.
The sanctuary of San Paolo lies just outside the town and is a medieeval building that underwent modifications during the eighteenth century: the interior preserves a late sixteenth-century poliptych by Giulio De Rossi (the only one in the province of Imperia).
Besides the superior-quality olive oil, local specialties include Aurigo bread and "Panzarelli", pieces of pasta dough that are leavened and fried and have various fillings. There is a green sports area with five-a-side football pitches and tennis and volleyball courts.
Aurigo was chosen in the 13th century by the Count of Ventimiglia as a place where a castle would be built, and that was done on account of its good location. Through its defensive position, the village offered an ideal location for a secure and easily defensible castle. The inhabitants of Aurigo were to a large extent engaged in farming, and it was mainly cereals and olives that were cultivated. The vast expanse of land just before the village is also very suitable for wine growing and cattle farming.
Around the year 1270 the village was attacked and conquered by troops belonging to Karl of Anjou. The village remained under his rule until 1273, when it was re-conquered by the Count of Ventimiglia with help from Genoa.
Time and again the village came under attack, as various rulers tried to bring it under their rule in the 15th century. The castle of the Count of Ventimiglia was destroyed in1480 and the Count surrendered to the new ruler, Maro Giovanni Antonio di Tenda. In 1555, the village of Aurigo, together with other villages in the region, came under the jurisdiction of Marchesato di Dolceacqua.
The destroyed castle of the Count was re-constructed in another location in the village. The village came under sustained attack during the Napoleonic wars and was partly destroyed.
Aurigo became part of the Italian empire in 1861, and during the Second World War, the headquarters of the partisan coalition was stationed in Aurigo.
Aurigo is one of the villages in the Province of Imperia which is located in the Liguria region. Near Aurigo are other hamlets like: Poggialto (3.1 km), Candeasco (3.5 km) and Ville San Sebastiano (8.2km). When coming from the direction of Imperia, take the SS28 towards Torino and drive past Pontedassio, then turn left in Sarola towards Borgomaro and then follow the road to Aurigo.