Faro di Gaggio Montano - Atlas Obscura

Faro di Gaggio Montano

Gaggio Montano, Italy

A unique combination of a lighthouse and a poignant memorial to the fallen of the two world wars. 


We instinctively associate lighthouses with the sea or a lake nearby. However, in the case of the Gaggio Montano lighthouse, the nearest body of water is more than five miles away.

Erected in 1952 by engineer Giuseppe Rinaldi, its beacon shines over the Reno Valley, nearby Bologna, in memory of those who fell in the mountains during the two world wars. It’s a symbol of remembrance that prompts reflection on the challenges faced by past generations, and a warning for future ones to strive for a future of hope and peace.

The monument is situated on the summit of a rock around which the village perches, and is accessed via a staircase of 155 steps. Breathtaking views of the surrounding valley and the majestic Corno alle Scale, a symbol of the Apennine Mountains, reward the effort of the climb. In the past, the site housed the ruins of an ancient fortress, some remnants of which are still visible beneath the modern structure.

In addition to the evocative presence of the lighthouse, Gaggio Montano welcomes visitors to a charming village, enriched by some Renaissance houses that testify to the importance of the area’s families over the centuries, offering an opportunity to discover the cultural richness of this land.

Know Before You Go

Gaggio Montano can be reached by car. Planning the trip in advance it can be reached by train to Porretta Terme, a well-renowned village in Northern Italy for its thermal springs, and then by bus.

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