History, culture and folklore
The road to Grosio in central-upper Valtellina is populated by its
recently renovated castles,
such as Saint Faustino (aka Castello Vecchio) and the Castello Nuovo, which was
built by the Viscontis. The hill on which they stand also has a number
of rupestrian (rock) etchings dating from between
2200 and 1000 BC and, in the eastern area, an interesting Romanic bell tower
belonging to Church of Saints Faustino and Giovita whose tombs are carved into
the rock at its base.
In the historic centre, the Parish Church of Saint Giuseppe, the Church of Saint Giorgio and the birthplace of Cipriano Valorsa, otherwise known as the Raphael of Valtellina, and the Visconti Venosta villa, which is now a civic museum with an extensive park, are all well worth a visit.
Local traditions are a big thing in Grosio, and the La Tradizion folk group both preserves and shares them with visitors. The group wears traditional local dress; participates in processions, fairs, folk festivals, religious celebrations; and puts on folk dance exhibitions accompanied by accordion players. The lively local community regularly celebrates festive events in the picturesque alleys of the town centre, with their historic buildings, portals and fountains. Key events include the Notte Bianca Grosina and the age-old Carnevale di Grosio, also known as the Carneval Vecc, which features floats and traditional masks. The latter is undoubtedly the most unique carnival in Valtellina, and it takes place on the first Sunday of Lent, after the festivities related to the more mainstream Ambrosian celebrations.