Asolo is a small town and commune located in northern Italy in the Veneto region; it’s one of the most beautiful borghi d’Italia. The town is located in the province of Treviso and is known by several names like “The city of a Hundred Horizons” because of its beautiful location. Originally the town had been settled by the Veneti and in the early Middle Ages it was under the possession of the Ezzelino family. Asolo had been under the possession of the Republic of Venice. The famous Asolo Theater was built here in 1798 by Antonio Locatelli.
After the unification of Italy, the pleasantness of Asolo becomes popular, and the town attracts many celebrities; among them, actress Elenora Duse, Robert Browning who was a famous English poet, Wilma Neruda the violinist, Gian Francesco Malipiero and Freya Stark who was a famous explorer.
Attractions in Asolo
Fortress and Asolo’s City Walls
The most interesting monuments in Asolo are the ancient fortress and the walls. The medieval fortress is characterized by many alleyways, arcades and mansions which have been built before centuries. The fortress dominates the sky line of Mount Ricco and had been originally built to guard the city. Many restoration and repair works have been done in the past centuries.
The center point of the town is the main piazza of Asolo, Piazza Garibaldi which has a beautiful 16th century fountain and is the most active part of the town. Several important monuments are located close to the main Piazza: the castle, the fortress, the theater, the palazzo della Ragione and the City museum are all located close to the main piazza.
The medieval cathedral of Asolo was the seat of the Bishop and was redesigned and renovated in the 18th century by Giorgio Massari. The cathedral has several important works by artists like Jacopo da Ponte, Lorenzo Lotto and Sebastiano Bastini. The cathedral is located close to Piazza Brugnoli where a roman aqueduct can also be seen.
Palazzo Beltramini is now the Town Hall of Asolo. The building was renovated in the 18th century and has arcaded streets and various frescoes on the façade with beautiful mullioned windows and balconies. The street where the Town Hall is located has many beautiful gothic and baroque buildings that have 15th and 16th century frescoes.
Convent of St. Pietro e Paolo
The convent of Saint Pietro and Paolo has beautiful frescoes on the façade that were done in the 17th century and depict various biblical scenes. There is an underground tunnel which connects it to the Il Fresco on the other side of the hill. The convent has been beautifully decorated and has an elegant interior. Inside the church are various art works and decorations most of which date back to the 17th and 18th centuries.
Getting to Asolo
Asolo is located quite close to the city of Treviso so getting down to the town is not very difficult. Treviso is well connected to most destinations in Italy so visitors can easily reach Treviso from other parts of Italy and then travel to Asolo. Buses depart every few hours from Treviso from the main bus station to Asolo. The state buses are also quite comfortable and the tickets are not very expensive. Tickets are easily available at most train stations. Visitors can also easily drive down to Asolo from Treviso.
Moving Around the Town
The best way to explore Asolo is on foot since it is a very compact town. The center of the town has many narrow streets and various hidden alleys which can only be explored on foot. Most of the sights seeing attractions in town are all concentrated close to the center of the town so visitors can easily visit them all on foot within a day. Those who have their own cars can also drive around to visit the nearby villages and the outskirts of Asolo.
Stay and Accommodation
Asolo has quite a lot of good hotels and Bed & Breakfasts for visitors to choose from. The town has a number of good hotels and some inexpensive options for budget conscious travelers. There are also a few villas and old country homes which can be rented by tourists if they plan to stay longer in Asolo. Most hotels are located close to the center of the town and are mostly small hotels which are run and managed by local families. Some of the most well known hotels in town are hotel Al Sole, Villa Cipriani hotel, hotel Duse, Hotel Asolo, Hotel Belvedere, Istituto Suore Maestre Di S Doretta Holiday house and villa Flangini.
Eating in Asolo
Asolo has a lot of good restaurants and pizzerias where visitors can eat. Food in Asolo is mostly traditional Italian cuisine and regional dishes which the locals prefer to eat. There are also a few taverns and bars in town that have a good collection of wines and light appetizers. On the other side, there are only very few restaurants in Asolo where visitors can find other cuisines. Some of the best restaurants in town are AI Morer farm restaurant, Epoca pub and sandwich bar, Al Bersagliere tavern, restaurant villa Cipriani, bar Al Castello, café central, café Commercio and osteria Alla Rocca.
Shopping in Asolo
Shopping in Asolo is limited to the old markets where the locals do most of their shopping. The old markets of the town have various small shops that are stacked against each other and sell various food items, handicrafts, clothes, shoes, wooden artifacts and pottery. There are also a few shopping streets in town where visitors can purchase almost anything. However, the best things to purchase in Asolo are extra virgin olive oil, honey, salami, cheese and wine. Most food shops have good quality olive oil and cheese. There are various wine shops in Asolo that have a good collection of local wines.