Viale Repubblica

Austrian port

Site n. 18 - Widespread Museum


For more than 2,000 years Angera has owed its development to the fact that it overlooks a natural gulf protected from the winds thanks to the Rocca hill and the San Quirico hill. The natural port was at the centre of the river-lake routes that connected Europe to the Adriatic Sea, through the Po, Ticino and Verbano. In Roman times there was perhaps also a lighthouse located in the current Via Ondoli found during the construction of a building on the Greppi property.

The medieval port was at the innermost point of the gulf, but no structures have survived because the barges berthed directly on the shore.

The Austrian port was built for reasons of trade during Habsburg rule to allow the early steamships to dock. The structure dates from 1819 and is composed of massive granite walls.

In 1826 a navigation service opened on the lake, initially involving only Piedmont and Switzerland. Later the Austrians too adhered to the agreement, which permitted the boat to stop also at Angera. The current pier, where the Navigazione Lago Maggiore boats now stop, was built in 1913.

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