The historic village of Formazza lies in the northernmost corner of Piedmont region, close to the border with Switzerland.
The community’s Walser origin, which goes back to the 13th century and is still today a matter of pride for its inhabitants, is seen in the dialect form of its name, Pomatt, and in the distinctive architecture of the local buildings.
The village’s marvellous setting among woods of pine and larch, Alpine pastures and rocky mountains, makes it an ideal destination for lovers of long mountain hikes through the colours and scents of the Alpine vegetation.
There are many examples of the characteristic Walser houses, their lower part built of stone and the upper part and the roof always of wood. Sometimes the wooden part of the house rests on stone “mushrooms”, which gave protection against mice.
The Casa Forte Museum can be visited in the village of Ponte, in a historic 16th century fortified house. The Museum’s collections and pictorial material on display illustrate the main aspects of the life and culture of the Walser people. Next to the local culture section an important collection of wooden statues boasts examples from the 15th century German school.
In winter Formazza is an ideal place for a winter sports holiday, especially for Nordic skiing enthusiasts, with cross-country circuits from 1 to 12 km of all levels of difficulty at San Michele and Riale.
Lovers of unspoiled mountain environments can go ski mountaineering in the upper Formazza valley, on routes which are among the most interesting in the whole of the Alps.