Vallaise Arnad – Quart Castles

This is an excerpt from the book “Aosta Valley Itineraries”.

Vallaise Arnad Castle
Vallaise Arnad Castle – Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley

The castle Vallaise Arnad was purchased in summer 2010 by the Regional Administration and is currently undergoing restoration. The castle is the result of several phases of construction. Of medieval origin, expanded in later centuries, it was significantly transformed during the decade 1660-1670 by Baron Félix-Charles-François. It was long divided into two distinct portions, belonging respectively to the two branches of the family (the Vallaise-Romagnano and Vallaise-Montalto). After the extinction of the male line of the family Vallaise, the castle was sold in the mid nineteenth century, the trader Turin Jacobins.

Vallaise Arnad Castle tower
Vallaise Arnad Castle tower – Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley

Castle tower of Vallaise ArnadLa building is on three floors, flanked by square towers own, and has within it many halls, relevant to the decorations that reflect the taste and culture of a family of provincial nobility of the Duchy of Savoy in seventeenth century. Another interesting element is the ongoing game of epic female, as evidenced by the stories of biblical heroines Agar and Tamar and the “strong women” that dominate in the gallery.

Vallaise Arnad Castle Chapel
Vallaise Arnad Castle Chapel – Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley

In the park of the castle is also a hexagonal chapel features a baroque altar in polychrome marble. The house is upstream of Arnad, surrounded by vineyards.
The castle will be made available during the summer and especially during the days of the feast of bacon. Once you have completed the task of returning to the public good will be made ​​available for the commercial promotion of local products and also non-institutional events.

Where to stay in Arnad

There is an hotel available, check it out and make a reservation here.

Quart Castle
Quart Castle – Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley

Quart castle

The Quart castle, a few kilometers to the east of Aosta, beautifully perched on the side of the mountain, was built by the Lords of Port Sant’Orsa powerful noble family became extinct in 1378.

Quart Castle - Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley
Quart Castle – Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley

The complex construction is the result of successive enlargements, successive from the twelfth to the seventeenth century. More that of a castle, it is a real fortified settlement. The restoration works and the contemporary archaeological excavations have further highlighted the complex layers of this building. In the chapel were restored the elegant stucco made in 1606 by John Gabuto Ticino.

Quart Castle - Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley
Quart Castle – Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley

The donjon (keep original) Quart castle is decorated with an elaborate series of wall paintings dating from the late thirteenth century.

Quart Castle - Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley
Quart Castle – Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley

The iconographic themes represented include the stories of Alexander the Great, the twelve months, Samson and Delilah.

Quart Castle - Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley
Quart Castle Alexander fresco – Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley

The stories of Alexander, in particular, constitutes an absolute rarity in the historical context of national art of this period. During the sixteenth century, unfortunately, the murals have been completely whitewashed the changed functions of the donjon. Since traditional methods of removal, physical and chemical, it has been inadequate, the removal of the plaster was performed using a laser instrumentation, and was completed in summer 2011.
What gives great charm to this site is its seamless integration into the wild environment, in a sunny valley, at the mouth of the narrow valley carved by the river Quart.

Quart Castle - Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley
Quart Castle – Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley

Pending the completion of the work and the opening to the public in 2013, it is worth taking a walk in the surrounding area that offer picturesque views of the castle. The path climbs up to the castle Valsainte, equipped with explanatory signs, you can observe the building from above and to appreciate the complex architecture. This route has many interesting natural and is accessible even in winter.

Where to stay in Quart

There is an hotel available, check it out and make a reservation here.