Madonna del Ghisallo, the Cyclists Temple
Madonna del Ghisallo, Churches in Como
The XVIIth century Madonna del Ghisallo Sanctuary is one of the best known destination for cyclists in the world: some of the most important bicycle races, including the Giro d'Italia, end at this cliff.
Magreglio is a village located inside two branches of Lake Como, the Triangolo Lariano, at a 754 meters altitude, can be found at the end of the Strada della Vallassina, a road that goes from Milan to Erba and the summit of Bellagio.
The road of Ghisallo has always been used by several bikers and its church is a renowned place for prayer and resting. Ever since the late forties, Magreglio's parish Ermelindo Viganò commited himself to proclaim the Virgin of Ghisallo as the saint patroness of cyclsts. This was recognized by the Papal Brief of october 13th 1949.
Statues of champions Gino Bartali and Fausto Coppi can be seen at the sanctuary's square, while the effigies of the Virgin and baby Jesus inside are surrounded by bicycles, trophies and pictures of other champions.
It is not by chance that the Cyclism Museum is located on this hill. It hosts numerous events and demonstrations that take place every year ath the Sanctuary, such as Cyclists Easter, National Bicycle day, among others.