The Caves

The Discovery

The Borgio Verezzi Caves were discovered only in 1933, but the locals were well aware of the presence of underground cavities and strange phenomena around them.

For example, the waters of the Battorezza River seemed to disappear in some points of its path, even though the river periodically overflowed and devastated the surrounding fields.

And then there was the lake, at the bottom of a "legendary" cave which was allegedly accessible from under the floor of St. Peter's Church in Borgio, and the so-called Roggetto, a small creek coming out of a crack nearby..

The Story

In the late '20s the Podestà Giacomo Staricco decided that the floods caused by the river were too dangerous: they decided to dig in the Battorezza bed, by expanding the cracks where water sometimes disappeared. They hoped to intercept an underground stream which could mitigate the strength of the floods.

They dug a 10 meter deep well, but it was stopped due to lack of funds.

Following the water

In the early '30s another flood finished the job. The water inside the well destroyed a thin layer of stone and disappeared underground. In 1933, by following the path of water, three kids from Borgio entered the first hall of a new cave, where they wrote their names (Lillo, Tito and Valentino) and the date of the discovery with the smoke of their candles.

Nobody realized the importance of the discovery till 1951, when Giovanni Dentella and the Gruppo Speleologico Ingauno began the scientific exploration of the caves: they found a web of halls and tunnels expanding for some kilometers underneath Borgio houses.

Dentella himself was fascinated by the extraordinary beauty of this place, thus he created the tourist path, which was inaugurated in 1970.

The caves today

Nowadays, when the rain is heavy, the Battorezza River still disappears inside the well and reaches all the small lakes at the bottom of the caves. The water of these lakes, calm and transparent, are a must-see of the 800 mt. tourist path, which takes the visitor to a tour of large halls among huge rocks which collapsed in ancient times.

There are speleothems of any kind: the thin and almost transparent straws; the draperies, as thin as blankets; the huge columns, which seem to support the entire cave; the "eccentrical" stalactites, which seem to defy gravity by growing in all directions.

And colors everywhere! Infinite shades of white, yellow, red, due to the presence of different minerals, are what makes our caves the most colourful in Italy!

Traces of the Past

Another extraordinary aspect is the amount of fossil bones found in some parts of the caves. Dated between 500.000 and 750.000 years ago, they include bones of extinct animals which lived in warm climates (rhinoceros, elephant, tiger, crocodile, macaque, tortoise,...) and in cold climates (bear, mammoth, deer, ibex, horse,...). This is a reflection of the alternation of ice ages and warm periods which characterized the last 2 million years of our planet's life.


It is not allowed to take inside: animals, umbrellas, sticks, tripods, bags and large objects in general. It is also forbidden:

  • To touch and damage stalactites and stalagmites
  • To smoke
  • To eat
  • To throw garbage
  • To separate from the group
  • To interfere with the guided tour

The guides may allow the use of cameras for photos and videos.

We take no responsibility for valuable objects left unattended outside or in custody of the ticket office.