Visit the famous caves in Toirano in Liguria, Italy and discover a footprint of a Cro-Magnon man.
It is a small village with medieval small lanes, which are suitable for walks
Toirano became famous for its grottos, which rank among the biggest in Italy.
There are still well-maintained remains of some towers in this medieval village, as well as a bridge with three arches and parts of the city walls. These are definitely worth seeing.
The Church of San Martino dating back to 1609 is also worth viewing. It has a bell tower from the 14th century, as well as remains of the former church. Several valuable, baroque marble artworks and altars are being preserved in the adjacent oratorio.
Also in the neighbourhood are a bell tower from 1564 and remains of a former church. The former church with a monastery was being occupied by monks in the 15th century.
Another impressive place is the San Pietro die Monti, the church standing on a hill of the same name. It has its origins in the 14th – 15th century and contains valuable frescos from the 15th century.
The rock sanctuary of St. Lucia is also worth seeing. It is located in the front part of the cave and was built between the 15th and 17th century. It contains the marble statue of a saint. From the rock church one can enjoy a wonderful view of the valley right up to the sea.
Likewise well maintained is the palace of bishops of Albenga in the historic town centre. Besides there are also other palaces belonging to noble families. Another very interesting place is the Giaire bridge across the Varatalle river; the bridge dates back to the 13th century and it has decorated arches and stone pillars.
Those who love museums will definitely get their money’s worth at the Ethnographic Museum of Varatella. It was opened in 1997 in the historic Palazzo D’Aste Del Caretto and contains a collection of objects and materials from the local population. From agriculture via household articles up to jewellery and furniture - one can find everything here. The small winding lanes of the locality beckon you to admire them and to take a stroll.
Toirano was established as a settlement during the Roman times. The locality became part of Limes, the defensive hedge of the Romans, which was supposed to protect the land against the Langobards. Due to the immediate proximity of the village to the river, a Byzantine garrison was constructed there in the 7th century.
During the 12th century Toirano belonged to the bishops of Albenga. The Genoan Republic and the Marquise of Finale quarrelled over the area for a whole year, until it was finally given to Genoa in 1385.
Under the French rule Toirano reverted back to the Ligurian Republic. In 1805 the locality became part of the first French Empire. In 1815 Toirano was subjected first to the rule of the Sardinian kingdom and then later it became part of the Italian kingdom.
In the 2nd world war the village suffered severe damage due to bombardment by the Anglo-American air force on 12th August, and that claimed civilian lives too. From 1973 to 2011 Toirano was part of the mountain community of Pollupice and later Ponente Savona.
Toirano is one of the villages in the province of Savona which lies in the Ligurian region. Near Toirano are several other villages like: Balestrino (4.9 km), Boissano (3.5 km) and Verzi (9.7 km). When coming from Genoa on the E80, take the exit to Borghetto S.Spirito and then follow the SP1 towards Toirano.