Napoleon Bridge – Bobbio Pellice

Today I went back to Bobbio Pellice (Torino) to take you to see a beautiful arch bridge, entirely built of stone, which has perfectly held out here for almost 400 years and which has a very outstanding name: welcome at Napoleon Bridge!

On my left you can see the bridge with the road that takes to Malpertus (the hamlet of houses on the right).

We are few steps far from Malpertus, a small village I already talked you about when I told you a legend set there time ago, but today history confuses me a little bit… At the entrance of the bridge, on a stone, the date of construction (1640) was engraved, but it dates back more than a hundred years before the birth of Napoleon, the famous French emperor… it is therefore not possible that he himself was the one who built the bridge!
Most likely, due to the extraordinary work done to build the bridge, it was decided to give this name to the bridge later on, in order to bestow the right importance to it… After all, the Napoleon Bridge was never damaged by any flood! (unlike other more recent bridges in other areas of Pellice Valley… ;(  )

This is me on the bridge; below me you can see carved in the stone the names of those who built the bridge, the first was probably a guy named Paolo Buffa who signed as “Muradore” (bricklayer).

think about it: it’s not the first time we run into a great work built by men but which has an almost legendary origin hidden in its name: d’you remember the Hannibal Bridge of Pinasca?
Or some irrigation drains so well made that they were attributed even to the devil, as the
Biâl dâ Diaou of Perrero or Pertus del Diao in Bibiana?

The Pellice river that flows towards the plain. Can you see the hill on my left? There once stood a castle, the Cestel of Count Billour!

Now I will go looking for other magical legendary sites of Waldensian Valleys… if you know any, please tell me!

Napoleon Bridge in winter time.

How to get here:
reach the village of Bobbio Pellice along the Provincial Road 161 and drive past the town; continue on Villanova street for 2 km and you will reach the township. Go down through the group of houses along the path that leads to the river Pellice… you can cross it through the bridge!
There is an alternative path from the village of Bobbio Pellice that brings you here, following the course of the river along a mule track.
a little advice: wear appropriate clothing and footwear, and have a check with the local tourist office before going there!

Do you want to read the tale in Italian ?

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