Necropolis of Monsorino

monsorino golasecca

The archaeological area of Golasecca to which Necropolis of Monsorino belongs is a place outside of time. It's plunged in the National park of Ticino with a very special age-old history.  This is indeed the only record left of one of the main culture of the Iron Age in Italy, the so called Culture of Golasecca and one of the most important and monumental in northern Italy.


History of the excavations

First discoverer was Giovan Battista Giani. He started excavations  in the 19th century thinking that the stone circles, so called chromlechs, were remains of Roman civilization from first Punic War. It was the scholar Pompeo Castelfranco to understand the real meaning of chromlechs as megalithic funeral structures from the Celts. They are similar to other stone circles found all around Europe indeed. Remains belong to a more ancient civilization than Romans’: the so called Culture of Golasecca derived from Celts and settled in these areas between IX and VII century BC.

In Monsorino but also in Vergiate and Garzonera are the Cromlechs that you can see while walking through the touristic itinerary inside Golasecca territory.

The path and the necropolis of the monsorino

Two graves are in front of Golasecca city hall too. You can follow the burial ground area until Sesto Calende walking along Ticino. Inside park of Ticino to the left shore there’s Monsorino, the most important core of burial ground made of round structures stone-built enclosing some tombs dating from VII century BC.

Remains of seven round and three rectangular fences are still visible right in the necropolis of Monsorino. Some object were recovered from burials as chinas and items made of bronze and iron.

Some of the most wealthy graves of the Culture of Golasecca are from Sesto Calende. Two of them belonged to warriors and they are preserved both in museums of Varese and Milan. Another one so called “Tomba del Tripode” is preserved in Museum of Golasecca. This tomb is a box of stone slabs with a rich burial equipment inside as a situla made in bronze, a tripod in bronze as well and ladies’ jewelry.

Immagini Copyright:

Opening Hours and Tickets

Open-access and free entry.

It is advised to call the park guides before to get the tour: tel. 02 972101


AGE: VIII - V century BC

CIVILIZATION: Celts, Golaseccans

REGION: Lombardy


ADMINISTRATION: Superintendence of archaeology, fine arts and landscaping of  the metropolitan city of Milan (MiBACT)


How to get to necropolis


Golasecca can be reached by train and by bus from Varese as well as from other towns in Lombardy. Just look at the different routes of regional transport network.


Take the exit gate Sesto Calende, coming through motorway A8.

From Novara: take the trunk road SS33 to Arona.

To get excavations: follow the path starting from viale Europa near Cascina Melissa of Golasecca at the overpass of motorway A8. The path climbs on the hill and it’s addressed on the related sign of Ticino Park at the entrance.

Or follow the directions of Google Maps and, once you have reached your destination, walk the Monsorino Anello path of about 1km into the woods.