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Official Tourist Information Site of Imola's Area

Church of Valmaggiore


The Church of Valmaggiore (from Latin "Vallum Major") was built around the year 1000.

Like others churches of this valley, it celebrates the Assumption of the Virgin.

It was part of the parish of Tossignano until 1271 when it became a parish church thanks to its own baptismal font.

According to Cortini's "History of Castel del Rio", a tower was erected during the Late Roman Empire in Valmaggiore.

A fortified castle was built only during the Middle Ages.

In 1492, Valmaggiore became possession of the Municipality of Imola.

One century later, it became property of Imola's Alidosi family, then of Manfredi family, of Caterina Sforza, of Cesare Borgia, once again of the Municipality of Imola and finally, in 1817, of the Municipality of Castel del Rio.

In 1506, Pope Julius II crossed Valmaggiore heading towards Bologna.
The Mass was served in the Church of Valmaggiore until 1821, when an earthquake caused its collapse.

The Church had a barrel-vault, three small altars and a baptismal font built around 1550. The Church was restored between the end of the19th and the beginning of the 20th century.

During Second World War, it was partially damaged since it accommodated the headquarters of the American troops who fought in Monte Battaglia against the German. In the '50s the church was abandoned following the depopulation of mountains.

The bishop of Imola prevented it from going ruined supporting the restoration of the church's boundary walls, bell tower and graveyard.

The newly renovated church was unveiled on 20 July 1997.

In 1998, the first anniversary of the restoration was celebrated and a copy of the sacred image of Our Lady of the Assumption was placed inside the church.

Today, the image once worshipped in the Church of Valmaggiore is housed in the Church of San Francesco della Pedagna (Imola).


Address: via Monte Battaglia - 40022 Castel del Rio (BO)

Opening hours: The church is open only in mid July, during the afternoon Mass.

How to get there

How to get to Castel del Rio


The church is located on the crest between the Santerno and the Cestena valley. It is two hours' walk from Castel del Rio. It can be reached by car following the highroad Montanara (SS 610).

One km before Castel del Rio, at the indication for Osta Church and Villa Ducale (a nursing home), turn left into a climbing road becoming non asphalted.

After 5 km, take the road following the crest which leads from Monte Battaglia to Valmaggiore. Turn right to reach the church.

Learn more

In front of the church is a graveyard. Just a few yards from the church are the overgrown ruins of the castle, probably of Longobard origin, abandoned in 1534.

A route called "The Valmaggiore - Monte Battaglia Circuit" is available.

Info on the tourist location

Tel.: +39 0542 22492 (Istituto Sostentamento Clero, Piazza Duomo, 1 - Diocesi di Imola)

Last update: 18-10-2013