San Carlone di Arona


A hill not far from the town of Arona is the home of the sanctuary of Sacro Monte di S. Carlo, built after the canonisation of Archbishop Borromeo in 1610. The initial project included fifteen chapels, a church and the monumental statue of San Carlo. However, wars, famines and epidemics slowed down the construction works, and only in 1698 was the monumental statue of San Carlo, designed by Giovan Battista Crespi, known as "il Cerano", finally completed. The statue took 84 years to complete. The chapel complex was never finished, and only three of the fifteen chapels included in the original plan have survived. The Colle's main attraction is without doubt the statue, affectionately called by locals "San Carlone". It was built by sculptors Siro Zanella from Pavia and Bernardo Falconi from Lugano.




The inner structure is made of stone blocks from the quarries of nearby Angera, held together by a supporting iron frame. The exterior is covered with copper plates, hammered and joined together with nails and tie rods. The statue is 23.4m tall and is mounted on an 11.7m granite pedestal. Boasting a total height of 35.10m, the statue is second in height only to the Statue of Liberty. The interior can be explored too: a narrow and steep staircase leads visitors up to the head of the statue. The giant's eyes and ears, as well as several small windows cut out from his robe, allow visitors to enjoy breathtaking views.


Single entrance to the terrace and the statue. €5

Single entrance to the terrace €3

Children under 6 (please note that children under 6 are not allowed to walk up the stairs inside the statue) free

Reduced admission for groups of over 15 people:

terrace and statue (cannot be combined with other reductions) €3

terrace only (cannot be combined with other reductions) €2

Religious youth centres and San Carlo day (cannot be combined with other reductions) €2

School groups: For every 15 paying students l free entry for one accompanying academic educator included in the list signed by the principal. Accompanying educators do not count as members of the school group. Upon buying the ticket you agree in full to the rules set out at the entrance. Our staff is not allowed to offer refunds on admission.


Summer hours:

open every day from March 21 to March 26, 9am-12:30pm and 2pm-4:30pm

open every day from March 27 to October 9, 9am-12:20pm and 2pm-6:15pm

open Saturdays and Sundays only from October 10 to October 29, 9am-12:30pm and 2pm-6:15pm

open on weekends from March 21 to October 9, 9am to 6:15 pm

Winter hours:

open Saturdays and Sundays only from October 30 to November 29, 9am-12:30pm and 2pm-4:30pm

open Sundays only from December 1 to December 31 and on December 8, 9am-12:30pm and 2pm-4:30pm

open Saturdays and Sundays only from March 1 to March 21, 9am-12:30pm and 2pm-4:30pm

Closed on December 25 and 26 and for the whole months of January and February


Information Office San Carlo Church Telephone: +39 0322 249669 


For bookings and information:

PIER: +39 336 23 61 32
DANIELE: +39 340 245 58 15