Many people think that Brianza is only and exclusively an industrial area, but in actual fact it is also an area of natural beauties all to be discovered.
Adda River: Brianza which inspired the genius of Leonardo Da Vinci
The Adda River is about 313 km long and flows entirely in Lombardy; it is the longest tributary of the Po and it is the fourth longest river in Italy. The water course rises in the Rhaetian Alps in Valtellina passing through Lake Como, then becoming a river in Lecco, moving through numerous towns of the province of Monza, Bergamo and Milan, and acting as a partition between the province of Milan-Monza with the areas in the town of Bergamo.
The river flows into the Po at Lodi. Along its path in Brianza there are numerous restaurants and limited traffic areas that allow nature to be enjoyed through pleasant walks and cycle paths.
The Leonardo Da Vinci Eco-Museum, develops along the Adda River; this is an extraordinary open-air museum which tells of the link between the famous artist and the Lombardy territory.
At Imbersago there is the so-called Leonardo Ferry, a type of manual ferry – the only one still functioning – linking the banks of the river (Imbersago province of Lecco to Villa d’Adda in the province of Bergamo). Brianza’s views of the Adda inspired Leonardo’s famous painting “The Virgin of the Rocks”.
Lambro River: the water course at the heart of Monza Park
The Lambro River is about 130 km long and rises from the San Primo mountains, above Ghisallo, at the centre of the Larian triangle only then to become an out-flowing stream of the Po at the border between Lodi and Pavia.
The river crosses Brianza’s capital city of Monza, passing through Monza-Park. The link and the importance of the river in the design of the Palace of Monza and its Park is emphasised by the presence of five nineteenth-century bridges and mills.
Further on, it divides into two branches: the first branch known as Lambro which moves beneath the famous Ponte dei Leoni, while the second, also known as Lambretto, is a deviation of the Lambro designed by Visconti, around the fourteenth-century, to create a defence for the city.
Seveso River: from Brianza to the city of Milan
The Seveso River is about 52 km long and is the shortest of the Brianza rivers. It rises in Cavallasca on Monte Sasso, close to the border with Switzerland. It crosses numerous towns of the Brianza territory to flow into the Martesana Canal.
Its original mouth was in the Lambro close to Melegnano. The river course was diverted and channelled to allow its waters to reach the city of Milan from as early as the time of the ancient Romans. The Seveso River is thus the major tributary of all canals in the city of Milan.
The Seveso crosses numerous parks in the Brianza territory including the Groane Park and the Brughiera Briantea Park. From 1718 to 1760 twenty-three mills were positioned on its banks, mainly used to operate the saw mills in the local area.
The Seveso River also crosses the protected area of the Parco Nord Milano which in recent years has been engaged in developing this water course, thanks to redevelopment work on the banks, restoring to Lombardy another natural beauty.