The monastery is built into the rock itself, overhanging
Lake Maggiore, Italy
Just along the coast from Clare's complex, is Santa Caterina del Sasso Ballaro. This is a small monastery, dating from the 12th century, built on a rocky ledge in the face of the cliff. It is said to have been founded by one Alberto Besozzi, and dedicated to Saint Catherine of Egypt, after he survived a huge storm while crossing the lake.
The complex where Clare lives is on the right,
overlooking the lake
Here, you can see the distance between Clare's complex, on the left,
and the Hermitage on the right.
Looking down onto the ferry station, from the monastery
Clare, standing in the archway of the entrance gallery
David and Jessica walking along the entrance gallery, with
great views of the lake on the left.
There is a grotto outside the church, showing the
three kings bringing their gifts
Inside the church, lie the remains of Alberto Besozzi,
although now his hands and feet are made of wood
In one of the courtyards there is this ancient wooden
olive press, dating from 1759.
Above the monastery, and on top of the mountain, is a
great restaurant, where we often eat
This is a speciality of the house, a platter of hams and
cheeses to share between two. Delicious!