Through the door on the riverbank appears the illusion of stepping into another era and immersing yourself in the life of the ancient medieval village. The special relationship between the river, the alleys, the features of the Taverns, The houses along the bank, the residence of old houses and the township of Santa Maria di Betlem is what gave life to the village.
Ticino Village is an ancient district of Pavia near the Covered Bridge, on the right bank of the Ticino. It is situated on the short bank of the river, across the bridge from the historic Centre. Found close to the bridge is a bronze statue portraying a laundress, which symbolizes the women who would wash their clothes those days, in the town of Ticino.
Seen from the remains of the old covered bridge on the edge of the village it is presumed that the bridge was an extension of New Road, and between 1351 and 1354 it was straightened and enlarged during its reconstruction. In the drier periods of Ticino the ancient wooden stakes driven into the riverbeds on the memorial stone of the Church of Santa Maria di Betlem are visible.
In the heart of the village, along Via dei Mille, you can see St. Mary of Bethlehem, the district church of Ticino Village. This church was built in the twelfth century on the ruins of a church from the Carolingian period. The name of the church comes from its location along the Via Francigena. A hospital was later built next to the church, with an elegantly gabled facade. This hospital was used for housing pilgrims who were travelling to the Holy Land. That of San Teodoro inspired this establishment and the façade of Saint Maria of Bethlehem had blind loggias and arches intertwined.
In 1735, the church underwent major renovations and in 1810, an extreme renovation nearly wiped out the medieval architecture.
Milazzo Street, one of the oldest streets that run along the bank of Ticino is full of many Inns, houses and wetlands. Today it is sought after for the panorama and for the privileges of being placed halfway between town and country.
The Village has always kept its separate identity, but at the same time linked to the city of Pavia. This is expressed through its own dialect, which is still in use among the older inhabitants, the church and its traditions.
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