Naviglio Grande, Magenta

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The Naviglio Grande is a canal in Lombardy, northern Italy, joining the Ticino river near Tornavento (23 km south of Sesto Calende) to the Porta Ticinese dock, also known as the Darsena, in Milan. It drops 34 m over 49.9 km. It varies in width from 22 m to 50 m from Tornavento to Abbiategrasso, dropping to 15 m between there and Milan. Initially carries 63 m³ per second, 116 outlets take water to irrigate 500 square kilometres leaving the canal 12 m wide and carrying 12 m³ per second as it enters the dock.HistoryThe Naviglio Grande was the most important of the Milan “navigli”. Probably originating as a ditch dug in 1157 between Abbiategrasso and Landriano as a defense against Frederick Barbarossa, it was one of the largest post-medieval engineering projects, allowing development of commerce, transport and agriculture.In 1177, construction began near Tornavento, but problems stopped work almost immediately. In 1179 however, a dam was constructed and water from the Ticino was directed towards Turbigo, Castelletto di Cuggiono, Bernate and Boffalora reaching Gaggiano in 1233. This 30 km section, the “Navigium de Gazano” took over 50 years to dig by hand using only pickaxe and shovel. Prisoners from Turbigo were put to work in 1239 to increase the carrying capacity of the canal.
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  • Beautiful bicycle and pedestrian path from Newcastle upon Tyne until Cassinetta di Lugagnano, Castelletto and then beyond. A quiet place where you can go for a nice walk and breathe clean air. The route runs along the banks of the Naviglio lined with stately mansions, with a beautiful green setting.
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  • The Canal always has its charm, bordered by a track trail is always popular with people by bike, on foot or go jogging, walk suitable for all ages to explore the nature.
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  • The navigli area is particularly fascinating and their recovery was splendid. Take a walk, get lost in these alleys and stop for a bite to eat ... worth it.
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