Monastic Complex San Benedetto Po, Italy

Founded in 1007 by Tedaldo of Canossa, grandfather of the celebrated Countess Matilda, on the island between the rivers Po and Lirone, the monastery played a key role in the history of monasticism via its religious, political and cultural vitality until it was suppressed by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1797. The visit to the majestic complex comprises the cloisters and interiors of the Seculars and of St Simeon, the cloister of San Benedetto, the monastic refectory with a fresco by Correggio, 16C cellars containing a rich collection of decorated old farm wagons and an exhibition of archaeological finds, the Chapter House and the Museo Civico Polironeano, one of the most important ethnographic museums in Lombardy.