Get to know how the old monastic communities lived, alternating working in the fields with prayer, seeking out architectural and artistic masterpieces and making a profit from the sale of various local products.
The suggested itinerary enables the visitor to attain an overview of the great historical and artistic wealth of the civilization brought about by monasticism, in particular with regard to the Humiliati and Cistercian orders. These orders developed primarily in the irrigated lowlands south of Milan, with its abundance of springs and marshes.
The first stop is the Abbazia di Chiaravalle which, with its cloisters, its monastery and its residential quarters is a very well-structured complex surrounded by the greenery of the Agricolo Sud Milano park.
Also of great interest are the other impressive abbeys located south of the city: the Abbazia di Viboldone in the municipality of San Giuliano Milanese, the Abbazia di Mirasole in Opera and the Abbazia di Morimondo.
Continuing the itinerary southwards, now in the province of Pavia, we arrive at the Certosa di Pavia, built between 1396 -1473 and considered as one of the greatest masterpieces of Renaissance Lombardy art. Also belonging to the Carthusian order is the Certosa di Garegnano (Charterhouse of Garegnano) of which remain some cloisters and the church with its wealth of frescoes within.
Amongst the more minor, but still very interesting, traces of monasticism a few kilometres from Milan we can find the Comunità dei SS. Pietro e Paolo at the Cascinazza in Buccinasco, S. Maria in Calvenzano in Melegnano and, in the eastern suburbs, S. Lorenzo in Monluè.