An agricultural and industrial center of the province of Piacenza, located at the mouth of the Valley of Tidone, Borgonovo was founded in 1196 by the city of Piacenza, as an outpost to defend the territory from enemy invasions. For this reason, the "noble oppidum" was fortified with walls, moats, a castle and watch towers. It was equipped with two main entrances, one at North and one at South. After just three years it was set on fire by the troops of Pavia. Rebuilt by the consuls of Piacenza, it was equipped, at North, with a powerful defense system: the Rocca. Throughout its history, several noble families took turns in the domain: the Visconti, the Piccinino, the Sforza, the Farnese and last until 1850, the Marquis Zandemaria.
Sites of Interest:
- the Collegiate Church of Santa Maria Assunta (XV century), in Gothic-Lombard style, features a façade built entirely in brick with three cusps and central portal with a lunette. The interior is divided into three naves and preserves the remains of ancient frescoes. Interesting is also the altarpiece, created in 1474 by the brothers Bongiovanni and Giovanni Bassano De Lupis;
- the Castle of Castelnovo, a fortress built on the ruins of an old castle, which in 1155 hosted Barbarossa. Due to battles and sieges, it was rebuilt several times and underwent a massive renovation in the late XIX century. It features a trapezoidal shape plan with round corner towers, an elegant courtyard with a XVI century well in travertine. The castle is surrounded by a large and luxuriant park with old trees and statues of the XVIII century. Today it is currently privately owned;
- the fortress, dating from the XIII century, was destroyed and rebuilt several times, it preserves none of the original forms. It features a rectangular square plan with only two corner towers and is surrounded by an embankment with a large moat (once filled with water) and has two entrances originally served by drawbridges.