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Mario Botta’s Mountain Church


Sometimes, when you’re getting bored of traditional style buildings, it means you need to seek for inspiration in another, more unusual-looking architecture. Which is not really hard to do. If you like exploring churches, this one will surely catch you off guard with its bizarre appearance.

The place where the church is situated is also non-traditional. Here you can feel homelike and peaceful atmosphere because it is surrounded with a few properties of a small village of Mogno, that is situated in the Maggia Valley (Val Lavizzara) at 1,180 m, Switzerland. Standing amidst the mountains, it seems like the church is hidden away from the outside world.

The history of this unusual building is also noteworthy: since the 19 century, the whole village of Mogno has been actually used as a temporary living place during the cattle grazing period. But in 1986 the horrible happened: the church and almost all of the village houses were destroyed by a huge avalanche. Fortunately, the houses weren’t inhabited during the disaster and no one got hurt.
After the avalanche, the small church was redesigned and rebuilt in 1990 by a well known Swiss architect Mario Botta. It is now dedicated to John the Baptist.

The building is extremely photogenic, so anyone would take incredible snaps of it from any angle. The great natural landscape gives more magnificence to the building and endless desire to be here as long as you can.
The church looks truly amazing from the outside, has elliptical shape and inclined roof and bewitches with black and white stripes.

The layers of the building, made of native Peccia marble and Vallemaggia granite made the whole design of the church pretty controversial. It has no windows and is illuminated by the natural light that accesses the building only through a glass roof. From the inside it is designed with a dizzying checkerboard, the rays of light falling on the walls look just fascinating!

Mario Botta’s Mountain Church is now known worldwide and is a must-visit for those traveling in the Maggia Valley. Small but impossibly beautiful, it only seats about 15 people, but again proves that you can find unbelievably cool things in the most unexpected places! Don’t forget to add it to your must-visit list if you going to be visiting Switzerland.