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The Valfurva extends for about 15.5 miles (25 km) from Bormio in the splendid setting of the Stelvio National Park, and is framed by the peaks of the Ortles-Cevedale mountain group. Composed of many villages, S. Caterina Valfurvadeserves a place of honor, as a renowned summer and winter tourist resort.
Transit route for the ancient trade
The history of the valley goes back to its ancient roots, when S. Caterina Valfurva was for a long time, an important transit point between the Republic of Venice and the County of Bormio, through the valley of the Gavia. Among other economic activities, in addition to the traditional mountain farming and livestock rearing, by the end of XVII century the first tourist activities had begun, which were mainly related to treatment with the healthy waters ferrugginose (iron rich) of S. Caterina Valfurva.
The Akua fort of S. Caterina
The springs that gushed out from the subsoil were two fold: the spring of sulfur water, rich in sulfur, and more importantly, the spring of Akua Forta, impregnated with iron and with a slightly sour, spicy flavor. Both had remarkable therapeutic properties and were very well known, attracting a lot of people. Over time, to protect the spring of the Akua Forta there was built an unusual roof of wood in the Gothic style. In 1835, the bottling facility was opened for the Akua Forta water, which was sufficiently famous to be exported abroad.
During the years between the First and Second World War, the spa tourism suffered a large decline and the hut covering the spring, expanded at the beginning of the twentieth century, and later converted to dry peat, was finally demolished in 1952. The spring of the Akua Forta has slowly become extinct, with the water remaining below the surface.