With a blue funny hat, they are … the Smurfs! Those so loved. Do you remember them? Morning trepidation before going to school, and waiting in front of the TV to undertake magical adventures with them and the perfidious Gargamel, with his faithful Birba. The Smurfs are now part of our memory of the heart, and it is possible to relive this enchantment by visiting the mythical Smurfs’ village, in Liguria! Don’t you know it? Let’s find it out together!
The smurfs: a story to put it mildly…smurfy!
Perhaps not everyone knows that … the name Puffi derives from Schtroumpfs, whose origin is linked to a really funny story. This strange event takes place in 1958, when Peyo, a Belgian artist, is attending a dinner with other guests. Suddenly he asks a neighbor to hand him the salt shaker, but at that moment the name of the object eludes him unfortunately. Peyo then begins by saying: “Passe-moi le … schtroumpf”, that is literally “Pass me the … smurf”.
The other guest bust out laughing, and pleasantly replies: “Here, here’s your smurf, and when you have finished smurfing him, smurf me it back!” It is easy to understand that shortly afterwards those curious words, pronounced on any day, would have marked the beginning of an era. That schtroumpf did nothing but resonate in Peyo’s head, so much so that he decided to use it in his successful comic book series, Johan et Pirlouit.
Johan et Pirlouit, when it all began
The story takes place at a time very similar to the Middle Ages, and a certain Johan is the protagonist of the adventures it deals with. The boy is a squire in the king’s service, while Pirlouit is the court jester. He becomes the owner of a six-hole flute which serves to evoke the so-called Schtroumpf. These little creatures appear sporadically in the comic, but then they become so popular that they deserve a series of their own.
If you remember well, their unmistakable acronym read like this: … we have very smurfy houses/ The mushrooms out there / In the woods you’ll see them […]. Well, it is no coincidence that the talented Cristina D’Avena played those words there. In fact, the fantastic the Smurfs’ village, with its pretty little houses, is not just a fantasy: it really exists! It is located in Bardineto, in the wonderful Liguria. This quaint village near Savona is home to some strange mushroom-shaped houses, very reminiscent of those of the cute little blue men.
Between the Sixties and Seventies, Mario De Bernardi took advantage of the magnificent woodland setting of Bardineto to build small houses, which undoubtedly referred to those of the Smurfs. Their aesthetics, however, is not only linked to the tender smurf inhabitants, but also to the typical vegetation of these areas, since the mushroom represents a specialty of Bardineto. With so many dreams and passion for mushrooms, Mr. De Bernardi decided to place his peculiar dwellings in a luxuriant forest of chestnut and birch trees, which reminds us in every way of the true Smurfs’ village. Entering the thick wood, you can almost hear the screams of the evil Gargamel chasing the poor Smurfs, trying to make it a gulp!
Smurfs’ village: a fairy place, to the delight of all
The phantasmagorical hauses of the Smurfs’s village take us back in time, when as children we chased our fantasies, and we played with light-heartedness and genuineness that perhaps too often we forget. The Smurfs and their village loved by foreign tourists, and the turn of the Bardineto wood is always greater. In essence, these homes are private homes, although no one has lived there for a long time.
They had initially been designed for vacationers, so that inside they could be found ovens, barbecues, and warehouses where to store tools and anything else. Today it is possible to admire these architectural wonders only from the outside, unfortunately, since the place is totally abandoned, and access is not allowed inside. However, visiting the Smurfs’ village is certainly a magical experience, where the memories of the past resurface in the minds of the adults, and fascinate those of the babies. Do not miss this wonderful opportunity to let your children know the extraordinary world of the Smurfs, and their characteristic village!