The abbey of San Martino dei Bocci, also known as Certosa di Parma (charterhouse of Parma) as in the famous novel by Stendhal, is a cistercian monastery that whose foundation was officially authorized by pope Boniface VIII in 1296, and assigned to the monks of the Abbey of Chiaravalle della Colomba, near Piacenza. This great monastic complex was edificated on the way that in roman times served as connection between the city of Parma and the Po river and underwent numerous changes in the course of the centuries; it was enlarged in the seventeeth and eighteenth centuries and just before Napoleon closed it and it could no longer serve as abbey, it counted 500 monks.
From then on it served as military garrison, production factory and other purpuses until it was finally renovated in the nineteen-eighties, when most parts of the monastic spaces and the curch were recovered. The church is pretty big (62×32 metres) and its original form was preserved. On the inside you can find the beautiful sixteenth century decorations made by the painters Cesare Baglione and Aurelio Gatti.