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Monteriggioni, a village that time forgot

monteriggioni stemmaMonteriggioni  is a small fortified village situated in the vicinity of the route of the Via Francigena (or Romea), one of the rare villages that have preserved unchanged over time the structure and the medieval atmosphere. The settlement is all enclosed by walls with a thickness of 2 meters perfectly preserved, interspersed with 15 quadrangular towers in excellent condition. The village consists of old houses, with one large central square where the Romanesque church is located. It is a place almost out of time where art, history and landscape merge in a rare example of natural beauty. This particular structure made of Monteriggioni an ideal set for film and advertising. The economy is predominantly agricultural, with production of olive oil, wine and honey, artisan working with ceramics and wood. Inside the village, there are many resales of Chianti wine and craft and antique shops. It was born in Monteriggioni the famous breed of Cinta Senese pigs, pigs characterized by a dark coat with a white streak, called “cinta.”

AREA Senese
TYPE medieval village and castle
COORDINATES 43°24′00″N 11°13′00″E
ALTITUDE 200 meters
PRODUCTS ceramics, wood, wine
SPORTS hiking, trekking, cycling, mountain biking
BORDERS Casole d'Elsa, Castellina in Chianti, Castelnuovo Berardenga, Colle di Val d'Elsa, Poggibonsi, Siena, Sovicille (SI)

monteriggioni mapTourist Informationsiena mapp

Municipality of Monteriggioni
Via Cassia Nord, 150 – 53035 – Monteriggioni (SI)
www.comune.monteriggioni.si.it

WHAT TO SEE

Monteriggioni Castles

Monteriggioni castello Monteriggioni castle

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Monteriggioni Castle

castello monteriggioniArea: Senese
Type: fortress of 13th century
Hours: winner 10.00am-01.30pm and  02.00pm-04.00pm  closed on Tuesday
summer 9.30am-01.30pm and 02.00pm-06.00pm
Tickets: € 2,00 full € 1,50 reduced

The diameter of the castle is 172 meters, all surrounded by a massive wall of elliptical shape with a thickness of two meters high, on top of a hill called Monte Ala. On the walls – a perimeter of 560 meters – there is a walkway from which you can enjoy a unique and evocative. Along the walls are placed fifteen towers (in the course of the four-time have been lost), two of which are equipped with access doors. On the main square there is the church of Santa Maria Assunta. The rest of the village is made up of small houses, many of which were built in stone, often accompanied by a garden. In the town there are also numerous gardens, very important in the past to allow the survival even in case of siege.

Churches

Monteriggioni - Abbadia a isola Abbadia a Isola

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Abbadia a Isola

abbadia a isolaArea: Senese
Municipality: Monteriggioni (SI) – locality Badia a Isola
Type: church from 12th century –  Lombard style

The village of Badia a Isola was the 16th stop along the Via Francigena (or Romea) according to the itinerary of the Archbishop di Canterbury Sigerico. In this place Ava, widow of Hildebrand of Staggia Gentlemen, in the year 1001 founded the Monastery of San Salvatore all’Isola. The good location, on the then busy Via Francigena, contributed to the growth of the abbey. They were built one “hospital” dedicated to San Salvatore and a hostel for the hospitalization of foreign pilgrims. The structure of the monastery was enlarged in the 12th century, with the construction of the cloister, the refectory and the church of San Cassiano. In the 18th century the abbey lost its role and became the center of agricultural activity. In 1962 they were carried out radical restoration work and the original appearance of the abbey was almost completely recovered. The church, in the Lombard style, is in the center of the ancient fortified complex is a three-aisled basilica with a roof, ending in a forum with a crypt.

Inside the fresco of the Madonna and Child Enthroned by Taddeo di Bartolo (late 14th century), the baptismal font stained (1419) and the fresco Assumption of the Virgin. (1520). On the high altar there is the altarpiece by Sano di Pietro (1476). Finally there is a marble urn dating from the first century d. C., transformed into a shrine. In the right wall opens a portal architrave of access to the cloister. They are distributed along the sacristy, the refectory, the dormitory, the bell tower and other buildings, all connected by a porch 13th two-storey supported by brick columns

ART AND MUSEUMS

Monteriggioni Museums

monteriggioni4Dragon

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Museo delle Armature ( museum of armor)

museo armatureArea: Senese
Type: museo di armi ed armature
Address: Piazza Roma, 23
Phone: +39 0577 304834
Hours: winter 10.00am-03.30pm and 02.00pm-04.00pm closed on Tuesday
summer 9.30am-03.30pm and 02.00pm-06.00pm
Tickets: € 3,00 full € 1,50 reduced

The Museum of Arms and Armor collects craft faithful reproductions of medieval and renaissance weapons and armor. Visitors have the chance to wear some armor and wield some weapons.

WHAT TO DO

Events

montepulciano1medieval Festival

Monteriggioni di torri si corona

festa medievaleType: Folklore
When: first and second weekend of July

The event takes place inside the castle, set in medieval scenes. In the light of torches and candles, figures and characters in period costumes animate stalls and shops of arts and crafts, recalling what once was one of the most active and flourishing centers of the territory of Siena. Aromas and forgotten foods are alternated with games and performances by acrobats, minstrels, men-at-arms.

Torchlight procession on the Via Francigena

Type: religious
When: december 24
Info: Tourist Office of Monteriggioni (phone +39 0577 304834)
email:info@monteriggioniturismo.it

The Torchlight (Fiaccolata) is a path where people carry torches through forests and dirt roads belonging to the ancient and historical street Franciegena. The itinerary includes the departure from Monteriggioni, switching to Valmaggiore and to arrive at Abbadia Isola.

ITINERARIES

Itineraries around Monteriggioni

monteriggioni2via Francigena

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Tourist route on the Via Francigena - from Monteriggioni to Siena

TYPE Tourist route on the Via Francigena (trekking, mountain bike)
AREA Senese
DEPARTUREMonteriggioni, Piazza Roma
ARRIVAL Siena, Piazza del Campo
LENGHT 21 Km
TIME5 years
DIFFICULTYmedium
DIFFERENCE330 m
ITINERARY CAI N°
ATTRACTION Cerbaia village, Chiocciola castle, hermitage San Leonardo al Lago
INFORMAZION

chiesamonteriggioniRoute along the Via Francigena (or Romea) with panels explaining history and legends of the area. Every road has been combined with a poet or a writer who has spent at least one work in the territory of Siena. From Monteriggioni and you walk towards Mount Maggio along the dirt roads towards Cerbaia, an ancient medieval village. After exit from the oak forest you can see the castle of Snail, which owes its name to a helical scale present in its characteristic cylindrical tower. It then crosses Pian del Lago, now drained plains, but in the past a lake karst, where the hermitage of San Leonardo al Lago. Arrived in Siena, you enter the Porta Camollia

Tourist route on the Via Francigena - from San Gimignano to Monteriggioni

TYPETourist route (trekking, mountain bike)
AREA Senese
DEPARTURESan Gimignano, Piazza della Cisterna
ARRIVAL Monteriggioni, Piazza Roma
LENGHT 30 Km
TIME 8 years
DIFFICULTmedium
DIFFERENCE563 m
ITINERARY CAI N°
ATTRACTION abbazia di Monte Oliveto Minore, Castello di Montauto, Molino d’Aiano, Badia a Coneo, castello di Petraia, Badia a Isola
INFORMAZION

monteriggioniIt is the most beautiful routes of the Via Francigena. Starting from San Gimignano to the Benedictine Abbey of Monte Oliveto Minor, continue for Santalucia leading to the Castle of Montauto. You pass another stream and climb to the Sovestro, tower-castle of Abbracciabeni.Si then descends, crossing the stream Foci, up to Molino d’Aiano, Continue for a tree-lined road to Badia a Coneo, Abbey Lombard origin belonged to the Vallombrosa monks. A little further on there are the Baths of Caldane, Etruscan-Roman period. The road towards the fortified village of Strove, built in 994 by the Lords of Staggia, and from the castle Petraia. Walking along an ancient wall you get to Badia a Isola, important monastery founded in the 10th century. Finally we arrive at the castle of Monteriggioni, Water and the dining options are only available from the towns.

CULTURE

History

monteriggioni3The fortifications of “Mons regionis”, built around an existing rural settlement of Lombard age, date back to 1214. The structures were designed to defend the northern border of the territory of Siena and fight so the expansionist ambitions of Florence. The castle, where he lived most of the inhabitants, was also surrounded by so-called charcoal or ditches full of coal that was burned to repel any attacks. In 1526 the army of Florence besieged Monteriggioni and they bombed the walls with artillery, but resisted the village. Only in 1554 the castle surrendered, for treason, the siege of Florence. The episode anticipated a year the final defeat of Siena and the end of its independence as a sovereign state. To punish the brave resistance of the village of the Tuscan Grand Duke Cosimo 1th Medici ordered that all the inhabitants were transferred to Florence in bondage. In later centuries, Monteriggioni was under the authority of various lords until 1704, when it became a possession of the annuity Griccioli family, which still keeps up area property and in the surrounding countryside.

In the past Monteriggioni economy it was predominantly agricultural and pastoral. vine crops and olive trees alternated with wooded areas and were able to provide the nutrition you need breeding of cattle and pigs, as well as timber and coal. Currently in the agricultural sector remain only the cultivation of cereals and grapevines, while there has been a development in the industrial sense in the wine industry, chemical, food, processing of iron and furniture. There are also artisan companies producing ceramics, wood, marble and granite.

Curiosities

amici mieiFICTION IN MONTERIGGIONI

Prince of Foxes, directed by Henry King, starring Tyrone Power and Orson Welles (1949)
Stealing Beauty, directed by Bernardo Bertolucci (1996)
The English Patient, directed by Anthony Minghella (1996)
Tea with Mussolini, directed by Franco Zeffirelli (1999)
Gladiator, directed by Ridley Scott (2000)
My Friends – How it all began, the Neri Parenti director (2010)

 

videogameVIDEOGRAMES

A free reconstruction of Monteriggioni is present in the video game Assassin’s Creed II and Assassin’s Creed – Brotherhood as the residence of the Auditore family of Florence and the seat of the Assassins crypt. In particular, in the third installment of the hit franchise, is playing a battle in 1500 between Monteriggioni and Cesare Borgia ……… the Papal State army commanded although this confrontation never occurred.

 

LEO36MOAT OF COAL

Monteriggioni Castle was surrounded by “charcoal” that is, a moat filled with coal, which was burned down during the assaults of the troops that besieged the fortress.

TOURIST SERVICES

Where to eat in Monteriggioni

Monteriggioni dove mangiare Il Pozzo

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Restaurants and Trattorie

Bar dell’Orso

Via Cassia Nord, 23 – Locality La Corona – 53035 Monteriggioni (SI)
Phone: +39  0577 305074
Website: www.bardellorso.it
Email: orsobar@libero.it
Services: specialty sandwiches with salami, cheese and pickles quality of traditional Tuscan cuisine, evening events with live music