What to see in Vinci

Attrazioni in Toscana

Vinci, Leonardo da Vinci’s birthplace

Vinci-StemmaWhat to see in Vinci a town surrounded by green countryside of vineyards and olive groves in the Montalbano mountain slopes. The town preserves the castle, the ancient tower, the rustic houses and medieval arcades. It is known throughout the world because, in 1452, Leonardo da Vinci was born, ne of the most important engineers, architects and scientists in the world. Vinci is known for an excellent wine (Chianti DOCG) and olive oil. Driving along the “Oil and Wine Road of Leonardo’s Montalbano hills” (Strada del vino e dell’olio del Montalba Colline di Leonardono) you can visit several farms and taste different wines, extra virgin olive oil and typical products. In recent times, in the localities of Spicchio and Sovigliana, there was a significant industrial developments in the sector of clothing, wood and furniture, food, footwear, glass and ceramics. Leonardo’s birthplace is the starting point of a network of trails, on foot or by bicycle, ascending the slopes of Montalbano.

AREA Valdarno Inferiore
TYPE  agricultural town
COORDINATES 43°47′00″N 10°55′00″E
HEIGHT 97 meters
PRODUCTS Chianti DOCG wine, estravirgin olive oil, ceramics, footwear, glass
SPORTS  hiking trekking, horse riding, cycling
BORDERS Capraia e Limite (FI), Carmignano (PO), Cerreto Guidi (FI), Empoli (FI), Lamporecchio (PT), Quarrata (PT)

vinci mapTourist informationfirenze map

Municipality of Vinci
Piazza Leonardo da Vinci, 29 2 – 50059 Vinci (FI)
Phone: +39 0571 56388

Tourist Office

via della Torre, 11 – 50059 Vinci (FI)
Phone: +39 0571 568012
email: terredelrinascimento@comune.vinci.fi.it




chiesa VinciSanta Croce church

Chiesa di Santa Croce

018Area: Valdarno Inferiore
Type: church (13th ccentury)

Built in the 13th century, it was restored several times over the centuries and, therefore, no longer has the original structure. The interior has three naves divided into bays in which warheads are two chapels dedicated to St. Andrew and the Blessed Sacrament. Almost certainly Leonardo da Vinci was baptized in the ancient baptismal font.

Monuments and places to visit in Vinci

vinci09The Vitruvian man

Conti Guidi Castle (Castello di Vinci)

vinci08Area: Valdarno Inferiore
Type: fortress (11th century)

It is a fortification dating to the 11th century, also known as “the castle of the ship” for the elongated shape and the tower that resemble the shape of a sailboat. Inside there are the coats of arms of noble families and ceramic Madonna and Child (1523) by Giovanni della Robbia. Inside the castle there is also the Villa Vignozzi whose image was reproduced on the first series of old notes from 50,000 lire. Inside the castle is home to the Leonardo Museum.


Biblioteca Leonardiana (Leonardo Library)

vinci05Area: Valdarno Inferiore
Type: historical library
Address: via G. La Pira, 1
Phone: +39 0571 933250
Website: www.bibliotecaleonardiana.it
Hours: open by appointment

The library was founded in 1883. Over the years become an important international center of study of Leonardo da Vinci. In the library there are Leonardo da Vinci’ manuscripts and drawings, as well as all literary works and the first edition of the “Treatise on Painting” (1651). It also contains more than 70.000 monographs in many different languages, films, posters, maps , photos, slides, x-rays of paintings etc. Finally, there is a small section containing the writings of contemporary authors that refer to the Leonardo’ works. In the square behind the museum was a big wooden sculpture by Mario Ceroli “The man of Vinci” (1987), inspired Vitruvian man.

Piazza dei Guidi (Guidi square)

vinci02Area: Valdarno Inferiore
Type: square with works of contemporary art

Renovated in 2006 by an intervention of contemporary art designed by Mimmo Paladino, the square is accompanied by evocative lighting that uses advanced technology with LED and fiber optics that create special effects.

Natural reserves near Vinci


monteferrato1Province of Firenze: Capraia e Limite, Cerreto Guidi, Vinci
Province of Pistoia: Lamporecchio, Larciano, Monsummano Terme, Serravalle Pistoiese
Province of Prato: Carmignano, Poggio a Caiano
Type: nature reserve

The protected area of ​​Montalbano includes a small mountain range between 400 and 600 meters. The dominant landscape is hilly, with vineyards, olive trees and chestnut spread on top. It seems that Leonardo da Vinci began drawing various views of the mountain. In addition, between 1506 and 1509 the great genius studied the geology of the mountain. Between the XVI and XVII century, the Medici set aside about 4,000 hectares to the realization of the Barco Reale Mediceo, a vast area used as a hunting ground, bounded by a perimeter wall of which are still visible some stretches. We have an extensive network of walking and cycling routes that reach hill towns surrounded by nature, archaeological sites, ancient forests like the holm oak in Pietramarina.

Human settlement is characterized by stately mansions, elegant farms and numerous farmhouses. It is made even more beautiful and productive this zone by means of terracing, vineyards and olive groves arranged on hilly terrain. Today Montalbano is appreciated for its ecological hiking through the creation of hiking trails, points equipped for parking, setting up guesthouses.


Vinci museums

casa di Leonardo - VinciLeonardo Da Vinci house-museum

Museum Leonardiano

013Area: Valdarno Inferiore
Type: museum of science
Address: Castello di Vinci and Palazzina Uzielli – Piazza dei Guidi
Phone: +39 0571 933251
Website: www.museoleonardiano.it
hours: from November tp Febrary 9.30 am-06.00pm; from March to October 9.30am-07.00pm

Opened in 1953 is one of the most original collections of machines and models of inventions designed by Leonardo. Each model is presented with specific references to sketches and handwritten notes of Le. The rooms show models through images taken from paintings and old Leonardo’ manuscripts. All are accompanied by animated digital reconstructions illustrating the machines operation. The museum has an exhibition area of textile machinery developed by Leonardo. Also military machines, models to move in the air, water and earth – including the self-propelled wagon or “Leonardo’s automobile.” Finally, the optical section, devoted to Leonardo’s studies of light.

Leonardo Da Vinci's House

vinci04Area: Valdarno Inferiore
Type: house-museum
Address: locality Anchiano
Webside: www.casanataledileonardo.it
Hours: from November to Febrary 10.00 am-05.00pm; from March to October 10.00am-07.00pm

The house is located 3 kilometers from the historic center of Vinci, along the “Green Road”, an ancient route between the hills and olive groves of Montalbano mountain, where the landscape is probably what Leonardo contemplated in childhood. Here, on April 15, 1452, Leonardo da Vinci was born, the illegitimate son of Ser Piero da Vinci and Caterina. It seems that the future artist began to practice drawing different views of the nearby Montalbano. Inside the building is a museum equipped with the latest multimedia technology, with a full pictorial presentation of the work of the scientist and graphics, engineer and artist. Thanks to “Leonardo touch” device, the visitor can admire the most famous paintings and discover the most intimate and private aspects of the inventor’s story. A life-size hologram reproduces an old Leonardo, who looks to the past, to his native home to tell his studies, the events that bound him to these lands.



festa unicorno
Unicorno festival

Festa dell'Unicorno (Unicorno Festival)

Type: historical re-enactment
When: July

The event commemorates the Cecco Santi’s story and his “flight.” Commander of the army of Vinci in the early decades of the 14th century, had the task of defending the fortress during the ongoing fighting between the Guelphs and Ghibellines. According to tradition Cecco Santi betrayed the city for the love of a noblewoman. Others let buy a commander enemy to whom he had promised, in return for a large sum of money, access to the interior of the town. But the betrayal was not because the attitude of the suspicious Commander population. Cecco was arrested and was sentenced to be thrown from the tower of the castle of the Guidi. As a last wish he asked to drink a glass of wine and … a miracle happened! Cecco managed to fly up the hill in front of the tower and save himself. Consequently it was pardoned and, in that year, the farmers were also abundant harvests of grapes, olives and wheat…

Menar mascelle all’or di cena

Type: gastronomy
When: June

Renaissance dinner.


Itineraries around Vinci

strada del olio montalbano
Montalbano Olive Oil and Wine Road

Strada Verde (Green road)

In the territory of Vinci, among vineyards, olive groves and chestnut woods, runs a network of pedestrian and cycle itineraries, with an extension of about 46 km, on the slopes of Montalbano. The paths, with different levels of difficulty, are a proposal to the discovery of a secondary road of great scenic and environmental value. The dominant landscape of Montalbano is hilly, with vineyards near the flat area or in some terracing, the common trees in the higher areas and chestnut forests on the summits. Between the 16th and 17th century, about 4,000 hectares of Montalbano were set aside by the Medici for the Barco Reale Mediceo, a vast area used a reserve for hunting, bounded by a perimeter wall of which are still visible some stretches. Here runs an extensive network of walking and cycling routes that reach hill towns surrounded by nature, archaeological sites, ancient forests like the holm oak Pietramarina.

The path 14, called Strada Verde in the first stretch up to Leonardo’s house (1 hour round trip), continue towards Saint Lucia and Faltognano with centuries-old oak and the Church of St. Mary. From locations Vitolini begin the path 10 (2 hours round trip) and 10A (2 hours 45 ‘return). To the northeast of Vinci, about three kilometers north of Sant’Amato (where there is the Romanesque church of San Pietro), 00 passes the path that reaches the Tower of Sant’Alluccio, the fairing and through the town of Capraia e Limite. So come to the gates of the town of Montelupo Fiorentino. Here, after Pietramarina (to visit the Abbey of San Giusto) the path 00 branches in the path 4A (then 4) in the territory of Capraia e Limite, encountering along the way the Romanesque church of San Jacopo a Pulignano (open only from ‘external), the Bibbiani Villa with style park created in the nineteenth century by Cosimo Ridolfi, the archaeological excavations of Montereggi. In the territory of Montalbano extends the Road oil and wine of Montalbano “Colline di Leonardo” that touches the towns of Lamporecchio, Capraia e Limite, Cerreto Guidi, Larciano, Monsummano Terme, Quarrata, Serravalle Pistoiese and Vinci.

Oil and Wine Montalbano Road - Leonardo' Hills

The Wine Routes are routes within the Tuscany region to high wine production characterized by important cultural, historical and natural. The Wine Routes allow you to visit the cellars and wineries known among nature landscapes and medieval villages that still retain traces of the original architecture.

Municipalities: Capraia e Limite (FI)  Serravalle Pistoiese (PT), Quarrata (PT), Cerreto Guidi (FI) , Lamporecchio (PT), Larciano (PT), Monsummano Terme (PT) e Vinci (FI)

Address: Piazza Fra Giuseppino Giraldi, 6 – locality San Baronto – 51035 Lamporecchio (PT)
Phone: +39 327 3594603
Website: www.stradadileonardo.org
Email: info@stradadileonardo.org

The Oil and Wine Montalbano Road and the Leonardo’ hills, was founded by the will of eight municipalities to safeguard and promote the environment and products, unifying the territory, agricultural productions, art and culture. Montalbano is a hilly area that branches off the Tuscan-Emilian Apennines separating the Pistoia-Florentine plain and that of the Valdinievole. The landscape is characterized by forests, vineyards, olive groves and arable land. It seems that Leonardo da Vinci has started to practice drawing their various views of the mountain. The hills are also rich in villas, Etruscan ruins, churches and churches. To note the distance and the Padule Barco Reale, one of the first examples of “nature reserve” created by man. In the area there are internationally known spa towns, as Monsummano Terme.

The vineyards of these areas produce the prized Chianti Montalbano as well as other wines as big as the dell’Empolese Bianco DOC, the DOC Colli Etruria Centrale, the Cerreto IGT and, of course, the Vin Santo. Another typical product is the extra-virgin olive oil Montalbano, considered one of the finest in the world. The territory of the oil Road and the wine and Montalbano hills of Leonardo also boasts other typical products of high quality. A top position goes to cheese like Marzolino Lucardo, cold meats, fruits and vegetables to the countless productions among which the Certaldo onion and artichoke Empoli, not to mention the truffle honey and IGT.

Typical Products:  Vino Chianti Montalbano DOCG (Chianti wine), Vin Santo Chianti Montalbano, Vino Cerreto IGT (wine), Vino Bianco Empolese IGT (white wine), Extravirgin Olive Oil of  Montalbano Hills, Onions of Certaldo, Artichoke Empolese


Along the Oil and Wine Montalbano Road and Leonardo’ Hills, you can taste excellent wines and extra virgin olive oil, directly in the cellars and mills. Starting from Cerreto Guidi, where they produce excellent wine Cerreto IGT, you can choose the route that descends to the Lazzaretto – near the Padule – and continues to Lamporecchio. Otherwise the route that leads to Vinci, the birthplace of Leonardo, where you can visit the Leonardo Museum, housed in the offices of the Palazzina Uzielli and the Castle of the Counts Guidi. Da Vinci you can climb the Montalbano, perhaps stopping to admire the house of Leonardo Da Vinci, and then on to San Baronto, a small village famous for the bread. Finally you can taste the brigidini of Lamporecchio, spelled soup, gruel with tomatoes, black cabbage gruel, finocchiona.

Still da Vinci you can follow a route through Violins and down to the Arno river. From here you can choose whether to cross or Sovigliana head Capraia e Limite, perhaps stopping to visit the Museo della Canteiristica Navale (Ship building Museum).



vinci10The earliest records of the town date back to the 11th century, when the fief of the Guidi was enlarged. In 1180 the difficult relations between the aristocratic family and Florence improved thanks to the marriage of Guido Guerra with Gualdrada, daughter of Bellincione Berti. In 1220 Emperor Frederick 2th moved to each branch of the Guidi family the fourth part of the ancient privileges, including the villages of Empoli, Monterappoli, Cerreto and the “castrum de Vincio”. The village and the castle were then involved in various events, until, in 1254, were built by Florence and transformed in common. In 1315 the population of Vinci rebelled against the rule of Florence. However, no later than five years later, the army of Castruccio Castracani, lord of Lucca and rival of Florence, Vinci devastated.

Only the peace treaty of Montopoli (1329) was able to bring a brief period of calm. In 1538 the valiant commander Giovanni da Vinci was distinguished for courage and diplomatic skill forcing the Spanish soldiers (eager to loot the countryside of Vinci, and that of Cerreto Guidi) to recede. The town became part of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany and followed its fate until the unification of Italy, when it became autonomous. Apart from the historical events, Vinci has its own name closely linked to the life of Leonardo, the universal genius was born in 1452 and who lived part of his childhood and youth before moving to Florence. In addition to Leonardo, the town are linked other artistic personalities like Pierino da Vinci, Leonardo’s nephew and precocious genius of the sculpture. Here also lived the poet and writer Renato Fucini.


The oldest part of the town has a plant almond shaped. Seen from above, suggests a boat with two masts: the tower of the fortress and the bell tower of Santa Croce. For this reason, the historical center of the village is also known as “Castel della Nave” (Castel of the ship).


Typical products

olio extravergine d'oliva
Extravirgin olive oil

Wine and Olive oil

olio-olivaIn the area of ​​Vinci the protagonists of food production are wine and olive oil, to which is dedicated the Road oil and wine of Montalbano Le Colline di Leonardo. The agricultural landscape, almost intact, is characterized by the cultivation of grapes on the lower hills and olive groves on the highest slopes.

Typical products:
Chianti Montalbano DOCG wine, Vin Santo Chianti Montalbano, Cerreto IGT wine, white wine IGT Empoli, Extravirgin Olive Oil of Montalbano hills, Certaldo onion, artichoke Empoli


The varieties of grapes used in the area are Sangiovese, Canaiolo and Malvasia Nera, which produce the excellent red wine Chianti Montalbano DOCG and, for white grapes, Trebbiano and Malvasia Bianca, from which we get the Bianco IGT Toscana. The harvest of ripe grapes takes place from mid-September to mid-October.

Olive Oil

Another typical product is the extra-virgin olive oil Montalbano, considered one of the finest in the world. A Win olive groves that produce excellent extra virgin olive oil IGP They consist mainly of crop types Frantoio, Moraiolo and Leccino. Just the variety of olives and the different stage of maturation at the time of collection to give this oil a significant mixture of tastes. The olive harvest is still largely done by hand and takes place from November to January.


The territory of the Oil and Wine Montalbano Road and Leonardo’ Hills also boasts other typical products of high quality. A top position goes to cheese like Marzolino Lucardo, cold meats, to the many fruit and vegetable production and IGT honey.

Typical products tasting

Information: Tourist Office – via della Torre,11 – Vinci
Phone: +39 0571 568012

Il Casolare di Luggiano

Via Luggiano, 9 località Collegonzi – Vinci
Phone: +39  0571 577996 –  by appointment
Products: Wine (Bianco IGT, Rosso IGT, Rosso Barriccato IGT, Passito).
Visit and Tasting: visit the company, the winery, vineyards and olive groves, for groups and individuals, also possible in English and French. Wine tasting and appetizers. Tour and tasting for a fee

Agriturismo Barbarino

Via Lamporecchiana, 105 – Vinci
Phone: +39  0571 56394 – by appointment
Products: Wine (Bianco IGT, Rosso IGT, Chianti Barriccato), Extravirgin Olive Oil  and Vin Santo
Visit and Tasting: visit the company, the winery, vineyards and olive groves, for groups and individuals, also possible in English and French. Wine tasting and appetizers. Tour and tasting for a fee

Casa Carbonaia

Via di S. Lucia, 11 – Vinci
Phone: +39  0571 993252 – prenotazione obbligatoria
Products: Wine (Chianti Montalbano, Sangiovese e Trebbiano) and Organic Extravirgin Olive Oil
Visit and Tasting: Visit the company and olive groves for groups and individuals, also possible in English and French. wine and oil tasting. Visit and free tasting.

Il Vincio

via di San Pantaleo, 24 – Vinci
Phone: +39 0571 56009 – reservations required
Products: Wine (Chianti Montalbano), Organic Extravirgin Olive Oil, honey, cheese, salami.
Visit and Tasting:Visit the olive groves for groups and individuals, also possible in French. Tasting be agreed. Tour and tasting for a fee.

Podere Zollaio

via Pistoiese, 25 – Vinci
Phone: +39 0571 56439 – reservations required
Products: Wine (Chianti Montalbano e Bianco IGT) e Extravirgin Olive Oil.
Visit and Tasting: Visit the company, the winery, vineyards and olive groves, small groups and individuals, also possible in English, French and German. Two wine and oil tasting. Tour and tasting for a fee.

Il Piastrino

via Piastrino, 30 – Vinci
Phone: +39 0571 56148  or +39 348 5103185 – reservations required
Products : Wine (Toscano Rosso IGT, Bianco Toscano IGT, Chianti), Extravirgin Olive Oil IGP, honey, Vin Santo of Chianti, Grappa Chianti Riserva.
Visit and Tasting: Visit the company, the winery, vineyards and olive groves, for groups and individuals, also possible in French. Tasting of wines and olive oil, on demand with cold cuts, cheese and croutons. Tour and tasting for a fee.

Villa Dianella

Via Dianella, 48 – Vinci
Phone: +39 0571 508166 – reservations required
Products: WineChianti Fattoria Dianella DOCG, Le Veglie di Neri Rosso Toscano IGT, Il Matto delle Giuncaie Toscano IGT, Chianti Fattoria Dianella DOCG Riserva, Dolci Ricordi Wine); Extravirgin Olive oil.
Visit and Tasting: Visit the company, the winery and the vineyards, for groups and individuals, also possible in English, French and German. Tasting of wine and fortified wine. Weekly Tour: Tuesdays and Thursdays at 03.00pm. Tour and tasting for a fee.

Cantine Leonardo

Via Provinciale di Mercatale, 291 – Vinci
Phone: +39 0571 902444 – reservations required
Products: Wine (Chianti DOCG, Val d’Arbia DOC., Bianco DOC, Rosato DOC., Vinsanto, Rosso di Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino, Chianti Classico DOCG), Grappe and sparkling wine
Visit and Tasting: Visit the company, the winery and the vineyards, for groups and individuals, also possible in English. Tasting 3 or 5 wines. Tour and tasting for a fee.

Oleificio Cooperativo Montalbano

Via Beneventi, 2/b – Vinci
Phone: +39  0571 56247 – reservations required
Products: Extravirgin Olive Oil
Visit and Tasting: Visit the mill, for groups, also possible in English and German languages. Tasting base and complete. Tour and tasting for a fee.

Tenuta Bacco a Petroio

Via Villa Alessandri, 18 – Locality Petroio – Vinci
Phone: +39 3452804784  – reservations required
Products: Wine (Rossi e Bianchi DOCG e IGT), Grappe, Vin Santo and Extravirgin olive oil
Visit and Tasting: Visit the company, the winery and the vineyards, for groups and individuals, also possible in English (with notice of 1 hour). Tasting three products. Tour and tasting for a fee.