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The medieval walled town of Monteriggioni

A few kilometers from Hotel Casolare le Terre Rosse, reachable on foot along the Via Francigena or by car, rises majestically Monteriggioni on top of a hill. It is a small medieval village in the Sienese area that is very characteristic: anyone who visits it is soon fascinated.

Dante Alighieri was so impressed by this charming village and its imposing walls that he created the famous simile between the towers of the town and the giants chained around the chasm of Malebolge:

“... As with circling round;
Of turrets, Montereggion[2] crowns his walls;
E'en thus the shore, encompassing the abyss;
Was turreted with giants, half their length;
Uprearing, horrible, whom Jove from Heaven;
Yet threatens, when his muttering thunder rolls.
(Inferno, Canto XXXI, versi 40-45)


History and the Castle of Monteriggioni

Monteriggioni has remained intact as if time had never passed. The Sienese built the village in the years 1213-1219 on a hillock for defensive purposes to guard against the Francigena and control the Valdelsa territory.

It is surrounded by walls 570 meters long and interspersed with 15 towers and two gates, Porta Franca (or Romea, toward Siena) and Porta S. Giovanni (toward Florence). Enclosed within the walls, in the heart of the town, is the Castello, or historic center, which, as the Supreme Poet wrote, is crowned with towers.

The center of Monteriggioni is small but extremely charming. Strolling through the historic streets, it is possible to glimpse craft stores, small restaurants offering typical Sienese cuisine, and characteristic dwellings where the village's inhabitants still reside.

The Church of Santa Maria Assunta is definitely worth a visit. It overlooks the town's main square and is the building that best preserves the medieval character of the village. Another must-see is The Museum of Monteriggioni in Arme, which houses faithful reproductions of medieval and Renaissance weapons and armor.

Walking along the walls is a must-do activity for those visiting the medieval village. The walls of Monteriggioni have an elliptical shape and are interspersed with 15 towers and two gates. It is possible to walk along the areas of two walkways and admire a unique view of the surrounding area. In fact, from here you can enjoy a full view of the Sienese countryside towards Chianti and Valdelsa and an unusual view of the village.


The town's medieval festival, a note of folklore

Those who wish to add a note of folklore to their tour may choose to visit Monteriggioni in July. Every year, it hosts the celebrations of the medieval festival Monteriggioni di Torri si Corona. It is a two-day event in which the village goes back in time with moments of historical reenactment, traveling shows, music, fights, and countless other unmissable initiatives.

Visitors can participate in medieval games, watch artisans at work, and admire colorful parades in period dress with knights, warriors, and elegant ladies. And then in the evening more street performances, dancing, and fireworks, with the opportunity to taste local dishes.

Monteriggioni's medieval reenactment is extremely precise in its reconstruction: each year, the organizers work with historians to ensure that the details and costumes of the festival fully reflect medieval times. Even the food reflects the castle's history and is prepared according to the traditions of the time. It is definitely an occasion to experience at least once in a lifetime.

Treat yourself to a visit to the charming village of Monteriggioni and stay at our country hotel Casolare Le Terre Rosse. You will be within walking distance of all the amazing attractions that characterize the Sienese territory and the beautiful Tuscan countryside.

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