Good morning everyone!
Today we’d like to talk you about the main character of our days here at the Borgo: Monteriggioni castle.
How can you not notice it while taking a walk? You can see its majesty over our vineyards, it fills our eyes with magic, and we can’t do anything but wonder how life was during the Middle Age…
As we can imagine, many of you have visited it, losing themselves among its narrow streets, enchanted by its colors and smells of tasty meals…
But today, we want to give you a more specific guide in order to make your visit more suggestive.
In fact, Monteriggioni has a lot of main points, first of all the main square: Piazza Roma.
With its church placed in the middle, and its famous water well, this square represents the center of Monteriggioni, there we can find restaurants and markets where you’ll be able to taste wonderful meals or buy a bottle of wine to give to your beloved ones.
We suggest you a visit to Santa Maria Assunta’s church: fronting the main square, is the building that best preserves the borgo’s medieval features. Built in the 13th century, it consists of a single interior space with a rectangular termination. The very elegant facade displays a fine doorway with a stone arch, with a round window (roundel) above. The interior, renovated in modern times, has plastered walls and domed vaults. As well as a bell dating to 1299, the Church also houses a 17th century painting of the Madonna and Rosary, which the town celebrates every year in October.
On the opposite side you’ll fine the main access of Monteriggioni, known as Porta Franca or Romea, it faces the direction of Rome, and stands below a tower with a high pointed arch. In the past it very likely had a drawbridge, that was lowered to bridge a moat that has now disappeared. To the left of the arch is an inscription commemorating the foundation of Monteriggioni in the 1220s, while a plaque on the right celebrates the newly-founded unified state of Italy, in 1860. We suggest you to go there during sunset, the view will leave you speechless.
Anyone coming to Monteriggioni cannot miss the experience of walking along the top of the castle walls. From the top of the outer walls, one can admire the glorious countryside on all sides, looking out towards the Chianti region and the Elsa Valley, and enjoy an unusual view of the borgo itself. But, with a little imagination, you might even hear the footsteps of those soldiers who used to guard the castle from atop these walls…
Last but not least, Monteriggioni owns wonderful outer walls, know also thanks to Dante Alighieri’s part of the Divina Commedia, in fact he compares it to the Giants of the Hell: “[…] Because as on its circular parapets / Montereggione crowns itself with towers, / E’en thus the margin which surrounds the well / With one half of their bodies turreted / The horrible giants […] Inf., XXXI, 40-44).
The outer walls, made of stone, run all the way around the top of the hill, in an uninterrupted circuit around 570 mt long.
The outer face of the walls is interrupted at intervals by 14 rectangular towers, with an extra tower abutting the walls on the inside.
Hundreds of people fill its streets everyday, but as you know, we suggest you to visit it during the Medieval Fest that takes place during the first two weekends of July.
For any advice, don’t hesitate to ask our staff, who will be able to give you additional informations, just as where to eat to obtain the best service possible.
Have a good day!
Borgo de’Brandi staff