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Siena

Siena, located in the heart of Tuscany, surrounded by hills, is one of the most beautiful medieval cities of Italy '. Heart of the city is the famous Piazza del Campo, the shell-shaped, in which it holds the famous Palio, one of the most important events for all the people of Siena. The Palio of Siena is a 'passionate horse race that takes place every year in July and August and its origins seem to date back to the seventeenth century addiruttura. According to legend, Siena was founded by Senio, the son of Remus, and in the city there are several statues of the mythical Romulus and Remus suckled by the she-wolf. Piazza del Campo is the core of Siena since the time of the Romans, who had their court here. The square was repaved during the government of the Nine, a semi-democratic group in power between 1287 and 1355, with a division into nine sections in the memory of the Government of the Virgin Mary and symbolizes the mantle that protects the city. The field is dominated by the red Palazzo Pubblico and its tower, called the Torre del Mangia. The Palazzo Pubblico, as well as the Cathedral of Siena, was built during the government of Nine, which was the heyday of economic and cultural center of Siena. The palace today houses the offices of the City, like the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence. From the courtyard of the Palace leads to the Civic Museum and the Torre del Mangia, on top of which, climbed the 500 steps, you can enjoy a splendid view of the city. In the Museum are kept some of the finest paintings of the Sienese school. The Consistory Hall offers one of the most beautiful works of Domenico Beccafumi, who frescoed ceilings depicting the cycle of public virtue. In the Hall of the Mappamonto and in the Sala della Pace (or Hall of the Nine) then there are true masterpieces: the great Majesty and the equestrian portrait of the siege of Montemassi Guidoriccio da Fogliano by Simone Martini and the Allegories of Good and Bad Government Ambrogio Lorenzetti, considered one of the most important series of paintings of the Middle Ages.

Pienza

Pienza, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is located in the beautiful Val d'Orcia and is known as the city of Pope Pius II, born Enea Silvio Piccolomini, who was born there in 1405. Pius II wanted to create an urban center and highly worthy ideal contrast to the other cities that had, with his family, unjustly marginalized Siena. Claims that famous architects and artists cry worked on a project in which they were embedded construction principles and philosophy of an age that opened full of promise: the Italian Renaissance. In just three years, from 1459 to 1462, rose Pienza, the City of author, the Ideal City, the City Utopia. The city "was born from a thought of love and a dream of beauty" as Giovanni Pascoli wrote. The city has been recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, as well as the entire Val d'Orcia which surrounds it. A fraction of the town of Pienza is well known Montichiello, the ancient village with its keep, its walls and its medieval gate towers over the Val d'Orcia. The inhabitants of Montichiello keep alive the ancient tradition of Poor Theatre, which demonstrates the vitality of the country and the ability of the population to meet and to stage its own history and its own identity.

Montepulciano

 
At the junction of two valleys, the Val d'Orcia and Val di Chiana, Montepulciano is located. Built along the narrow top of a limestone hill, this beautiful medieval village seems to be the natural continuation of the survey on which it is built. Coming by car from the picturesque tourist town but most ideal of Pienza, just eleven miles away, the landscape that you encounter just before reaching the village is in the best way the idea of ​​the classic Tuscany, made up of hills and green waves fields, as well known in the world. Immediately below the city walls and fortifications of the town, you can admire the beautiful church of the Madonna di San Biagio. The pearly white travertine with which the early sixteenth century was built the building stands out in the distance in the green surroundings and welcomes anyone who decides the best way to spend a day wandering through the narrow streets of the village or swim in the warm waters of the nearby sulfur Terme. Leaving the car in one of several parking lots located outside the walls is possible to walk along the river that runs through the elegant and ancient village dating back down the hill along the imposing Renaissance palaces, until you reach the central square. The Piazza Grande, located at the highest point of the country is dominated by the large tower and the Gothic facade of the Palazzo Comunale. Opposite the town hall you can admire the cathedral dating back to the late sixteenth century. Despite the undeniable beauty, Montepulciano is known internationally for its Vino Nobile, one of the most popular Tuscan wines in the world, which is obtained from the pressing of the grapes from the vineyards surrounding the village.

Cortona

The town of Cortona is located in the province of Arezzo, on the side of a mountainous place between the Valdichiana and the valley of the Tiber, and was an important Etruscan center. Of the Etruscan period are substantial remains of the walls perhaps dating back to the fifth century BC, which were developed for about 2 km. The old town as it is today was formed in the thirteenth century: in 1241 there is already the Town Hall, built in 1245 is the church of St. Francis, built in 1250, is the People's Palace. In 1456 began the renovation of the new Cathedral on the site where once stood the ancient parish church of St. Mary, while in 1480 the Sienese architect Francesco di Giorgio Martini starts the construction outside the city of Sanctuary of Madonna delle Grazie al Calcinaio . The city is rich in museums and works of art from the Museum of the Etruscan to the Diocesan Museum, which collects treasures such as the Annunciation by Fra Angelico, the Madonna in glory by Bartolomeo della Gatta and the Deposition of Luke Signorelli. Do not miss the Archaeological Park, the Medici Fortress of Girifalco and the Abbey of Farneta.

Città della Pieve

Where today is Città della Pieve, it is assumed that the Etruscans and Romans had already established their respective settlements. This quaint village was not immune from the vicissitudes of medieval history, and in fact, he saw several gentlemen succession to his guidance until Clement VII placed it under the direct control of the Church. In the middle of 'village, still surrounded by walls for a good part of the fourteenth century and medieval appearance so they can boast the narrowest street in Italy: the way Baciadonne, stands the Cathedral, dedicated to SS. Gervasio e Protasio; its original structure is to be traced back to the twelfth century, but the interventions of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries have changed the forms more remote, but the oldest building still emerges in the decorative details of the facade of the lower zone, in 'apse and bell tower in Romanesque Gothic . Inside works by Domenico Alfani and two great painters both born just in Città della Pieve, Perugino: "Madonna and Saints John the Evangelist, John the Baptist, Peter Martyr and blessed James Villa," "Madonna and Child with SS. Peter, Paul, Gervasio and Protasio "," Baptism of Jesus ", and Pomarancio:" Eternal and Angels. " Besides the beautiful tower of the Public, 38 meters high and built from a thousand and the churches of Santa Maria della Mercede and St. Augustine, which respectively preserve a fresco by Perugino and a table of Pomarancio, we can not forget to visit the Fortress and the church of S. Francesco, now shrine of Our Lady of Fatima. The first is a solid defensive structure with towers and male, the second, of the thirteenth century, houses the works of local school and a "Pentecost" usual Pomarancio. To conclude other works of the most famous painter citizen, Pietro Vannucci are preserved in the churches of Santa Maria dei Servi, and in that of St. Anthony the Abbot. Among the most important events organized in the city we should absolutely mention the Terzieri.

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