The medieval town of Monteriggioni is situated on a hill with vineyards and olive groves, in the heart of Tuscany, clearly visible from the highway Siena – Firenze and Via Cassia. What strikes at first this village is its immense walls, surrounded with its 14 towers, which look like a stone crown. Visitors can take walks along the walls, thanks to a path created inside the castle walls, admiring the beautiful hilly landscape of Chianti, the Montagnola Senese and reading the history of the city even mentioned in the “Divine Comedy” by the poet Dante Alighieri.
Monteriggioni Castle was built by the Sienese in 1200 by order of the mayor Guelfo Da Porcari, mainly as defensive, in fact, in the course of time is often a cause of clashes between Siena and Florence. The castle is accessed through two doors one towards Florence (Porta Fiorentina or San Giovanni) and the other towards Siena (Porta Franca or Romea).Today the village is still inhabited by small houses and a large central square, Piazza Roma, where there is the church of Santa Maria Assunta. The square is surrounded by gardens and orchards, in the past very important for the survival of the country, there are also a number of shops of handicrafts and objects typically medieval. Monteriggioni is located in the path of the Via Francigena, the famous ancient road that led pilgrims to Rome, 21 km (13 miles) walking from Piazza Roma to Piazza del Campo in Siena. Every year, in late June, in the castle it is organized the medieval festival “Monteriggioni di torri si corona” (Monteriggioni is crowned with towers), where we can admire the ancient crafts (blacksmiths, carpenters, dyers and more) that make items on the spot using only tools and historical instruments, creating the atmosphere of a medieval market, all dressed in costumes of that period. There are also the guards in various strategic areas of the castle (the entrance, patrols on the walls and on the inside), areas for children, shopkeepers, street performances and parade with lots of music evoking the Middle Ages. The territory of the town of Monteriggioni is vast reaches up to Quercegrossa, the Val d’Elsa and the area of Siena.
You can find the lesser known, but very beautiful and evocative as Abbadia a Isola where there is the church of San Salvatore and Cirino; Scarna where in the sixties was discovered a necropolis with about thirty tombs carved into the tuff rock and a pit dating from the fourth century B.C.; the fourteenth-century “Castello della Chiocciola“, characterized by a square tower surrounded by battlements, which takes its name from the typical scale of access to the floors of the main tower; Villa Santa Colomba residence of Pandolfo Petrucci where inside are a series of frescoes dating from the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries including a representation of Sant’Ansano, the Patron Saint of Siena, only outside the city walls.