Cities of Art

SIENA – 60 km away from Monticchiello

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.

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, were 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 Mappamondo and in the Sala della Pace (or Hall of the Nine) 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 of Ambrogio Lorenzetti, considered one of the most important series of paintings of the Middle Ages.

FLORENCE – 120 km away from Monticchiello

A city that has maintained its charm and splendor of the past that never fails to surprise with its masterpieces of art, the colored marbles of the churches and buildings that will evoke the splendor and the role played in the development of culture and art of the Renaissance.

The beating heart of Florence is the Piazza del Duomo, the monumental complex of the Basilica of Santa Maria del Fiore – topped by a majestic dome of Brunelleschi – the Baptistery of St. John – a magnificent example of Florentine Romanesque – the Giotto’s bell tower – a masterpiece of Florentine Gothic architecture.
Behind the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo Santa Maria del Fiore, where you can admire a valuable collection of works from the Cathedral, the Baptistery and the Campanile.

Piazza della Signoria is the historic center of civic life and is home to the fourteenth-century Loggia dei Lanzi, the Fountain of Neptune and the Palazzo della Signoria, or Palazzo Vecchio, one of the symbolic monuments of the city, in front of which stand some famous statues, including a copy of the famous Michelangelo’s David.
Next to the square is the magnificent Uffizi Gallery, home to one of the most important museums in the world, which includes works by Botticelli, Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and many other great artists. Architectural element of particular importance is the Vasari Corridor Gallery designed by Vasari in the mid-sixteenth century, structure that connects the Palazzo Vecchio and Palazzo Pitti.
Between Piazza del Duomo and Piazza della Signoria arise architectural treasures such as the Church of Orsanmichele and the thirteenth-century Palazzo del Bargello National Museum, among the most important in the world for the sculpture of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Do not miss the sixteenth-century Loggia del Mercato Nuovo, also called the Loggia del Porcellino for the characteristic bronze statue, depicting a boar considered a good luck charm, and the magnificent Palazzo Strozzi, at the end of the fifteenth or early sixteenth century, with a beautiful courtyard.

Particularly fascinating is the medieval quarter of Santa Croce which is dominated by the homonymous Basilica, famous for its frescoes by Giotto and to preserve the graves of many illustrious Italians, such as Michelangelo, Galileo and Machiavelli. Other highlights include the extraordinary monumental complex of San Lorenzo and the convent of Santa Maria Novella, with the church that preserves famous frescoes and precious works of art and the museum, including the famous Green Cloister and the Spanish Chapel.

Through the ancient and picturesque Ponte Vecchio, littered with historical goldsmith shops, you will reach the district of Oltrarno, where it meets the scenic square dominated by the Pitti Palace, the imposing and magnificent palace that was the residence of the Medici and Lorraine, with the wonderful park, the Boboli Gardens, a splendid example of Italian garden.
Still in the Oltrarno, not to mention the panoramic Piazzale Michelangelo, popular with tourists for its wonderful view of Florence and the surrounding hills, and the Church of San Miniato al Monte, one of the finest examples of Florentine Romanesque style.

PISA – 200 km away from Monticchiello

The Leaning Tower of Pisa is the most famous Italian monument in the world. Together with the cathedral and baptistery is part of a series of works that the poet D’Annunzio called “Miracles”, from which the term of the Square of Miracles to the site that hosts them.
Reason for this reputation is certainly tilted in the structure of the tower due to a failure in the soil, but also in its magnificent architecture, consisting of arcades and loggias and in which 294 spiral steps lead into the top of a belfry from which there is a spectacular panorama: 56 meters above the ground. Square of Miracles since 1987 is included in the UNESCO world heritage list.
And yet the tower has not become as famous as many people believe, for the story of Count Ugolino narrated by the poet in his Divine Comedy, Dante Alighieri, which commemorates the imprisonment of the count who survived the children imprisoned with him, devoured the limbs. Count Ugolino was imprisoned in fact another tower, inside the Clock Palace.

The magnificence of the Tower, adjacent to the Cathedral of Santa Maria, stands inside the complex of buildings in the square, which appear to be resting on a cloud of green.
The Baptistery, the place of Christian baptism, the cathedral, a symbol of spiritual elevation and the old cemetery, the place of final destination, according to some interpretations represent a cosmic calendar: birth, life and death. The Cathedral or Duomo and baptistery, as white as snow, are an unparalleled example of Pisan Romanesque although in the case of the cathedral are evident within the Arab influences.

The beauty of this tourist destination in the heart of Tuscany must not deceive. Pisa is an open air museum but also a modern city whose rhythms and everyday life are marked by an intense young life. Although much of the nightlife and the student is taking place along the Arno river, walking along the Arno which crosses the city, it is common to see in the Square of Miracles many of the students who animate one of his University, the Scuola Normale di Pisa, between the oldest, respected and sought after in the world. It is located in Piazza del Cavalieri, host of the Palace of the Caravan of the great Giorgio Vasari.

The greatness of the ancient maritime republic of Pisa is reflected in bridges, buildings and interiors painted in a bid as a museum of great importance: in the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo, in one of the graphics, the Royal Palace and the Certosa. The medieval center is full of churches, arcades and bars. Pisa was the birthplace of well-known painters and still is an important center for contemporary art. Near the railway station boasts the magnificent mural by Keith Haring Tuttomondo while the fountain in Piazza della Stazione is the great Arnaldo Pomodoro.

In addition to cultural tourism, Pisa is inextricably linked to the sea, it has returned recently to be a place of seaside tourism in its municipalities comprising both places such as Marina di Pisa and the Tuscan coast, which is part of the Natural Park Migliarino, St. Flushing Massaciuccoli.