Rising on a hilltop near Siena, Monteriggioni is one of the most scenic and suggestive hamlets of all Tuscany, thanks to its impressive and majestic medieval bastions, that can be seen from a far distance.
The perfectly preserved circle of walls is 570 metres long and is characterized by 14 towers and two entrance gates. This tiny charming village was loved by the famous poet Dante Alighieri, that, in his Inferno, compares the fourteen imposing towers to giants in an abyss, a verse that welcomes you on the main gate as you enter the village:
“ però che, come su la cerchia tonda
Montereggion di torri si corona,
così la proda che ‘l pozzo circonda
torreggiavan di mezza la persona
li orribili giganti, cui minaccia
Giove del cielo ancora quando tuona. ”
Dante – Inferno XXXI, lines 40-45
This splendid fortified Tuscan borgo, was built in 1234 by the Sienese people to protect their northern border in the eternal conflict with the rival city of Florence.
Its charming squares, churches and ancient buildings have remained almost unchanged from the past! They seem exactly the same as 8 centuries ago; so creating a suspended and unique atmosphere.
The walkway on the walls is unforgettable and offers outstanding views; from there you can admire the wonderful surrounding countryside stretching up to the Chianti and the Val d’Elsa valley. The beautiful castle hosts a very interesting museum dedicated to medieval weapons and armours.
For its beauty, Monteriggioni has often become the special setting for famous movies, like The Gladiator, The English Patient, and La vita è bella by Roberto Benigni.
For more information about the museum, the walkway, and all about Monteriggioni, just click this link.