From Monticchiello to Montepulciano: a "noble" itinerary
From Monticchiello to Montepulciano
a "noble" itinerary
We will rarely lose sight of Monticchiello or Montepulciano during this excursion focusing on their rich history and landscape.
First we will pause to visit the small but interesting village of Monticchiello. Despite having fewer than one hundred inhabitants it retains its typical medieval layout, enclosed within mighty walls now falling down in places and crossed by narrow lanes.
Today Monticchiello is well-known for the annual historical performances known as “Teatro Povero” (Poor Theatre) but we will be directing our attention towards the old centre and the Pieve dedicated to Saints Leonard and Christopher. The interior of the Pieve, renovated in neoclassic style, hosts numerous frescoes, including an enormous one (5 metres tall!), depicting Saint Christopher.
After this we will take the “Via Barlettaia” footpath, following in the footsteps of the former carpenters from Mount Amiata who made “barlette”, small chestnut wood barrels for pilgrims, destined for markets in the Val d’Orcia and Val di Chiana.
The landscape which meets our eyes will depend on the season: green expanses of grain in spring will turn into boundless splashes of yellow in summer. With a light heart we will move on from the fields to the Vino Nobile vineyards: a sure sign that Montepulciano is near. We will see the unmistakable silhouette of the Church of San Biagio standing out from the incredible surrounding landscape. We must at least stop to admire the exterior of this, one of the architectural masterpieces of the sixteenth century!
Mighty and solidly constructed entirely in travertine, the church was designed by Antonio da Sangallo il Vecchio, on the site of a miraculous occurrence.
Our day will end with a guided tour of the “pearl of the Renaissance” as Montepulciano is known. A pleasant walk, taking in the birthplace of Poliziano, will lead us to the striking Piazza Grande, heart of Montepulciano.
- Duration: . 4.30 – 5 hours overall (approx. 3.00 hours for the excursion, 1.30 – 2
hours guided tours
- Lenght: 9 km
- Difficulty: medium
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