Agra:Farm Holidays,Tuscany|Radicofani

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Radicofani


Radicofani, TuscanyRadicofani was one of the most important strongholds in Italy for centuries. Besides the via Cassia, it controlled the border between Latium, Umbria and Tuscany (thus swinging between the power of Siena, Grosseto, Perugia and Viterbo). The Rocca (Old Citadel) is seen ten kilometres away with its domineering position over the medieval suburb a quadrangular embattled tower surrounded by more recent fortesses, is all that remains of the original building. Everything -nevertheless- is a modern recostrution with a medieval form. It was built in 1200 A.D., rebuilt in 1565 and destroyed in 1700. You will enjoy a wanderful view up there: the landscape, which is dominated by Mount Amiata to the west, overlooking the Chiana Valley and Umbria, is rich in detail, including Lake Bolsena and the Central Appennines on a clear day. Before going down to the village, it is worth taking a walk in the pine-wood surrounding the citadel, which requires attention for the presence of arches, wells and vaults half hidden among the vegetation.
 
Instead of driving up to the fortress, you can walk there in 20 minutes. The village is worth a careful visit. The most meaningful monument is the Romanesque church of St. Peter, dating back to the XIII century. It was damaged in the second world war and then restored in 1946. The inside, with its low gothic arches preserves a wonderful collection of "terracotta" by "Della Robbia" and wooden statues among which a beautiful " Madonna col Bambino" by Francesco di Valdambrino. Behind the Church is a large square- the view you can enjoy from here may be compared to that enjoyed from the Rocca. Along the main street, the Church of St. Agatha, the patron Saint of Radicofani, presents a big altar-frontal (dossal) by Andrea della Robbia and a more recent wooden statue in the sacristy. The Palazzo Pretorio is another monument worth mentioning. Now used as a school, it is an impressive building with numerous old stone coats of arms in its façade. Along the old Via Cassia is the Post Palace, a beautiful Medicean Villa, which originnally a hunting house for Ferdinando I, was then trasformed into a hotel and customs-house for travellers. Among the various guests, François Montaigne, Charles Dickens,Pope Pius II and Pius VII stayed there during their journeys.Opposite the Villa, there is a beautiful stone fountain dominated by a big Medicean coat of arms.






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