Spending a few relaxing days in Tuscany, will allow you to travel among ancient towers and parish churcheses.
San Gimignano, the medieval Manhattan
The beauty and the glory of San Gimignano, in the Chianti area, found its blessing when the UNESCO stated it as Human Heritage Site. It is a very special hamlet, famous for its medieval architecture and for the number of towers standing towards the sky. During its peak, there were more than seventy towers, built by the highborn families as symbol of their power and wealth.
Its aesthetics and its peculiar medieval atmosphere, is amazingly represented by the many towers survived through time. The hamlet, clearly Etruscan, in the X Century was mentioned with the name of San Gimignano, a Saint who was capable, according to the tradition, to save the town from the ferocity of the Huns. It can be easily stated that its most flourishing period was the middle age, especially looking at the wonderful Piazza del Duomo (Cathedral Square). This square is the core of San Gimignano, which offers a deserving frame to the Cathedral, to the Lodge, as well as to the Populus Palace, and to the Podestà Palace. Of particular interest, is Porta San Giovanni, finished in 1260, and Piazza della Cisterna (Tank Square), where you can see the huge tank built in 1287.
Greve in Chianti, the heart of Chianti
Greve in Chianti is a picturesque medieval hamlet, which has been a focal trading centre since the middle age, due to is strategic location, confluence of many commercial routes in the past.
The wonderful Castel of Montefioralle is basically linked to the whole history of Greve in Chianti. Its square, surrounded by porches and in shape of the typical extended triangle, still represents the focal point of the village. At the center of the square there is the statue dedicated to Giovanni from Verrazzano, while the Church with a neoclassical façade, dedicated to the Holy Cross, is located over one of the vertexes; this sacred building holds inside, among many marvels, an interesting fresco from the Fourteenth Century. Of particular interest, are the many parishes, such as, to mention some of them, the Parish of St. Donatus in Mugnana, the Parish of St. Miniatus of Rubbiana, and the Parish of St. Peter in Cintoia. The Greve in Chianti Wine Museum, instead, allows visitors to taste more than two hundred varieties of wine.