tuscan pecorino
Apr24

Today we’ll showcase one of Southern Tuscany’s best products… Tuscan Pecorino!!

A gastronomical delicacy the Tuscan Pecorino, (PDO, Protected Designation of Origin) is the result of a delicate balance of natural features (climate and environmental characteristics) and human features (production method and artisanal know-how) that blend to create a product which is inimitable outside of the area of origin.  Also called ‘cacio’ in Southern Tuscany, it has ancient origins which date back to the Etruscan era. With the creation of the first cheese factories, it emerged the definitive separation between the figure of the shepherd and that of the cheese maker, who well and truly became an cheese artisan. It’s a cheese that’s also known with its ancient name, ‘cacio marzolino’, which comes from the period of production that started in the month of March and continued throughout the Spring period.

The characteristics of the PDO Tuscan Pecorino derive from both the environmental conditions in which the sheep are bred and also the productive processes aided by the most advanced technologies, that nonetheless respect a centuries-old tradition, allowing for the production of a top-quality cheese.

The fundamental ingredient is obviously milk, exclusively sheep milk, that comes from herds raised on the territory marked by the Denomination of Protected Origins. It has a cylindrical shape and its consistency is dense with a straw-yellow color of varying intensity. Its flavor is fragrant and at times accentuated, a characteristic of this particular production method. Depending on the area of production the aging process changes and with this, the flavor and the use of the cheese also change a lot too. In fact, they range from a fresh Tuscan Pecorino, which has a delicate and sweet flavor, to a more seasoned Pecorino, with an intense and more accentuated flavor and finally to a Pecorino with a very long aging process, making it hard and with a strong flavor that is traditionally served with the sweet flavor of honey or jam…

During your stay at Hotel della Fortezza, you will have the chance to taste Tuscan Pecorino in different occasions, such as in the buffet of your breakfast or choosing our Aperitif with Local Products. We underline the importance of using local products, in order to let our guests discover our rich territory starting from the local gastronomy. Our Aperitifs include a mix of Tuscan Pecorinos with different aging processes, fresh, aged, or blue cheeses and Cinta-Senese cured meats.. All accompanied with a glass of white or red wine from the best local cellars!

Let you be tempted by the irresistible tastes of Southern Tuscany… we look forward to welcoming you!

 

tuscan wines
Apr18

An organic excellence amongst the southern tuscan wines ..

This enterprise is the fruit of a love and passion for the territory, for the tuscan wines and in particular for this strip of land in the Southern Tuscan hills. 24 years ago Carla and Edoardo, a couple both in work and personal life, decided to make a change after a lifetime in the chaos and monotony of city life. Thus, they embraced nature by moving to Southern Tuscany. Carla, who is an agronomist from Trento, had always wished to live in the countryside; Edoardo, a documentary maker from Rome, has always been fascinated by the realm of winemaking. Thanks to their dreams they were able to set up the vineyard of Sassotondo, that today is amongst the best in the area of the hilltop towns.

72 hectares that lie on the border between the municipalities of Sorano and Pitigliano, which include woodland and pastures; 10 of them produce their elegant, flavoursome and aromatic wines, the expression of this powerful and mysterious territory of Southern Tu
scany. According to the organic agriculture, the vineyard produces two
DOC (guarantee of origin) wines, the Pitigliano White and the Sorano Red. 8 hectares are dedicated to red grapes (principally Ciliegiolo, San Giovese and Merlot) and 2 for white grapes (Trebbiano, Greco, Sauvignon) with tuff-stone being the characterizing element of this territory and its wine production. Their real strengths are the IGT (Protected Geographical Indication) wines which hold all of their intuitions, culture and passion for this land and for the tuscan wines.

What about the origin of this name?

Sassotondo..a peculiar name whose origin are to track down in the nature of this land, a volcanic land. Nowadays Monte Amiata is the most famous ski station of the whole Southern Tuscany, but it was previously a volcano whose eruptions, once cooled and stratified, originated the stone that distinguishes this area.. the Tuff! HIMG_3884ouses, streets and foundation of the villages spread from Monte Amiata to the coast are made of tuff, that characterizes not only the aspect of Southern Tuscany, but also the flavors of the products of this land, that, as Carla will proudly explain, for this reason are unique worldwide!

The real round stone (“Sasso-tondo”) is a tufa stone that had been found by chance in the fields of the company, after a long process of smoothing and sculpting made by the weather. The two wine-producers make it the emblem of their love for this land, giving it the place of honour in the centre of their label, in which we can notice also the vineyards and the mountains in the distance that surround the sphere.

Also the cellar is carved into the tufa stone! A thirty-meters-long cave that ends in the room called “bottaio”, where the barrels containing wine have always the optimal temperature and humidity thanks to the material of the walls.. a suggestive tunnel that you can travel following Carla, Edoardo or who will accompany you to the discover of the wine-producing system that give shape to the wines of Sassotondo, getting lost in the passionate narrations and descriptions of who will answer to all your questions.

We have chosen for you the wine-producing company Sassotondo for a two-hours wine-and-food tour to discover the flavors of Southern Tuscany, because it emerges as representative of the excellences of products in this region. Once arrived at Sassotondo, the owners themselves will welcome you warmly, and your tour will start in a friendly and informal atmosphere. Starting from the vineyards, you will eventually visit the wine-producing systems, hidden in the tufa stone under the fields. The tuff makes the cellar more suggestive, but also constantly cool and humid. At the end of the tour of the machines you will taste the finished product. Three wines, tasted in the cozy terrace directly with the owners, listening to their description about the iter they have passed before being uncorked for your wine-tasting. Uncorked, obviously, like as the rules of the good sommelier impose… Get lost observing the careful motions of who will open the bottles, pouring the wine in the glass in the best way to exalt its unique taste and flavor. Your visit will last two hours, after which, you will have the chance to buy the products that most captured your attention!

Discover our Special Package dedicated to all the lovers of the tuscan wines – WINES OF SOUTHERN TUSCANY

homemade cakes
Apr13

Today we showcase Daniela and her homemade cakes..

What is the biggest satisfaction for people who work with tourists? Undoubtedly the positive reviews of the guests! According to what you have written until today about our hotel, it seems that our hard work is giving its good results. The detail that has been mentioned and always appreciated in most of your comments is the breakfast, in addition, obviously, to the stunning view from the Orsini Fortress!!

..A breakfast that we try everyday to make better and more genuine!

Every morning you will have a sweet awakening, with a sweet fragrance in the air and a big buffet rich of fresh and tasty products, both salty ones and homemade cakes. We always choose to propose local groceries, in order to speak about our territory through the gastronomy, in fact, in addition to the ham and cheese from Sorano, as well as fresh fruit and local bread, we decided to let you taste homemade cakes, baked just in the kitchen of our hotel!!

Today we want to introduce to you the chef that prepares everyday the homemade cakes for your breakfast, with simple, local, genuine ingredients.. Daniela! Her peculiar and friendly character won’t be difficult to notice during your stay, with her congeniality and spontaneity will know how to make you feel like home, just like guests of her own kitchen, and how to let you begin the day with a smile.

Surely, waking up and finding a good set buffet and a kind staff always ready to prepare you the hot drink that you prefer most is in and of itself a very relished cuddle, but try to imagine if everything you will find for food was rigorously high quality and locally produced? Daniela, who is very keen on cooking, has decided to think not only about the inimitable taste, but also about your health and the always increasing wish to find local products and awareness of the risks provoked by wrong diets.

IMG_4015For this reason in the last days we have carried on an experiment, with the guests who have had breakfast at Hotel della Fortezza, offering you both cakes prepared with the classic flour 00, and little muffins made with a new flour, produced in an organic farm just few kilometers from Sorano, asking their opinion at the end of the meal about the quality and taste of what they have eaten. We were a little bit uncertain about the result of this experiment, because the taste and the color of this new rough flour could have turned out to be too different that the previously one or could have not meet the expectation of the guests who would have expected the classic dough.. However we had to change our mind! The experiment yielded only positive feedback, every guest congratulated with us for Daniela’s culinary skills!

During your stay you will also have the possibility to visit the farm, to know the place where this particular flour is being produced.. An organic farm called Aia del Tufo, an enchanted place for those who come from the chaos of cities, where it is possible to taste a good lunch or dinner with special menus, in the silence and quietness of the countryside.

Check now the availability for a stay at Hotel della Fortezza

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hot springs of southern tuscany
Mar30

 

The benefits of the thermal water, in the wild nature of Southern Tuscany

We can notice as a new category of tourism has been spreading next to the one interested to the hundreds of century of history admirable in the territory of Southern Tuscany and obviously to the wine and food. This new category is turned to eliminate, or reduce, the psycho-physic problems thanks to the use of thermal waters! This is not a modern trend, but a millennial habit : Greeks, Romans and Etruscans have left their testimony celebrating the virtues of the waters of the hot springs of Southern Tuscany.

Today the hot springs have gained great consideration because of the discover of the real benefits earned by the immersion in this kind of water, and especially, because of the chaotic life we lead, that requires us to dedicate part of our time to the personal care. There is no better way to relax than a stay in the wild and natural environment of the Hilltop Towns, where you can reach the many hot springs of Southern Tuscany with a brief transfer.. In order to increase this kind of tourism, in the last years the thermal centers have evolved, establishing real SPAs able to offer services and specific therapies focused to the complete wellbeing of the guests.

Tuscany, especially the southern part, boasts a great tradition for which concerns wellbeing and hot springs; some of the most important nucleus as Bagno Vignoni and San Casciano have a very long history, but many other thermal stations have raised throughout the years, contributing to make Tuscany one of the most equipped under this point of view. Saturnia, Sorano, Bagni San Filippo, just to mention few of them, are really cherished by people who love this kind of wellness-holiday.

Hot springs of Southern Tuscany boast an additional key factor than the other Italian thermal centers. In fact these SPAs are immersed in natural and fascinating environments, surrounded by the green valleys and woods…ideal places for the complete relaxation!

Water as a therapy

Immersing in this water or getting dirty with the mud for example by playing with it, make us regress, and according to a fascinating symbolism studied by the psycho-analysis, it seems to be a mechanism that allow us to become young again, back in the time when mother used to take care of us. This “return to the pureness”, but especially the healing and protective connection inside the pools, can be seen as a complex relation between I and Subconscious. We can speak about a research of the soul, of our origin and our identity, that bring men to discover the water as a mean to solve some diseases in a natural way.

The waters of the hot springs of Southern Tuscany are used for many organic pathologies, in relation to their chemical composition. We can think about waters that contain arsenic and iron, that suit particularly for depression, while waters with bromine or carbon, and radio-active waters, can help anxious people.

We can assume that therapeutic waters (often synonymous of thermal waters) have characteristics able to carry out a sort of “pharmacologic activity” that prevents, and rehabilitates, physical and psychological diseases.

Waters are not all equal, and they do not solve the same problems:

  • The action of sulfurous waters, like that of Saturnia, is mainly dermatological, in fact they fight acne and dermatitis
  • Waters with arsenic is the best for the dry pathologies of the skin, like psoriasis
  • On the other hand, waters with carbon allow a specific action pointed to the circulatory system.

Take advantage of our Wellness packages, to dedicate your holiday to the care of body and mind.. Ask to our staff for further informations!

southern tuscan rural cuisine
Mar01

The emblem of the Southern Tuscan tradition

Since we are real tuscans, and lovers of simple and tasty food, we want to showcase you the Southern Tuscan Rural cuisine, that is part of the still alive traditions and culture in the territory of the Hilltop Towns, Sorano, Pitigliano and Sovana. As the time goes by, the development of modernity has increased the feeling, the necessity, to rediscover the ancient traditions that, on the contrary, would necessarily get lost.

Cooking is an art, and it is thanks to the culture, the history and the territory of a community that it is possible to discover authentic traditions..Southern Tuscany is one of the best example of territory that maintains a long and old culinary tradition. Many recipes and secrets have been preserved and transmitted  through the generations, so that an ancient memory has had the chance to keep living nowadays.

The Southern Tuscan Rural cuisine is a poor cuisine, but tasty, made of simple and cheap raw materials mixed to create unique and intense flavors, all linked to the relation between men and the productive cycle of the lands, the environmental conditions, the seasons and the personal beliefs and religious superstitions.

The emblem of the Southern Tuscan Rural cuisine, that today can be found in most of the restaurants of the Hilltop Towns, is called “Acquacotta”, a poor winter vegetables soup, with roasted bread…few and simple ingredients for a special and delicious result!

Imagination and fantasy are the means to rediscover flavor and taste of a dish that has been created for necessity to cook using only the few available ingredients. We have to say a special thanks to all the housewives, who, with their brilliance, have left us a really inimitable culinary tradition.

Discover our Special Offers that will allow you to taste the unique specialities of the Southern Tuscan cuisine in a selection of menus studied for you…from the classical traditional cuisine, to the more creative and cherished one!

 

hotel della Fortezza
Feb28

Hotel della Fortezza.. Ancient hart with a mind projected to the future!

Today is a great day for Hotel della Fortezza and its guests.. TODAY is an important date!

Today represents, for us, the fulfillment of the efforts of 10 years of hard work, always done with passion and LOVE!

Yes, LOVE for all what the branch of Tourism represents, for the Territory that hosts us and for its Development, for its History and for its Present, for an inimitable Gastronomy, for each Sunset and Sunrise that we had been living while working at Hotel della Fortezza!

The true LOVE for this job has been what has allowed us to work hard everyday, deciding to risk, to appreciate, to better understand this unique place, to dedicate care and particular attention to the level of the service and TODAY it allows us to dare…thinking about making Hotel della Fortezza even more beautiful than it already is!

TODAY our project is shaping brick by brick… A project that will lead to an even more special Hotel della Fortezza of Sorano!

Why do we say Special?

..Because every single management and structural aspect will be discussed with the purpose to offer you a better service!

..Because we will have our inner Food-Bar, where you will have the possibility to taste the delicacies of the territory in a new way!

..Because just asking to our receptionists you will have the activities you prefer booked for you!

..Because you will have the chance to buy all the products you will taste in the Food-Bar directly in the Hotel!

..Because, speaking about good food, we have solidified our agreement with the restaurant Fidalma in Sorano and we have add the new service of Gourmet Restaurants in Tufo Allegro, for who would like to visit the closed by hilltop town Pitigliano.

..Because we will have some stunning Suite in Pitigliano where, if you want, you will have the possibility to spend some more days of holiday!

..Because we grant you that all this will be managed with passion, professionalism and great LOVE!

Is it not enough?

We have decided to dedicate a Special Offer to the first week of re-opening of Hotel della Fortezza! For all the people who want to be the first to the try our new services and to give us their opinion… we look forward to welcoming you at Hotel della Fortezza!!

SPECIAL OFFER RE-OPENING 2017

prodotti biologici toscani
Feb06

Today we’ll be speaking about top quality tuscan organic products!

A tuscan organic products are guaranteed because it’s certified according to the CEE regulations that guarantee the method of production. In fact, the products that come from this particular form of agriculture are produced without the use of any chemical substance and in complete respect of the environment.  Organic products are spreading more and more in Southern Tuscany, because this is a territory full of agricultural enterprises built on the organic model that use the natural fertility of the land and promote biodiversity. Thus many cultivators have adopted techniques that respect the natural ecological equilibrium by not using harmful substances like fertilizers and pesticides. The purpose of these practices is to produce food, wine and many other products without toxic residue and full of nutritional value.  These are the reasons why an organic product guarantees quality and authenticity, indispensable prerogatives of a well-balanced, complete and healthy diet. Southern Tuscany can boast of a vast array of organic products, from fruit and vegetables to its renowned meat.

In recent years, there has been a mass return to our origins, particularly with the desire to use products from one’s own land. However, we’ll start from the premise that the identification of organic products derives from specific labeling procedures that offer the consumer the greatest guarantees possible of these products’ origins, preparation, transformation and packaging.. there is a real tradition based on the production of southern tuscan organic products!

There is an ever increasing request for healthy and natural products and therefore also, or above all, organic products. And thus we introduce you tuscan organic products that arise from the continuous search for products of high quality, all obtained from organic ingredients. There is no chemical treatment of the trees and their fruit, no impact on the earth and only natural products. All this translated into good health for those who buy organic!

arkeo hiking in Southern Tuscany
Jan30

Discovering “Città del Tufo” archaeological park

Today we showcase some of the fantastic opportunities for hours and hours of arkeo hiking in Southern Tuscany , especially in the territory of the hilltop towns called “Città del Tufo”, to discover the heritage of the etruscans and the other civilizations that have once lived in this particular area! Southern Tuscany is just a unique place, that deserve to be visited, where to enjoy every single landscapes, and, first of all, where to come in contact to all the cultural, historical and architectural patrimony of this territory, from the etruscans to the medieval time. You could visit the woods that surround the triangle of the hilltop towns of Sorano, Sovana and Pitigliano with a guide or by yourself, discovering the preserved signs of the etruscan and roman time.. from the origin, to the roman conquer, until the medieval period. A surprising and suggestive trip into the etruscan world and into the history of Southern Tuscany!

It is not easy to describe all the beauties of a such a rich territory like Southern Tuscany in a unique article, and for this reason what we can suggest you is an ideal itinerary dedicated to all curious people who are interested to discover this hidden edge of Tuscany that is almost still unknown, undertaking all-levels hiking in the nature.

1st Day

Pitigliano and Vie Cave

We suggest you to dedicate at least a day of your hiking in Southern Tuscany to the etruscans Vie Cave. This long roads carved into the tufa stone, delimited by the 20 meters tall sides, that create long corridors, are the example of how nature and human work can mix a perfect union, infusing a real sensation of balance with the environment to who walk through them. The aim of this road is still a mystery… In addition to connect the etruscan centers of this area, it was thought that they have a spiritual purpose, like a linking between human and divine.

You can park in one of the parking areas just outside village to reach the historical centre on foot. Reach the oldest part of the medieval village, in “Capisotto”, where a long staircase will accompany you to the ancient door of Sovana, from which you will have access to the first Via Cava, “Poggio Cani”. From here, reach the bottom of the valley where Lente river flows, to start the visit to the Vie Cave of “Frate Nuti” and “San Giuseppe”.

You just need to ask, and you will have the chance to spice your hiking in Southern Tuscany with a good picnic at Olmo Fountain, or if you prefer, some hours of wine-tasting in one of the local cellars, or a lunch in agritourism. For all the information, do not hesitate to call or write an email.

2nd Day

Sorano and the park of San Rocco

The morning begins with the guided tour of the medieval complex of the Orsini Fortress, concerning the extraordinary underground tunnels once used by the soldiers. At the end of the visit, you can reach the centre of Sorano directly from the fortress, with its intricate labyrinth of narrow streets and strict alleys, and its Masso Leopoldino, that was once a tufa mine, now transformed into a spacious terrace the first years of XXTh century. The old entrance of the fortress, “Porta dei Merli”, on the north side of the village, will bring you to the bottom of the valley, where you will find the entrance of Via Cave San Rocco, that lead to the namesake park. The walk to reach the park is hard, we suggest you to keep it calm! Once arrived on the top, you can explore the park of San Rocco and its necropolis and enjoy the stunning view on the hilltop town of Sorano. The terrace is perfect to take a moment of relaxation and a pleasant picnic.

Travel time : from 3 to 4 hours, without lunch break.

3rd Day

Sovana and its etruscan Necropolis

We can divide the itinerary into medieval and etruscan also in Sovana. The small open-air medieval museum has got no more than one hundred inhabitants and it will surprise you for the many details of its architecture, Piazza del Pretorio with its emblems of the old powerful families and the Church of Santa Maria. At the end of the majestic Duomo with its crypt, unique example of roman architecture in whole Tuscany. In Piazza Pretorio there is the museum of San Mamiliano, where the gold coins of the treasure of San Mamiliano have been preserved for centuries.

Once finished the visit to the village, walk to reach archaeological area that hosts the etruscan monumental tombs and other unbelievable Vie Cave build on the tufa spurs.

It is important to remember that Sovana has been the main etruscan centre of this area, so for an accurate comprehension of the archaeological site it is necessary to join a guided tour or to make provision for a good paper guide. There is the possibility to join guided tours for full-day or half-day hiking in Southern Tuscany, picnic or lunch in the hilltop town of Sovana or in agritourism.

Discover our Special Offer dedicated to the territory of the hilltop towns, for all the lovers of sport and nature, especially if linked to the history and archaeological sites that are unique in all over the world, and dedicate your stay to the hiking in Southern Tuscany!!!

sorano
Jan23

The medieval village

Like the other hilltop towns, Sorano is  build on the top of a tufa hill, that is the material of which houses, streets and buildings are made of. Sorano is one of the most suggestive cities in Southern Tuscany, that was already inhabited during the bronze age and it still preserve the archeological beauties fixed in a picturesque landscape and completely uncontaminated.

Its medieval part, dominated by the Orsini Fortress, is like a fantastic labyrinth of narrows streets and little alleys where it is easy to lose the orientation, but it is also easier and pleasant to find it again because of its small dimension. Walking through the narrow streets of Sorano it is impossible not to note the majestic Masso Leopoldino, that will guide you with its big clock on its facade. When duke Leopoldo commissioned the building of the fortress in 18th century, he wanted to satisfy his mania of grandeur, and he succeeded greatly in his purpose! The terrace of the Masso is a real observation point..what you will see is not easy to describe!

The etruscan territory

The marks of the etruscan civilization are well-spread in all the territory and also in Sorano, after visiting the shops of the artisans, restaurants and alleys you could visit the numerous  necropolis that surround the town.

Sorano is one of the few places in Italy to preserve intact pre-roman buildings. Its countryside is full of necropolis, ancient cave settlement and “Vie Cave”. This territory have attracted both the Etruscans and Romans because it was considered rich of sources by both of the two civilities. Also if you are not interested in ancient history, the countryside deserves a visit, also just for a walk through the tall oaks living that wild atmosphere that still defines Southern Tuscany.

The park of San Rocco, just on the other side of the main valley, is reachable on foot by the town. It is an amazing place, where to contemplate the stunning panorama.

The medieval Orsini Fortress of Sorano.. an impregnable castle!

The medieval Orsini Fortress of Sorano has never been conquered..it cannot be caught, a real self-sufficient labyrinth, able to resist to the many sieges ( Siena has been trying to bend its resistance for four years in the XVTh century). Niccolò III Orsini made the fortress a real majestic fortification. On the other hand, Niccolò IV, transformed it into a hidden refuge for his vexations and intricate violent love stories.

The Orsini Fortress is the most majestic building of Sorano, built on a spur over the rest of the village. It is a masterpiece of architectural balance. It is a real fortress city because it can contain all the inhabitants of Sorano. It had big cisterns for the gathering of the rainwater, it could produce energy from the wind and the millstones worked seeds and saltpetre. Many soldiers were trained there, and there were a production of powders necessary to create munitions.In the basements of the fortress there is also a tufa cave. Surely, the Aldobrandeschis had already built a fortification of Sorano, but only the Orsinis transformed the village into a military unit.

Gian Francesco Orsini and his son Niccolò IV, designate the senese architect Antonio Maria Lari in XVITh century to reinforce the fortress by realizing a parade ground and two bastions, in order to make it resistant to the new fire-arms. Getting into the higher part of Sorano you will meet the monumental emblem that remember the Aldobrandeschis, with the rampant lion, and the Orsinis, with the five-petals rose and the heraldry bear.

In the first part of the fortress you will meet the fortified tower, and the palace Ricci Busatti, once the residence of the Laris and now linguistic high school. Two bastions, San Marco and San Pietro, protect the fortified tower. They are dedicated to Venice and Rome, the two towns of the Orsinis. There is a wonderful panorama of Sorano from the San Marco bastion. A big moat divides the military quarters of the fortress to the residence of the Orsini counts. You can walk on a tufa-bricks bridge to reach piazza Cairoli, that hosts Hotel della Fortezza. In addition to the Hotel, there is a very little theatre dedicated to Niccolò IV that is often used for small performances.

The Middle-Ages and Renaissance museum

The Middle-Ages and Renaissance museum has been set up in the private room of the palace. It is like getting, as guests, in the residence of the Orsini. There are showcases which safeguard pitchers, bowls, pieces of glass, phial of perfume and many other objects dated back to the Middle-Ages and to the Renaissance of Sorano.

We are in the west part of the palace, where the small windows watch the rest of the town..a place of meditation? A little office for the counts? A room for the reflection for Niccolò IV? He was not this kind of person! He was aggressive, cruel and arrogant, he withdrawn into his tower with the girl who captured his attention. It was the place of his violence. The old stories say that a young girl, Antea, succeeded in escaping from that room, and Niccolò IV, while chasing her, fell into one of cliffs that surround the fortress.

The fresco of this little room, appeared during the restoration works in 1967, are incredibly light and beautiful. It is a unique testimony of renaissance pictures: figurative art, music and poetry mixed in a single painting. Niccolò IV was an harsh character but his painters were genial.

The underground tunnels

It is difficult to imagine a building with a profoundness of at least fifteen meters. In fact it is a fortress of five levels. The restoration works have reopened the underground tunnels, allowing people to getting in, but only joining the guided tours. The entrance is the point of beginning of the tours, just under the San Pietro Bastion. Here you can find the guarding point, the first mean of defense in case of danger.

The tunnels are a military labyrinth. Long and strict narrow streets and conic breach through the floors and the ceiling to communicate among soldiers. They were one-way tunnels where the soldiers had to follow a precise direction in order to avoid to crash with the others. Getting out of the undergrounds, you will pass through a room that was once a foundry.

Take advantage of our Special Offer to a trip into the medieval history of Sorano.

hilltop town Sovana
Jan16

Nowadays, with only a few hundred inhabitants, Sovana offered something more to the inhabitants of the Southern Tuscany region. In fact, it was the most important Etruscan center in the area. Here, the Etruscans found the ideal conditions to maximize their artistic architectural expression seen in history. The village of Sovana that we know today was built in the Middle Ages under the will of the Aldobrandeschi family and the great Duomo Romanico built on the edge of the village, erected by Pope Gregory VII (Hildebrand of Sovana). There are few towns in Southern Tuscany that have kept both their history and their original splendor. One of these, if not the most exemplary, is Sovana.

What to do in Sovana?

The Middle-Ages

Sovana is composed of just three roads. Hidden within these three streets are some of the most incredible treasures like in an old painting where a few houses stand out perched on a hill, still retaining all the medieval charm.

In Sovana, time seems to have stopped. The city, built in the Middle Ages and completely renovated during the 15th century, has been the illustrious home of the so-called Capitani di Giustizia: a police unit of the time with great prestige composed of the oldest and most aristocratic families.

In the central square of the village you can admire the Palazzo del Pretorio with the original marble insignia; the Loggia del Capitano, a building not only aesthetically pleasing but holding an important place in the history of Sovana, the Church of S. Mamiliano, the Palazzo Bourbon del Monte, and the Church of S. Maria Maggiore where you appreciate the delicate ciborium.

The Etruscans

While visiting the Hilltop Towns you can’t miss to visit the rests of the etruscan civilization, located near the villages of Pitigliano, Sorano and in the archeological park of Sovana. Overcoming Sovana for a couple of kilometres, you will reach the etruscan Necropolis where you can admire the monumental tombs, real rarities of etruscan funerary architecture: the splendid tomb of the Siren, the tomb of Hildebrand and the most recent discovery, Demone Alato. All are testaments to the unique beauty and complex architecture of the region. Visiting the villages and the many cemeteries will reveal the flourishing past of the Tuscan hillside, now edged by beautiful landscapes and backgrounds. Hidden in the forests of the nearby countryside you will have the opportunity to walk along kilometers of roads made entirely by Etruscans with shortcuts dug into the volcanic rock walls nearly 20 meters high, the Vie Cave.

Check out our Offer for a stay dedicated to the History