Theme Week Tuscany – Montepulciano

Saturday, 28 January 2012 - 01:30 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, UNESCO World Heritage
Reading Time:  4 minutes

Montepulciano © Adrian Michael

Montepulciano © Adrian Michael

Montepulciano is a medieval and Renaissance hill town and comune in the province of Siena in southern Tuscany, in Italy. Montepulciano, with an elevation of 605 m, sits on a high limestone ridge. By car it is 13 km E of Pienza; 70 km SE of Siena, 124 km SE of Florence, and 186 km north of Rome.

Montepulciano is a major producer of food and drink. Montepulciano is known world-wide for its wine. Wine connoisseurs consider its Vino Nobile among Italy’s best. However, the Vino Nobile di Montepulciano should not be confused with the varietal wine (Montepulciano grape) of the same name. Montepulciano is also known for its pork, cheese, “pici” pasta (a thick, rough, chewy variant on spaghetti), lentils, and honey.

Linda Proud’s The Botticelli Trilogy centres on the life of Angelo Poliziano. The second volume in particular, Pallas and the Centaur (2004), deals with his boyhood in Montepulciano, and the life of his sister Maria. The novel contains vivid detail of the city and surrounding country and an authoritative account of the murder of Poliziano’s father derived from local knowledge. Twilight Saga: New Moon was filmed in Montepulciano as a stand in for the Italian City of Volterra, the city where the Volturi live.

Montepulciano Panorama © flickr.com - Alex Pears Santa Maria delle Grazia © Niels Elgaard Larsen Palazzo Nobili-Tarugi © Beckstet Palazzo Communale © flickr.com - spangledrongo Street view © flickr.com - dalem Montepulciano © Adrian Michael
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Montepulciano Panorama © flickr.com - Alex Pears
The main street of Montepulciano stretches for 1.5 kilometers from the Porta al Prato to the Piazza Grande at the top of the hill. The city is renowned for its walkable, car-free nature. The main landmarks include:

  • The Palazzo Comunale, designed by Michelozzo in the tradition of the Palazzo della Signoria (Palazzo Vecchio) of Florence.
  • Palazzo Tarugi, attributed to Antonio da Sangallo the Elder or Jacopo Barozzi da Vignola. It is entirely in travertine, with a portico which was once open to the public.
  • The Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, or the Duomo of Montepulciano, constructed between 1594 and 1680, includes a masterpiece from the Sienese School, a massive Assumption of the Virgin triptych painted by Taddeo di Bartolo in 1401.
  • The church of Santa Maria delle Grazie (late 16th century). It has a simple Mannerist façade with a three-arcade portico. The interior has a single nave, and houses a precious terracotta altar by Andrea della Robbia.
  • The Sanctuary of the Madonna di San Biagio is on the road to Chianciano outside the city. It is a typical 16th century Tuscan edifice, designed by Antonio da Sangallo the Elder on a pre-existing Pieve, between 1518 and 1545. It has a circular (central) plan with a large dome over a terrace and a squared tambour. The exterior, with two bell towers, is built in white travertine.

Here you can find the complete Overview of all Theme Weeks.

Read more on City of Montepulciano, Montepulciano.com, Montepulciano.net and Wikipedia Montepulciano. Learn more about the use of photos. To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facebook pages/Twitter accounts. In addition more and more destinations, tourist organizations and cultural institutions offer Apps for your Smart Phone or Tablet, to provide you with a mobile tourist guide (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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