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UNESCO cultural patrimony of mankind, Pienza is certainly the most important of the many historic towns of the Chiana and the Orcia Valleys, right after Montepulciano (15km one from the other).
Pienza has started as a Siennese citadel, called Corsignano, from what lasts only a piece of city walls, and a Romanesque church located 3km away. However, Pienza is completely Renaissance style, because has been built by order of the Pope Pio II – Enea Silvio Piccolomini – that decided to transform his home town in a beautiful place for him and his court to be protected and relaxed near the water risings of Valdorcia. Actually, this area is very special because stays near to three important lakes: Trasimeno (of Cortona), Chiusi and Montepulciano Lake; and also close to a great quality water source called Vivo – this the main source that supplies Siena nowadays.
You will be able to admire a complete well preserved Renaissance town planning, walking through the streets of this beautiful town.
The Cathedral, the most important building of Pienza, is a project of Bernardo Rossellino, who in only three years, have built the Cathedral, the Town Hall and the Pope home building ("Palazzo Papale"). The Cathedral has an interesting illumination by the coloured glass windows, by will of Pope to symbol the intellectualism of the Humanism age.
It is worth a visit also to Palazzo Piccolomini, in the main square of the town, "Piazza Pio II", opened from Tuesday to Sunday. And Pieve di Corsignano, located in Via delle Fonti (1km away from Pienza centre) where the Pope Pio II has been baptized, opened upon reservation (call the Touristic Information Center: +39 0578749071).
Pienza is the capital city of the “Pecorino” – sheep cheese, and organizes every year, on the second Sunday of September, the “Fiera del Cacio” or the Festival of the local sheep cheese. The milk is particularly aromatic because the configuration of the clayey land where many aromatic herbs grow, and sheep all freely grazed, producing a perfumed milk and cheese. Pienza Pecorino cheese has the D.O.P. European label (which means a Protected Origin Denomination).
A wonderful day-trip to Pienza and Montepulciano, almost neighboors, will provide you one of the best eno-gastronomic experiences ever! Montepulciano is the town of the famous wine Vino Nobile. Pienza Pecorino cheese and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano are undoubtely a perfect match!!!!
Don’t miss a visit to one of the thermal establishments nearby, like Bagno Vignoni or Terme di Montepulciano. There are even more of them on the close town of Chianciano Terme.
Adriana Lucchesi for Tuscany Villas .com 06/10/2007
For more info, contact:
Pro Loco Pienza Association
Address: Via Case Nuove, 22
Tel.: 0039 0578748072
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