Sinalunga and Rigomagno, two hamlets to discover close to Montepulciano
18 October 2017
As we have told you in the article Must-Sees Destinations In Montepulciano Surroundings, this area is full of attractions and it’s better to dedicate some time to every hamlet that dotted the vast landscape of the province of Siena, both in Val di Chiana and Val d’Orcia.
The destination we have chosen is Sinalunga, just 20 km from Montepulciano, situated on the hills that separate the Val di Chiana from the Valle dell’Ombrone and surrounded by vineyards and olive trees, a hamlet that you could explore in one day, not forgetting to make a stop also in Rigomagno, a district of Sinalunga known for its Roman walls, its panoramic position and the excellent olive oil produced locally.
Where to start the itinerary? First of all, it’s worth knowing that the hamlet is divided into two parts, Sinalunga Paese and Pieve di Sinalunga, mostly unaltered over centuries and easy to visit on foot or by bicycle.
The name of the hamlet derives from the Latin ab Sena longam, as it was the farthest place from Siena in the Middle Age. The lower part of the town, Pieve, owes its name to the Pieve di San Pietro ad Mensulas, a Romanesque church dating back to XIV century. The route we suggest goes on to the Church of Santa Maria delle Nevi in Piazza Garibaldi, characterized by a Baroque style, due to the restorations that took place in the XVIII century.
Here, in the tabernacle, on the main altar, there is a painting representing the Madonna with child and is attributed to Benvenuto di Giovanni. On the left side there is a small bas-relief that depicts the Madonna with the child and angels and probably belongs to the Sienese school of the XIV century.
The Palazzo Pretorio, built in the XIV century, was the seat of civil authority and today it is possible to see the coat of arms of the Podestà of the Republic of Siena and the Medici era. A curiosity that attracts many tourists is the pillory, placed at the right side of the main portal, where the criminals were publicly tied up and scoffed.
The theater Ciro Pinsuti is an important venue in Sinalunga, since its origins date back to literary academies from the XVII century, although the current theater was built in 1807.
It is considered one of the most beautiful and elegant theaters in southern Tuscany and offers a wide choice of shows, interesting suggestions if you want to spend here even an evening.
A tour at Sinalunga is not exhaustive if you don’t contemplate a visit to Rigomagno, founded on the Colle degli Ulivi, site of a fortified castle and a well-known for the excellent quality of extra virgin olive oil, which you can buy here to have a tasty Tuscan souvenir.
Colle degli Ulivi is now the name of an annual event, a summer festival that includes guided tastings, performances, meetings with actors and writers, an additional reason to include Rigomagno on your own itinerary among the hidden gems Siena’s province.
Immerse yourself in the beauty of the Val di Chiana, follow a path through the lesser known destinations.
Preview photo: Credits Szabolcs Mosonyi https://flic.kr/p/WcurWP