Castiglione della Pescaia
Castiglione della Pescaia is a small town with a very ancient history, a seaside town of Etruscan origins, a hill overlooking the sea from which the castle and the ancient medieval village surrounded by walls and towers stand out. The most important testimonies of the Etruscan period come from nearby Vetulonia, an ancient and famous Etruscan city. The Etruscan period was followed by the Roman one around the 4th century BC, a period to which most of the urban works such as paved streets and aqueducts were traced, traces of which are still visible today. Subsequently the towers and the city walls were erected under the protection of Pisa around the X-XII century AD.
In 1404, under the protection of the Medici of Florence, also following reclamation interventions, the area saw a decisive repopulation and today only the beauty of the Diaccia Botrona natural reserve remains of that vast and unhealthy wetland area, of which a great naturalistic importance is recognised. . Given its history, its traditions, the uncontaminated natural environment in which it is inserted, today Castiglione della Pescaia is an appreciated tourist resort famous all over the world and thanks to the numerous acknowledgments in terms of environmental quality it is often called “little Switzerland of the Maremma “.
The Historic Center is certainly worth a visit, a beautiful medieval village from which you can enjoy an extraordinary 180 ° view that ranges from the Diaccia Botrona nature reserve to the Tombolo pine forest and from here to the sea to the promontory of Monte Argentario. On clear days you are able to discover and recognise all the islands of the archipelago.
Inside the historic centre there are several interesting buildings to visit, including the eighteenth-century Church of Santa Maria del Giglio, built inside a bastion of the medieval walls and the sixteenth-century Church of San Giovanni Battista which presents on the portal, for architrave, a high-medieval bas-relief.
Among the many traditional folklore events in the Castiglione della Pescaia area, the Palio marinaro deserves special mention: a traditional festival held in Castiglione della Pescaia since 1952. The palio is run on rowboats with five crew members (four rowers plus a helmsman). Originally organised in the Bruna River which runs through the town, since 2009 the race has taken place in the sea, with the race course in front of the canal port where the finish is placed. Each boat represents one of the five districts with which the town was divided: Castello (yellow and green colors), Marina (white and red), Piazza (white and green), Ponte Giorgini (white and light blue) and Portaccia (yellow and red ). An event of sure interest, a good opportunity to visit the beautiful Castiglione!
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