- NORTHERN ITALY
- CENTRAL ITALY
- SOUTHERN ITALY
- INSULAR ITALY
Volterra is a historic city in Tuscany, in the province of Pisa, about halfway between Pisa and Siena, located on top of a hill 531 meters above the sea level. This position opens to a panoramic view over the entire Val di Cecina on one side and the Berignone Forest on the other. It can also be seen from numerous neighboring municipalities in the province of Siena.
Important city in the Etruscan era, it was a influential center even in Roman and medieval times.
Its historical importance can be seen from the Etruscan acropolis, dating back to the III century BC. For those wishing to deepen the Etruscan origins of the city, it is possible to visit the ancient Etruscan Museum"Mario Guarnacci".
In the same archaeological park of the acropolis, it is also possible to see a Roman cistern, but, to see the Roman Theater, it is necessary to change the area of the city, heading north, passing through the historic center.
The historic center of Volterra is mainly medieval and had its maximum expansion in the thirteenth century, a period in which many walls were built or rebuilt and in which the Palazzo dei Priori was built, located in the central square of the city and administrative center of the municipality.. The square itself is a pleasant place to explore, surrounded by buildings from the medieval era, which highlight the centuries-old importance of the city.
Not far from Piazza dei Priori, behind the Palazzo dei Priori and in Piazza San Giovanni, is the Cathedral of Volterra, also known as the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, dating back to the 12th century. In front of the cathedral there is the Baptistery of San Giovanni, with an octagonal plan and later built as a cathedral, again in medieval times. The square itself offers a pleasant panorama.
Continuing the route further, you arrive at the panoramic point of the city, from which it will be possible to admire the whole Val di Cecina up to the distant sea.
Another historical testimony of Volterra is the ancient city walls, dating back to the third century BC. The Porta all'Arco is a characteristic example of this. There are numerous other gates of the walls, built or rebuilt in medieval times.
As in all important medieval cities, there is the Medici Fortress, a majestic and imposing fortress facing east and south. It is located near the Etruscan acropolis, but is not accessible to the public.