High on a hill, surrounded by centuries-old roads, ancient forests and a generous countryside lies the town of San Gimignano. The historical centre has been on the Unesco World Heritage List since 1990 and is recognised worldwide as an icon of the medieval city: with its towers, palaces and squares. Entering the historical buildings, one can admire the same cycles of frescoes that Dante Alighieri saw when he visited the city in 1300. The churches in the centre are frescoed by the great Renaissance painters, and the countryside is dotted with small parish churches and sanctuaries, places of silence and of the soul.

San Gimignano is in the centre of Tuscany, between the Via Francigena and the Via del Sale, two of the main communication routes of the Middle Ages, where people and goods, knowledge and experience passed through. An area characterised by largely unspoilt nature, known the world over for its quality of life, its ancient and contemporary historical heritage and its ability to have skilfully preserved its own cultural identity that has never been removed.

Vernaccia di San Gimignano doc wine and Zafferano di San Gimignano dop saffron have been cultivated since the Middle Ages in these lands, which today, thanks to the care for the land of the producers, is one of Italy’s first bio-districts.
For Christmas 2022, the centre is hosting a sustainable art project that brings the
magic of the forest to the historic centre, to underline the strong link between the city and the countryside. Winter is the season in which the medieval character of the city becomes even more evident, when one can fall madly in love with this ancient and contemporary place nestled in a unique countryside.

Article by “Borghi Magazine” December 2022

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