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Montepulciano, the fortified city of Tuscany, perched on a steep hilltop at the heart of the Vino Nobile vineyards! Famous for its great wine making and tasting tradition and for its elegant Renaissance skyline, this is a city that attracts hundreds of wine, nature and history lovers who find cheap air tickets to Montepulciano. This is the most mountainous city of Southern Tuscany, just a few steps from Siena. A beautiful central square, some of Italy’s most idyllic cathedrals and exquisite palazzi make up the skyline of Montepulciano, while the city’s long heritage in wine is evident and tempts everyone into endless hours of wine tasting, with some of Europe’s best wines. Plan ahead and book your accommodation in one of the cheapest hotels in Montepulciano, pack with you your most comfy shoes and get ready for new explorations, discoveries, tastes and experiences!
Montepulciano, standing at the highest point of Tuscany, features a labyrinth of medieval narrow streets lined with Renaissance palaces and cathedrals and comprises the ideal base for you to explore the rest of the region.
Founded initially as an Etruscan fortress, Montepulciano later knew many conquerors and potential leaders. The most well-known struggle of all took place between Siena and Florence, with the latter eventually winning and conquering Montepulciano, in 1404. Montepulciano replaced Siena’s she-wolf with Florence’s lion as a symbol of the city and architects Michelozzo and Sangallo il Vecchio were invited to fulfil a new urban planning, giving a new Renaissance air to the former Gothic landscape.
Montepulciano is considered to be one of Europe’s most important wine-making centre, with a long tradition in the production of top class wines since antiquity; this is the proud birthplace of Vino Nobile, Rosso di Montepulciano and other well-known wines!
Book your trip to Montepulciano and feel free to lose yourself somewhere around the idyllic medieval streets and alleys and maybe get a bit drunk, from excitement, beauty and a glass or two of Europe’s finest!
The nearest airport to Montepulciano is the airport of Florence (Aeroporto di Firenze-Peretola), located 24 kilometres from the city centre and accessible by buses LAM PO-FI, F_ST6 and F_ST3.
Getting around Montepulciano
You can get around Montepulciano using the city’s bus network; fares cost from 2.20€.
Your day in Montepulciano begins at the Piazza Grande, the central square of the fortified city of Montepulciano and historic heart of the area, lined with a series of beautiful historic buildings.
The Gothic Palazzo Comunale dates back to the 13th century. Having been rebuilt in the 15th century by Michelozzo, today it serves as Montepulciano’s city hall. You can take a tour inside the Palazzo and you should definitely get to the top. You’ll be rewarded with a marvellous panoramic view of the city.
The Cathedral of Montepulciano (Duomo) is your next stop. Don’t be fooled by the façade of the cathedral, left unfinished due to economic problems during the restoration of the city. This is one of the most important landmarks of the city, housing two extremely important works of art.
- Italian architect and sculptor Michelozzo created a carved burial vault for Bartolomeo Aragazzi, Pope Martin IV’s secretary, the period from 1427 to 1436. Sometime in the 18th century, the vault was broken and its pieces were not found until 1815. Two of the statues decorating the tomb were stolen and were later found in London, but the rest of the tomb’s fragments are kept and exhibited in the Cathedral.
- The second precious work of art kept in the cathedral is the legendary Gold Triptych of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, made by Taddeo di Bartolo in 1594-1680. The triptych depicts scenes from the Assumption and stands on a base that is decorated with scenes from the Passion of the Christ. The value of this work of art is dual and lies both in its extraordinary beauty and in the fact that Bartolo was one of the greatest artists of Siena, with this being his most notable work.
Within short distance, you can reach the Renaissance Palazzo Ricci, constructed by Italian architect Baldassarre Peruzzi, under the orders of Cardinal Giovanni Ricci. A winding staircase will lead you to the Cantina del Redi, one of the world’s oldest and most impressive wine cellars, once belonging to the Ricci family. The guided tours around the cellars are highly recommended and come with delicious wine-tasting sessions and the opportunity to buy world-class wine.
Continue to the hill opposite the Duomo, where you can find the Museo Civico Pinacoteca Crociano. Dedicated to the city of Montepulciano, this museum is housed in the Palazzo Neri Orselli and houses excellent collections of art, Etrouscan artefacts, della Robbia ceramics and a portrait recently attributed to Caravaggio!
The official language of Montepulciano is Italian.