15 km from the Hotel Prategiano in Maremma Tuscany: The town of Chiusdino rises over a territory covered in forests and fields. It was originally under the dominion of the Bishops of Volterra, and then later by the Municipality of Siena (13th century). The main town was founded as a fortified military point in the Merse Valley. It features a characteristic concentric urban structure. Parts of the old city walls and the city gate are still visible. The Merse River winds through the valley floor.
The origin of the village can be traced back to the period of Lombard rule; initially controlled by the diocese Volterra step in the hands of Siena in about 1230. Positioned on one of the promontories of the metalliferous hills and the direct road from Siena to Massa Marittima, his position allowed her to exercise control over the Merse valley and the Massetana road.
The village still has the remains of the second city walls and Porta Senese, which is the arch that gives access to the most ancient and beautiful part of Chiusdino, called Rione Pontino; In this area there are some of the most significant monuments of the village as: The Church of San Sebastiano, the Casa di San Galgano, which is home to the lower level a chapel in honor of the saint and a very special and beautiful low relief at the entrance; and the Rectory of St. Michael the Archangel, which calmed the internal sound of San Galgano Head. Not far from the village and solitary in the plain of the Merse, situated Abbey of St. Galgano, a 'Cistercian abbey, which over the centuries has been in ruins leading to the collapse of the roof, offering a harmonious picture and very impressive, given the tall structures that rise into the sky.
Not far away is the Chapel of Monte hedges, a circular building decorated with bands of brick and travertine, covered by a dome which is also decorated in the same way. Inside the building and in front of the altar and present the sword in the stone: Legend has it that the nobleman Galgano after the appearance of an Archangel, has decided to spend his life as a hermit, devoting himself to prayer and came to the place where now stands the chapel, he stuck his sword into the ground to make it a cross.
The area's significant monuments are the church of San Martino and the Parish Church of San Galgano. The Abbey of San Galgano rises alone on the plain of the upper Merse Valley. Built by the Cistercians of Casamori in the 13th century, it became one of the most powerful abbeys in Tuscany.
The vertical cathedral structure, now open to the heavens due to the collapsed roof, is an image of great charm and harmony. It is especially imposing to visit at night when the whole structure is lit from below and the stars and moon rise above.
At the top of the adjacent hill, stands the Church di Montesiepi. This small and special church features a round structure with bands of brick and travertine and it is covered with a dome. In front of the altar there is the legendary sword of Knight Galgano thrust into a stone. Also worth a visit: Frosini, the ancient castle of the Gherardesca Counts today altered by restructuring, Pentolina, Spannocchia, Luriano, Castelletto and the Castle of Montalcinello. The natural surroundings of the Cecina Valley are also a popular destination for horse riding, mountain biking, cycling or trekking.
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