Pienza, a town and comune in the province of Siena, in the Val d’Orcia in Tuscany, between the towns of Montepulciano and Montalcino, is the “touchstone of Renaissance urbanism. The idea to go there and exprerince this wonderful place come to me long time ago. Several times i was visiting Italy but i didnt have enough time to go to Tuscany and visit this little place.
After months and months of thinking when to go there and only there i booked my flight to Venice and from there with a rented car i head to Pienza.
If you ask me this little town is one of the most tranquility places on the earth. You have a feeling like the time stop there. All that structures and warm people greeting you everywhere you go.
This giving you some feeling that Pienza is your home away from your home. Narrow street , coffee tables outside , smell of the wonderful food and coffee around the place make you feel like you are in the heaven. Surrounding of this little city is also amazing, hills with fantastic nature overlooking the town.
This charming village is widely known as the “ideal city of the Renaissance”, the creation of the great humanist Enea Silvio Piccolomini who later became Pope Pius II. Piccolomini had the money and influence to transform his birthplace village, the humble Corsignano, into what he considered the Utopian city should be, exemplifying the principles and philosophy of classical times and of the great Italian Renaissance. Thus, Pienza became the realization of a dream!
The project was designed by the architect Bernardo “il Rossellino” under the guidance of the great humanist Leon Battista Alberti. In only 3 years, a group of amazing and harmonious buildings were completed: the Cathedral, the Papal or Piccolomini Palace, the Town Hall, and the lovely central square onto which all of these buildings look upon.
Piazza Pio II has a perfect harmonious shape which gives great dignity and solemnity to all of the surrounding buildings built in bright travertine stone. On one side of the square, you can admire a beautiful well, known as the “well of the dogs”.
The Duomo or Cattedrale dell’Assunta hosts very fine paintings by the most renowned artists of the period, while the octagonal bell tower standing over the ancient crypt with the same octagonal shape points to the sky. Both dominate the landscape as you view Pienza from afar. As you walk through the church you will notice the uneven floors, the unsettling cracks making their way across the paviment and little glass plates (like lab slides) glued to the walls. The architects didn’t calculate the effect of the weight of the cathedral and its impact on the foundation of the church and now the hillside that it is built on is starting to “give way”. The little glass plates are a way of controlling the shifting of the earth and the structure….everything is fine….until one of them cracks!
Accommodation in this small place is possible to found but is not much , people are willing to assist you with anything you need if you just ask. They are not getting much tourists so they are super friendly with every person visiting their little city. Best time to visit this area is spring, nature is waking up and you can see all that beauty front of your eyes. Is great to visit during the summer too but me personally prefer spring 🙂
Hope you will visit this place as soon as possible… ENJOY is a perfect place for romance and enjoying….