Walk to Poggio a Caiano - Poggio A Caiano (PO) - QualcosaDaFare.it
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Rinascimento fuori porta

Poggio a Caiano is his own villa: located on the banks of the Ombrone river, on the slopes of Montalbano, it is strongly identified with the magnificent Medici residence (www.qualcosadafare.it/28551), which is undoubtedly the perfect starting point for a tour of the municipal area. Whether you want to spend a romantic day with your sweetheart, with friends or with your family and children ... it makes no difference! Those who visit Poggio a Caiano cannot miss the wonders of the Villa, its magnificent park and the places connected to its history that are all around. The starting point is the Medici Villa, summer residence of the Medici and place of important events such as weddings but, like any ancient and noble home, also involved in court intrigues, such as the well-known mystery of the spouses Francesco I and Bianca Cappello, whose death probably wasn't accidental, but due to premeditated poisoning. This building is considered a rarity, as a holiday resort and land administration, open and not predisposed to attacks, which is why there aren't particular fortifications. It is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site and its splendor still has no end. Its elegant rooms are marvelous and its garden with the lemon house is enjoyable. A visit is absolutely recommended. After the visit to the residence, it is possible to take the path along Cancellieri street, descending from the 'colmo', as the small hill on the top of which the villa stands is called. You will pass in front of the royal palace (annexed to the Medici villa and current seat of the municipality of Poggio a Caiano) and at the intersection with Lorenzo il Magnifico street you will find the fountain of Mascherone, located in the center of the town, on the corner of the boundary wall of the Medici Villa. This unusual fountain has the renowned characteristic of changing into the 'wine fountain' of Carmignano, on the occasion of major events and every year in September during the popular festival 'Siege of the Villa' which recalls the marriage between Francesco I and Giovanna of Austria, who decided to celebrate their promise of marriage with the whole population. Once you have left the Mascherone behind you, you can continue along Lorenzo il Magnifico street and meet the Medici stables: currently home to the municipal library and the Soffici museum, both of which can be visited. Going on you will arrive at the bridge at the Molino and, passing the Ombrone, you will enter into the territory of the municipality of Prato and turning left you will enter in via Bogaia, to reach the Cascine Medicee in Prato. Walking along the Ombrone embankment is truly beautiful and you can recall the legend of the Amber Nymph, transformed into a statue by the Goddess Diana to escape Ombrone's love. The Leopoldo II Bridgeis a must-see, better known as Manetti bridge (by the architect Alessandro Manetti who built it in 1833). The technique of its construction was extremely avant-garde for the time: a suspension bridge with ropes and iron wires, the first to be built in Italy with this technique. Born to connect the Grand Ducal possessions of the right bank (Villa Medicea of Poggio a Caiano) with the left bank (Cascine di Tavola), today it is crossed on a new pedestrian walkway also for bikes that passes under the original stone portals, on one of which is written' Vis unita fortior ': which today can be translated as ' union is strength', but literally means' strength united is strength '. Here, turning right, you can make a detour to reach the Medici farm and the Tavola farmhouses, while on the left, beyond the bridge, we continue our tour crossing the SR66 to enter the 'Bargo Mediceo of Bonistallo '. Today is the main park of Poggio a Caiano, but it was the hunting bandit that the Medici built in the mid-sixteenth century, protected by a wall of about three kilometers. Taking one of the paths that goes up the hill, inside the woods, it is possible to reach the church of Bonistallo, from which you can enjoy a beautiful view of the villa and the whole plain of Prato and Florence (on sunny days Brunelleschi's dome is clearly visible). If instead you will turn left after reaching the park, in a few minutes you will leave the main portal, the one facing the Medici villa, which is in front of you and which you can reach again to conclude the tour. Next to the park portal there is the entrance to the Path of the Constitution: if you went up to the church of Bonistallo, you can go back down through this interesting pedestrian street with the first 12 articles of the Italian Constitution.

DurationDuration42 MINUTI (5 Km/h)
Total LengthTotal Length3,5 KM
Road surfaceRoad surfacesterrato-asfaltato
DifficultyDifficultyfacile
TechniqueTechnique★☆☆☆☆
Physical effortPhysical effort★★★★☆
LikingLiking★★★★☆
LandscapeLandscape★★★★☆
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43.816584°, 11.055346°

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