Let’s visit Sorano in Tuscany
In the province of Grosseto, in Tuscany, we find a small town called Sorano. Sorano is a beautiful city and is not well known for its large tourist mass. Called ‘the city of Tufo’, Sorano presents us with impressive natural beauties, in addition to a lot of history and culture. Today let’s visit Sorano in Tuscany. And what are the 10 must-see castles in Italy? Here at Your Travel to Italy with Ana Patricia you make the trip of your dreams!!! ALSO: see our “Accommodation in Italy – Tips for your holidays!”
Sorano is a beautiful city, although it is not so well known by tourists. Called ‘the city of Tufo’, Sorano presents us with impressive natural beauties, in addition to a lot of history and culture. If you want to discover a different, interesting, charming city full of incredible panoramas, you can include Sorano in your itinerary without any fear, I’m sure you won’t regret it. Sorano is also called ‘the Matera Tuscany’, as its resemblance to the beautiful city of Basilicata is remarkable.
A little more about Sorano
Sorano belonged to the Aldobrandeschi family, but the municipal territory was already inhabited since the Etruscan period, as evidenced by archaeological finds and ancient settlements and necropolises. Shortly after the marriage between Anastasia, who was the last heir of the Aldobrandeschi, and Romano Orsini, in 1293, Sorano passed into the hands of Orsini’s own family.
Its center followed the policies of neighboring Pitigliano, and the Orsini pledged to protect Sorano with the construction of forts, making Sorano one of the safest cities of that period. At various times, especially during the 15th century, several neighboring villages tried to dominate the city, but they were only successful in 1417. In 1556, Sorano passed into the hands of the powerful and historic Medici family, who insisted on including her in the Grand Prix. -Duchy of Tuscany along with the neighboring town Pitigliano.
In 1556, Sorano passed into the hands of the powerful and historic Medici family, who insisted on including her in the Grand Duchy of Tuscany along with Pitigliano.
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A day through charming Sorano
The city is not big and it can be visited in a day, but I need to tell you something about this place: don’t visit it in a hurry. Despite being a small town, it has a very special, very unique charm, and the silence that surrounds it is something almost divine; not to mention the orange panoramas that take on golden tones with the sunset.
1) Let’s visit Sorano in Tuscany: VISIT THE FORTALEZA DE SORANO AND THE ARCO DEL FERRINI
We start our tour at the entrance to the Fortress of Sorano, located on Via San Marco. Here you can get there on foot or by car, but from this point on I suggest you go on foot. This is the gateway to the nerve center of Sorano and this is where our journey begins! Undoubtedly, the Fortress Orsini dominates the city and its charm is fatal: it impresses even the most demanding tourist.
Today the fortress can be fully visited and there are two museums there: the Civic Museum and the Archaeological Museum. Also very interesting are the buildings connected by tunnels, which are also open to visitors.
Leaving there, walking through the city, it seems that we were transported back in time! After crossing the Arco del Ferrini, the view is already surprising: with a unique panorama over the valley of the Lente stream, the tree-lined canyons are majestic.
2) Let’s visit Sorano in Tuscany: VISIT THE COLLEGIATE CHURCH OF SAN NICOLA, THE PALAZZO COMITALE AND THE CLOCK TOWER
We continue walking along the main street of the city until we reach the beautiful Collegiate Church of San Nicola. This is a 13th-century church and a valuable baptismal font dating from 1563 is preserved here. A 15th-century lava stone ciborium can also be seen here, as well as a canvas by the artist Raffaello Vanni. Leaving the church, be sure to visit the Collegiate Church, located in one of the most beautiful palaces in the city, the Palazzo Comitale. Here there is a travertine portal with the inscription in memory of Ludovico Orsini; Behind this same palace we have the Clock Tower that rises just above the Masso Leopoldino, which is a fortification surrounded by a reinforcement of a large tufaaceous cliff. Its shape reminds us a lot of a ship. There, at the top of the Masso, there is an incredible terrace that serves as a belvedere and offers us a magnificent panorama of the entire city. It’s worth climbing to the top!
3) Let’s visit Sorano in Tuscany: VISIT PORTA DEI MERLI
We continue the walk down from the terrace and walking towards Porta dei Merli. This is the old entrance to the city and originally had a drawbridge that also served as protection. The highlight of this building is its façade, where, to this day, we can see the insignia of Niccolo IV Orsini and Cosimo II de Medici. Passing through the entrance, we reach the Lente valley, which is between rocky caves of Etruscan origin, woods and huge tuff walls.
4) Let’s visit Sorano in Tuscany: VISIT VIA CAVE
Unmissable is the only one of its kind Via Cave. The ‘caves’ and paths here form veritable labyrinths and are of a beauty that is difficult to translate into words. Here you will find the ancient Etruscan trails dug directly into the rock and reaching up to 25 meters deep! It’s really impressive! They are true works of art and fascinate because they were built with absurd precision and in a time when engineering was not known. Until today, scholars have not been able to unravel the reason for these constructions, although it is already certain: the Etruscans were a people far ahead of their time.
Some researchers defend the idea that the alleys were used for sacred and funerary purposes; while others claim that they were simple connecting roads between one village and another; there are also those who defend the idea that the roads served as defense systems against enemies and, finally, there are those who believe that, in fact, those roads served to bring water to the inhabitants. Continuing along the main Via Cava, we reach another unmissable point in the city: San Rocco, more precisely behind its Cathedral and, here, another incredible tour begins!
5) Let’s get to know Sorano in Tuscany: VISIT SAN ROCCO
Via the two kilometer road, Via Cava, we arrive at this almost magical place: San Rocco. Here, the entire area had a human presence since the Bronze Age and, here, several peoples left their traces. Arriving in San Rocco, go to the church of San Rocco which still has some remains of a 17th century fresco. Here you can visit various environments excavated in Tufo, such as caves and tombs.
Via Cave is a true heritage of enormous historical and cultural importance and sums up, in a magnanimous way, what Sorano is and its surroundings. Here you will find dozens of alleys that vary in size and width; they also vary in height and length, but it is impossible to ‘choose’ the most beautiful stretch. The setting is very suggestive and, in fact, it seems to take us inside a fairy tale book: you enter the land, pass dizzying walls, mysterious images and a nature that envelops you from beginning to end. At some points on the roads, some trees create a kind of vegetable roof, which ‘filter’ the sunlight, presenting us with true visions of paradise! The highlight of the tour is the magnificent viewpoint: the view is SPLENDID and shows us all Sorano! You will fall in love with this place, be absolutely sure!
A suggestion: the city is EVEN MORE BEAUTIFUL in the late afternoon, with the beginning of the sunset. The yellow and orange tones dominate the view and the panorama is, without a doubt, priceless!
How to get to Sorano?
1) How to get to Sorano? BY TRAIN
The main railway stations that provide transport to Sorano are the stations of Orvieto, 48 kilometers from the city, and the station of Albinia, which is 60 kilometers away. From the train stations, you can take the bus to Sorano.
Did you know that Trenitalia is the main Italian company dedicated to the management of rail transport. Find out here “What is the difference between trains in Italy?”. Buy your ticket online in advance and save a lot, read the Post “How to buy a train ticket in Italy?”.
2) How to get to Sorano? BY BUS
Use the RAMA bus lines: some depart from Rome (Roma Ostiense) and Florence (Santa Maria Novella terminal) arriving in Albinia; from there you can follow the connection with Pitigliano – Sorano. You can also use the Autolinee SIRA bus company that makes direct connections to Sorano from Viterbo.
3) How to get to Sorano? BY CAR
See now the departure options for those going by car.
From the North:
If coming from the north, use the Autostrada del Sole and follow it to the Firenze Certosa exit; then use the road junction towards Siena, to the south, and continue towards Rome; Follow signs for S.S. Cassia for 70 kilometers and take the exit indicating Sorano.
Another option is to follow the Autostrada del Sole to the Chiusi / Chianciano exit, and head towards Sarteano, Radicofani, Roma, and take the S.S. Cassia towards Rome; when you see the exit, take the access and that’s how you reach Sorano.
From the south:
If you come from the south, you can also use the Autostrada del Sole. However, take the Orte exit, then the highway junction with signs for Viterbo. Take the Siena exit, continue to the Valentano exit, and from there follow the signs for Pitigliano and Sorano.
Are you going to travel around Italy by car?
If you are going to rent a car, be sure to read our posts in the section Driving in Italy on the blog Traveling to Italy. In addition to car route tips, we have everything about signs, tolls, roads and many more tips. Also read TRAVELING BY CAR IN ITALY: EXAMPLES OF ITINERARY!
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