One of the most characteristic villages in the Val d’Elsa – middles ages atmosphere
If you’re looking for middles ages atmosphere Certaldo is the right place. Certaldo is a Tuscan amazing village in Val D’Elsa area. It’s development began in the early Middle Ages and it’s also famous for being the birthplace of the poet-writer Giovanni Boccaccio (1313–1375).
The historical town center, called “Il Castello”, is completely surrounded by red brick walls and the original gates to the city: Porta Alberti, Porta al Sole and Porta al Rivellino. It can be accessed by going up the ancient streets called Costa Alberti and Costa Vecchia, from the more modern Via del Castello or via the funicular that starts from Piazza Boccaccio. The main characteristic of Certaldo is the absence of a typical central square. Certaldo’s religious and civic authorities palaces in fact overlook the Main Street “Via di Boccaccio “.
Palazzo Pretorio is the most important monument of Certaldo. It was the historic residence of the Alberti counts- It was built at the end of the XII century on the ruins of the original family home. Vicariate families arms’ coats are diplay on the facade of the building. Inside Palazzo Pretorio we can also admire frescoes and sinopites from the 15th and 16th centuries.
Church of San Tommaso and Prospero
Next to the Palazzo Pretorio, there’s San Tommaso and Prospero’s Church the oldest church in the Castle (early 13th century). At the center of the Church is located the great Tabernacolo dei Giustiziati by Benozzo Gozzoli, executed in 1464 -1467.
The Museum of Sacred Art is located in the rooms of the old 15thC Augustinian convent. In the old convent refectory, there’re paintings dating from the 12th to 16thC. In the Romanesque church of SS. Jacopo and Filippo (XII century) there’s Giovanni Boccaccio’s tomb. The tombstone lies at the center of the church is a replica of the first known poet’s portrait painted by Andrea del Castagno in the 15thC. Boccaccio’s house and the Nailìs Museum are also worth a visit.
If you’re looking for middles ages atmosphere Certaldo is the right place.