mancianoFortezza Aldobrandesca

This 14th century fortress is all that remains of the powerful Aldobrandeschi family who once ruled Manciano.

The Aldobrandeschi controlled almost all of the Maremma and you can find fortresses like this one spotted all over the countryside. Unfortunately many are now private property and can only be admired from afar.

Manciano’s fortress isn’t exactly private property, but it isn’t open to the public either. It’s the seat of the Town Council at the moment, but the council is negotiating to move elsewhere and hopefully the fortress will soon be opened to public viewings.

At the moment, visitors can explore the piazza the fortress sits in and wander up the stone steps to the first terrace. There you’ll find Manciano’s best viewing spot- a place where you can see all of lower the Maremma and sometimes even as far as the Argentario Sea.

The view is so beautiful, it’s easy to get lost admiring it for hours!

I really can’t urge you enough to climb to the fortress’s terrace and admire the view.¬†There is no better spot in the Maremma to truly appreciate the Maremma, and the countryside is so beautiful, so spectacular, that it really does deserve to be admired.

You can also book a guided tours of the inside of the fortress from the tourist information centre in the museum in Piazza del Castello.

The tour guide will take you first to all the main sights of the city, before stopping at the fortress.

Inside, you’ll see the old medieval prison, followed by the Sala del Consiglio, which has two striking paintings by the Maremma’s most famous painters, Pietro Aldi and Paride Pascucci.

The tour finishes at the top of the tower, where you can enjoy an unobstructed view of the entire countryside.

To reach the top of the tower you have to climb a few flights of tight and winding staircases.

The observation deck is only barricaded by a short parapet wall, so it’s probably not the best place for those who suffer from vertigo.