|• THE MARCHE TRAVEL GUIDE|
|- A first overview|
|- City of art and culture|
|- Rural tourism and touring|
|- The Marche and the sea|
|- Wine and Food in the Marche|
|- Marche - uncontaminated nature|
|- Marche - Sport and leisure|
|- Thermal Baths and Wellness|
|- Romantic Marche|
|- The Artisan Marche|
|- The Marche region in blue|
|- Marche Fortresses and castles|
|- MARCHE for young people|
|- Marche for families|
|- The Marche and wellness|
|- The Green Marches|
|- The Archaeological Marche|
|- Medieval festivals / historical reenactments in the Marche|
Fortresses, castles and medieval villages perched on hills of The Marche, theatre of ancient love stories that arouse passions and senses: these are the romantic Marche, a region that is rediscovered through literature and history.
The love story between Paolo and Francesca has enchanted generations of students and avid readers who let themselves be overwhelmed by hidden feelings, it is in The Marche that the Gradara Castle is located: between myth, history and legend. Perched on top of a hill between the Romagna and The Marche, Gradara (PU) is one of the most beautiful towns in Italy which has preserved its historical-artistic charm and attracts thousands of tourists who can visit the places where the ill-fated love story took place between Paolo and Francesca, as told by Dante Alighieri in the fifth Canto of the Divine Comedy. To celebrate the two passionate lovers every year on Valentine's Day, the old town becomes the natural meeting place for those seeking a romantic atmosphere and there are many tourist proposals to pass a romantic weekend in the area.
Sentimental and tragic is the story of Piero and Sara, two lovers killed by the evil Count of Rovellone, a feudal lord who fell in love with young Sara and decided to kidnap her, however, failing in his attempt he enters into a bitter battle that leads to the killing of the woman and her promised husband Piero. The setting for this tragedy is the Medieval Castle of Pierosara di Genga (AN) which stands on a hill and dominates the south-east of the Frasassi Caves.
Also in the province of Ancona, love was the driving force for the realization of the great Public Park Colle Celeste in Maiolati Spontini that Gaspare Spontini, the famous Italian composer, commissioned in the late 19th century, as a tribute to his wife Celeste Erard. Equally poetic and romantic is the Colle dell’Infinito in Recanati (AN) which inspired Giacomo Leopardi, one of the most important Italian poets, of many imagined yet never consumed loves such as with Geltrude Cassi Lazzari, or unrequited as with the beautiful Fanny Tongioni Tozzetti or his most famous love for Silvia.
Antique and romantic atmospheres can also be found at Castello dei Conti Pallotta in Caldarola (MC) where there is a restaurant serving typical medieval recipes in a unique location overlooking the valleys of The Marche. Even in the Castello di Luco, medieval fortress in the vicinity of Acquasanta Terme (AP), it is possible stay in renovated apartments dating from the 15th century and dine by candlelight.
Not only castles and parks, but also beautiful historic villas, accompanied by beautiful gardens full of statues, neoclassical and baroque masterpieces, which complement the landscape and help Marche emphasise the art-historical importance of this region.
In the province of Ascoli Piceno, which encompasses the slopes of the Sibillini and the waters of the Adriatic Sea, there are several historic villas and palaces like Palazzo Malaspina, one of the leading eighteenth-century patrician buildings which conserves several frescoes which are still intact. Villa La Pantiera is an example of the Seventeenth century building, known for its enormous exedra staircase that dominates the entrance. In Grottammare (AP) it is possible to admire Casa Pazzi, now a prestigious luxury hotel; it is a palace dating from the late eighteenth century, located in the central square of the medieval village perched on the Adriatic coast where magnificent fifteenth century houses and historical buildings have attracted the attention of many architects throughout the ages. Many of these historic homes, still privately owned, have been converted into hotels and B & B ideal for those who want to spend an unforgettable holiday in The Marche region in the countryside, immersed in beauty and history.
In Macerata, the southern area of The Marche, characterised by a hilly landscape coloured with large wheat, soybean and sunflower field, the historic abodes represent the pride of the artistic treasures: Palazzo dalla Casapiccola built in Recanati in1600 now houses a Bed & Breakfast, Villa Bonaccorsi, magnificent residence in Porto Potenza Picena, stands atop a small hill and the ruins of a fortified place transformed in the sixteenth century in a building with a secret garden, dating from the mid seventeenth century. Also worth the visit is Palazzo Lucangeli and Villa La Capparuccia both from the nineteenth century with historic gardens and forests where it is still possible to walk among beautiful flowers and trees that are always well taken care of.
The province of Ancona is full of historic villas, among them, the most unique on an architectural level is Villa Malacri, a fortress outside of the walls of Offagna (AN), the construction of which rests entirely on the roof of a cellar. Palazzo Sabatucci on Ostra Vetere (AN) instead represents the classic architecture of the Marche from the 17th century.
North of The Marche, Pesaro and Urbino, two radically different cities, one on the plain and the other on a hillside, are full of beautifully preserved palaces and stately homes visited by tourists and onlookers. Palazzo Gambini in Pesaro built in the eighteenth century in the city center is within walking distance from Rossini Theatre. Slightly outside the city centre are two perfectly preserved residences: Villa Caprile represents a splendid example of a noble residence with and Italian style garden and Villa Imperiale, where even the Emperor Frederick III of Habsburg stayed there in 1468, hosted by the Sforza family, lords of Pesaro.
Uphill is the Casale Torre del Sasso in Cagli (PU), a complex of houses all renovated and now fully integrated in the river landscape originally built on ancient tower walls. Famous worldwide is the Palazzo Ducale of Urbino, commissioned by Duke Federico da Montefeltro, a soldier and refined humanist, who had it built in the fifteenth century. The palace is now home to the National Gallery of the Marche which preserves masterpieces of Italian Renaissance masters like Piero della Francesca, Raphael and Paolo Uccello.
Not to be missed
Palazzo Ducale di Urbino e Galleria Nazionale delle Marche
Call: +39 0721 855987
Telephone:+39 338 6228715 - +39 0541 964181
Castello di Pierosara a Genga
Telephone: +39 0732 973014
Public Park Colle Celeste
Maiolati Spontini (AN)
Telephone: +39 0731 70751
For a complete tour of the places that inspired the famous poet Giacomo Leopardi, contact:
Tel: +39 071 757 3380
Telephone: +39 0721 21440
Istituto Tecnico Agrario A. Cecchi
For a romantic weekend
Castello (Castle) dei Conti Pallotta
For information contact: +39 0733 905242
Castello (Castle) di Luco
Aquasanta Terme (AP)
For information contact: +39 0736 802319
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