Set into the Tuscan scenery, high on a hill overlooking the beautiful vineyards and groves of olive trees below is San Gimignanoof the charming towers. This small and handsome medieval town, founded in the eighth century, is known for its many medieval towers, 14 of the 72 original still remain.
Likely Italy’s most famous small town, there are few places that evoke the atmosphere of Medieval Toscana as well. Cobblestone roads, high defensive walls, imposing towers, narrow streets to walk and no cars create an illusion of timelessness.
Famous towers date back to a period when wealthy families sought prestige by building towers to match the height of their status. So hard was the competition between families that the government made a law that forbade any tower taller than the tower on the Palazzo del Popolo, the seat of the government. Symbols of status, the towers also served as defensive strongholds during the incessant family feuds that plagued the city, and were used to store grain for sieges and for dumping boiling oil on enemies.
A breathtakingly fascinating little town in almost every corner -- a view from the top of the Torre Grossa is exquisite -- San Gimignano’s squares and palaces add to its authentic charm – the beautifully Piazza della Cisterna, the Piazza del Duomo, the Palazzo del Popolo’s town hall. This is a marvelous medieval town.
Like all the towns in this spectacular region San Gimignano is unique also for its wine and food. Vernaccia di San Gimignano is Toscana's renowned white wine and the pride of the town.