Monticchiello is a small village in Val D’Orcia, about 5km east of Pienza. As with most of the towns and villages in this area it is built on a hill and has a history dating back to Roman or even Etruscan times. The village has the remains of a medieval castle dating from the 1200s when the village was under control from Sienna. There is a good view of the village from the SP88 road, approaching from the west.


Looking out from the town, there is a lovely view across the rolling Tuscany landscape towards Pienza.

Pienza From Monticchiello

In exploring the village, we came across a number of sculptures close to the castle ruins at the top of the village. These appeared not to be a permanent feature, but perhaps changed from time to time to feature work by various artists.

Monticchiello Sculpture Park

The parish church is dedicated to Saints Leonardo and Cristoforo and dates from the 13th Century, though it appears that the original church was older and renovated in a gothic style. There are remains of frescoes  on several of the walls, some of which are very early Rennaissance works, dating from from the 14th century by unknown Sienese artists.

Pieve dei Santi Leonardo e Cristoforo

When wandering around Italian towns, there are always small scenes worth photographing – doorways, pots of flowers and steps can often be combined to capture a little of the feel of the town.

Doorway In Monticchiello

Plant Arrangement In Monticchiello

Monticchiello Cypress Road

Just outside Monticchiello is one of Val D’Orcia’s well know winding roads, lined by cypress trees, where the SP88 climbs up a hillside. For a view of the road head west out of Monticchiello along the SP88, and after 0.5km at a rather grand house known as Casa Bonari, turn onto an unpaved road. A short distance along this road the view to the cypress road opens up to the left. This road is not only a good subject for photography, but is a pleasure to drive up through the zig-zags – the only problem being that it is too short.

Cypress Road At Monticchiello

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