Sorano - the first tourists
who saw this beautiful rock with its sheer cliff, decided
it was a good idea to stick around for a bit.
Those tourists were the ancient Etruscans
and they built the town of Sorano during the period of their
The continuity from ancient past to
present is literally visible and the principal activities
have been maintanined to this day. All around the town, vineyards
alternate with scrub, olive groves, fields of wheat and sheep
farms displaying the area's strong agricultural vocation.
A further confirmation of this vocation lies in the present
high regard held for the excellence of the local production,
especially the dairy products.
The surrounding area is dotted with
medieval fortifications such as the Montorio Castle, the citadel
of Castell'Ottieri and Montebuono Castle. This historical
wealth is a part of the extraordinary archaeological heritage
of the whole territory. The archaeological park of the "Citta
del Tufo" is unique of its kind. Here you find the most
interesting Etruscan sites, the church of San Sebastiano,
Rocca Aldobrandesca and innumerable necropoleis carved in
the rock and now immersed in nature. The most important cliff
settlements in Italy can be found in the neighbourhood of
the Rocca di Vitozza.
These have caves used for housing and
others called "colombari" or coops, most probably
intended for raising pigeons. These caves are fascinating,
but almost bare compared to those discovered near Sovana.
Here the caves, the vie cave, wells, tunnels and hydraulic
systems are all joined within a single landscape. The necropoleis,
all cut in the tufa, are wrapped in thick, protective vegetation,
making them all the more fascinating and mysterious.
The most important tombs are the Tomba
del Sileno, the Tomba della Sirena and the monumental Tomba
lldebranda, considered the masterpiece of all sepulchre. Sorano
is notable for its elegant Renaissance architecture and massive
enclosing walls that made it one of the safest defensive offshoots
in the county of Pitigliano. It first fell under the Aldobrandeschi
family who developed its defensive fortifications by building
the enclosing wall which still surrounds the town.
Later the Orsini family built the splendid
fortress, considered the town's most interesting monument.
In the middle of the 15th century, it became the theatre of
the conflict with the Sienese Republic without ever being
taken. This prompted Cosimo dei Medici's nickname for it as
the "tinderbox of Italian wars". In 1608, it fell
definitively under the domain of the Grand duchy of Tuscany.
Where is Sorano: is located in the south of Grooseto
province, on the border with the Lazio region.
How to reach Sorano: From Grosseto, direction south,
reach Albinia (35 Km) and then turn left direction Manciano
(30 Km) then Pitigliano (18 Km) and after 9 Km you will reach
Nearby: Visit Pitigliano, Sovana
Distances: Grosseto 92 Km - Siena 100 Km (Via Cassia)
- Florence 200 Km - Pisa 220 Km - Arezzo 150 Km
Correct name is Sorano
Common mistakes are Sorrano, Soprano, Soreno, Surano,