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Arezzo

Arezzo is a town in the Tuscan province, situated on a hillside that is 296 meters above the sea level, between Casentino, Valdichiana and Valdarno.
Archaeological remains are evidence of its existence since VI century. The town remained important during Roman times.


Arezzo Area

Made internationally famous by the award-winning movie, Life is Beautiful, Arezzo is one of Italy's most charming jewels, featuring everything Tuscany is famous for and more. Whether you want to explore Roman ruins, enjoy ancient, medieval and neoclassical architecture, sample amazing food or shop for Italian leather and ceramics, Arezzo has something for every visitor.

This ancient city was conquered by the Romans in 311 BC, and prior to that it was one of the twelve most important cities of the Etruscan civilisation. Home to great artists, including Piero della Francesca and Georgio Vasari, this hilltop city is packed with more cultural and architectural delights than you could possibly see in a single visit. For anyone planning a trip to this charming city, here are a few tips for making the most of your time there.



Visit the Piazza Grande

This beautiful medieval square is one of the finest in Europe, with stunning buildings on every side. Situated behind the 13th century Romanesque apse of Santa Maria della Pieve, the Piazza Grande was once the main marketplace of the city. It was also the site of Giostra del Saracino, an ancient joust held here in the 16th and 17th century.

Once a medieval training event, this tournament is now remembered in an annual historical re-enactment held in the Piazza Grande on the second-to-last Saturday of June, and on the first Sunday of September, to the delight of locals and visitors alike. The day starts with a procession of costumed characters and horses in the square, and the main event features eight jousters competing for a coveted golden lance.

The Piazza Grande is bordered on one side by the beautiful 13th century Episcopal Palace, seat of bishops and home to frescoes by Teofilo Torri, Salvi Castellucci, and Pietro Benvenuti. Also situated next to the Piazza is the Palace of the Lay Fraternity, a 15th century palace with a quattrocentro floor designed by Bernardo Rossellino.


Taste the wine of the Arezzo Hills
Arezzo has some treats in store for wine lovers, who can take a trip along the Terre di Arezzo, or 'Road of Wine', to admire and enjoy the sights and tastes of this picturesque wine growing region. This winding 200km route will take you through vineyards, olive groves, tobacco plantations and forests, and visitors can taste and purchase some of Italy's finest wines along the way. Food lovers will also find some of the area's finest gastronomic delights here.


Visit Arezzo's many local churches
The city is crammed with churches, many of which are home to ancient artworks and stunning architectural features. It would be impossible to see all of them in one trip, but it is worth visiting at least a few of the most celebrated. These include the 12th century Romanesque church of Santa Maria della Pieve, the Basilica of San Francesco, which features the 15th century History of the True Cross fresco cycle by Piero della Francesca, and of course, the beautiful Gothic Cathedral of Saint Donatus.


Cycle past the waterways of the Etruscan world
If you like to get a little exercise while seeing the sites, why not hire a bike and cycle along the Canale Maestro della Chiana? This route will take you through the heart of the Etruscan world, past the waterways and scenic landscapes of Arezzo. Bikes can easily be rented in the city, and if you don't fancy the task of propelling yourself along under your own steam, why not try a moped for the real Italian experience!

Another route that cycling enthusiasts will love is the Bonifica bike path, which runs between Arezzo and Chiusi. This cycle path crosses ancient marshland, passing locks and canals and travelling through the tunnels that used to be essential for draining the Arezzo area. Now unused, they make up an interesting open air museum in the heart of the Chiana Valley. Cyclists can stop for a bite to eat along the route, enjoying delicious local food in an unusual historical landscape.


Visit Arezzo's many museums
Arezzo has a wonderful selection of museums, notable not just for their contents but for the historic buildings they are situated in. Don't miss Casa Vasari, home of the famous artist and decorated by the man himself in typical Tuscan manieristic style, or the rare jewellery on display at the Pinacoteca Comunale. This museum hosts a collection of sacred art and rare medieval jewellery, as well as the stunning bust of Sant’Orsola.

The Archaeological Museum's unusual curved design is taken from the ruins of the Roman amphitheatre it was built on, and houses ancient vases and amphorae from the 5th and 6th centuries BC, as well as a collection of Arentine ceramics.

The Museo Archeologico is home to many artefacts of the Etruscan settlement, including a selection of ancient bronzes. The museum explores the history of Castiglion Fiorentino, utilising a blend of ancient artefacts and modern media installations to showcase ancient activities, including weaving, spinning and fishing.


Enjoy the tastes of Italy
With over 100 trattorie, osterie and taverne, food lovers will have a wonderful time sampling the tastes of Tuscany. Each offers visitors unique menus and local fare, all focussed on traditional recipes and fine local wines.

The Arezzo area is known for its local delicacies, including sheep and goat's cheese, local honey, olives, beans and many kinds of cured meat. Don't forget to sample the Valdarno chicken and Chianina beef, and try local classics such as pici con cinghiale (wild boar pasta), ribollita soup and delicious Mugello tortelli.


Shop for leather, gold and fashionable clothes
As everyone knows, Italy is the place to go for the world's finest leather, and Arezzo is no exception. Here you can find wonderfully soft shoes, handbags and other leather goods, as well as all manner of jewellery, particularly in gold. Fashion lovers will find a wealth of delights in the many boutiques, and of course, no Italian shopping trip would be complete without local delicacies such as wine, cheese and olive oil.


Video of Arezzo


Giostra Del Saracino
The most important and typical event is the chivalric tournament called “Giostra Del Saracino” that takes place on the second to last Sunday of June and on the first Sunday of September, in Grande Square.




Fiera Antiquaria  
A must see, the Fiera Antiquaria antique market (the most important in Italy), held on the first Saturday of every month.





PARKING
This helpful link will save you time when looking for parking in Arezzo
http://en.parkopedia.it/parking/arezzo/


SHOPPING

Supermarkets
- There are two large Coop supermarkets which have the usual opening hour of 8.00 to 21.00 on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. One is closed on Monday mornings and the other is closed on Wednesdays.
Also in the town there is a variety of small grocery stores with typical products.

Banks - There are various banks with cash dispensers that accept Credit Cards. Banks are open in the mornings.

Mass - There are a number of Churches in Arezzo which have regular masses. There is a Sunday service hourly from 7:00 to 12:00 and also one at 18:00.

Petrol -There are several petrol stations that operate a 24 hour machine service, you will need a 5, 10 or 20 Euro note when they are closed. They are normally open Monday to Friday 7:30 to 12:30 and 15:00 to 19:00. On rotation basis at least one petrol station is open on Saturday and Sunday

Chemist - The Farmacia Comunale n.1 is always open 24h per day
Via CAMPO DI MARTE 7
Tel: +39 0575 902466


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