Rocca of Montestaffoli
Rocca of Montestaffoli
4.5
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Walk to the castle on this hilltop park to get a sweeping view of the town's many towers.
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.


4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles312 reviews
Excellent
155
Very good
132
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20
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5
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Mairwen1
United Kingdom10,614 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2019
Walking to the hilltop was the highlight of our visit to San Gimignano. However don’t expect a huge fortress as it is mostly a crumbling, but picturesque ruin. It's the absolutely stunning views that are worth going for.
The path is easily accessible for most people. It is a gentle uphill walk - a steady incline and not too steep. Starting just past the Duomo, there is a clear path the whole way. Halfway up, there is a large viewing point on your left which is a great spot to stop and take photos.
The fortress itself is just a shell really but you can walk up on the old tower that still remains and the views from here are a 360 degrees panorama – it’s an absolutely commanding view. There was a big storm brewing the day we were there. Watching the dark clouds rolling in across the distant mountain and over the beautiful green vineyards and lands below was dramatic and stunning.
Afterwards we wandered through the small gardens. Meandering paths, olive trees, a musician playing, a central medieval well… it couldn't be prettier. It is also quite peaceful up here as most day-trippers seem to stay close to the main historic centre. Had it been a better day, I can’t think of anything much nicer that taking some food up and having a picnic under the olive trees.
NOTE: Entrance through the park and fortress is free.
Written January 3, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

rockyjoe
Minneapolis, MN8,193 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2015 • Family
The Rocca di Montestaffoli is a castle (fortress?) near the center San Gimignano, Italy and was built in 1353. It is also located near the Piazza del Duomo. San Gimignano is about 25 miles north of Siena, Italy and about 30 miles south of Florence. Some travel guides have it listed as a fortress but it seems way too small to be a fortress.

I visited the fortress with my wife and daughter on a Friday afternoon in mid-March and really enjoyed the views from the top. Since we arrived later in the afternoon the town was not very crowded and there was only one other couple at the top of the castle wall. This is the best spot in San Gimignano and provides fantastic views of the skyline of the medieval town and its many towers. It also is a great spot to see the entire countryside surrounding the town. The top of the tower is also a fantastic place to take some great photos with many towers in the background. The climb to the top does not take very long as there are only 33 stairs to the top of the little tower (almost anyone could complete this short climb). The inside of the castle is now a peaceful hilltop park and olive grove and you can sit here and rest for a while before moving on to your next thing. There were a couple of local artists and musicians in the park that added some interesting color.

Overall I really enjoyed walking through the old fortress and visiting the top of the tower. In my opinion this is the best spot in San Gimignano and is a must see attraction. I recommend that you visit the Rocca di Montestaffoli and take some photos while you are in the town. The best part of this attraction is that it is completely free.
Written May 8, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Michael Hausmann( Insta:mikestravelbook)
Neuchâtel, Switzerland656 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2018 • Couples
The castle is not really present anymore but the area is very quite as less people end up there. Worth it for a little break
Written April 30, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

AlbertSalichs
Manresa, Spain20,456 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019 • Family
Rocca of Montestaffoli is the old fortress of San Gimignano, a wonderful medieval town in Tuscany Region, in the center of Italy. Nowadays only you can see remains, a park and a children park. Pitifully, it is not well-preserved, so it is ok to walk here, but it is much better walk around the town.
(See also Historic Centre of San Gimignano)
Written May 13, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

viviSiena
siena12 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
On visiting san Gimignano it's a must, when northen winds blow you can see Apuane Alps as well as Appenins
Written November 22, 2009
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Brun066
Florence, Italy12,987 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2020
Speaking of the Rocca di Montestaffoli, it's necessary to distinguish between its current appearance and the pre-existing buildings (of them nothing remains) which are much older, probably the first nucleus of the San Gimignano settlement.
Observing the topography of the city, it is evident that the site of this "Rocca" is the highest of all those close to the city. It therefore seems natural to imagine what the ancient chronicles tell us: that is, that the first relevant settlement in San Gimignano is documented on this site: that is, a fortress from the early Middle Ages belonging to the bishop of Volterra (who had jurisdiction over the area), and to the "shadow" of which the first nucleus of the future city developed, already in the remote 10th century (this nucleus was extended in a west-east direction, from here to the "Poggio della Torre", rather than north-south as it was in the following centuries of Middle Ages).
The current appearance of the Rocca (or rather, of what remains of it) is instead due to the construction by Florence starting from 1351: the date on which the city surrendered to Florence.
Today the main advantage of the site is the panorama that can be enjoyed from it (in particular from a corner tower, accessible by a staircase open to the public) towards the city and its towers to the east, towards the well-raised hill covered with woods called "Poggio del Comune", to the west.
Written December 27, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

swetamodi
Mumbai, India224 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2019
a short easy walk past the main square - hilltop is easily accessible.
Lesser crowds than the main part of the town.

views are great, serene.
Written April 7, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

PaulB
Maastricht, The Netherlands3,156 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2018 • Couples
The Rocca di Montestaffoli is a short climb from the Piazza del Duomo, crossing the Pazza delle Erbe.
But worth the effort.
Originally, it was a castle of the Lombard Astolfo, later a Dominican Convent.
The fortress was built by the Florentines in the 14th century to protect San Gimignano from possible attacks by Siena or from internal riots that may arise inside the town itself. The fortress housed soldiers under Florentine command. The fortress has a pentagonal base with a perimeter of approx. 280m, turrets on each corner and passages that linked it to the city walls.
It was protected by a front gate and by a drawbridge.
Today only one of the ancient turrets is still safe and open to visitors, and it offers breathtaking views of the historical centre with its unique towers and surrounding countryside.
Written September 3, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Taxidevil
Glasgow, UK2,943 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2018 • Couples
This is a lovely park with a ruined tower, if you don't want to pay to go up one of the towers then this is the place for you . The tower is not too high but as the park itself is on high ground then the view is really good. great place to watch the sunset although it can get busy at that time.
Picnic tables were out when we visited so a nice spot to enjoy .
Written June 29, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

firechief-JL
Vegreville, Canada2,026 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2016 • Couples
We took a walk up the hill to La Rocca di Montestaffoli, the ruins of the 14th century fortress above the town. we got a chance to take in the views of the rolling Tuscan hills and the towers rising from the town center. there was a harpist plucking out a tune while others set up their paintings. This is a nice spot for you to have a picnic lunch with some of the goodies you purchase in the stores below. Well worth the climb to the top.
Written December 8, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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