Forte di San Leo: in the footsteps of Cagliostro

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Martí Micolau

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The Fort of San Leo, also known as Rocca di San Leo,? located in the homonymous village in the province of Rimini, in the beautiful Valmarecchia.

1 day

The Fort? undoubtedly the distinctive symbol of the Borgo. Its origins date back to the th century, at the time of the Goths and Byzantines. The imposing structure, long disputed between the families of Malatesta and Montefeltro, has undergone several changes and renovations over the years, also due to its position. The Fort of San Leo rises in fact on the top of a limestone hill that over the years? been subject to several collapses that have affected its architecture.

The Fort, built to be an impregnable stronghold,? later became property? of the Papal State that converted him? to jail. Among the inmates the most? famous stand out Felice Orsini, accused of having caused a massacre in the attempt to assassinate Napoleon III, and the Palermo Giuseppe Balsamo, more? known as the Count of Cagliostro. Does the Count, who was an alchemist, healer and Freemason, travel? for Italy and Europe, managing to cheat the pi? and being welcomed by the major courts of the time. He was later tried and arrested as a heretic by the Catholic Church and then locked up in prisons inside the Fort of San Leo. Initially relegated to a normal cell too humid for his health, he was then transferred to another without doors, in which he was lowered through a trap door and taken in the same way only four years later, on August 26, 1795, upon his death.
History lessons apart from what I found myself in front of when visiting the Fort of San Leo? it was a breathtaking sight. Structure ? reachable on foot or by shuttle from Piazza Dante Alighieri, I chose the walking route. The walk ? uphill but really short and allowed me to get in tune perfectly with the climate of the place. Once you reach the summit inside the fortification you can visit a museum containing weapons and period objects, so? like prisons, all by buying a ticket for 9? (per adult).

Yet, however beautiful and well-preserved the interior is, what really left me speechless? was the surrounding landscape. The Forte overlooks the beautiful Valmarecchia, an area that inspired several works by Piero della Francesca and Leonardo da Vinci, in front of me only hills as far as the eye can see and the wonderful feeling of being poised on the roof of the world. Yes, I say in the balance why? actually we are at the top and the limestone does not seem convinced of wanting to stay there? still a long time, but trust me my friends, it's really worth it!

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