Monte Antico, il Castello degli Ardengheschi
Monte Antico is a small fraction of the municipality of Civitella Paganico in the province of Grosseto. Located on the banks of the Ombrone river, the one arose by the will of the ancient noble family of the Ardengheschi who built a first castle with its courtyard. The village still maintains an elegant fourteenth-century appearance which counts it among the most characteristic villages of the area. In Monte Antico there is a station that still represents an important railway junction of the transport line that connects Grosseto with Siena.
What to see in Monte Antico
As its name suggests, the town of Monte Antico has very distant origins in time and inside there are interesting places to visit. The historic center of the town is in itself already a lovely open-air museum, from the streets to the small squares everything tells of an era that no longer exists but which continues to live in the memory and architecture of this wonderful village.
- Church of San Tommaso
- Monte Antico Castle
Church of San Tommaso
The church dedicated to San Tommaso is a religious building located in the territory of Monte Antico, near its ancient medieval castle. The church has uncertain origins, according to some theories this solemn building was built on the ruins of the Pieve di San Giovanni Battista in Ancaiano and at the beginning it was most likely dedicated to another saint. What is most striking about this church is its delicate neo-medieval style derived from a restructuring that took place in the first half of the last century, the interior is neo-Romanesque while the exterior is clad in walled stone. The façade is divided into three orders by pilasters, each of which corresponds to a nave. In the upper part of the church, in the center, a beautiful rose window stands out above which there is a niche containing the statue of the saint to whom the church was devoted. On the right side, on the other hand, there is a bell tower with simple lines. Today, contemporary art reviews and exhibitions are held inside this building.
Monte Antico Castle
The Monte Antico castle is the symbol of this ancient village. The fortress dominates the entire Ombrone valley from its position, and is now the seat of a hotel restaurant of great value. The castle was born around the year one thousand as a possession of the Ardengheschi and included the ancient parish church of San Giovanni Battista in Ancaiano claimed by the monks of San Lorenzo al Lanzo, which has now disappeared. This imposing mansion was the home of many families; after the Ardengheschi the Buonsignori arrived in Monte Antico, who enlarged the fortress transforming it into a real castle. In the fourteenth century the complex was sold to the Salimbeni and then in the fifteenth century Siena donated the property to the Tolomei family under which it underwent considerable transformations. Currently the structure, although it has become a restaurant, maintains some unique architectural elements. The style of the fortress is neo-medieval even if the external parts have been plastered in general, the building has the typical Renaissance aspect where the stone wall structure prevails. The complex was also mentioned in Giuseppe Guerrini’s book “Towers and Castles of the Province of Grosseto” as an example of a period patronal residence.
Where to sleep in Monte Antico
For those looking for a holiday of relaxation and contact with nature, the hamlet of Monte Antico in the municipality of Civitella Paganico is the right place to stay. In the area of this village of medieval origins, the agritourism is particularly widespread, which gives the opportunity to stay immersed in the green countryside of the Alta Maremma. There are also structures within the town and in particular we suggest to those wishing to try a different experience to stay at the ancient Castle of Monte Antico which has now become a renowned hotel with restaurant.
Where to eat in Monte Antico
Monte Antico is a small fraction of the widespread municipality of Civitella Paganico and like the whole territory that surrounds it, it has a vast and ancient culinary tradition based on the use of raw materials grown in the adjacent countryside.
La Taverna di Campagna (loc. Podere Campo Rosso 34, Monte Antico) Score 4,5
Beautiful restaurant with typical Maremma cuisine, a rustic and hospitable environment where you can taste the best of local cuisine. Pizza, but also homemade pasta, game and excellent wines, red and white, of local production. The restaurant is open for both lunch and dinner and after midnight. For more information or reservations +39 0564 991030
History of Monte Antico
Monte Antico was born as an inhabited nucleus before the year one thousand, in a dominant position over the Ombrone valley as a possession of the Ardengheschi family, who built a first castle there. Subsequently the village and the fortress passed under the control first of the Buonsignori, then to the Salimbeni and finally to the Tolomei in the late fifteenth century. During the course of the eighteenth century there was a development of the courtyard downstream from the castle, up to the creation of a real inhabited center born thanks to the inauguration of the railway line in 1872. The Monte Antico castle is currently used as a hotel and restaurant, while the nearby church, more recent and currently deconsecrated, has replaced the ancient parish church of San Giovanni Battista in Ancaiano which once stood near the castle.