Emilia Romagna Villages: Castrocaro Terme and Terra del Sole
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The Emilia Romagna Tourism Staff’s date dedicated to the Emilia-Romagna villages returns this week with Castrocaro Terme and Terra del Sole! These two small villages form one of the most suggestive towns in the province of Forlì-Cesena, welcoming visitors from all over Italy, famous for the thermal spa and the Castrocaro Music Festival.
They are also inserted among Orange Flagships Villages for several reasons: they stand out for the harmonious, homogeneous and well-preserved ancient nucleus, have a special care of the green and the urban furnishings and offer a rich calendar of events that will not leave any unhappy tourists visiting these lands just 10 km from Forlì.
The story of Castrocaro is linked to its fortress, which has always dominated these lands, offering a strategic point of defense in the territory since the Middle Ages. Ancient texts tell these lands as possession of the Counts of Castrocaro, allies of Federico Barbarossa in the struggle with the Lombard League. During the 1200s, with the death of Frederick II (1253) and the imperial disorientation that followed, most of Romagna ended under the temporal power of the Church that long sought the fortress until 1403 when it was sold to the Republic of Florence , Thus becoming the capital of the Romagna Fiorentina. However, they followed three centuries of abandonment and the subsequent revival and restructuring in the early 1900s.
If Castrocaro does not have accurate birth information, we know much more about Terra del Sole: we are in 1564 when an important liturgical ritual was celebrated with the purpose of accompanying and blessing the foundations of the city. Rite manifests a particular meteorological event: after days of fierce fog, while the mass of heaven is celebrated, it opens and the sun illuminates the place where the city would be built, to close at the end of the ceremony. Thus, as in a legend, the Terra del Sole (literally “Land of the Sun”) is born that over the centuries will live the affairs of the adjoining Castrocaro, passing in the early 1920s under the jurisdiction of Forlì.
One of the most interesting things in Castrocaro is certainly its medieval fortress with Archaeological History Museum, one of the most significant examples of composite fortified architecture, where the structural fulfillment, over time, has adapted to the war needs and the morphology of the ground. Always in Castrocaro you can visit the Byzantine Baptistery. Churches also find several interesting artistic ideas: the Church of St. Nicholas has frescoes in Giotto’s school, while the Church of San Nicolò and Francesco paintings and frescoes from the Renaissance period. Finally, the spa complex is a clear example of art deco.
In Terra del Sole there are as many artistic wonders like the Museum of Man and the Environment, with its journey into the millennial history of settlements in the valley of the river Montone from prehistory to the present day. Terra del Sole presents the splendid City of the fortified Medicea and the Castle of the Artillery Captain of Porta Fiorentina.
– Summer: trekking lovers will find many perfect places for their passion including the Cozzi site or the Via del Santo, a breathtaking trail from Castrocaro to the hermitage of Monte Paolo, through an uncontaminated territory.
– Autumn: The Castle of the Artillery Captain is an integral part of the city’s Fortress of Terra del Sole and opens its halls, for events, while in the cellars of Medicea and at the tavern, among the Copper Alambics of the late ‘700, you can enjoy the Tuscany and Romagna’s specialties
– Winter: Don’t you resist the cold weather? Castrocaro’s Spa waits only for your diving in the hot sulfurous waters of Castrocaro
– Spring: At the end of April for three whole days Terra del Sole returns to the splendor of its late-Renaissance origins with Heliopolis, reviving the splendor and strength of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany at the beginning of the seventeenth century.
– Summer: The Palio di Santa Reparata awaits you at the beginning of the summer, where the terraces of Terra del Sole are challenging in a Tire race with the Ancient Balestra. At the end of August, instead, one of the most important events of Italian music, the Castrocaro Music Festival, creator of talent since 1957
– Autumn: The Pieve Salutare Wine Festival is held in September in the homonymous hamlet of Castrocaro-Terra del Sole, where you can enjoy the red nectar between live music and typical local products.
– Winter: Like other Romagna villages Castrocaro has a tradition linked to artisan Christmas nativities, made by a group of amateur-hobbyists and exhibited between Palazzo Pretorio, Porta Fiorentina and the guardian body of the Porta Romana castle.
Wine and Food
Like all the small villages of Romagna, Castrocaro and Terra del Sole present the typical dishes of these lands, rich for tradition of food and wine enriched by the famous local white truffle. You will surely be seduced by restaurants, taverns and food production companies, with home-made cappelletti and tagliatelle, all served with quality wines.
– Silvio Corbari (1923-1944), partisan leader of the Banda Corbari, partisan formation protagonist of the Italian resistance and struggle against Nazi fascism in the Faenza’s Apennines.
– Giuseppe Gaudenzi (1872-1936), a republican politician who advocated the first republican economic organizations in theForlì’s area, in whose Resistance Park there is still a bust.
– Angelo Masini, tenor (1844-1926), nicknamed the “Angels Tenor”, brought Italian lyric music around the world from Moscow to St. Petersburg as well as Paris, London and Vienna.
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