From a distance the structure that characterizes the village of Poppi is undoubtedly the Castle of the Counts Guidi (or Praetorian Palace), which, with its massive structure dominates the town on the hilltop, but the town is very beautiful even for its porches. Poppi’s history dates back to the twelfth century when it became the main residence of the Counts Guidi, in 1440 it came under the dominion of Florence.
THE CASTLE OF THE CONTI GUIDI
Poppi Castle was built in the XII century, but then rebuilt in the XIII century. A stone lion from 1447 dominates the entrance door of the Castle, the interior of the Castle is certainly worth a visit, which is accessed via a scenic courtyard with the coats of arms of the Florentine vicars and a beautiful staircase on the walls.
On the first floor are the Rilliana Library full of hundreds of medieval manuscripts and incunabula, and a large hall. On the second floor is a beautiful frescoed chapel, the Chapel of the Counts with a fourteenth-century cycle of frescoes attributed to Taddeo Gaddi, a pupil of Giotto, and some other rooms. The nearby Augustinian Monastery (16th century) keeps valuable terracotta by Della Robbia
ALONG THE STREETS OF THE VILLAGE
Walking along the town should visit the small church with a dome of Madonna del Morbo (1657-1705) set in beautiful location in the center of a square and lined with arcades that characterize the town. On one side is the church of San Marco and Lorenzo (17th century). Along the beautiful arcades of Via Cavour (to the right coming from the castle), we arrive at the Abbey of San Fedele (1185-1195), which preserves valuable works of thirteenth-sixteenth centuries, including works by Francesco Morandini (called the Poppi), the Maestro della Maddalena and the school of Giotto. The crypt containing the remains of San Torello, a saint native of Poppi (1202-1282).
Opening of the Castle of the Counts Guidi: March 15 to October 31. Open daily: 10-18; July 1 to August 31. Open daily: 10-19; November 1 to March 15. Closed: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday. Open: Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday: 10-17. Admission: Full price 4 Euro; reduced 3 Euro.
HOW TO GET
Poppi is on top of a hill at 437 metres in Casentino, in the province of Arezzo, town which is about 40 km.
Car: To reach Poppi from Arezzo must travel the road n° 71 that leads to Bibbiena, shortly after Bibbiena, turn left on the road to Consuma (n° 70) and after about 5 km you reach the village. From Florence, the village can be reached with a road of about 55 km from Pontassieve and then along the beautiful mountain pass of Consuma.
Road distances: Arezzo 39 km, Florence 54 km.
Bus: Poppi is connected by SITA bus services with Florence. Numerosi sono poi i collegamenti con i paesi vicini effettuati dalla LFI.
Train: Poppi is served by its own railway station on the railway line Arezzo-Stia.
The nearest important railway station is that of Arezzo which is 39 km.
Air: The nearest airport is Florence-Peretola Amerigo Vespucci, which is 78 km away.
Weekly Market Ponte a Poppi: Tuesday Weekly Market in Ponte a Poppi, every Tuesday from 8.00 to 13.30.
Tourist Information Office Via Cavour, 11 Poppi Phone 0575 502 222
- AA. VV. “Toscana” Guide Rosse Touring Club Italiano, 2007
- Bicchierai, Marco “Ai confini della Repubblica di Firenze. Poppi dalla signoria dei conti Guidi al vicariato del Casentino (1360-1480)” Olschki, 2005
- Quercioli, Mauro “Poppi. Il borgo medievale e il castello dei conti Guidi” Ist. Poligrafico dello Stato, 2004