Florence is the capital of the Tuscany region of Italy, but Fiesole is the heart and soul of Tuscany. Perched at a height of 1000 feet on the Tuscan Hills towards the northeast of Florence just 8 Km away, Fiesole offers magnificent views of the Florence town below. The smattering of grandiose villas amidst olive groves is reminiscent of Renaissance architecture. Fiesole’s cultural and linguistic footprint is synonymous with ‘a nation within a nation’ syndrome.
Up to the 12th century, Fiesole was an important Etruscan town made secure by its location on the hills. After Florence was promoted in the plains, Fiesole lost its importance but became a retreat for people to escape to from the hustle and bustle of Florence.
There are several impeccable sights to behold in Fiesole that include
• Remains of Etruscan walls
• Roman theater and baths
• The Monastery of San Francesco
• Episcopal Seminary of Fiesole
• Site archéologique de Fiesole
• Museum Bandini
• Museo Civico Archeologico
Fiesole offers great opportunities to enjoy peace and quiet amidst its history dating back to the 7th century BC. The town is full of interesting places to spend time in with small parks packed with shady trees. The stunning view of Florence from a height of 1000 feet is worth experiencing.
Fiesole is a great place for biking and trekking. You can see the best of Fiesole such as the ancient Cathedral of St. Romulus, the Roman Theater and baths and the Etruscans walls while biking or trekking. You will have plenty of time to take in the deep sense of history Fiesole offers.
Perhaps, the biggest accolade for Fiesole comes from Georgetown University and Harvard University which have set up Italian Renaissance Study Centers here. Even Frank Lloyd Wright, the famed American architect, spent time in Fiesole and lent it an element of world renown.