Castelnuovo Berardenga, between the vineyards of Chianti classico
Castelnuovo Berardenga is located about 20 kilometres est from Siena in the southern area of the Chianti near the border with the Crete Senesi. This area was under the control of the noble Berardo during the tenth century, so it was called “Terra Berardinga“. This anectode helps to explain, partially, the origin of the name Castelnuovo Berardenga.
The hamlet was born in 1366 as a castle founded by the Repubblica di Siena, a “Castelnuovo” (“new castle”); today there are very few remains of this medieval castle: a tower and few traces of the walls. This village remained under the control of the Repubblica di Siena until the final defeat in 1555; starting from that date, Castelnuovo Berardenga became part of the Medici’s possessions.
Nowadays Castelnuovo Berardenga is part of the wine-growing zone of Chianti and particularly the sub-zone of Chianti Classico.
Things to do in Castelnuovo Berardenga: guide to the hamlet
- Torre civica
- Propositura dei Santi Giusto e Clemente
- Villa Chigi
- Museo del Paesaggio
As I said before, the only appreciable rest of the Castle built by Siena in the 14th century, is a tower. The medieval fortifications were torn down at the end of the 18th century to make way for the construction of the Villa Chigi. The only surviving tower was converted into the current Torre Civica. This tower is also called Torre dell’Orologio (Clock Tower) because since the 1763 was added a clock (the current one dates back to 1896).
From the top of the Tower you can enjoy a wonderful panoramic view ranging from Chianti to the Crete Senesi.
April – September: sunday and holidays 9.00–12.00
October – March: sunday and holidays 10.00–13.00
Tickets: 2 euro
The most important church of this hamlet is the Propositura dei Santi Giusto e Clemente, a neo classical church built between 1843 and 1846. Inside there are some paintings including a Madonna and Child (1426) by the sienese painter Giovanni di Paolo.
Where once was the castle, today we find the nineteenth-century Villa Chigi Saracini with its italian garden and its big park.
Museo del Paesaggio in Castelnuovo Berardenga
The Museo del Paesaggio is about the landscape around Castelnuovo Berardenga, a countryside near Siena between Chianti and Crete Senesi, very appreciated by many people. The Museum employs explanatory panels, pictures, movies, and documents and mainly handles eco sustainability and how the landscape is represented by art. Is also part of the museum an archaeological section where are exposed findings from the surronding area, useful to reconstruct the history of human habitation from prehistory until the middle ages.
Address: Via del Chianti 61
March – October: tuesday, wednesday, thursday and sunday 9.30-12.30; friday and saturday 9.30-12.30 and 15.00-18.00
November – 14 March: friday and saturday 9.30-12.30
Tickets: regular: 3 euro; reduced: 1,50 euro; groups 2 euro
Things to do around Castelnuovo Berardenga
Around Castelnuovo Beranderga there are many small villages, ville, castles and churches. Among the hamles we recommend the pictoresque San Gusmè only four kilometres far from Castelnuovo, and Pieveasciata where is located the Chianti Sculpture Park. About eleven kilometres far, there is the Castello di Montalto, an ancient castle that was the scene of clashes between Florence and Siena. Talking about churches are worth a visit the Certosa di Pontignano and the ancient Pieve di Santa Maria a Pacina, located very close to the centre of Castelnuovo Berardenga.
Leaving the municipal territory of Castelnuovo Berardenga, while remaining in the Chianti Classico, there are to visit Gaiole, Castellina, Radda, Greve and many other places scattered around these centers.
How to get to Castelnuovo
By car: from Siena you have to take the strada statale SS73 till the exit Casetta-Monteaperti, then continue on SP111 in direction of Castelnuovo Berardenga
By bus: from Siena line 134R by Siena Mobilità; alternatively, there are other solutions that involve two busses.