The perfectly preserved medieval village of Capalbio lies in the extreme south of Tuscany on a hilltop dominating the wild Maremma coast. Its picturesque streets and flowered squares, together with the magnificent surroundings and long sandy beaches attract visitors all year round.
Capalbio is also known as the “Little Athens” for the environmental context in which it is set and for the historical and artistic importance assumed during the Renaissance. It has received various recognitions and prizes for its shrewd safeguard and management of its beaches, landscapes and surrounding environment.
The name Capalbio probably derives from the Latin Caput Album or Campus Albus, white cape or field, due to the white alabaster stone dug up in the area. The first mention of the village goes back to 805 AD, when Capalbio was donated by Charlemagne to the Abbey of the Tre Fontane near Rome. Later it fell under the rule of the Aldobrandeschi family, then Orvieto, followed by the Republic of Siena and the Orsini family. These were years of great wealth, leading to the accomplishment of many public works such as the fortress and the walls. Unfortunately after being conquered by the Spaniards and assigned to Cosimo I de’ Medici, Capalbio decayed and malaria depopulated the area.
Today the hills produce excellent red, white and rosé wines, the Capalbio DOC, and the charming medieval town is a popular tourist attraction. From the ancient crenellated walls visitors can admire a breathtaking view of the Maremma countryside while the tower of the Aldobrandeschi Fortress watches over everyone. A stroll around the village offers many picturesque nooks and sights such as the renowned square Piazza Magenta.
Amongst the many events the town organizes, coming up soon is its celebrated Wild Boar Festival. This year at its 50th edition, the festival will be held from September 9th to 13th. This milestone will be celebrated with its traditional scrumptious dishes such as polenta with wild boar sauce, acquacotta soup, wild boar stew and steaks and many more. Also on programme a series of events such as a photographic exhibition, a painting competition, a vintage car and motorbike meeting, an archery competition, a flag waving show, a demonstration by the Maremma Butteri cowboys and to end a firework show. You name it, they’ve got it! Certainly worth a visit.