Valtiberina

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The Roman patricians at the time of Augustus discovered the beauty of the area and built several villas. Then came the feudal lords and abbots who erected sturdy, bold castles and monasteries, followed by saints who found suitable sites to satisfy their mystic thirst.
Michelangelo maintains that he owes his genius to the surrounding countryside. Of course, his words cannot be taken literally; however, there remains the fact that he, a native of these mountains, had the gift of perceiving life in the core of a stone block just as Piero della Francesca in his birthplace, Borgo San Sepolcro, had already understood the secret of light and space and translated it onto paintings.
So it is perhaps not by chance that other little-known, indigenous artists have carved magnificent, religious works of art and elegant pieces of furniture out of the tree-trunks from these forests, simply for the joy of living in peace and harmony with Man and Nature. The powerful bishops from Arezzo, the landlords from Montefeltro, the Podesta from Perugia, the Popes from Rome all fought between themselves for centuries to control these mountains and valleys, where the women were extremely agile with their hands, weaving a lace cloth even finer than that found in Flanders and who, it is said, possessed the secret of a culinary art, elsewhere unknown.
Of bygone battles, the one which readily comes to mind is that fought between the Florentine and Milanese armies on the flats below Anghiari in 1440. Yet, it is not the historical event which is remembered but rather the fact that it inspired one of Leonardo Da Vinci's masterpieces. The Upper Tiber Valley is traversed in its entire length by Tiber State Highway no. 3 which connects Rome directly with northern Italy, crossing the Apennines just at the point where the Tiber rises. Numerous roads, all in good condition, link the area with the various towns, castles, churches and sanctuaries. Arezzo is easily reached, as too the Valdichiana and Casentino to the west, Romagna to the north and Montefeltro and the Adriatic coast to the east.
Due to its mountainous character, the Upper Tiber has always been engaged in forest-related activities and the raising of sheep and cattle. Even though wood working has reached industrial proportions today with the manufacture of traditional-styled furniture, the preparation of milk products still maintains its traditional character of celebrated gastronomic value.
In San Sepolcro and Anghiari, the antique tradition of lacework still survives whilst in continual expansion is the manufacture of shoes, clothing, Italian pasta in particular and components for the building trade.


At Valtiberina, there is tourist accommodation available in hotels, farm holiday, farmhouse, residence self-catering accommodation, b&b, rooms for rent, holiday homes, camp sites and tourist villages.