The Ideal City of the Italian Renaissance, is still a perfect example of beauty and harmony in architecture. The little town was conceived by Pope Pius II Piccolomini and completely designed by the great Florentine architect Bernardo Rossellino.
Built over a span of three years (1459-1462), the city of Pius is situated in a panoramic position overlooking the Orcia Valley and Mount Amiata. A visit to the town, very pleasant and easy, permits the visitor to learn about the amazing history of the place and its founder, Enea Silvio Piccolomini, who, after becoming Pope, wanted to transform his birthplace, Corsignano, into a new city capable, through absolute aesthetics, of elevating the human soul and stimulating the best brainpower.
Starting from one of the ancient medieval gates of the town and following the main street, the first stop is San Francisco Church, founded in the XIII century by the monks of Assisi, where it is possible to admire a rare iconographic cycle of frescos depicting the life of St. Francis.
Continuing along the main street and alongside the sumptuous residences of various cardinals, is Piazza Pio II, the heart of the town, with the magnificent cathedral, the papal residence (Palazzo Piccolomini), the City Hall and the Borgia Palace, seat of the Diocesan Museum. Besides the visit to some of the above-mentioned buildings, a walk through the scenic streets of the village is recommended, for one can also admire, among the many picturesque corners, the first example in the world of public housing in Via delle Case Nuove.
Visit to Pianporcino Dairy Farm (www.fattoriapianporcino.it), located in the heart of Val d’Orcia , to observe the cheesemaking process of the famous Pecorino of Pienza, the jewel of Tuscan cuisine.