Medieval Manhattan


Between the 12th and 14th centuries, the town of San Gimignano in Tuscany, Italy, underwent a Manhattan-style skyscraper building spree, fueled by local family rivalries, resulting in 72 towers that were up to 230 feet tall!

Having searched the web beforehand, it was clear that to get a full-frontal view of this Medieval Manhattan would not be possible from within the town – but rather, just like modern day NY, one would have to get further out of the town and find the perfect viewing spot.

There were lots of pictures on the web with this breathtaking view, but none had done a good job of mentioning from where the pictures had been taken. Enter Google Maps. By looking at some of the GPS-tagged pictures and zooming in via the satellite imagery, we could pretty accurately pinpoint a location on Via Vecchia – a dirt road right next to Strada Proviniciale 1 – that would give us the perfect view.

After visiting the town, we decided to drive down Via Vecchia even though no other car was going down that road, and were rewarded with our own view of this Medieval Manhattan.

Posted in italy, traveling.

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