On the southern peaks of the Cimini range, Ronciglione (VT) developed principally during two eras: the “upper borgo” has Medieval origins, while that added in the 1500s has Renaissance features.
The “upper borgo” rises on a large spur of tuff rock at the confluence of two water courses: River Vicano, which comes from Lake Vico; and Fosso Chianello which now flows underground after being filled in by the Farnese family in the 16th century. The Farnese work permitted the Renaissance and, later, modern development of the town on a second tuff spur. The result is extremely harmonious: the narrow, climbing alleys and medieval tuff houses provide a pleasant contrast to the urban layout and noble palaces of the 1500s. The churches were built in many different eras, while the fountain of the Unicorns and the Apostolic Palace (now the Town Hall) date to the late 1500s.
The town offers a wonderful view across Lake Vico and the Beech Forest of Monte Cimini, part of the “Ancient and Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe” series inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and boasts one of the best Carnival festivals in Italy.