Il Corso


Montepulciano's main street – called in stages Via di Gracciano, Via di Voltaia, Via dell'Opio and Via Poliziano – climbs up the eastern ridge of the town from Porta al Prato and loops to meet Via di Collazzi on the western ridge. To reach the centre of town (Piazza Grande), take a dog-leg turn into Via del Teatro.

In Piazza Savonarola, up from the Porta al Prato, is the Colonna del Marzocca, erected in 1511 to confirm Montepulciano's allegiance to Florence. The late-Renaissance Palazzo Avignonesi is at No. 91 Via di Gracciano nel Corso. Other notable buildings include the Palazzo di Bucelli at No. 73 (look for the recycled Etruscan and Latin inscriptions and reliefs on the lower facade) and Palazzo Cocconi at No. 70.

Continuing uphill, you'll find Michelozzo's Chiesa di Sant'Agostino, with its lunette above the entrance holding a terracotta Madonna and Child, John the Baptist and St Augustine. Opposite, the Torre di Pulcinella, a medieval tower house, is topped by the town clock and the hunched figure of Pulcinella (Punch, of Punch and Judy fame), which strikes the hours. After passing historic Caffè Poliziano, the Corso continues straight ahead and Via del Teatro veers off to the right.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Montepulciano attractions

1. Museo Civico & Pinacoteca Crociani

0.06 MILES

It was a curatorial dream come true: in 2011 a painting in the collection of this modest art gallery was attributed to Caravaggio. The work, Portrait of a…

2. Via Ricci

0.07 MILES

From the central Piazza Grande, Via Ricci runs downhill past Palazzo Ricci, now home to the European Academy for Music and Performing Arts. The street…

3. Palazzo Ricci

0.08 MILES

Built for Cardinal Giovanni Maria Ricci in the 16th century, this handsome palazzo has a rear loggia with a stunning view of the countryside. Home to many…

4. Piazza Grande

0.08 MILES

Elegant Piazza Grande is the town's highest point and main meeting place. If you think it looks familiar, it might be because it featured in New Moon, the…

5. Palazzo Comunale

0.09 MILES

Built in the 14th century in Gothic style and remodelled in the 15th century by Michelozzo, the Palazzo Comunale still functions as Montepulciano's town…

6. Chiesa di San Francesco


Montepulciano's Chiesa di San Francesco dates from the 13th century, but was largely reconstructed in the 17th century.

7. Duomo

0.11 MILES

Montepulciano's 16th-century duomo is striking, largely because its unfinished facade gives the building a stern, heavily weathered look. Inside, don't…

8. Torre di Pulcinella

0.16 MILES

This medieval tower house is topped by the town clock and the hunched figure of Pulcinella (Punch, of Punch and Judy fame), which strikes the hours.