Peccioli is an ancient Tuscan village that dominates the Era valley, along the route that leads from Pisa to Volterra. Since the nineties, it has been able to make the most of its historic and artistic heritage, becoming an interesting technologically avant-garde museum complex.

The village develops around the remains of the ancient medieval castle, dating back to the X-XI centuries, and the church in the Pisan Romanesque style.
To fully enjoy the atmospheres, it is advisable to slow down and enter the tangle of narrow streets and steep alleys, typical of medieval villages: “i chiassi”. Stop by in one of the animated shop to meet the locals.

Despite not being a large center, Peccioli can boast a quality museum center, managed by the Peccioli Foundation, which distributes the cultural offer between the Palazzo Pretorio Museum (formerly Russian Icons), the Museum of Sacred Art, the Archaeological Museum, the Pieve San Verano with the Bell Tower.

Let’s go and discover them in this itinerary, that winds through the village, which can also be accessed by lift from the car park along the slope, that leads from the Provincial Road to the town. You read that right, an elevator. Peccioli also amazes for this.



Sights

The visit begins at the Archaeological Museum, inaugurated in 2004, that displays the numerous and precious artifacts found in the town of Legoli or in the nearby archaeological site of Ortaglia, where excavations have even unearthed the remains of an Etruscan temple or sanctuary (IV century BC). The museum is multimedia, allowing suggestive reconstructions such as the model that reconstructs a temple of antiquity. In addition to the Etruscans there are also exhibits from a Roman settlement (1st century AD), found at the nearby site of Santa Mustiola in Ghizzano, as well as the Longobard Age and Lower Middle Ages.

The itinerary continues in the Romanesque parish church of San Verano which houses the Museum of Sacred Art, with works of medieval Tuscan school from various churches and parish churches in the surroundings, of great artistic value.

You can also visit the Bell Tower, the result of a restoration with the raising of the ancient medieval tower, built in Moorish style (in vogue at the time) in the late nineteenth century, by the architect Luigi Bellincioni, who designed other seven bell towers still existing in Valdera and Val of Cecina. Both can be visited all year round with free admission.

 

Last stop is the Palazzo Pretorio Museum which houses two collections of Russian icons (tempera, oil and wood) and an exhibition section of bronze crosses and icons, typical of Orthodox devotional art. The Museum is enriched by a collection of Italian 20th century engravings and lithographs, donated to the Municipality by local philanthropist Vito Merlini.

Peccioli’s vocation towards contemporary art also extends beyond the Museum environments, given that the squares and the most suggestive corners of the historic center (and also of neighboring hamlets such as Ghizzano) are often the site of exhibitions and installations by artists of international level.