The valley of castles.
Over there, just a few kilometres away, climbing up the River Orcia and entering the now famous, Val d’Orcia, the terrain is not so steep and work with durum wheat is easy and yields well. Here, amongst these hills of between 180 and 440 metres above sea level there is nothing but sparse land. And if we find castles and country estates here, it is only because this was once the main road between the South of Italy and the centre used by Popes from the early centuries until the second millennium.
These buildings were once armed fortresses which had the sole task of protecting the highway. Those who lived here had been brought there, probably under force, to guarantee food for the soldiers.
This is why the architecture is almost all medieval and why the distance between one country estate or the castle and another is measured in kilometres.