Serravalle, a village worth discovering

Serravalle, a village worth discovering

From the Rock of Castruccio to the affreschi of the Oratory.

The beauty of Serravalle of Pistoia, a medieval village near the city gates of Pistoia, does not pass unnoticed. And above all the Rock of Castruccio catches the eyes of the drivers that pass along the highway or the old Lucca Road towards the sea or the Tuscan capital. Built in the 14th century during the feuds between Pistoia, Florence and Lucca, its position was strategic and is just as fascinating today for those who, in the summer evenings, decide to venture onto the hexagonal tower that allows one to observe the Valdinevole and the Pistoiese plains.

“The entire village – emphasizes the Mayor, Eugenzio Patrizio Mungai – is a little jewel to discover. Other than the Barbarossa Tower and the Rock, there are the churches of Saint Michele Arcangelo and Santo Stefano, the Oratory of the Virgin of the Assumption with its beautiful frescos, and in the surroundings, the landscape views that are typical of Montalbano. So this is why the tourist chooses to stop here, in this medieval fortress on the historic hill, a place of memorable battles.”

This evocative place is the host every year of important events with Cgil Encounters that proposes a rich calendar of concerts, debates and performances inviting the participation of  well-known figures from the Italian and political worlds.


There are so many names from past events here:  from Gianni Agnelli to Luca Cordero di Montezemolo, to Alì Rashid, from Paolo Rossi to Francesco Guccini. The event was begun almost by chance: “Everything began – says Sergio Frosini of Cgil Pistoia, President of the Foundation Valore Lavoro since last year – in 1997 with the reading of an interview with Gianni Agnelli, that he regretted of not having yet met Sergio Cofferati personally, during the newly elected times of the general secretary of the Cgil. 

So Agnelli, offering the possibility of a public face to face encounter through the Rock of Castruccio accepts, and immediately set in motion is the organizing body of what eventually became Cgil Encounters.” It is a prestigious beginning that brought Serravalle to the front pages of national papers.

Cgil Encounters and Serravalle Jazz are able each year to maintain very high standards and to attract a large number of visitors. “This involves – explains Mungai – regular events that contribute to knowing our village, capable of promoting its rare beauty. In August there is also the festivity of the patron saint, San  Lodovico that unites the locals and culminates in a parade in medieval costume.” Despite the undisputed artistic relevance of the place, Serravalle,  however, still remains unknown to many. “The village, like the rest of Pistoia, was for a long time placed in the shadows with its geographic closeness to the art cities such as Lucca and Florence.

For some time now, however, tourists have discovered why, even if for many centuries, we have a unique artistic patrimony and historical value.  But we were not discovered by chance, like the Americas by Christopher Colombus: behind this there are years of work, investments in promotions, improvements and restorations.

The administrations over the years have focused on the restoration and protection of the historical buildings. At the moment it is likely that the Castle of Castruccio needs further support on the part of the Superintendence in order to recover its ancient splendor fully. Other than that, it would be useful to strengthen the synergy between various local administrations for the proposal of itineraries in the Montalbano area and ad hoc tourist packages.”


Giulia Gonfiantini


Fabrizio Antonelli

Nicolò Begliomini


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