Surrounded by the local greenery, on the road between Florence and Bologna, there is a charming and little medieval village called Scarperia, which owes its name to the geographical position on the escarpment of the Apennines. Known today mainly for the famous Mugello circuit, this area is also proud of its breathtaking natural environment, consisting of green plains covered with olive trees and grapevines, and of its artistic and cultural heritage.A bit of history
On 7 September 1306, with the capitulation of the Ubaldini, the feudal lords of the Mugello, started the construction of “Castel San Barnaba … onsite called the Scarperia”. In 1351 Scarperia resisted for 55 days against the troops of the Visconti of Milan led by Giovanni Oleggio, and thus ratified the control of the Medicis’ family in this area. The town initially helped as Florentine outpost along the way towards the north, but became soon a thriving craft center and landmark for all the traders who, during long trips, stopped here to refresh themselves at inns and hotels. In 1415 Scarperia became the seat of the Vicar, representative of the administrative and judicial power of Florence, and included the villages of Mugello, Borgo S. Lorenzo, Campi, Carmignano, Dicomano, S. Godenzo, Sesto, Fiesole e Vicchio. On 12 June 1542 a strong earthquake destroyed most of the town, but it was rebuilt by Cosimo de’ Medici and continued to grow until reaching 978 inhabitants on 1551. Around 1750, the new road Futa was opened and made accessible, so that the trade routes were deviated from Scarperia. However the “knives, penknives and pincer” continued to be fine products for the various markets, and established the reputation of Scarperia. From 2014 Scarperia merged with the city of San Piero a Sieve, creating the town of San Piero and Scarperia.
Not to be missed
The Mugello Circuit
The Mugello Circuit is a 2 or 4 wheels motor racing track which is right in Scarperia, and that attracts racing fans from all over the world. The circuit is owned by Ferrari and twist and turn for 5,245 meters, with 15 curves and it is seat of the Moto GP World Championship and Formula 1 drivers, and was also the destination point of some editions of the Giro d’Italia (Tour of Italy).
One of the first holiday residences of the Medici family, the villa is set in the lists of the UNESCO World Heritage Heritage since 2013. The medieval house is surrounded by a huge garden with a lot of flowers and trees. It was represented in one of the famous lunettes by Giusto Utens, that one called Il Trebbio.
Bosco dei Frati Monastery
The building is made up of the convent and a church, surrounded by a large Turkey oak forest. Inside the monastery there is also a Museum of Sacred Art, where you can admire the impressive wooden crucifix by Donatello.
UNA Poggio dei Medici Golf Club
Spectacular view of the Tuscan hills, and an 18-hole par 73 in 6,468 meters length. These ingredients make the Golf Club Poggio dei Medici an unmissable destination for golfers and sport lovers, but also for those who simply love the nature.
The Cutlers of Scarperia are real master artisans who hand down the ancient tradition of their blades and decorations techniques. Some of the most famous shops, which offer the possibility to visit them, are Coltellerie Giglio, Coltellerie Berti and Coltellerie Spadini.
Festivals and Events
The surrounding area of San Piero and Scarperia offers, throughout the year, a wide variety of events, parties and festivals for all tastes. The Antique Market, exhibits both sought objects and cheap; the Feast of St. Agatha, with a solemn procession to the beautiful church; the characteristic feast of Santa Maria in Fagna, a festival celebrations with the trophy tiro alla rulla a fagna; the Palio of Diotto, from “Day 8” (the 8th) with the evocation of the designation of the Novo Vicario (New Vicar) who took office every six months, during which you can admire the parade of the local flag hurlers; the MotoGP, with international motor stars and great performances on the track; the Mugello Food and Wine Festival (Rassegna Enogastronomica Mugellana), which offers the opportunity to taste the best food of the area, such as the boar meat, ravioli and truffles; the Infiorata (Flower Festival), since 1980, made up of floral works by all the people and that cover the streets of the village through the historic center.
People, places, situations in Scarperia are truly unique…discover it maybe during a pleasant day trip in the fantastic Tuscan countryside.