Sometimes there are villages in our Veneto, unknown to most foreign turists but which are also real jewels to discover. It should be our mission to make them known to a wider audience. An example is the city of Montagnana, Orange Flag of the Italian Touring Club, considered as one of the most beautiful villages in Italy.
Montagnana is in the province of Padova, but is easy to reach from the hotel. In fact it is only 38Km far as you can see from the map below. Typical MEDIEVAL town, Montagnana is among the walled cities of Veneto and Italy, the one that has better preserved its wall which makes it a unique village.
The Montagnana origins probably date back to Roman times. Its name comes from “Motta Aeniana” that means “small rise” (Motta) situated on a place along a Roman road (Aeniana). In Roman times were frequent floods of the river Adige. Especially after a terrible flood the Romans decided to heavily modify the river path. So MONTAGNANA was founded.
From 1405 until 1797 the city was part of the Venetian Republic. Same destiny like the most cities of Veneto.
What surprises the tourists about Montagnana is the splendid state of conservation of the historic village. That is the reason why Montagnana is perfect place for medieval re-enactments.
Every year, in September, Montagnana celebrates in the green medieval rampart around the walls, the tradition of the PALIO.
The “Palio” was one of the most typical Italian festivals in medieval times. It was the most widespread popular event which was celebrated a particularly significant event for the whole Community.
The EVENT of the “Palio of the 10 municipalities” has a very complex PROGRAM, because it recalls and commemorate the complex historical events of the area.
Another peculiar feature of the Middle Ages, in addition to weapons, are the flags. FLAGS had the function of indicate, announce and defined the attacks and retreats. On the flags were etched symbols of the family and military teams. The famous “SBANDIERATORI OF MONTAGNANA” every year made COMMEMORATION HISTORICAL shows.
The flag-wavers and musicians, in the past had the function to intimidate the enemies and to give the cadence and encourage their soldiers.
The last CURIOSITY about Montagnana is culinary. Among the typical products of the place the famous HAM of MONTANGANA. It is a DOP product, (CERTIFIED PRODUCT OF ORIGIN), produced ONLY WITH SALT and no other flavor. So you can obtain a product “pink to red in the lean part, pure white in the fat, with a delicate and sweet.” Only respecting a RIGID DISCIPLINARY the product can obtain the seal of protection: the winged lion of St. Mark.