Castiglione del Lago e Corciano

Day 9 – Castiglione del Lago e Corciano

Daily Wrap-Up

One Word
  • Barb: Crenelations
  • Mike: Passageways
  • Jen: Castles
Two Words
  • Barb: Medieval airs
  • Mike: Storybook villages
  • Jen: Tiny spaces
Three or Four Words
  • Barb: Scudding cloud shadows
  • Mike: Long narrow tunnel
  • Jen: Christmas tree village
One Sentence
  • Barb: (See Mike’s first) Me, too!
  • Mike: Limitations aside—its and mine—I like my GPS.
  • Jen: You can’t swing a dead cat around here without hitting a castle, tower, or fortified town.
Castiglione del Lago

Olive trees and Castiglione del Lago

We visited Castiglione del Lago (Lion Castle on the Lake by my reckoning) and the small hill town of Corciano today. The castle is on Lake Trasimeno, the fourth largest lake in Italy. This was an important strategic area, hotly disputed for a long time. Hannibal defeated the Romans here in 217 BC. Fortifications on the Castiglione del Lago site were destroyed and rebuilt a number of times, and I think what remains is from the 13th century.

What remains is a pentagonal castle with high rock walls that have tiny slots for shooting arrows (or something) at invaders, towers that provide extensive 360-degree views, and crenelations (square saw-tooth notches, like on a chess rook), so we know it’s a castle. I don’t know castle terminology or anything about strategic engineering or uses of a castle, but it was very cool, nonetheless, enormous and in relatively good repair.

I especially liked the tower at the top point of the pentagon: It’s triangular. Standing in front of it and looking up, with clouds scudding past, it looked as though the tower was about to fall on us, or perhaps like the prow of a giant ship about to run over us.

The triangular tower at Castiglione del Lago.

The triangular tower at Castiglione del Lago.

The best part was that they let you inside. We started at what I’ll call the palace. We wandered through a series of fresco-covered rooms. From here, a tiny covered passageway led to what I’m calling the castle where we climbed the steps and walked around the battlements at the top. The views were grand; the castle itself was beautiful and wildly interesting; and imagining how it was used was fascinating and fun. I can’t fathom anyone getting through, over, around, or under those walls without bombs and/or airplanes.

Painting at Castiglione del Lago

A painting from what I’m calling the palace at Castiglione del Lago.

Covered walkway that leads to the Castiglione del Lago Battlements

The narrow covered walkway leading to the battlements at Castiglione del Lago.

At the top of Castiglione del Lago

Walking the battlements at the top of Castiglione del Lago. See the cool narrow walkway? That’s Lake Trasimeno in the background.

Castiglione: Tiny doorway to tower

Look at the tiny doorway onto one of the towers.

We walked through hill town that Castiglione del Lago protects, visiting the churches to see the always-impressive art and architecture.

Church in Castiglione del Lago

One of the churches in Castiglione del Lago. (There are usually several in each town.) I’m grateful for churches that allow photos to be taken inside. We’re seeing so many that I forget what’s where without photos to remind me.

Then we headed to Corciano, another tidy and quaint hill town nearby. (See my wrap-up sentence for the day. I’m not kidding.) The painter Pietro Vannucci, known as Perugino, was born and worked in the Lake Trasimeno area, and a church in Corciano has one of his paintings.

Perugino painting in Corciano church

Perugino painting in Corciano church. I like the clean lines and bright colors. I also like the blue accents on the frame. Again, I’m grateful to this Corciano church for allowing photos.

Corciano shop and home

Outside a Corciano shop (ground floor) and home (first story). Tiny, tidy, and adorable. I always want to see inside.

Corciano dwelling interior

At last! A Corciano building interior! It was late on a rainy afternoon, and no one was walking around outside but us. This place was empty, and the door was slightly ajar, so we stepped inside to snoop. It was very dark, but Mike’s flash was nicely effective.
It was an odd but interesting layout. We came in on the upstairs level, but there are steps down to the slightly below-ground level before there were stairs to access the loft across the way. I think the lower story has another door on the side. Again, it’s a tiny space. Mike would have to duck to get through the door across the way. Hmmm…I might have to, too.

Categories: Italy, Travel

3 replies »

  1. It all looks so great and interesting! Seeing the castles and old structures would be my favorite part. If walls could talk…

  2. As you can tell, it’s one of our favorite parts, too.

    That’s a great 4-word wrap-up for the day, Beck! And I’ll bet it will be a great four words for another day, too. Don’t tell Barb and Mike; I call dibs on them.