San Marino: what to see in the ancient Republic

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What to see in San Marino, one-day itinerary including the main monuments and places of interest, including the Basilica of San Marino, the Santa Chiara Monastery, the Palazzo Pubblico and the Cisterns.


Tourist information

Completely surrounded by Italian territory, the Republic of San Marino is located about ten kilometers as the crow flies from the Adriatic Sea, between Emilia Romagna in the north and Marche in the south.

Its territory, mainly hilly, reaches the highest altitude with Monte Titano equal to 750 meters above sea level.


The ancient Republic of San Marino was one of the city-states present in Italy before its unification, the only one that managed to maintain its independence.

Tradition has it that at the origins of the foundation of the state there was the Marino stone-breaker, of Dalmatian origin, who, due to the persecutions against Christians, in the mid-fourth century AD, took refuge with some of his companions on Monte Titano.

Around the year 1000, the community of what had become the land of San Marino was established as a free municipality and, to defend itself against attacks, built the three towers of the city, Guaita, Cesta and Montale, on the three peaks of the crest of Monte Titano. , which are documented for the first time in 1253.


The well-preserved historic center of the City of San Marino and Monte Titano are part of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, as they are an example of continuity of a free Republic since the Middle Ages.

What see

Inside the ancient village, equipped with an austere defensive complex, very interesting monuments and places are preserved.

In addition to the three medieval towers, the Basilica of San Marino stands out, built in the place where a parish church dedicated to San Marino was already in the fourth century,
the Monastery of Santa Chiara, the Porta and the Church of San Francesco, the Piazzetta Titano and the Palazzo Pubblico, which stands on the so-called Pianello, corresponding to Piazza della Libertà, which is the main one in San Marino, closed on three sides by ancient buildings .


In front of the Palazzo Pubblico, built on the old Domus Magna Communis, stands the Palazzetto della Domus Parva Communis, while in the center of the square stands the monument of the Statue of Liberty which, inaugurated on September 30, 1876, was donated to the Republic by the Duchess Ottilia Heyroth Wagener from Berlin, to whom San Marino conferred the title of Duchess of Acquaviva.

Under the square there are ancient cisterns used in the past for the collection of rainwater.

Recommended readings
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  • Grazzano Visconti (Emilia Romagna): what to see
  • Castelnovo ne ’Monti (Emilia Romagna): what to see
  • Canossa (Emilia Romagna): what to see
  • Emilia Romagna: Sunday day trips

Overlooking the left side of the square you can admire a beautiful panoramic view of the Apennine hills and mountains.

The local administrations of the Republic of San Marino, called Castelli, are nine and precisely Castello di San Marino, Castello di Borgo Maggiore, Castello di Serravalle, Castello di Faetano, Castello di Domagnano, Castello di Chiesanuova, Castello di Acquaviva, Castello di Fiorentino, Montegiardino Castle.

Most of these territories were annexed to the Republic of San Marino in 1463, after the victory of the San Marinese over the Malatesta di Rimini.

San Marino: The Oldest Republic in the World (August 2021)


Tags: Emilia Romagna
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