This city is unique already from afar: Surrounded by a fortified medieval city wall, which rises boldly on the back of a hill, from where you can overlook the far plane.
Here, between the rivers Sile and Brenta, that is the area between Treviso and Vicenza, of which you can safely say that it is the funny province on Italian territory.
In the Middle Ages the area was known for its gallant festivals, famous and infamous as "a happy and loving Mark". The courtly knight tournaments, however, were also short-lived because Padova, the evil nemesis, was always laying in wait. (which explains the bold walls)
Also it explains the fortress cities Castelfranco and Cittadella, both designed on the drawing board: Castelfranco with square city castle, Cittadella with an elliptical, still almost intact city wall.
Clear and geometric shapes are also found in Marostica, the third and probably the most beautiful places of this walled province. A square in the plane and a triangle on the hill which form the perfect symmetrical structure of this town.
On the arcade-lined square of Marostica every two years (most recently in
2010 2012) in September a game of chess with real people is held. What a spectacle! The figures are dressed à la mode of the 15th century and embody the chess pieces, including steeds and riders.
This event is reminiscent of a game of chess on which two young princes had agreed to the proposal of the local lord Taddeo Parisio in 1500: Instead of a duel with weapons they fought with brains. The prize: the hand of Leonora, the beautiful daughter of the castle owner. (But the loser of the tournament did not get nothing: He got her sister in marriage.)
This event is happily remembered until today in the local restaurants with an intricate portion cannelloni alla Leonora.
If you accidently arrive in Marostica on a Tuesday, you will experience the weekly market on this famous Piazza degli Scacchi. Every first Sunday of the month it hosts an antique market.
Furthermore, in Marostica in June there will be the traditional Cherry Festival. Few visitors should be aware that this medieval city once was a flourishing center of weaving. For over 250 years the native straw gave working and living for up to 10,000 people. The hats, bags and purses from Marostica were estimated in all European markets, so they have been exported even to Russia and America.
From 1900 the production was steadily declining as straw from Japan and China was much cheaper. In the lower castle, the community has set up a museum of traditional straw processing, which is called Museo Cappelli di Paglia.
In 2012 it was time again. The famous chess game was held in the Piazza Castello.
• Friday 7, Sept. and Saturday, 8 Sept. 2012 at 21.00 o'clock
• Sunday 9 Sept. 2012 at 17.00 and at 21.00 clock
The ticket prices were - depending on the selected places - between 10 - 70 €
• Pro Marostica
• Phone +39 0424 72127