Marino: Small, Historic and Underrated
it’s history, sightseeing or adventure that brings you to Italy, the Most
Serene Republic of San Marino is a must-see stop on your itinerary.
San Marino is
entirely encapsulated within Italy and is the third smallest state in
Europe—behind Vatican City and Monaco—being only 61 sq. kilometers (23.5
sq. miles) in area.
A.D. 301 by a master stonecutter named Marino who wanted to establish a small
community of Christians after being persecuted by Emperor Diocletian, it also
claims to be the world’s oldest republic.
It is located
only 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) from the Adriatic Sea, and uses Italian as its
San Marino is simple. If you’re visiting Italy with a visa, you may enter.
There’s no need for a currency exchange upon arriving, either, as the Euro
is what the Sammarinese people use.
accessible, too. The capital city of San Marino is located only 16 kilometers
(9.9 miles) from Federico
Fellino International Airport in Rimini, Italy.
is comprised of nine small towns called Castelli.
With plenty of sights to see and things to do in each, a trip to San Marino
could easily occupy more than a day.
popular attractions are in the San Marino Castello. If you’re on the prowl
for historical sights, visit the
famous three towers atop Mount Titano.
The oldest of
the towers is Guiatia, which dates back to the 11th century. The second tower,
Cesta, was built at the beginning of the 13th century and hosts the Museum of
Ancient Weapons. The third tower, Montale, was completed at the beginning of
the 14th century for defensive purposes.
towers are linked by a path that runs along the entire ridge of the mountain.
city center of the City of San Marino is enclosed by medieval stone walls and
is closed to traffic. It’s here that visitors can see the Palazzo
Pubblico, which is the official government building for the country and is
known as “the heart of San Marino.”
tour the inside of the building and see the centuries-old water cisterns that
once contained water reserves for the citizens of San Marino. Completed in
1478, these tanks were built to offset the country’s lack of major
looking for the arts, visit the gallery attached to the 14th century Church
of San Francesco or see a show at the Teatro
Titano - a fine example of a late 18th century balcony theater.
San Marino isn’t known merely for its architecture and place in world
history. What about a more modern attraction?
Rosso Ferrari Museum in the Serravalle Castello is worth the visit, as it
showcases Ferrari’s evolution with 25 models of cars from throughout the
decades. After taking a tour here, this stop should ultimately lead its
visitors to a place etched in the history of world auto racing—the Autodromo
Enzo e Dino Ferrarri in Imola, Italy.
It’s not in
San Marino, though. This famous racetrack actually lies 74 kilometers (46
miles) northwest of the republic. Even so, this racetrack is connected to San
Marino by a quarter century of racing history.
From 1981 to
2006, the Formula One San Marino Grand Prix was held in Imola and was named as
such because Italy already had its own grand prix. This track is perhaps most
notorious for its 1994 San
Marino Gran Prix, in which three-time Formula One World Champion Ayrton
Senna lost his life only a day after the rookie driver Roland Ratzenberger was
killed during qualifying.
seen enough sights for the day and are ready to relax and explore the culinary
culture of San Marino.
more than 60 restaurants throughout the country, giving you yet another reason
to stay a bit longer. Traditional foods include fagioli con le
cotiche, a dark
bean soup flavored with garlic or rosemary, and nidi
di roundine, baked pasta filled with smoked ham, beef, cheese and tomato
sauce. Find some of these dishes at Cantina
di Bacco, located in the original city center. Affordable and romantic,
this restaurant serves Italian food with the Sammarinese influence. Though,
with more than 60 restaurants to choose from, this may be one of the more
difficult decisions you will make during your visit.
If you have
more of a sweet tooth, try seeking out one of San Marino’s traditional
desserts like Torta
Tre Monti, which is a layered wafer cake covered in chocolate that
symbolizes Mount Titano and its three towers, hence its name.
food with San Marino wine is a must. With a beautiful, hilly landscape ideally
suited for cultivating vines, San Marino boasts 300 acres of vineyards. The Consorzio
Vini Tipici di San Marino, which imports grapes from Italy's world
renowned growing regions, is the sole wine producer in the country
Here, you can
find many different varieties of wine. If you want white wine, try Roncale, a
fruity wine made with ribolla di San Marino grapes. Roncale pairs well
with cold summer dishes and fish. If red wine is more your forte, taste
Tessano, a dry riserva made with sangiovese grapes. It pairs well with red