Rocca Maggiore (Major Fortress), Assisi

Rocca Maggiore (Major Fortress), Assisi (must see)

Perched high above the town, the Major Fortress, or Rocca Maggiore, has a history dating back to Charlemagne, who is said to have erected the initial defensive walls here after sacking the town. The structure we see today, with its imposing towers, battlements, and turrets, owes much of its appearance to Cardinal Albornoz. Arriving to assert papal authority in 1367, he undertook the task of restoring an earlier castle that had been damaged by repeated clashes with Perugia. Legend has it that the castle's clerical governors administered justice by hanging criminals from the battlements or by tossing them out of castle windows into the ravine below.

The medieval streets winding up to the fortress from the Cathedral are among the quietest in Assisi, partly due to their steep inclines and distance from tourist hotspots. However, rest assured that the climb is well worth the effort. Once at the top, the lush surroundings offer an ideal spot for a picnic, and the panoramic views stretch across Assisi, Perugia, and the Spoleto Valley, all the way to Montefalco and the Martani mountains. Be prepared for a bit of a trek, though—wear comfortable shoes and bring along some water.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Assisi. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Rocca Maggiore (Major Fortress) on Map

Sight Name: Rocca Maggiore (Major Fortress)
Sight Location: Assisi, Italy (See walking tours in Assisi)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Assisi, Italy

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Create Your Own Walk in Assisi

Creating your own self-guided walk in Assisi is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
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There were clashes with Guelph Perugia. In the battle of...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.9 Km or 1.2 Miles
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The entire city-sanctuary –...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.2 Km or 2 Miles