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Vallo di Nera

Vallo di Nera

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The most beautiful village of the Nera
Vallo di Nera is a magnificent village, completely intact and handed over to the Valnerina just as it used to be in the Middle Ages.

Its walls are still intact as well as all the other defence structures which were typical for ancient fortified castles.
The village rises on a gentle hill at about 400 metres altitude, resting on two slopes along an opening of the valley of the river Nera.

The origins of the settlement of the first inhabitants of the valley, the Naharci, are very ancient, so they settled in the territory and populated it until the coming of the Romans in the 4th-2nd century B.C.

The whole zone turned out to be an election place for monks, hermits and recluses who distributed along the valleys of the Nera, building hermitages, abbeys and draining the marshy zones. The church Chiesa di San Giovanni, one of the most ancient ones in the Valnerina, is a precious evidence for this.

Exactly on the 8th September 1217 Vallo received from Spoleto the authorization to build a castle which should fall under Spoleto's jurisdiction and in its political and economical sphere. In the following centuries the castle took in a remarkable quantity of inhabitants, becoming the most populated of the Valnerina and expanding its own inhabited centre even outside the circle of the walls.

During the first decades of the 16th century the political situation changed and in the Valnerina came into being an alliance, guided by Petrone da Vallo and Picozzo Brancaleone, which joined all communes opponent to the dukedom of Spoleto. During the discussion Petrone killed a papal representative who had arrived to put the revolt to an end, but the reaction was terrible. The condottiere was burned alive in 1527, the castle of Vallo di Nera was destructed and plundered.

Today Vallo di Nera is one of the most beautiful images kept by the Valnerina, as gives evidence its inclusion in the club of the ''Borghi più belli d'Italia'' (Most beautiful villages of Italy).

The inhabited centre is extremely well-preserved and immersed in an unpolluted environment and a really lovely landscape. Its monuments are surrounded by forests and protected by valleys which appear in a never-ending succession.

The houses are of stone, one set against the other, designing an intricate texture of alleys, towers and narrow streets, bows and narrow passages, all of which give the tourist a very charming image of its medieval past.
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