One of the strongholds of the powerful house of Este
La Rocca degli Estensi in Camporgiano is a fortress built around the 15th century by the powerful and noble Este family from Ferrara. It sits on a rocky elevation near one of the most important branches of the historic route from the upper Serchio valley, just in front of the Verrucole Fortress, which stands above the river.
Once the medieval centre of the town, today the Rocca preserves little of its original structure because of an earthquake that struck all the Garfagnana and Lunigiana in 1920.
The ring of walls is equipped with two sturdy guard towers that make up the most significant and eye-catching part of the fortress, while the walls are crowned with a walkway for the watchmen. Inside the walls you can still see the base of the bell tower that belonged to the Romanesque Church of San Sisto; you can also make out certain sections of the medieval walls, which formed the original centre of the fortification, brought to light by a recent programme of archaeological digs.
The Rocca is home the Renaissance Cermanics Collection, which displays late-medieval and Renaissance pottery found in the wells of the castle during restoration.
Camporgiano lies on the right border of the Serchio river, in a verdant valley that divides the mountainous chains of the Apuan Alps and the Apennines. The hamlets making up the town still maintain a medieval urban plan, with each one showcasing notable elements of the Garfagnana area’s culture and history. ...