The first Saturday and Sunday of each month, Arezzo, a Tuscan city 50 miles southeast of Florence, plays host to a monthly antique market. Vendors from all over Italy and Europe come to set up their stalls and proudly display their goods. This market is truly a gem– offering everything from small trinkets and bobbles, to huge 15th century furniture pieces and paintings with haunting portraits from the past.
The booths start on the edge of the town towards the train station and snake their way through the winding cobblestone streets where they then converge in the Piazza Grande (big square). Entering the Piazza Grande, one feels torn between the ground and the sky. The surrounding architecture of the Piazza steers your gaze upward while the glittering light plays on the marvelous objects displayed in the market.
My suggestion is to take a coffee, gelato or even light lunch at any of the establishments in the Piazza. This allows for the simple enjoyment of enjoying the surrounding sights and sounds without the distracting pressure of choosing between the alluring antique treasures and the charming antiquity of Arezzo.
Once an Etruscan capital and trading post, Arezzo has a fascinating past which is expressed through the town’s art, culture and architecture. Arezzo has also made its claim to fame with its cinematic appearance in Roberto Benigni’s film, La vita è bella (Life is Beautiful).
Farther off the beaten path, Arezzo is generally less crowded with tourists and offers a genuine sense of Italian authenticity. The ingrained sense of antiquity in Arezzo is tangible every day, though it truly resonates throughout the town the first weekend of the month. Easily accessible by car or train, Arezzo offers a good day trip when the world beyond your villa starts calling.
Filed by Alexandra Morris, Homebase Abroad Photographer