The small medieval gem of Tuscia is located on a hill and on a tuff area.
The village unfolds in a crescent shape below the Medieval Fortress (Castle of Proceno), which is privately owned but can be visited. It features its original and functional drawbridge and is surrounded by a small Italian garden. The village has 2 medieval gates that lead into the village and overlook the valley of the Paglia River and the Stridolone stream. Some of the 7 churches (such as the Romanesque church of San Martino) can also be visited, as well as the ground floor of Palazzo Sforza, a historic residence of the Lazio Region, and its terrace overlooking the valley. The Garden of Sant’Agnese is also open to visitors.
Divided into districts, its foundation dates back to the 6th century B.C. during the time of Porsenna. It later came under various dominions that certainly had a significant influence on the architecture of the town, including the Romans, the Marquisate of Tuscany, the Church, and finally the rule of the Municipality of Siena.
The most characteristic monument that defines the history of Proceno, visible even from the mighty fortified walls surrounding the town, is undoubtedly the Rocca (Fortress). Positioned atop a small hill that overlooks the town, it also provided shelter to Galileo Galilei at one point.
Another Renaissance-style monument is Palazzo Sforza, built in the 16th century and adorned with beautiful frescoes.
In terms of religious buildings, Gothic influence prevails. Examples include the architecture and structure of the Church of San Martino, also known as the Church of the Franciscans, which houses precious frescoes from the 14th and 15th centuries. Other interesting structures to visit include the Church of Sant’Agnese and those of Santa Maria del Giglio.
A typical product of Proceno is red garlic, known for its strong and spicy flavor and intense aroma. It serves as a fundamental ingredient in many local dishes, and during the week of Ferragosto (mid-August holiday), you have the opportunity to taste it at the Sagra dell’Aglio Rosso (Red Garlic Festival).
Other celebrations in Proceno include the Feast of Madonna delle Piane after Easter and the Bruschetta Festival in August.