Situated on the slopes of the Montalbano and surrounded by vineyards and olive trees, the town of Vinci is undoubtedly linked to the memory of its most famous citizen, Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519).
The castle which for its unusual shape is known as the “castle of the ship”, was owned by the Conti Guidi family in the XII Century but then fell under Florentine rule. The towns characteristic medieval streets and stunning views well justify a visit but the majority of visitors come to follow the footsteps of Leonardo.
The House of Leonardo da Vinci can be found in Anchiano and allows the visitor to discover the personal side of the artist and the deep links he had with the territory in which he grew up. Immersed in the green Tuscan countryside, the House is also an excellent starting point from which to take a walk along the beautiful trails of the Montalbano. In the historic centre of Vinci, the Leonardo Museum presents the works of Leonardo the technologist and engineer through one of the largest and original collections of machines and instruments. The models, which are accompanied by digital animations, give testimony to the extent of Leonardo’s interests: from the studies of flight and movements in water to designs for machines of war, textile machines and experiments on optics.A visit to Vinci continues in the Chiesa di Santa Croce where the baptismal font where Leonardo was baptised can be found, made even more precious by the installations Cecco Bonanotte dedicated to the Storia della Salvezza (History of Deliverance) and to the evocative locations where imposing works of contemporary art re-elaborate the heritage of the Genus: l’Uomo di Vinci (Man of Vinci), sculpture by Mario Ceroli in Piazza del Castello, the bronze Cavallo (Horse) created by Nina Akamu, the Piazza dei Guidi designed by Mimmo Paladino as a dramatic entrance to the museum. Finally there is the Leonardo Library, which houses copies of all the coded manuscripts which today are almost entirely accessible online thanks to the eLeo portal. The library is now a reserach and study centre recognised at International level.