Farmhouse "La Siesta" is a wonderful base for exploring the charming surrounding areas: Treia, a beautiful medieval and renaissance centre overviewing the declining hills and plain untill sea is only five minutes away, while Macerata, with its open air summer opera festival is 20 minutes away.
The seaside resorts of Porto Recanati, Conero and Civitanova Marche are only 30 minutes away, with their coastline whose wonderful view - from Ancona to San Benedetto del Tronto - can be seen while hyking uphill behind "La Siesta" through the spectacular ruins of medieval castle.
There's also ample potential to venture along the Adriatic coast, on the hykes of the Marches go on into Umbria up to Rome - only two hours and a half by car.
The city of Treia with its 13th century walls, Lombard towers, Renaissance and neoclassical buildings, is a maze of charming alleys and lanes that lead to the magnificent Piazza della Repubblica, which is like a horse-shoe surrounded by an aerial balustrade with a marble monument of Pope Pius VI.
A breathtaking panorama whose precious background is the neoclassical Valadier House, now home to the Georgic Academy, stands together with the Town Hall (XVI-XVII sec.) and theChurch of S. Filippo with its fifteenth century crucifix and its statues of the Evangelists by Varlé.
The Church of San Michele, in Romanesque style, with Gothic elements, stands in front of the baroque Church of Santa Chiara, in which a statue of the Madonna of Loreto is preserved. The legend says that this is the original statue and that the one in Loreto is a copy, which was placed there in order to preserve it from the Napoleonic raids.
The Cathedral, designed by Andrea Vici, a pupil of Vanvitelli, holds a lunette by Pagani, a tablet by Giacomo da Recanati and a marble bust of Pope Sixtus V, a copy of which is part of a collection in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
Leaving the apse of the cathedral behind, you get to Porta Vallesacco, a national monument from the thirteenth century. This is where the Montecchiesi captured, using a stratagem, Corrado d’Antiochia, who was engaged in an epic battle that was illustrated on the superb curtain of the Civic Teathre, by Silverio Copparoni (1865).
From Porta Vallesacco, a short walk leads you to the Santuario del SS. Crocifisso that was designed and built by Bazzana in the place where the Roman Treia rose. Copies of its relics are mounted on the façade of the bell tower. The legend says that the Crucifix was carved by an angel, but for some scholars it reveals the work of Donatello. The face of Christ is very interesting as it shows three different facial expressions depending on the angle.
The ancient center of Cingoli is a combination of the warm colours of façades and the austerity of stone Renaissance portals, which gives the town a peculiar timeless atmosphere.
The heart of the town is Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II, overlooked by the City Hall and the Cathedral. The City Hall was built up in different periods: the most ancient structure, from the 12th century, is hidden by aRenaissance style building ordered by Egidio Canisius from Viterbo, the Governor of the city. The Santa Maria Assunta Cathedral was built on the small church of San Lorenzo in 1615, and was enlarged in 1654 to contain a major number of faithful.
From Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II you could take the most interesting roads of Cingoli: Via del Podestà, Via Forlani, Via dello Spineto and Via Maggiore. Along Via del Podestà you will find the 15th century Palazzo Conti and you will admire the Church of San Filippo Neri built in Baroque style on the ruins of the old pieve of Santa Maria, whose Romanesque portal still exists on the right wall of the Church.
If you want to see some of the most beautiful Renaissance palaces of Cingoli, you should take Via Forlani. At the end of the road you will find a wide square overlooked by the Church of San Domenico with the Monastery of Order of Preachers. On the high altar of the church there is a canvas depicting Our Lady of the Rosary and Saints from 1539, one of the most complex and beautiful work of arts by Lorenzo Lotto.Continuing on Via Foltrani, you can see the walls of the Silvestre Monastery of San Benedetto and the 16thcentury Palazzo Puccetti.
At the end of Via dello Spineto, outside the city walls, you can see the Church of Santa Caterina D'Alessandria, dating back to the second decade of the 13th century. You can also admire the Quartiere della Polisena, the oldest quartier of the city, with its steep narrow streets paved with irregular stones and not plastered country cottages.
On Via Maggiore you will find the most imposing noble palaces of Cingoli. Going on to Corso Garibaldi, you could admire the Church of Santa Maria in Valverde and the beautiful Fontana del Maltempo (“fountain of bad weather”), covered with an allegorical structure crafted by Lombardi in 1568 on suggestion of the mysterious “Congregation of Philosophers”. You can also admire the imposing façade of Palazzo Castiglioni, where Francesco Saverio Castiglioni, the later Pope Pius VIII, was born in 1861.
Corso Garibaldi ends with Porta Piana, built in honour of important fellow citizen, which leads to the ancientChurch of San Nicolò, built after 1218 in order to spare the parishioners of Sant'Esuperanzio a long walk down the uncomfortable road that lead to their church in winter. The Church of San Nicolò is considered the most famous monument of Cingoli: the bare grey stone façade is adorned with a rosette and a beautifulRomanesque portal, carved by master Giacomo in 1295, resemble that of other important Italian Cathedrals, like the one in Modena.
The Church is composed by one large room divided into seven spans: the 16th century tribune, which is held by two Romanesque columns, is set against the bottom. The presbytery was raised at the end of the 17th century to make space for the crypt, where rest the relics of the Saint. Many frescos are preserved: a polyptych attributed to Giovanni Antonio Bellinzoni da Pesaro and, in the sacristy, a tablet with the Flagellazione by Sebastiano del Piombo.
Outside the city walls is also situated the 13th century Sanctuary of Santa Sperandia, a Benedictine nun born in Gubbio who died in Cingoli in 1276, where the body of the Saint lies. The courtyard, flanked by high walls, leads to the entrance door. Inside the Church reside some valuable paintings, such as Il Miracolo delle Ciliegie (“The Miracle of Cherries”) by Pier Simone Fanelli and the Madonna con Bambino e Santi (“Madonna with Child and Saints”) by Antonio da Faenza.