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Colle di Val d'Elsa is located at north of Siena's province and it is one of the most important centers of Val d'Elsa, thanks to the architectural beauty of Colle Alta and industry of the crystal.
The country is divided in the old village, said Colle Alta, and in the new part, called Colle Bassa.
The village of Colle Alta is a charming combination of streets and squares where are the major monuments. The Porta Nova, the church of St. Catherine of Alexandria, the church of San Francesco, until you get to the scenarios that open up on the Bastioni di Sapia and the Ponte di Campana. Finally there is the heart of Colle, Piazza del Duomo, overlooked by the Cathedral, the Palazzo del Podestà and the Palazzo Comunale.
The lower part is the seat of production activities. The central square of the city is dedicated to his illustrious countryman, Arnolfo di Cambio, the best pupil of Nicholas Pisano and a great architect.
The industry of the crystal, a direct descendant of that of glass and iron, decreed the economic explosion of Coll in the sixteenth century. In the nineteenth century was called the Bohemia of Italy and today Colle Val d'Elsa is known around the world as the City of Crystal, boasting 15% of the entire world production of crystal, and over 95% of the Italian one. The Crystal Museum allows guests to enjoy the beauty of crystal made in Colle.
Colle di Val d'Elsa has also obtained the name of City Bio (brand promoted by AIAB - Italian Association for Organic Agriculture) for the support and development of major projects for the environment, organic farming and sustainability.
Among the attractions that tourists can admire are the Duomo, and the Museo Civico e di Arte Sacra, housed in the Palazzo dei Priori, which is in itself a work of art, the Museo Ranuccio Bianchi Bandinelli, and the former Conservatory St. Peter of Vasari.
Walking through the quiet streets of the village, meet also the imposing medieval buildings and old houses kept and preserved with admirable care: Palazzo Campana, the Teatro of Varii, the Convento di St. Francisco and the mysterious Via delle Volte.
The town of Colle Val D'Elsa is a must-see during a trip to Tuscany, for its art and its history that blend creating a lifestyle enviable.