The Old Fortress
The Old Fortress is one of the best examples of Medici architecture in Livorno. Its construction, begun in 1521 and completed in 1534, was entrusted to the Florentine Antonio da Sangallo. The main function of the fortress was to protect the port from possible enemy incursions and to control the trades that took place there.
At one time the structure was completely encircled by the sea and could only be accessed by boat or barge. Precisely for this reason, in the 1800s it was used as a prison.
The Old Fortress has an asymmetrical shape with only three bastions: the Ampolletta, facing the city, the Canaviglia, facing the port, and the Capitana, facing the northeast. A fourth bastion that facing the open sea was never built.
The peculiarity of the Old Fortress is that it houses some oldest buildings dating back to the Middle Ages. Moreover archaeological excavations have confirmed the presence of a previous Etruscan-Roman settlement. The Old Fortress is therefore a real treasure chest that tells the story of Livorno.
Over time, it has been restored several times to keep its soul and its historical value intact, a major intervention was needed after the bombings that struck the city during World War II.
Hotel Città is just a short distance from the Old Fortress, just a 15-minute walk away.