Point of entrance of the Casentino valley for the ones that come from Arezzo, Subbiano stretches between the left bank of the Arno river and the foot of the Catenaia Alp. On the mountains there have been finds that date back to 3000 BC.
The origin of the name is uncertain, some think that it derives from the roman Sub Jano, referring to Janus, the Roman deity with two faces.
The town is located along an ancient road that connects Arezzo and Casentino. During the 11th century a castle was built perched on a rock, controlling the access to the Arno river.
The bishops of Arezzo, Counts Guidi, Ubertinis and Tarlatis from Pietramala at different points in time held the castle and the town under their ownership but, during the second half of the 1300s the Florentine republic conquered Subbiano, making it a municipality.
The castle was placed in a strategic position, protecting a bridge on the Arno river, a residential area and a series of mills. Of the old mansion, still documented during the 1800s, there still is a sturdy keep and some parts of the walls, visible from the promenade that runs on the bank of the river.
The church of Our Lady of the Visitation (chiesa di Santa Maria della Visitazione), built in the 13th century to substitute the first church of the castle considered too small, was enlarged and a loggia was built adjacent to it; the bell tower was added in the 19th century.
In the centre of Subbiano, the most interesting sights are the City Magistrate’s palace, Ducci palace and Subiani-Ducci palace. The Centre for the Documentation of the Archaeological Culture has archaeological finds discovered in the area that cover a period of time that goes from the 7th century BC to the 14th century.
The large municipal territory of Subbiano houses evocative places such as the castle of Valenzano has been documented since the 11th century but was probably built by the Langobards. The castle was totally restored in 1870 by the Bastogi family, in a neo-mediaeval style with some Romantic influences. Going up towards the Catenaia Alp, deep in verdant forests of oaks, chestnuts and beeches, there is the hamlet of Falciano with its two operating mills. Along the Arno river are Santa Mama, with the church of st. Mamante built in the 11th century, Ponte Caliano and Castelnuovo, on the border with the territory of Arezzo. In the hamlet of Castelnuovo there is the grand castle of the Fioraia, built after the year 1000 and modified many times during the following centuries, that takes its name from the family that received it at the beginning of the 1400s as a homage to its services to the Florentine Republic.
On Libbia road there are Chiaveretto, on the Chiassa stream, and Montegiovi, which derives its name from a lost temple dedicated to Jupiter, the Roman god.
Castle of Valenzano
Castle of Fioraia, Castelnuovo