The Meldola Fortress has a turbulent history: changing
hands multiple times, besieged and conquered
by opposing factions, despoiled, damaged in an
earthquake... Built on a rocky mass that dominates
the town, it’s one of the biggest fortresses in
Romagna, and the citizens of Meldola are particularly
proud of it: the first nucleus dates back to the year
1000 when Emperor Otto III and Pope Gregory V
granted jurisdiction to the archbishops of Ravenna.
The cause of dispute between Ravenna’s churches
and the local counts, in 1350 it was conquered by
the Ordelaffi family, while in 1359 Cardinal Egidio
Albornoz brought it back under the rule of the pope.
Then it passed to the Malatesta family, Cesare
Borgia, followed by the Venetians. In 1518 Pope Leo X
donated the fiefdom to the Pio family of Carpi.
the last descendent of the family sold the fiefdom
of Meldola to the Aldobrandini princes and it was
subsequently transferred to the Pamphili family.
Over the centuries the fortress has been enlarged,
strengthened, and embellished multiple times,
becoming one of the most remarkable noble
residences in the region.
Then came its decline:
at the end of the 19th century it was despoiled by
Napoleonic troops, and in 1870 a major earthquake
severely damaged it. Long abandoned and neglected,
in 1995 it was purchased by the Municipality of
Meldola, which began a restoration that’s still
Meldola Ex Ospedale del Santissimo Crocefisso
The building was designed in 1604 by
Giambattista Aleotti. Its construction
absorbed a pre-existing hospital
structure of Medieval origin and the
annexed Chapel of the Holy Crucifix.
Meldola Ponte dei Veneziani
With its five semi-circular archways, it was built at the
start of the 16th century, during the Venetian rule, and
probably replaced a pre-existing bridge. Destroyed
during WWII it was rebuilt with its current physiognomy.
Meldola Teatro Dragoni
Delightful theatre plan with three levels of
balconies, thirteen boxes per level, and a gallery. Its
construction began in 1827 and ended in 1877. After
a long period of closure it was restored, and starting
in the 1980s it returned fully operational.
Meldola Arena Hesperia e Museo del baco da seta
In past centuries, Meldola was one of the
biggest producers in the world of silk,
competing with China and Japan. The
Silkworm Museum is located in the Arena
Hesperia. During the summer this space,
named after the famous silent-film star
who began her career in Meldola, is used
for shows and film screenings.
Meldola Borgo e Castello di Teodorano
Approximately 10 km from Meldola, along
the road to Montecavallo, one comes upon
the suggestive village of Teodorano, which
dominates the Voltre Valley. The town is
enclosed within Medieval city walls, on which
the fortress – with origins dating back to the
11th century – stands.
Meldola Riserva Naturale Bosco di Scardavilla, Museo di Ecologia e Centro Visitatori
The Regional Preserve, with its fifteen
hectares of oak woods, is an extraordinary
testament of the ancient forest which, long
ago, covered most of the surrounding area.
Within the reserve, the two nuclei of the
ancient monastic settlement of Scardavilla
still survive as well.
Meldola Rocca delle Caminate
Rocca delle Caminate castle, located between
Meldola and Predappio, was extremely
important during the Renaissance. During
the fascist time, it was used by Mussolini
as a summer residence. Today it is a high