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Dignity - Marino - the small, but proud republic of

the Tower San - Marino

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my acquaintance with San - Marino had to take place several years ago, during the first trip across Italy. At least, such excursion appeared at travel agency which services I then used. By the tradition which developed at the Russian tour operators, visit San - Marino is planned the first or last day of round on Northern Italy. Quite often, owing to various circumstances (for example, from - for delays of flights or banal traffic jams on the weekend), changes as a result of which tourists lose an opportunity to visit this state of Europe are made to the program. In that first time and it happened...

I Remember

that after my first travel, already on the plane, talking to one of members of our group, all - visited in San - Marino, I asked about his impressions of visit.“ To look in any case? Do not worry: the mountain as the mountain“, - there was an answer of the compatriot. I admit, then the similar assessment smoothed feeling of disappointment from cancelled excursion a little.

Only later few years, after independent acquaintance with San - Marino, this medieval fairy tale, I understood how it is precipitate to rely on someone`s subjective opinion...

the Meeting with San - Marino could not take place also in my second visit of Northern Italy this summer. However, circumstances developed so that in the program of a business trip “window“ and I, already fairly tired of beach rest appeared, decided to seize the successful opportunity to visit the most ancient state of Europe located in only twenty five kilometers from Rimini.

On the ordinary regular bus following morning rushed me on the highway, up the picturesque serpentine of Mount Titano. On the way to the capital you meet a large number of the medieval strengthenings confirming that all history San - Marino is a history of fight for independence and freedom. The surrounding landscape and architecture cast the corresponding thoughts...


, you will surely find the legend about the founder of the state in any story about this country - Saint Marin. According to a legend, in the first half of the 4th century the simple mason by the name of Marino appeared in these parts from Dalmatia, escaping from religious prosecutions of the emperor Diokletian ruling at that time.

They say that at first future Saint located in rich and big, to medieval measures, the city of Rimini. Found work as would tell now, “in the specialty“, constructed a lodge. To live to it and to rejoice under the fine sky of Adriatic Sea, but here local authorities took a dislike to it. All business was in too freedom-loving character of the mason who besides actively asserted the rights of the companions on shop. If Marino was born later some sixteen - seventeen centuries, he could self-actualize, probably, as some leader of labor unions. However at the time of Europe going by the gloomy Middle Ages advanced views of Marino did not find support from “mighty of this world“.

Being afraid of

to be a prisoner in a dungeon, Marino constructed to himself a small cell in Mount Titano. To earn on livelihood, it had to climb down a mountain to the city where there was always enough work for the master. Tradition claims, the mason who was often coming back with provisions was fleeced by angry robbers. In response to an impudent robbery future Saint only silently smiled... In the national legend of sanmarinets there were stories that the mildness Marino was succeeded to tame even the huge bear living at a foot of Mount Titano and directing horror all around.

the glory which Extended after the district about a righteous life did not help Marino to retire from the whole world, and, on the contrary, attracted to it crowds of pilgrims. Soon about a cell the small monastery was formed. According to historians, the monastery called by name the founder existed already at the end of the 6th a century and led independent life, without depending in the political relation on anybody of neighbors...

Having admired the look opening from a bus window, having indulged in thoughts about surprising legends, I nearly passed the moment of crossing of “frontier“. Our driver did not even reduce speed at a low column in the snatsionalny flowers of Italy (red, white, green) on the one hand and is white - a blue flag - with another. In total - I cannot get used in any way that in the Schengen area where enters also San - Marino, the traveler crosses borders of the states, without meeting either frontier guards, or customs!

the Bus brought to

us to the big capital square located at the height of 750 meters above sea level. Further - only on foot, upward on abrupt ancient steps, each of which, apparently, kept traces of last centuries. The ladder led to the main gate of the city - to gate San - Francesco at which the guardsman in a national form quickly discussed something with friendly policewomen in peak-caps of color of the summer Italian sky.

Historic center of the city - Donn Felichissimo Street conducting to Giuseppe Garibaldi Square who in the summer of 1849 together with two thousand soldiers was sheltered from prosecutions of the Austrians by hospitable sanmarinets. By the way, hospitality of inhabitants of the tiny republic (A dignity - Marino often was a shelter for political refugees) caused discontent of governors of neighboring countries more than once and was the reason of numerous invasions. The dignity - Marino was succeeded to keep statehood and during a terrible era of revolutionary wars: great Napoleon offered it the friendly union and even part of the adjoining territories. Sanmarintsa, having expressed to the French emperor gratitude for generous gifts, it is proud refused increase in the territory, quite satisfied with own status quo.

“In spite of the fact that your possession are small, your State - one of the most worthy in all history...“ - the American president Lincoln wrote, expressing the friendship and sympathy in relation to San - Marino.

the Advantageous geographical position strengthened by the best achievements of that time voyenno - engineering thought, and, of course, the “charge“ of love of freedom received from Saint Marino allowed to defend successfully throughout many centuries independence of the small, but proud republic. What to tell, mountaineers and in Europe - mountaineers!

Traces of the battles which ceased in Europe remained long ago in local legends and in numerous monuments of medieval architecture. On the edge of the Titan three magnificent fortresses up to now connected by fortifications and tracks with the city located below and surrounded with three rings of walls - with gate, bastions and towers tower. Behind walls literally everything reminds last centuries: streets, squares, palaces, medieval constructions. Narrow small streets with ancient houses in a complicated manner wind along a mountain slope, continually natykayas on ruins of ancient castles.

Three fortresses - a country symbol. Surely glance in the second where the museum of the ancient weapon is located. I recommend to visit a stone quarry of arbaletchik also. By the way, thanks to a reverent attitude sanmarintsevk to this ancient art, in the country the competitions of the international level attracting tourists are regularly held.

I will not be mistaken if I tell that San - Marino - the real champion by the number of the museums on square meter (or, for example, in terms of one resident of the country). What museums are only not present: waxworks, ancient cars, reptiles, mail, philately and numismatics (by the way, coins and brands of this state are very much appreciated by collectors). There is even a private institution, with the plain name - “The museum of curious things“.

Today San - Marino - an example of the effective organization of travel business. Judge for yourself: there are no minerals, and the most part of the territory of the republic is covered with the woods. In former times agriculture, animal husbandry and processing of a stone were the only types of economic activity of the republic. In many respects thanks to tourism the accelerated development of the local industry, handicraft trade and trade began.

to Soglasnoofitsialny statistics, annually San - Marino visits more than three million tourists. Especially much they are in days of the national holidays accompanied with songs, dances, music on streets of the capital.

In memory of visit San - Marino can get various souvenirs, but the biggest gift to yourself will be given by the one who, having reached the highest point of Mount Titano, will enjoy a view of a blue bowl of Adriatic Sea and the resort of Rimini lying below. Though, perhaps, for someone, not able to understand beauty of the nature, to feel spirit of the freedom-loving people and to join breath of centuries, it - just the mountain...

Sergey Kurbanov