The little village is surrounded by the thick vegetation of the Montalbano hills, where one is struck by the changing greens of olive groves and vineyards. The village grew up around the Castle of Guidi Counts and was conquered by Florence in the 13th century. It owes its fame to Leonardo who was born here on the 15th April 1452.
One can start visiting the village in the Vinci Museum, which is arranged on two of the floors of the old castle. The collection includes a large number of models, reproduced to scale in recent times and based on Leonardo’s drawings, shown in facsimile next to each model. The same building also houses the Leonardo library which sponsors a whole series of cultural activities aimed at promoting the study of Leonardo’s complex works and celebrating his memory, including Vinci Readings and an Aerial event.
Whether one is roaming within the realms of fact or legend, it is pleasant to walk up to the parish church of Santa Croce, where one can admire the baptismal font supposedly used when Leonardo was baptized. A few kilometers outside the village, in Anchiano, one can see the old farm house restored in 1952 and believed to be where the artist first entered this world on that remote 15th April. The guardian will show one around.
Living Vinci one returns down towards the Amo river until one reaches Cerreto Guidi.