The ancient Walls of Sorrento
The Ancient Walls of Sorrento, the city’s monumental settlements, represent a site of great historical value for the Sorrento Peninsula, arise at the Porta di Parsano Nuova, opened in 1745 and are located in the centre of Sorrento, close to many hotels in Sorrento.
In the sixteenth century, Sorrento felt the need for an effective defensive system of the town, being exposed to the risk of the Saracen invasions, restored several times during the Middle Ages, the Roman walls were completely renovated and in fact made impassable.
Porta Parsano and the four Bastions
The Parsano Gate arose only in the Bourbon period and it is the only one that it is still visible today in its original context.
It was opened along the south side of the wall to allow easy access to the hilly area, difficult to achieve due to the shape of an area.
The opening of the Parsano Gate, recently restored, is, however, only a small part of the massive intervention of the whole defensive fortification of the walls of the medieval period. The Spanish engineer Pedro Treviño, totally renewed the southern part of the defensive fortifications of the city of Sorrento. Four bastions were rebuilt and strengthened, which took the names of four by the five town’s patron saints. On those sections of wall called garrette, usually placed at the corners of the ramparts, or on the most extreme of these defensive ramparts, you could see the small towers used by the sentries on guard; each bastion also had a pair of gunboats, also said gun holes.
There was an entrance to the Greek Gate of Marina Grande, originally equipped with a tower, called the Manganella, which protected the city against attacks from the sea.
Among the southern ramparts the Bastion of San Valerio or of Parsano was the only wedge-shaped type and the largest of the four. The other three bastions, the Bastion St. Anthony, also told Sovradonno, the Bastion of St. Athanasius or Bagnagatti and the Bastion of San Renato or Sant’Agnello del vico, were simple buildings, and less protective than the previous ones, since they were located on top of the Valley of the Mills, at a point that is already substantially impregnable. The last bastion was connected, then, using a short hanging, to the ancient castle and to Porta Maggiore, also called of St. Anthony, destroyed during the nineteenth century to expand the ancient castle square.
If you have chosen a cultural trip to visit the picturesque walk along the Viceregal walls, stay in a hotel in Sorrento centre, you will reach quickly this fascinating and characteristic structure and in the summer, you can attend the many concerts organized near Ibsen Park, listen to the masterpieces of classical and Neapolitan music in the picturesque scenery of the Ancient Walls.