Now that am back home in Canada, I will admit that I want to finish all my blog posts related to my nearly eight months journey, and move on with planning my upcoming road trip (and doing my taxes!). So here is a very short post about the last country I visited, tiny San Marino. San Marino bills itself as the oldest republic in the World. I am not so sure what the Athenians would say about that, but if they mean “oldest republic still existing in its same form”, than I guess they are correct. The country was founded in 301, by a Christian stonecutter fleeing persecution from Emperor Diocletian.
Most of the country comprises little industrial towns which apparently have very little interest for tourists. I bought that and did not check myself. The capital, also called City of San Marino, is an ancient fortified city known for its three towers, incorporated in the country coat of arms. This is the first tower, built around 1320. If you imagine yourself as an attacker with 14th Century technology, you can see why taking it would not be so easy.
Tower 2, built around 1253 would not be much easier.
When you climb on the towers and look down, you understand that the enemy would have a hard time catching the defenders by surprise.
And if you look at the size of the cars in the lower left of this picture, you see that the place’s natural geography is most certainly in the defender’s advantage. Continue reading