The town:

The Barco Ducale

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The Barco Ducale is situated one km from the centre of Urbania on the road towards Sant'Angelo in Vado. Founded in 1465 upon the wishes of Federico da Montefeltro, it was one of Francesco Maria I Della Rovere's favourite places and was often defined as "viridarium".

Barco Ducale

It was a hunting park and source of spiritual solace and physical relaxion to the duke. The site is linked to the ducal palace by a mile of river which cavaliers and ladies reached by boat. Within its walls there was a little 14th century convent of Franciscan monks, called Zoccolanti, sheltered from the Metauro river. It was subsequently extended (1594 – 96) upon the wishes of the last duke, Francesco Maria II della Rovere, who would occasionally dine or stay overnight there- and perhaps it is for this reason that mistakenly, the Barco is thought of as the duke's summer residence.

The structure, due to its proximity to the river and to the construction of a sluice nearby began to manifest structural problems, which caused part of the convent to collapse in 1719. It was therefore decided to abandon the old building which was completely demolished and the materials reused for the new building of which the model in wood, probably by P. Soratini may be seen at the Civic Museum of Urbania. The impressive architectural complex that we see today is an 18th century convent in Vanvitallian style whose church dedicated to Saint John the Baptist was consecrated in 1771. Today the structure is undergoing a long and meticulous restoration, the outside being already complete, which will return it to its original splendour.

During recent restoration work in the Franciscan monks' refectory, 18th century frescos were discovered, among which is a "Last supper" of the Pergola artist Gianfrancesco Ferri.

The Barco now hosts the ceramics and crafts laboratories of the Civic Museum, in collaboration with the Associazione Amici della Ceramica.
The workshops of the Barco Ducale Museum are part of the group called "Metauro Museum" of the Communià Montana Alto e Medio Metauro, along with the Museum of the City of Urbino and the San Francesco Museum of Mercatello sul Metauro.

Ducal palace, Civic museum and Library

Corso Vittorio Emanuele, 23
tel - fax 0722 313151
(visite: 10/12-15/18, lunedì chiuso, ingresso € 4,00, ridotto € 2,00)

Museo di Storia dell’Agricoltura e dell’Artigianato - Cantine Palazzo Ducale

Corso Vittorio Emanuele, 23 Urbania
tel - fax 0722 313151

Services for visitors, tourists and students: Library and Archives: consultation, research, and interlibrary loan books, reading, magazines, sect. boys, internet point and service operators.

La Mediateca

Servizi internet Informagiovani e Informadonna
Corso Vitt. Emanuele, 23
Tel. 0722 313183 - Fax 0722 313184 -

Sala e saletta Volponi

(100 posti per convegni e conferenze, saletta per mostre)