Convents & Monasteries – Cortona

Today’s Cortona is a foreign-wedding destination, college town, Etruscan site, and expat haven. Visitor lodging is abundant – including some convents and monasteries in Cortona.

Featured photo: A spring scene in Cortona, Italy.

Table of Contents

Convents & Monasteries Series

This is part of a series of ongoing blog posts about Italian convents and monasteries where I have stayed. I will update this page as I get to stay in more religious guesthouses in the future.

Check my main article on staying in convents and monasteries: the pros and cons, and what to expect when considering these accommodations.

firenze d90 1804 6108 santa elisabetta


Cortona is situated on a mountainside almost 500 meters in elevation. During ancient times, Cortona was an Etruscan town known as Curtun. In 2018, I visited the town in search of its Etruscan treasures: the remaining walls and gate of the ancient Etruscan city, the Tabula Cortonensis (a legal Etruscan document inscribed in bronze), and the enigmatic lampadario (an Etruscan chandelier of sorts).

Today, Cortona is a very popular venue for weddings of foreigners. There is a cottage industry of wedding planners and services in the town. The Comune di Cortona is popular, where the stairs provide a great spot for the wedding entourage.

VIRTUAL SCENE (instructions to view this 360 Google StreetView photo)
You can interact with 360 photos and see all around!
Move/Rotate the photo: Use your mouse or fingers to drag and rotate the view around or upward-downward.
On tablets or desktops: The square icon on the upper right corner maximizes or minimizes the photo.
Magnify the view: To zoom in or out, use the + or – sign on the lower right corner.

Cortona also hosts the study abroad program of an American school, the University of Georgia.

Bramasole – Frances Mayes’ famed villa in Under the Tuscan Sun – is located a mile outside the town center.

You can tell Cortona has a robust number of visitors and expat residents. On any given day, you will hear English spoken at the town center, the grocery shop, and the train station. In addition to hotels, B&Bs, and agriturismos, there’s a fair number of convents and monasteries in Cortona that offer hospitality to visitors…

firenze d90 1804 6108 santa elisabetta

Casa Per Ferie Villa Santa Margherita

The Casa per Ferie Villa Santa Margherita is operated by the Suore Serve di Maria Riparatrici (Sisters Servants of Mary Reparation). They have a layperson who manages the bookings and reception for the guest house.

The gardens of Villa Santa Margherita - elegant guest house in an Italian convent. Cortona, Italy.
Convents & Monasteries in Cortona: Casa per Ferie Villa Santa Margherita – an elegant guest house in an Italian convent. Cortona, Italy.


The villa seems to have been modernized recently with a nice Tuscan motif. The elegant double room I had was quite spacious, with a spacious bathroom. I asked for a room with views of Lake Trasimeno or the mountainside, and it was perfect!

Convents & Monasteries in Cortona: A room with a view of the hillside in Villa Santa Margherita. Cortona, Italy.
Convents & Monasteries in Cortona: A room with a view of the hillside in Villa Santa Margherita. Cortona, Italy.

The villa has a garden/terrace, a dining room where breakfast is served, and sitting or lounge areas.

Breakfast is worth a mention: in addition to the usual convent fare, the villa provided proteins with eggs and some salumi meats!

Convents & Monasteries in Cortona: The reception area of Villa Santa Margherita. Cortona, Italy.
Convents & Monasteries in Cortona: The reception area of Villa Santa Margherita. Cortona, Italy.

This convent guest house has no curfew. You are given keys to the gate, front door, and your room. You don’t surrender your keys when you leave the convent for the day. 

Villa Santa Margherita is within walking distance of the Cortona town center, Piazza della Repubblica. It’s a 0.3 mile distance with 100-foot ascent. Follow this Google maps walking route.

A few items to note (as of 2018 – hopefully, things get better in the future):

  • The reception has a limited schedule. It closes after 3:00 pm.
  • Air conditioning is extra (€5/day) – but I didn’t need it because it was still cool in the mountain when I stayed in the spring.
  • Wi-fi charge is extra (€1 per person /day). However, I found it barely usable in the room.
  • Laundry facilities – only available in Camucia!
Convents & Monasteries in Cortona: Another view of the hillside from Villa Santa Margherita. Cortona, Italy.
Convents & Monasteries in Cortona: Another view of the hillside from Villa Santa Margherita. Cortona, Italy.

Lodging Summary for Villa Santa Margherita

Bed & breakfast rate (single):€47 in 2018
Distance from city center: ✅✅✅
Breakfast:✅ ✅ (with protein!)
Wi-Fi:✅ (unreliable)
Check-in:from 10:00 am -3:00 pm
Check-out: by 10:30 am
Credit cards:Yes
Luggage storage:Yes
Laundry facility:No
Onsite parking:Yes
Ensuite bathroom:Yes
Wardrobe/drawers in room:Yes
Desk/chair in room:Yes


Distance from the city center or main attractions
✅ Must drive or take taxi/multiple bus/train ride
✅✅ Within 30-minute walk or short bus/train ride
✅✅✅ Within 15-minute walk

Breakfast offering
❌ No breakfast offered
✅ Basic: coffee, milk, juice, bread, jams, cereal, fruit
✅✅ Basic plus protein: above plus eggs or some meat
✅✅✅ Sumptuous breakfast buffet

Wi-fi coverage
❌ No Wi-fi
✅ Wi-fi only in common areas
✅✅ Room Wi-fi: adequate
✅✅✅ Room Wi-fi: strong

Contact & Address

Tel.: (39)0575-63036
Address: Viale Cesare Battisti, 17, 52044 Cortona AR, Italy

How to get there:  
Take the train from Roma, Firenze, or other points in Italy – to the Camucia-Cortona train station. From the station:
➤ The simplest way to get to the convent is by taxi, especially if you have luggage in tow. This is an 8-minute drive from the valley town of Camucia, and up the mountain town of Cortona.
➤ OR: It’s 10 minutes by bus. Use Google maps for navigation. Take the bus SU5 that goes to Cortona Piazza Garibaldi. Get off right in front of the Villa Santa Margherita, at the stop Viale C. Battisti Di Fronte Nc.17

How the Villa Santa Margherita convent building and gate look like (No. 17 on the left):

firenze d90 1804 6108 santa elisabetta

Other Convents & Monasteries in Cortona

You may want to consider the following convents and monasteries, which are on my wishlist. I haven’t stayed in these guest houses yet. When I have the opportunity to do so when I’m back in Cortona, I will write about my experience.

Tel.: (39)0575-630343
Address: Via Santa Margherita, 2, 52044 Cortona AR, Italy

Note: This guest house is operated by the Sorelle dei Poveri di Santa Caterina da Siena.

Tel.: (39)0575-630127
Address: Via le Contesse 1, 52044 Cortona (AR) Italy

NOTE: This used to be the location of the ancient monastery of Santa Maria alle Contesse. It no longer seems to be an active religious institution but has been converted into a real hotel.

For a complete list of sources and resources used on this webpage, please see the References page.

Related Posts

FB 1080x1080 Convents Monasteries

You don’t have to be Christian or religious to stay at an Italian convent or monastery. Find out if these safe, economical, and peaceful lodgings are right for you.

Casa per Ferie Santa Elisabetta - beautiful gardens at an Italian convent in Firenze, Italy.

Where to stay in FLORENCE?Try Convents & Monasteries in Firenze, Italy

assisi d90 1805 6416 italian convent monastery

Where to stay in ASSISI? Try Convents & Monasteries in Assisi, Italy

Visit the Italy page for more stories and travel tips …


Fascinating ancient stories.
Practical travel tales and tips.

A bull, a dragon, and a bear on the marble wall of the Tower of Pisa, Italy.
Let’s go! Andiamo! Abeamus! Vamonos! Tayo Na! Ikimashou!
Wander Virtually - logo

If you liked this story, Share It:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *