Apuane Alps: the
Antro Cave and Ascent of Mt. Corchia
From Levigliani the park’s shuttle bus will
take us to the entrance of the cave. Following a guided tour of the
Antro del Corchia (a 2h tour with a specialised guide, along steel
walkways, for a total of 646m; constant temperature of 7.6°C) we will
climb to the Del Freo Refuge (return route of medium-easy difficulty;
total uphill altitude difference about 280m; actual walking time about
1h). We will have a break for lunch near the refuge (either own packed
lunch or at the refuge – to be arranged). From the refuge we will climb
to the top of Mt. Corchia (1676m) (optional) (return route of medium
difficulty; uphill altitude difference 500m). On the way back we will
stop again at the refuge before beginning our descent to the entrance to
the cave where the shuttle bus will meet us to take us back to
In the lush surroundings of the
southern Apuane Alps, this striking route takes us along the Rio
Lombrici with its cavities formed by the erosion of the water over
thousands of years and the surprising ruins of the ancient factories
which exploited the energy of these waters, maintaining a harmonious
balance with nature. We will have a chance to bathe in the cool stream,
and can visit the only remaining factory in use, the Antica Ferriera
Barsi, an ironworks where a friendly blacksmith will introduce us to one
of the marvels made possible by water.
return shaded route
of medium difficulty with a number of detours; overall length 6000m;
uphill altitude difference 350m; average walking time 2h.
Bring a small backpack with sufficient drinking water (although you can
drink at the many fountains en route), and a picnic lunch. Wear
comfortable clothing and walking shoes; a pair of beach sandals and a
swimming costume are also recommended.
Monte Forato is
one of the best-known and unusual peaks in the Apuane mountains (its two
peaks rise to 1223 m and 1209 m). It is easily identified because of the
arch that spans its peak, measuring about 32 by 25 metres. At certain
times of the year the sunset can be seen through the arch, and on clear
days you can see the sea, the region of Liguria and the islands of the
The walk will
start from Stazzema.
medium-difficult route; actual walking time, 4h; overall uphill altitude
difference 500m; length about 8km.
Mt. Gabberi, the “Balcony” over the Apuane Alps
A day’s hike along the southernmost
ridge of the Apuane Alps, through chestnut and maple woods to the
spectacular “Versilia Balcony” affording views that stretch from the
islands of the Tuscan Archipelago to Corsica, the Cinque Terre, the
islands of Tino and Palmaria and across all the peaks of the Apuane
Alps, like an immense map. The circular route from the village of
Farnocchia will take us close to the legendary “Pietralunga” where the
Devil is supposed to guard a treasure consisting of a hen and twelve
gold chicks, hidden in the pinnacle of grey limestone. Retracing the
history of the terrible massacre of S. Anna di Stazzema, our walk will
look at the area from a different point of view as we make our way
through the little villages and past the historical roadside maestà.
medium-easy circular route: total uphill altitude difference 600m;
distance about 9km, actual walking time about 4h.
Bring a small backpack with sufficient drinking water. Wear comfortable
clothing and walking shoes.
For much of the way this fascinating
route follows an old aqueduct through oak woods to the spectacular cave
– Grotta all’Onda – with its enchanting shower of water. The Grotta
all’Onda is in the Apuane Alps, on the southern slope of Monte Matanna
at 710 m above sea level. This large cavity takes its name from the
marked convex or wave-like feature above the entrance to the cave.
return route, partly shaded, of medium difficulty for averagely fit
people; average walking time 2h (each way)
This route leads through secular
chestnut woods, past wayside shrines where wayfarers used to shelter
from medieval times. Our destination is the Foce di Mosceta, an
enchanting saddle with typically Apennine features overlooked by the
most famous Apuane mountains
medium-easy return route of about 7000m; total uphill altitude
difference 700m; actual walking time about 5 h.
Bring a light backpack and drinking
supplies, as well as a packed lunch (food can also be bought from the
refuge). Comfortable clothing and walking
shoes are recommended.
Tambura and the Apuane Marble Quarries (Carrara, Province of Massa)
The age-old tradition
of the miners in the splendid setting of the Apuane mountains
From Arnetola we will
follow the long series of bends up the "Via Vandelli", the old mule
track planned by abbot and engineer Domenico Vandelli to connect the
Duchy of Modena with the Garfagnana and Massa. The easy path winds first
of all through beech-woods, then through rocky meadows with isolated
trees. Passing two deep Karst chasms and the entrance to an old iron
mine (hematite and pyrite) it leads to the Tambura Pass (m. 1620). From
the pass it takes about 40 minutes along the easy, rocky ridge to get to
the top of Mt Tambura (m. 1895) which is second in height only to Mt
Pisanino (m. 1946), just over 3km to the north-north-west.
panorama takes in the Apuane Alps, the Gulf of La Spezia, the Livornese
hills and the islands of the Tuscan Archipelago and Corsica. On very
clear days you can see as far as the Alps.
return route of medium difficulty for averagely fit persons. Route
partly shaded by vegetation. Uphill altitude difference 600/800m;
average walking time 3h to the top, but walkers can opt to stop at the
Bring a small backpack
with sufficient drinking water and a packed lunch. Wear
comfortable clothing and walking shoes.
In the magical
Valle delle Fonti, on the western slopes of the Pisan hills, the
charming ruins of the Mirteto Monastery rise unexpectedly from the
maquis at the beginning of the tranquil ‘chestnut paths’. Long avenues
surrounded by age-old chestnut trees will lead us on a leisurely walk
back to our starting point.
medium-easy circular route, overall altitude difference 500m, distance,
about 10km. Actual walking time: about 3h30’. We will leave some of our
cars at the end of the route in order to go and get those left at the
beginning, thus avoiding having to walk a stretch of asphalt road on the
Pisani: The Circular Route to the 2
Springs (Buti –Province of Pisa)
From the village of
Buti, situated in a lush green valley, we will walk through olive groves
on an asphalt road which quickly becomes a cart track, leading uphill
for 30 minutes to a pinewood and a stretch of flat ground. We carry on
to the Church of the Madonna della Neve (‘of the Snow’) near which is
the Rio Magno stream with a spring of delicious drinking water. Still
surrounded by dense vegetation, we come to the Mezzo Pane spring. From
here a path leads downhill along the stream, winding through pines and
ferns back to the village of Buti. If we want to we can visit the
charming village and its olive press where, during the pressing season,
we can taste and purchase oil (not included).
a medium-easy route; distance 7 km;
altitude difference 608m; actual walking time, 3h 30'.
Along the banks of the
River Arno to the charming Caprona Tower, with a walk to the tower. We
proceed towards the lovely valley of Calci with its ancient parish
church and the characteristic villages. If we want to we can visit the
Natural History Museum and the Carthusian monastery at Calci(entrance
fees not included)
a technically easy return route over level
ground, of medium difficulty in terms of distance (30km). Actual
cycling time 4 hours.
Cycling from Pisa to the Lake of
A cycling tour to
explore the Pisan coast and its varied environment from a new
perspective. We will ride through part of the presidential estate of San
Rossore where we may be able to see some of the abundant wildlife that
inhabits the park and which has little fear of passing bicycles. We
proceed through the Park of Migliarino, through pinewoods and coastal
areas to the village of Torre del Lago. Picnic lunch. After lunch we
will visit the Lake of Massaciuccoli with its aquatic fauna, and the
archaeological remains of the Roman villa. Depending on time available,
we may be able to take a boat trip on the lake.
a technically easy return route over level ground, of medium difficulty
in terms of distance (40km); actual cycling time, 4 hours.
A circular route
through olive groves and woodland on the Pisan hills to Mt Verruca
dominated by the 13th-century Pisan fort which crowns the
mount of the same name at about 540m. Its origins and history are
closely linked to the village of Calci which lies in the middle of the
valley below and which has always participated in the vicissitudes of
the powerful town of Pisa and all the wars that it was involved in over
the centuries. From the walls of the legendary fortress we can enjoy the
splendid panoramas stretching from the Pisan Plain to the sea and the
island of Gorgona.
Chance to visit
the Carthusian monastery and Natural History Museum at Calci (entrance
fees not included).
medium-easy circular route with a slightly more difficult stretch.
walking time about 3 hours.
An unforgettable trip into the Tuscan hills covered
in the velvety green May wheat. From Saline to Volterra along the old
rack railway line which used to climb up to the picturesque Etruscan and
medieval town where we can visit the Acropolis and the Roman Theatre, as
well as the Rocca Vecchia’s green park, now the site of the prison.
After walking through town on the tracks of the civilisations which
inhabited the area, we will return along the old mule paths, giving us
an opportunity to get a privileged view of the mineral area of the salt
pit. Tour of Volterra and its famous salt cliffs: a geomorphological and
Technical details of the
walking; total uphill altitude difference approx 400m; distance 10,000m;
expected walking time approx 3 hours. N.B. the complete circular route
(which is 18,000m long and takes 5.5 hours) will only be covered in one
direction on foot, the return will be by car, so that we can also fit in
the ‘urban walking’ in Volterra. For this purpose, some of our cars will
be taken to Volterra before we start the walk.
We recommend bringing a
lightweight backpack with adequate water supplies.
Wear comfortable clothing and walking
This is the heart of the Mediterranean
scrubland, made even more distinctive by the serpentine rocks which make
the substratum toxic for most plants and therefore determine the
exclusive make-up of the plant associations. The route takes in a number
of educational itineraries which will allow us to observe all the
aspects and vegetation stages of the maquis as well as the
geology of the area.
At the centre of the more coastal part
of the Val di Cecina nature reserve, there is a submontane wood of
Turkey oaks and hygrophilous plants, a living fossile from the last
glaciation period. The particular phyto-sociological value of this wood
is added to by the beauty of the surrounding landscape, dotted with old
millcourses and spectacular waterfalls, and the area has been declared a
site of European interest and world heritage.
Technical details of the walk:
the walk follows a
figure-eight circuit along paths and gravel roads. Level of difficulty:
easy - moderate; overall distance 10.5 km; uphill altitude difference:
380m; average duration 4h45’.
We recommend bringing a lightweight
backpack with adequate water supplies, and a packed lunch. Wear
comfortable clothing and walking shoes. The Cascata della Sterza
waterfall is a site of European importance and bathing is therefore
The ancient pilgrims’ route to Rome
along one of its most fascinating stretches through the gentle Tuscan
hills and the Sienese Crete (clay hills). This is a distinctive
landscape consisting of clear streams, velvety green hills and thick
copses. Walking along this legendary route is like going back to daily
medieval life and the history of ordinary people, surprising for their
gaiety and modern relevance, in contrast with the stereotype of the dark
Middle Ages with their feudal transgressions. In this land of Boccaccio
and Arnolfo di Cambio we will search out the original easygoing, learned
Tuscany from which today’s Tuscan character descends.
Technical details for transfer to
the beginning of the path:
we will use our own cars to get there. In order to avoid covering a
stretch of tarmac road on foot, we will leave some of the cars in the
village and pick them up on our return. The remaining cars will be used
to get to the beginning of the path.
Just the sound of the name brings to
mind myths and legends of long ago, but the fascination of these
mountains does not stop there: the Cornate (literally, ‘horns’) di
Gerfalco, rising to 1060 metres and overlooking the Tuscan Archipelago,
offer an incredible dolomite-type itinerary situated in the heart of
southern Tuscany. Around the limestone mountain a natural reserve known
as the ‘Cornate e Fosini’ reserve has been created, so as to preserve an
environment that contains many endemic species and many ancient traces
of the work of man, from the widest of pastures to the mines where
silver and other precious metals were extracted, making the fortunes of
the families of the village of Gerfalco, now one of the remotest places
in Tuscany. Our itinerary takes us on a discovery of the history, the
geology and the fossils of this part of the Metalliferous Hills and we
will be able to walk through ancient and modern oceans below the wing of
the Fosini and Gerfalco castles.
Technical details of the walking
tour: a star-shaped
path of medium difficulty because of the altitude difference from the
western slope of the Cornate to the top at Castello di Fosini and to the
Fonte del Canaluzzo. Total altitude difference (uphill) 500m; average
walking time: about 4 hours.
The valley of Lajatico is rich in
history and curious natural features: during this excursion we will see
the Windmills at Orciatico and visit the Mofette at Lajatico where the
carbon dioxide gurgles at the bottom of the stream creating a
fascinating ‘boiling’ of the water. Along the wild Fosce river we will
find the remains of ancient water mills, hidden in the woods. A path
leads to another unusual natural activity, that of the escaping of gases
rich in sulphuric acid which deposit sulphur crystals around the
openings through which they escape.
Technical data for the walking
circular medium-easy walk; length of walk 10,000 m; average walking time
about 4 hours
A walk through unusual woods of oak
and juniper on the gentle Tuscan hills to admire the many colours of the
landscape during the ploughing season. Walking through this breathtaking
pastoral scenery we will follow in the tracks of our medieval ancestors
to the legendary fortress known as the Rocca di Pietracassia, still
standing majestically above the rich Metalliferous Hills.
Technical data for the walking
itinerary: an easy
route along an uneven and sometimes muddy path; overall distance 11,500
m, uphill altitude difference 281m; average walking time 3 hours 40m.
An unimaginable landscape just a short
hop from Florence, with its steep vertical walls (the spectacular cliffs
of sand, or balze, even more imposing than the famous ones of
Volterra) and ravines rich in fossils. A day dedicated to geomorphology
and paleonthology to reconstruct the area’s ancient geography using the
techniques employed by geologists.
Technical data for the walking
itinerary: an easy
circular route; uphill altitude difference 400m; overall distance 8000
m; average walking time about 3hours. Walk
suitable for children
It is a good idea to bring a small axe
and a few small bags or boxes (and some absorbent paper such as toilet
paper) for collecting fossils in. Also bring a small back pack, and wear
comfortable clothes and walking shoes. Since the land is clay-based, it
can get muddy after rain: wear clothes that you don’t mind getting
the hills of the Elsa valley, the fabulous potholes dug out by the devil
himself – the Diago – form a frame for one of the most superb and least
known panoramas in mainland Tuscany. Among woods of hornbeam and
stretches of thick Mediterranean scrubland which alternate because of
the change in temperature and the ophiolitic rocks, we will come across
the remains of ancient mills and bridges originating from the Middle
Ages, the era that also created the “Tuscan Jerusalem” at San Vivaldo.
will travel in our own cars; journey from Piazza Gramsci to the
beginning of the walk, about 10’. Walk of medium difficulty, distance
7km, actual walking time 3 hours. Much of the route is in the shade. In
the case of recent rainfall it might be possible to bathe in the river’s
equipment: a lightweight back pack with at least 1.5 litres of water per
person, and a packed lunch. Wear comfortable clothing and walking shoes.
We recommend you also bring a pair of beach sandals and swimming
In the Medici lands of Montalbano
Leonardo found his first inspiration for the study of Art and Science.
The Medici had already sensed the immense value of this generous and
maternal land by protecting it in their Royal Reserve. This walk will
take us along those paths rich in history and nature that we can try to
imagine through the eyes of Leonardo as a boy: with a sense of curiosity
for even the slightest change in the landscape and vegetation, for the
rocks of marine origin which make up the substratum, and for all the
archaeological and historical remains which make the area so precious.
And in order to immerse ourselves completely in the Renaissance
atmosphere of these places we will also try out some of the authentic
flavours that Leonardo himself appreciated, with a visit to the
Agriturismo “Il Calesse” for a Renaissance style Banquet.
Technical data for the walking
technically easy circular route, of medium difficulty in terms of its
length of 14km; uphill altitude difference 500m; average walking time 5h
30’; the most difficult stretch is the climb from Bacchereto to the
Tower of Sant’Alluccio, covering a distance of 3km and a climb of 340m
(average gradient of 9%; time taken 1h15’).
We recommend that you bring a small
backpack with sufficient supplies of water. Wear comfortable clothing
and walking shoes. Return to cars for 6.30pm. Renaissance lunch at the
Agriturismo “Il Calesse”.
This walk is dedicated to medieval
archaeology, in search of traces of the history of this area with its
ruined villages and castles hidden in the scrubland and conserved by
popular memory, and splendid parish churches between the woods and the
fields. It is also a pleasant walk, allowing us to admire one of the
most beautiful waterfalls in the Tuscan hills, surrounded by the dense
Mediterranean vegetation and characterised by plants belonging to the
microclima of the gorge formed by the Strolla river. The Montenero
Reserve stands out with its rugged ophialitic rocks like a wild island
against the “sea” of gentle cultivated countryside.
Technical data for the walking
walk of medium difficulty because of the uneven ground; total distance
9,300m; total uphill altitude difference 280m; average walking time 3h
island of Capraia is perhaps the wildest of the inhabited islands in the
Tuscan Archipelago. Its distance from the coast and its relative
vicinity to Corsica
the development of a typical and exclusive flora and fauna which make
the island a perfect laboratory for the observation of nature. A variety
of landscapes unroll in the space of a few hundred metres, creating a
unique and stunning contrast between the arid asphodel-covered steppe
with its windswept saddles and the spectacular water buttercups in the
Stagnone marsh (the only natural area of water in the Tuscan
island’s history and its former penal colony are of great interest, its
natural features will undoubtedly form the predominant part of our
explorations, enabling us to get closer to that magical aspect of the
island which is still largely unknown to mass tourism and urban life.
Walk to mount Arpagna, an old military lookout site from where on clear
days we can enjoy a view of Corsica. Packed lunch. From here we proceed
to Trattoio head where a small lighthouse marks the coast to sailors.
Tour of the old village of Capraia, transfer to the ferry, embarkation
at 18.00, arrival in Livorno at 20.30.
of medium difficulty; 5 hours of walking; uphill altitude difference
250m; packed lunch to be provided by participants.
A splendid day’s
walk during which we will see the remains of the 18th-century windmills
along a lush, ridge-top path with a mixture of evergreen and deciduous
vegetation. The circular route allows us to touch on various small
villages separated by long stretches of natural countryside rich in
traces of a rural culture that has now been lost. These include the tiny
hamlet of Pandoiano, and the village of Colognole hidden in the green
path that leads along the 18th-century aqueduct, with its bridges and
little temples which guard the precious sources of water that gurgle
from the rock.
circular route, partly on open land. Length of walk 11,910 m; total
uphill altitude difference 345m; average walking time: approx.
Mediterranean maquis in the wild and little known Livornese Hills is at
its most attractive at this time of the year with its shiny myrtle
berries and tasty red strawberry fruit. Along the path there are some
interesting shepherds’ buildings from the 18th century and
traces of old Lombard outbuildings, as well as an exceptional outcrop of
Miocene Coral Rock: in fact, 8 million years ago these hills were
surrounded by sea and can only be described as ‘Fossil Islands’. At the
convergence between the River Chioma and the Botro Quarata we can rest
for a while and eat our picnics before setting off again through the
secular wood of holm oak back to the beginning of the path.
easy circular route partly on open land and partly through woodland;
total uphill altitude difference: about 160m; length of walk 8,250 m;
average walking time: about 3h 30’
Spectacular gypsum crystals emerge
like precious stones from the rough clay. Like the remains of an ancient
civilisation, they recall a distant natural history made up of wide salt
basins which preceded the seas of today. During our walk, which takes in
panoramic farmland and stretches of Mediterranean maquis and holm oak
woodland, it is possible to get to the Fonte di Ricaldo, an ancient
washing basin now half-covered in vegetation, which represented the most
important source of water up until the 18th century. Its
importance was such that it merited the paving of an interesting ancient
easy return route,
partly covered by vegetation; distance: about 4km, minimal altitude
difference; average walking time: 1 hour each way. A small backpack and
sufficient water supplies are recommended; wear comfortable clothes and
through woods of oak and holm oak will lead us on a discovery of the
environment and vegetation around the characteristic village of
Castellina Marittima from where you can gaze at the sea, the islands of
the Tuscan Archipelago and Corsica on one side, and the snowy peaks of
the Apuane Alps on the other.
challenging hike because of the repeated changes in slope; average
walking time: about 4h 15’, distance: about 12km.
A day dedicated to the geology and
history of the Val di Cecina area with its mines, salt mines and its
In the morning we will visit the
historical part of the village of Montecatini from where we will then
depart on our hike towards the Poggio alla Croce from where, on clear
days, the panorama stretches from the Apuane Alps as far as the south of
Tuscany. Picnic lunch. The pleasant path, with its wealth of anemones
and cyclamens, leads us on a discovery of the typical Mediterranean
fauna of the sunny slopes and through the chestnut woods on the northern
slopes in the company of grazing cows.
Tour of the Mine of Montecatini and
the famous Pozzo Alfredo from where the minerals were brought to light.
circular route along
paths and ‘white’ (or unpaved) roads ; difficulty: medium-easy;
overall length 7 km ; uphill altitude difference 200m; average time
required 3 h.
A small backpack and sufficient water
supplies are recommended; wear comfortable clothes and walking shoes.
One of the most interesting and
panoramic routes on the Etruscan Coast. Starting out from the medieval
village of Castagneto Carducci, we will go in search of the numerous
water mills which characterise the area, some still in ruins, while
others converted into villas or farmhouses. The route is marked by its
Mediterranean maquis, the garrigue and evergreen and deciduous
woodlands. Along the way you will see countless former charcoal pits
showing how the forest resources were exploited up until recent times.
we will travel by using our own cars;
the walk starts in Castagneto Carducci. The hike is of medium
difficulty, length 8km, time required 3h 30’.
prohibited island, the least known and most fascinating in the Tuscan
Archipelago. A day trip to the most beautiful corners of the isle.
lacking in civil settlements, but still a prison site, Pianosa boasts a
rich historical and archaeological heritage as well as being a protected
nature reserve. The island possesses a paradoxal contrast between its
unusual flat morphology and its high limestone cliffs; it has an
original village designed in the very early days of the Kingdom of
Italy; the magnificent Paleochristian Catacombs shrouded in mystery; the
remains of the thermal baths belonging to Marcus Postumus Agrippa’s
luxurious domus; the prison sectors of the oldest Agricultural Penal
Colony in the Archipelago, and innumerable coastal paths immersed in the
Mediterranean vegetation. All this is waiting to be discovered on this
enchanting day trip. We will have a chance to swim in the splendid Cala
outside the Stazione Marittima in Piombino at 8.00am. Board the fast
boat for Pianosa (a 2h 15’ journey). The ferry sails along the
north-western coast of the island of Elba. Hike into the prison part of
the island, towards the south-east coast, through the prison sectors
which are now abandoned farmhouses. Picnic lunch (participants supply
their own) (lunch can also be bought at the Bar Ristorante Coop. S.
Giacomo). Tour of the historic centre and the Catacombs (entrance fee €2
to be paid locally). There will be an opportunity for swimming at the
Embarkation for Piombino at
17.00. Arrival at about 19.15.
This day trip will take you on a
discovery of the most traditional and authentic aspect of the island of
Elba, that of the mines which brought the island worldwide fame. We will
walk along the historical mining routes and through the various
quarries. At the end of the walk we will visit the Museo Minerario
an easy open route, overall
distance 5700m, total uphill altitude difference 225m, average time
taken 2h 20’.
This walk is dedicated to geology and
history. We will enter the Park along an external path in order to reach
the evocative medieval fortress (‘rocca’) of San Silvestro where you can
still breathe the atmosphere of the tiny hamlet at the time when it was
abandoned. This is an exceptional and internationally unique
archaeological site. Our itinerary will allow us to discover first-hand
the infinite mineralisations of the Metalliferous Hills and their
geological history, including an exciting visit to the historical
overall length 9000m; uphill altitude difference about 450m .
Close to the old village of Scarlino,
our path will take us through the “Bandite di Scarlino”, a vast area of
woodland overlooking the gulf of Follonica taking in the municipalities
of Castiglione della Pescaia, Gavorrano, Scarlino and Follonica. Our
route along the ridge will lead us to the evocative remains of the 15th
century Convent of Monte Muro, between charcoal pits and chestnut woods
through which you can glimpse the splendid gulf of Follonica.
we will use our own
cars; this is a circular route of medium difficulty; length 8km, actual
walking time 3h 30’, uphill altitude difference 330m.
Bring a small backpack with at least a
litre and a half of water per person, as well as a picnic lunch.
Wear comfortable clothing and walking shoes.
The Farma Nature
Reserve, situated between Monticiano and Roccastrada, incorporates the
middle stretch of the beautiful, wild valley of the river Farma, the
main tributary of the river Merse. The whole Farma valley, especially
the part within the reserve, preserves a number of natural features
which are unique to the province of Siena and among the most interesting
in the country.
In the valley
there are numerous historical traces of the Middle Ages, such as the
mills and the iron mines where iron was worked, powered by the energy
provided by the water. The river Farma became an industrial centre for
the working of iron. The most important ironworks, which we will visit,
used to be known as the “Ruota” (‘wheel’) and is now called the “Ferriera”.
The whole building can still be seen, as well as a dam for the
collection of water a few hundred metres upstream.
When we get to
the attractive river we can bathe in the clear water and have lunch in
the peaceful surroundings in the shade of the lush vegetation. We will
have another stop for bathing at “Canaloni”, a stretch of about 150 m of
river characterised by a marvellous alternation of waterfalls and bars,
while framing this is one of the most ancient rocks in Tuscany (about
350 million years old).
will use our own cars; journey from Ginestra Fiorentina to Scalvaia in
order to reach the beginning of our path. This will take about 1h 15’.
Route of medium difficulty, length 10km, actual walking time 4 hours (if
necessary we can take one of the cars towards the end of the route in
order to avoid the last uphill climb). The first part of the path has
little vegetation for shade. The second part is almost entirely shaded.
Bring a small
backpack with at least a litre and a half of water per person, and a
picnic lunch. Wear comfortable clothing and walking shoes. A pair of
beach sandals and a swimming costume are also recommended.
adventure or for pleasure, crossing the Merse Valley one cannot fail to
be enchanted by the beauty and primitive charm of these places, and it
does not take much to imagine you are still in the Middle Ages. The
splendid Abbey of San Galgano and the hermitage of Montesiepi rise in
the valley of this river, between Chiusdino and Monticiano in the
province of Siena. A characteristic wooden bridge will lead us across
the river Merse to our destination. We will visit this important
religious complex with its wealth of history and legend, and we will see
the famous sword which, according to legend, San Galgano drove into the
rock. On our way back we will visit the medieval village of Chiusdino,
the birthplace of San Galgano, which still conserves the relics of the
route with negligible uphill slopes; actual walking time 2h 30’; length
about 5 km.
In the area between the Puntone di
Scarlino and Punta Ala, halfway between the lush Mediterranean maquis
and the crystal clear sea, this walk offers breathtaking views over the
Gulf of Follonica and the southern islands of the Tuscan Archipelago.
Taking advantage of the late summer
weather, we could head for the beach that is known as one of the most
beautiful in Italy, reachable only via one of the many paths. It owes
its name to the violin-like sound perceived when walking along the fine
white sand. The clear, warm water might entice us into having the last
swim of the season, having walked through the lush Mediterranean
vegetation and holm-oak woods.
a circular route
along paths and “white roads”. Difficulty: medium-easy; uphill altitude
difference about 300m; average walking time 3h 45’.
This walk leads
through the lush vegetation of the river delta marshland at the mouth of
the Ombrone. It is a charming route offering opportunities for
birdwatching and sightings of the various mammals present in the park.
We will walk through the Granducale pinewood to the wild sandy coast
where we can swim while admiring the view of the Tuscan islands.
circular route, partly shaded by plants and trees. Average walking time:
2h; length 5km. No altitude difference.
Bring a small
backpack with at least a litre and a half of water per person, and a
picnic lunch. Wear comfortable clothing and walking shoes. A sunhat,
sunscreen, towel, binoculars and a swimming costume are also
Through the lush
vegetation of the park to the medieval tower of Castel Marino, perched
on the edge of the ancient cliffs. Below lies the Granducale pinewood
which covers the wide plain between the sea and the mouth of the Ombrone
river. In the background you can see the white sands of the attractive
return route of medium difficulty for averagely fit people. Partly
covered by plants and trees; average walking time 3h (each way); length,
about 6km; total uphill altitude difference 170m. From Alberese Visitor
Centre a shuttle bus will take us to the beginning of the path and will
pick us up again on the way back.
a small backpack with at least a litre and a half of water per person,
and a picnic lunch. Wear comfortable clothing and walking shoes.