Book your stay: Mediterranean fragrances and colors will welcome you.
Volterra: between art, history and beauty.
Today, Volterra is a city with a characteristic medieval appearance, where it is still possible to enjoy the atmosphere of an ancient village, thanks to the relative isolation that has limited industrial and commercial development, preventing that massacre that often accompanies economic development.
In Volterra history has left its mark with continuity from the Etruscan period until the nineteenth century, with artistic and monumental testimonies of great importance, which can be admired simply walking through the streets of the historic center, but also visiting the city’s museums: the Museum Etruscan, the Civic Art Gallery, the Museum of Sacred Art, the Alabaster Ecomuseum. Alongside these monuments you can find a pristine landscape, a quality of life still human and an artistic handicraft unique in the world: alabaster.
Modern Volterra is almost completely enclosed within the circle of the thirteenth-century walls and is the arrival point of a process of urban expansion that began around the year one thousand and finds its conclusion at the beginning of the 1300s with the construction of defensive systems near the main doors of the city. In fact, the city reduced in castrense form in the late-ancient period (sec.V) and whose perimeter is today marked by the Piano di Castello, Porta all’Arco, via Roma, via Buonparenti, via dei Sarti and via di Sotto, develops around the ancient church of Santa Maria (current cathedral) and the contiguous pratus episcopatus, today piazza dei Priori, while outside the castrum or castellum, after the year one thousand rise the village of Santa Maria, now via Ricciarelli, perpendicular to the walls of the castle, and the village of Abate, now Via dei Sarti, parallel to the walls themselves.
At the edge of the meadow are the crossroads made up of powerful towers and which are the tangible sign of urban development towards east, west and north: they are the crux viarum of Buomparenti, di Sant’Agnolo and dei Baldinotti.
In the course of the twelfth century on the pratus episcopatus not only is the domus comunis (Palazzo dei Priori, 1208) adhered to the apses of the cathedral, but the terms of the same square are also delimited and the height of the towers is limited in different zones urban areas meticulously described. In line with the Palazzo dei Priori, the S. Giovanni square stands in a typically Tuscan urban setting, where all the buildings relevant to the action of the church overlook: the cathedral, the baptistery, the house of the Opera, the hospital of Santa Maria , the cemetery (now via Turazza).
Today, the medieval circuit of the walls enclosed, until a few years ago, almost the entire city that has not had a strong urban expansion over the centuries, remaining, therefore, almost equal to itself with its four medieval villages, connected to the city by roads uphill. These are the villages of S. Alessandro, on the Via delle Saline overlooking the Val di Cecina, S.Lazzaro, on the way to Florence and Siena, S.Stefano and S.Giusto, the furthest from the city, near the Balze and dominated by the mighty bulk of the church dedicated to the patron; is by definition the village of Volterra so that, commonly, the village of S.Giusto is referred to as “the villages”.
At the end of the nineteenth century and in the first thirty years of this century in the area of Borgo S.Lazzero the great complex of the psychiatric hospital was built, transformed today into a modern hospital structure, where the eclecticism of the early twentieth century mixes with the grandiose and pompous architecture of the fascist period.
Also in the S.Lazzero area you can see the old railway station, inaugurated in 1912, which connected the city to Saline through bold scaffolding.
Vada: crystal sea and fabulous beaches.
Famous for its wide beaches, of light and fine sand, more than 5 km long, and for the crystalline sea, repeatedly awarded with the Blue Flag, Vada is a place frequented by tourists from all over the world.
The center of the town is characterized by Piazza Garibaldi, dating back to the Lorraine period. Not far away is the imposing Renaissance structure of the watchtower, a fine example of defense architecture.
On the coast, shaded by thick pine forests, characteristic bathing establishments alternate with wide stretches of free beach, where you can rent beach umbrellas and deckchairs. Le Secche di Vada, a stretch of sea characterized by shallow waters, attracts fishing enthusiasts in every season.
The Rada del Saraceno, the Pineta di Pietra Bianca, Molino a Fuoco, the Mazzanta, are known and fascinating corners of this town, which has very ancient historical origins.
In fact, it was the ancient natural harbor of Volterra, it was already known in 330 BC, then remembered by Cicero and other Latin poets. Later it became a refuge for Saracen pirates, engaged in raids on the sea, of which amphorae and terracotta vases lying on the seabed are testimony. Important findings, in the town of San Gaetano, have brought to light the remains of a large harbor district built in the second half of the first century AD. C, of a spa building and a market.
Sport and relaxation center, Vada has a rich and varied accommodation offer. It is an important nautical center and has a small port equipped for mooring boats. The tasty seafood cuisine, rich in tradition and inventiveness, characterizes the gastronomy of this town and is at the center of characteristic events, such as Vada sull’Aia.
Montescudaio: city of DOC wine.
A historic village of considerable importance to discover by bike and on horseback.
Originally home to a Benedictine monastery, in the Middle Ages Montescudaio became an important village thanks to its strategic position.
Montescudaio is part of the National Wine City Association and boasts its own DOC which includes the municipalities of Val di Cecina, excluding Volterra.
In 1968 the Wine Festival was born, while in 1977 the wine obtained the denomination of controlled origin with two typologies: a red wine based on Sangiovese, Trebbiano, Malvasia and other varieties, and a white wine based on Trebbiano, Malvasia and Vermentino which can also be produced as dry, semi-dry or sweet vin santo.
In addition to being the City of Wine, Montescudaio is also Città del Pane, the classic Tuscan tasteless cooked in a wood oven.