HOLIDAYS AND SHORT BREAKS IN MASSA MARITTIMA: SLEEP, WATCH AND ENJOY
Did you choose Massa Marittima as your holiday destination? Then, we can figure out much about you. You love history, the good food, plunging into rare beauty atmosphere and pretend that time never pass.
The historic old town, its well-tended alleys, the smiling faces of the locals, the view across the plain below that gently slopes to the sea of Follonica as well as its excellent restaurants, inns and wineries, make Massa Marittima the ideal destination for a well-being holiday.
Considering its inestimable historical and architectonical value, the city has been proposed for the addition to the UNESCO’s World Heritage List. Furthermore, it has been awarded with the Orange Flag by the Italian Touring Club which assign the prize to small hinterland towns, distinguishing themselves in the enhancement of cultural heritage, environmental protection, quality in hospitality, food and local products.
All the main historical and political buildings of this medieval city stand in the central square: the Cathedral, the Palazzo del Podestà, the Town Hall, the Loggia del Mercato and only a few steps ahead the Mint and the Public Fountain.
In the Upper Town stands the mighty fortress with the Clock Tower, built under the domination of Siena. Open to public allows a wonderful view over the plain and the sea, as far as you are not afraid of heights!
In addition to the historical and architectonic heritage and museums, you can enjoy many leisure opportunities including hiking, trekking, biking and horse riding.
With reference to events, two are the main summer ones: the Balestro del Girifalco and the Toscana Foto Festival.
The Balestro del Girifalco is a very popular event, which is held twice a year: on May and August. It is a major historical reenactment of medieval Tuscany and it is a crossbow competition amongst the three “terzieri” (neighbourhoods) of the city. Twentyfour crossbowmen take part at the competition. Before the competition, a marching parade with more than 150 people dressed up in medieval costumes, move along the ancient streets of the city, toward the beautiful setting of the thirteen-century cathedral square, where the competition takes place.
Following the spectacular flag weavers show that fascinates tourists from all over the world, the competition begins. The archer, after having nocked his arrow, shoot it towards the target, locally called “corniolo” or “tasso”, which sits at the distance of 36 m. The competitor whose arrow hits closest to the centre of the target gets a symbolic golden arrow and the winningteam, the “Palio” or “Drappellone”, a silk painting by a local artist .
The Toscana Foto Festival, focuses on photography and since 1992 has become an event of international importance being Franco Fontana the Art Director. Throughout the summer, the programme includes artists meetings with leading internationally renowned photographers such as Oliviero Toscani and Steve McCurry, exhibitions and workshops.
Seamless, the magnificence of art calls to mind the extraordinary beauty of the surrounding landscapes. At the foot of Massa Marittima, just two minutes away from Podere Cascatelle and Agriletizia Holiday Homes, it stands the wonderful Lago dell’Accesa in a wild environment, protected from wind. The lake is a karst lake with a perimeter of 1825 mts. Its maximum depth is about 45 mts in the centre part.
The whole area is protected and it is home of a great variety of freshwater fish while aquatic birds nest on its banks which get quite crowded during the migratory time. The surrounding area is particularly interesting also from an archaeological point of view. Infact, in recent years, an Etruscan settlement – likely connected with the exploitation of mineral mines nearby- has been brought to light.The Archaeological Park is open all year round and it is provided with explanatory panels while the archaeological finds are on display at the Archaelogical Museum of Massa Marittima.
If you need some rest, tables and benches are available in the shade of the surrounding wood while a nice swim in the lake will be invigorating! Whatever reason made you chose one of our apartments, you will be able to experience a marvelous holiday, while in planning your days you will be spoiled for choice! Sunbathing at the sea, relaxing at the lake, walking in the countryside, visiting the many interesting museums or natural parks, swimming in a spa, exploring the several medieval villages or historical city centres of the area while maybe tasting some gorgeous food and some great wines!