One of the most well-known parts of northern Italy is Tuscany and for a very good reason. Tuscany is full of some great experiences, small mountains cities, huge sunflower fields, fantastic foods, sunny weather, kind people and a very inspiring lifestyle. Most of us know the large cities of Tuscany, such as Pisa, Livorno, Sienna, Florence and so on. These are really nice places to go, but there is some true beauty in the small cities around. In this post we will focus on some of the cities we think is really worth the visit.
Volterra – a small town with around 11.000 people in the hills south of Pisa. The town was a settlement and an important Etruscan center, with an original civilization; it became a municipal in the Roman Age. The city was a bishop’s residence in the 5th century, and its episcopal power was affirmed during the 12th century. With the decline of the episcopate, Volterra became a place of interest of The Florentines, whose forces conquered.
Today Volterra offers great historical experiences. You will find both the Etruscan museum, the old castle of Volterra and and very impressive old buildings. Visiting Volterra, is really like a time travel. Furthermore the town provides a lot of different concerts, festivals and cultural shows. One of the times we visited Volterra, was during their “white nights” summer festival week. The town was really vibrant, and all restaurants was throwing a huge party in the streets right outside the doorstep. It seemed like the number of inhabitants had exploted to 110.000 at least. We had such a great time here, and when we thought it was time to find the car and head for our home, the party was still rocking.
During this summer festival, there was also a lot of jazz-concerts in the squares of the city, samba concerts in the streets, and a lot more.
So if you are going to Tuscany, Volterra is one of the cities you must visit, and try to time it to some of the festival days in the town. see http://www.volterra-toscana.net/eng/welcome.html for more information about events in the town. You need half a day there at least.
to be continued…