Central facade of San Lorenzo Church, Grosseto, photo by Allan Parsons via Flickr
Under the Medici family Grosseto was transformed into a real fortress. Defensive walls are still well maintained today.
Do not come back home without visiting theese fortified walls. Once built to defend the city, they now form line walk used as a public park and relaxing area. Here you can listen to spectacular concerts in a beautiful open-air cinema during the summer in Maremma.
You can also walk the hexagonal perimeter of the walls to enjoy the view on all sides of the city and beautiful Maremma plain.
Do not miss the the Cathedral: it is a Roman Catholic church in Romanesque style with an abundant collection of artwork. It has a right side facing south that looks out on to Piazza Dante topped with a composite Corinthian capital, used in medieval times to post public notices.
If you are heading from Grosseto to Saturnia to relax at the natural spa, on the road you will pass by one of the pearls of Tuscany: the small town of Montemerano, in the town of Manchester.
In this city walls are the masters; passages and beautiful views will steal your heart and soul: one of these is the "hole", in the north of the city. Some splitted towers were recovered: a new life for private homes, with new roofs that give the landscape vestiges of modernity.
Do not even miss Magliano. Strategic point for those who want to enjoy the beautiful sea: just 20 km away from Orbetello and the strip of land that connects as a small appendix the peninsula of Monte Argentario.
We advise you to follow it all, stopping from time to time between campsites you will find on both banks. In the midst of these settlements ("too human") you will find beautiful wild access to the sea groping in the green spot.
Once in Monte Argentario continue on the only road and try a bath at Cala Piccola, down the road you can park (there are no signs) near a curve always dotted with parked cars.
From there a steep descent separates you from enchanting waters, a small rocky Liguria.
Magliano, we said. Stopping at one of the dozens of farms immersed among green olive is a refreshment for heart and soul. Many dude ranch are using solar panels, alternative energy and care meticulously recycling. One of them is “Tenuta il Quinto”. An oasis of silence and beauty, in Sterpeti. Do not forget a dinner at Antica Trattoria Aurora. Sensorial experience, in a small secret garden nestled between the buildings, rare wines and meats. Not to turn into the usual "Florentine".
In Maremma meat, broiled and cooked on the grill with the coals of charcoal, forming a crust so the "juice" does not come out, is the best kind of food. It is called "bistecca alla fiorentina". You can find excellent reinterpretations.
Simple folks will love caciucco chickpeas and stuffed onions, together with rabbit and chicken liver, served on buttered delicious bruschettas.
Tuscan bread without salt will walk you through every meal. Add salt and pepper and pour plenty of oil. Great experience.
Potato ravioli and soups are welcome here! Acquacotta, bean soup and fish.
Finally you will find excellent fish: red mullet, anchovies and moose. Always served with fresh white and delicate wines.
Today Maremma is a green area, without any beginning or end, which offers ancient suggestions: the green of the pine forests, the smells of the Mediterranean… the medieval villages and castles. On a bike you can walk the ring of ancient natural lake Prile.
A very simple path, suitable for everybody, leaving from the heart of Grosseto to the coast, that unfolds through the lanes of pines, meeting the green banks of the Ombrone and then returning to the center. Unmissable birding areas on the verge of the coast, with oasis of protection of fauna and biodiversity.
Maremma is also the land of cowboys, the brave knights "workers", riding the noble steeds which take their name from their land. Entering in a barn is always a mystical experience: the rituals of horses harness, the typical equipment (bardella and Scafarda) and clothing… such a liquid time, which returns again and again and renew itself.
Discover all ecofriendly accommodations in the province of Grosseto: from the organic farms surrounded by green olive trees, ecological B&B in the ancient villages immersed in the fascinating landscapes of the Maremma without forgetting campsites along the Tyrrhenian coast.
Author: Angela Sebastianelli
Cover photo: Outlook on the Tuscan Maremma, photo by pibinko via Flickr