Castelnuovo Val di Cecina
Nature, geothermal power and medieval towns
A pine-cone or a bunch of grapes; many are the shapes that visitors see in the particular structure of the village of Castelnuovo Val di Cecina. Perched on top of a hill, among rich chestnut woods, this medieval town features narrow stone alleyways, medieval gateways and sudden views of the valley.
Castelnuovo Val di Cecina is the destination for many nature lovers who can choose from a variety of natural paths to explore the surroundings and discover peculiar geothermal phenomena such as the “putizze” (cold gas emissions) and the “fumaroles” (steamy gas emissions). Visitors can also look for panoramic views on Val di Cornia and Golfo di Piombino or visit old settlements that belonged to the Etruscans (6th century BC hypogeum), to the Greeks (Bagnone thermal area), to the Middle Ages (Romanesque parish churches of Saints Filippo and Giacomo) or to modern times (the copper mines, no longer in use).
The natural geothermal phenomena of Sasso Pisano are a unique, wild and barren landscape, a striking natural environment which could be compared to a “hellish place”. In the Valle del Diavolo (Devil's Valley), strong colour contrasts, rare vegetation, constantly forming minerals, red-hot rocks and hot water sources can be found among steam and bubbling waterholes, traces of an illustrious past.
“The ancient tradition of wellbeing made possible by geothermal energy”
In Sasso Pisano, the Etruscans and the Romans had already built beautiful thermal baths which can still be seen today. The old tradition of well-being made possible by geothermal power is renewed with the biolago: thermal pools particularly recommended for those who enjoy some extra time to relax in one of the most evocative areas of Tuscany.
The town hosts the Etruscan Roman Museum Antiquarium, which contains the most interesting discoveries made during archaeological excavations in the “Bagnone” area. These include: a lead and tin “Menerva”, a bronze statue of an offerer, 3rd century AD coins, a terracotta bath-tub and tiles with the Etruscan seal.
The Etruscan-Roman Baths of Bagnone are located in the centre of this picturesque territory, characterised by geothermal phenomena and a wealth of hot water springs at temperatures over 60C°. The excavations have highlighted very particular archaeological styles, structured in different sectors and showing various periods in history which stretch over the area so far investigated. This is the only example of existing Etruscan thermal baths in the territory of the old Etruria.
Finally, very interesting is the educational geothermal route where it is possible to see a small geyser that can be visited with an authorised guide only. In the summer, guided tours are organised several times a week, while during the low season group visits are available on request.
What to do
The agriturismi (holiday farms) provide accommodation which most promotes sustainability that distinguishes this land of rural houses scattered in the silence of the countryside. Castles, villas and historical residences are immersed in an aristocratic atmosphere of old times. Awakening in Valdelsa Valdicecina is a unique experience.
Historical dwellings, charming country houses, refined relais or ancient castles, all immersed in the countryside, to share the experience of what it was like to live in another time. Find your favourite accommodation and enjoy each awakening in the beauty of Valdelsa Valdicecina.