Situated between mountains and the sea, Versilia is not only one of the most popular seaside locations of Tuscany and Italy, but it is also a place full of activities to spend a fun summer shopping, sunbathing and playing sport. Sea, mountain, shops, discos, villages, water sports, hiking and good food. There is really something to suit all tastes.
Here are 10 things to do in Versilia and surroundings during the Summer:
- Versilia by bike
From Viareggio to Marina di Massa, Versilia could be a very long bike path. More than 20 km of road along the wide beach and the blue sea, strictly to go by bike. From Viareggio with its promenade to Lido di Camaiore, through Marina di Pietrasanta and Forte dei Marmi, the ride gives the best when covered at sunset, with the sun disappears and the sky becomes inflamed.
- Go shopping in a local market
If the luxury shops in the Forte dei Marmi are not for you, there’s nothing better than to immerse yourself in one of the local markets to find opportunities worthy of real boutique. In each location the market is held on one day of the week (in Lido di Camaiore on Monday, in Viareggio on Tuesday, in Forte dei Marmi on Wednesday and Sunday, in Marina di Pietrasanta on Saturday) and there you can find objects in leather, handmade handbags, cashmere garments, but also swimwear, accessories and much more.
- Discover the Apuan Alps
The Apuan Alps, 400 km of mountains, surround Versilia and offer many villages, peaks and trails to discover unexplored areas of nature and breathtaking views, and more than 200 caves. Reaching by car one of the many villages perched in the valleys between the mountains, you can take various excursions for all levels of experience, and then have a meal in places like St. Anna di Stazzema.
Among the must-see attractions, the “Wind Cave”, in the middle of the Natural Park of the Apuan Alps, one of the most picturesque in Europe, and Vagli Lake, which houses under its waters the ” Submerged City” of Careggine , also called “Ghost City.”
- Learn the art of sculpture in Pietrasanta
A few kilometers from the coast, lies the picturesque Pietrasanta, called “Little Athens” because of the numerous artists who have decided to take up residence here. Marble work here is an art, and there are many workshops in the city, some open to the public that can be visited, others that host cafes or restaurants.
In summer they multiply the art exhibitions in galleries and shows in the streets, and a walk in this small town is a must for anyone who spends a bit of time in Versilia.
- Explore the marble quarries
The white marble has been for two thousand years, since the Imperial Age, the main wealth of the territory. Fantiscritti, a huge amphitheater dug, the “Cava della Piana”, the place that inspired Dante Alighieri for some parts of his “Inferno”, and Colonnata, one of the most famous quarry, are among the most known caves. There are numerous tours to discover the suggestive rock galleries and picturesque views, and people can even rent a bicycle to explore the area.
- Go to La Versiliana
Between the promenade of Marina di Pietrasanta and Forte dei Marmi there is a pine forest, beloved by sportsmen and children, which houses one of the most culturally vibrant and well-known Versilia places: Versiliana. The Versiliana Park has the same name of the villa inside it, known for having hosted, among others, Gabriele D’Annunzio. Here, every summer there is the Versiliana Festival, started in 1980 under the guidance of Franco Martini. A rich artistic program offers shows, concerts, debates, artistic and literary events, along with the typical afternoon meetings, born with the aim to revive the tradition of cultural coteries and characterized by the presence of celebrities of culture, politics, entertainment, science and even more. Info: www.laversilianafestival.it.
- Explore the “Antro del Corchia”
The most important cave in Europe is located in the village of Levigliani, and is part of the complex of Mount Corchia. The starting point to visit it is in an abandoned marble quarry, 860 meters above sea level. After a tortuous path, you arrive at the “Gallery of the Stalactites”, the most beautiful part of the cave, where a huge pillar seems to hold up the whole cave.
To visit it, you need to book a visit and wear appropriate clothing (inside there are about 7 degrees).
- Tasting lard in Colonnata
Perched on a marble mountain just above Carrara, there is Colonnata, a small town with three hundred inhabitants famous throughout Italy for a specialty produced in the area: the lard. In all the taverns of the village is served this delicacy, originally eaten by quarrymen, who tasted it thin and with bread and tomato. The cars are not allowed, but a walk up to the monument of the quarry, located at the highest point of the village, is an experience that is worth doing.
- Try an extreme sport or a water sport
From hang-gliding, up to renting a small plane at the airport of Cinquale: opportunities for fearless people are a lot in Versilia. Sportsmen and water sports lovers can try waterskiing, surfing (there many surf schools on the coast), renting a personal watercraft or a boat to reach the nearby Portofino and the Cinque Terre. (Read more about The magic of the Cinque Terre, just a stone’s throw from Versilia)
- Go dancing in night on the beach
Versilia is the queen of the night of Tuscany, it hosts locals who have made the history of the clubs, and still offers opportunities to suit all tastes. You can start with an aperitif on the walk of the dock, followed by a drink at Viareggio, continue with a glamorous dinner of fried fish in a room of the Fort and end the evening dancing in a nightclub with his feet on the sand.
Are you looking for accommodation in Versilia? Find out more on www.unahotels.com