Rediscovering the gentle mountains

serra-pistoiese
La riscoperta della montagna morbida

This medieval village is the ideal destination for a genuinely slow vacation.

Slow travel has been definitively ordained one of the hottest trends in tourism in recent years, so much so that some areas have tried to re-invent themselves so as to fit on to this track. Other areas, however, have rediscovered their natural vocation for “slow” tourism. Serra Pistoiese has shown leadership in this arena since the 1960s as many families from the nearby cities have chosen it as their holiday destination. Now, as then, it is not difficult to understand the reasons for this preference.

Time seems to have truly stood still here: the days are marked by the rhythms of nature and the square has retained its character as a place for socializing, offering an idyllic realm set between nature and culture. Serra Pistoiese truly embodies the ideal tourist destination of our times because, if its “isolation” ensures true relaxation, its easy access to nearby towns and Wi-Fi availability make it a village that has not lost contact with the outside world. A lively summer holiday resort, thanks to the villagers and the holidaymakers, Serra Pistoiese offers many not-to-be-missed events as well as tours of art and nature.

Serra Pistoiese

A small chest filled with treasures, Serra Pistoiese is a village of great charm that leaves visitors speechless. The wide open spaces that characterize it, in fact, offer a glimpse, on one hand, of the sea (Cap Corse and the island of Gorgona) and, on the other, the highest peaks of the Tuscan-Emilian Apennines (Monte Cimone, Rondinaio, Corno alle Scale, and Alpe Tre Potenze). Many traces of a glorious past can be found along the narrow streets of the old town: Medici coats-of-arms, unusual upside-down images, Florentine lilies, and war memorials. Serra offers an artistic-historical tour that reveals the village’s pride and history, including wars, struggles, and changes in power. Of particular interest is the Church of Sant’Andrea di Furfalo that is completely isolated in the middle of a chestnut grove, set along the medieval road that leads from the village of Panicagliora to the castle of Serra Pistoiese. In 1327, Castruccio Castracani Antelminelli, the lifelong consul of Lucca, and his followers laid siege to the Serra castle and destroyed the ancient parish church. Today only its imposing ruins remain.
Ideal, however, for rediscovering the flavors of country cooking is the event Piazzette in Festa. On the first Saturday after Ferragosto on August 15th, Serra Pistoiese offers tastings of typical dishes, from the classic necci made with chestnut flour to the farinata di cavolo nero, a type of soup. Later, there is a historical procession with flag-waving, music, and entertainment.

Instructions for use
HOW TO ARRIVE
BY CAR: Serra Pistoiese is located about 25 km (a 20-minute drive) from Montecatini Terme, Pistoia, or Pescia, Tuscany’s capital city of flowers.
Less than an hour from Abetone and Florence, it is both a holiday destination in the country or as a starting point from which to explore the north of Tuscany.
BY BUS: Serra Pistoiese is easily accessible by the regular bus service from Pistoia (BluBus Copit) and Montecatini Terme (BluBus Lazzi).
Hours and information: www.blubus.it

TEXTS

Luca Parenti

PHOTO

Marco Innocenti

Lorenzo Amerighi

 

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