Carefully watching them, concentrating only on the sharp peaks, white and rocky, they would not even seem to be in Tuscany. The beaches of Versilia stretch around them, rhythmically bathed by the waves of Tyrrhenian Sea, and in the distance you can even catch a glimpse of the hills of the Lucchesia.
They are the Apuan Alps. Alps in both name and in appearance, mountains so different from the rest of the Apennine mountain range, that completely unveil their magnificence in the northern most edge of Tuscany, between the provinces of Massa Carrara and Lucca. However, you must not be frightened by the austere appearance of the Apuan Alps as they conceal magnificent treasures of nature only found by exploring the complex net of tracks that pass through them.
This incredibly unique territory – created through a 220-million-year process of receding waterlines and a lifting seabed – hosts a huge variety of fauna and especially flora, abundant with native species that have thrived in this unique local microclimate.
Similarly fitting is the relationship that the Apuan Alps developed over the centuries with man. For ages they have been a land of passage for wayfarers travelling along the Via Francigena and bandits seeking refuge in the arduous terrain. These steep slopes were traversed on foot by salt and chestnut merchants and later, the world-renowned marble - a commodity of priceless value – was requested over centuries for their quality by the most noteworthy sculptors of the Renaissance, among them the great Michelangelo.
Our itinerary is aimed at hiking enthusiasts that are already comfortable on hiking trails and in mountainous environments. The point of departure of each excursion must be reached by car.
So, if you are amongst those that are not easily intimidated by effort and long walks, follow us and see how this expedition is worthy of adding to your most beautiful memories.