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Park of the Metalliferous Hills

Naturalistic attractions

A journey through the geological and mining history of an ancient territory

The Park of the Metalliferous Hills (Tuscan Mining UNESCO Geopark) is part of the UNESCO World Network of Geoparks and was created in 2003 to preserve the millennia-old history of metallurgy and mining activities carried out in this territory.

It covers more than 1,000 square kilometers in a mainly hilly area with a very important geological heritage, comprised in the seven municipalities of Follonica, Gavorrano, Massa Marittima, Montieri, Monterotondo Marittimo, Roccastrada and Scarlino.

The park includes 34 different mining sites, 41 geosites, 19 thousand hectares of protected areas dedicated to biodiversity, and over 130 sites of historical, archeological and landscaping interest. In fact, the mining and geological history of this large area begins as early as the Chalcolithic period, when jasper was mined at the La Pietra geosite along the Farma valley in the municipality of Roccastrada, and was then developed by the Etruscans, who began the systematic mining and processing of the area's resources. For years, in fact, the Etruscan cities of Populonia and Vetulonia fought over these valleys and hills.

Park of the Metalliferous Hills
Park of the Metalliferous Hills - Credit: Parco delle Colline Metallifere - pagina FB

In medieval times, the richness of the soil made the territory's fortune. This is evidenced by the fact that artists of the time such as Ambrogio Lorenzetti, Giovanni and Andrea Pisano were called upon to create valuable works in Massa Marittima. Moreover, in the 13th century, one of the first mining Codes in Europe was drafted here. The "Ordinamenta super arte rameriae et argenteriae civitatis Massae," sets the rules for the proper conduct of mining activities from prospecting to well safety, from the health of miners to the marketing of extracted products.

Today the park's industrial archeology trails offer visitors the opportunity to approach a rich heritage, where history, art, the environment, technology and different working cultures are the elements of a complex and millenary history, whose underlying theme is the rediscovery of the traces of mining and underground work.

Museo Subterraneo of Massa Marittima
Museo Subterraneo of Massa Marittima - Credit: Parco delle Colline Metallifere - pagina FB

È possibile accedere al parco attraverso le Porte, punti di informazione e accoglienza, dedicati a conoscere tutte le risorse, le esperienze e le opportunità di questa area protetta unica in Toscana.

I visitatori possono quindi iniziare la loro visita dal MAGMA Museo delle Arti in Ghisa della Maremma di Follonica, dal Museo della Miniera - Subterraneo di Massa Marittima, dal MUBIA GeoMuseo delle Biancane a Moterotondo Marittimo o dal Maps Museo Archeologico di Portus Scabris di Scarlino.

Si possono trovare notizie sulle attività del parco anche presso il Centro di accoglienza e Infopoint di Gavorrano, al Centro civico Ribolla e al Centro visite della Riserva Cornate e Fosini a Gerfalco.


Parco delle Colline Metallifere
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