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5 family-friendly ideas for a summer in Lunigiana!
Photo © Matteo Dunchi
Photo © Matteo Dunchi

5 family-friendly ideas for a summer in Lunigiana

Among nature, culture and adventures

Lunigiana
by  Lunigiana

Summer in Lunigiana is a true triumph of adventure, fun and emotions. In addition to the numerous events organized throughout the area and guided tours, there are so many activities and experiences dedicated to families with children. You can relax and be enchanted by the breathtaking views, but also choose an adventure in the cool rivers or in the prehistoric caves; Those who love nature and the outdoors can follow the ancient paths or learn about the life of shepherds and animals on educational farms. And why not also visit the many mediaeval villages with their particular and distinct castles full of secrets and surprises?

All you have to do is choose how to enjoy your trip in Lunigiana to the fullest!

Contents
  • 1.
    Educational working farms and a day with the shepherd
  • 2.
    Excursions in the Tuscan-Emilian Apennine National Park
  • 3.
    Fun and magic in the castles of Lunigiana
  • 4.
    Riding the E-bikes along the Ciclovia dei Castelli
  • 5.
    Incredible adventures in the Caves of Equi Terme
1.

Educational working farms and a day with the shepherd

A day with the shepherd
A day with the shepherd - Credit: Matilde Ferrari - Sigeric Servizi per il Turismo

In Lunigiana it is possible to have a truly unique and memorable experience: to come into direct and playful contact with farm and breeding animals, to learn about their habits and live the life of a farmer for a day! Immersed in the green of the Lunigiana landscape, the agricultural companies and their educational farms will allow you to take guided tours to discover their activities, the animals and the origin of the products they consume: rabbits, chickens, geese, ducks, sheep, cows and donkeys, which are lovingly taken care of. But it will also be the opportunity to discover some of the species that naturally live in the surrounding area such as squirrels, foxes and pheasants. And do not miss the opportunity to spend a day walking with the shepherd, along the renowned Via Francigena or in the splendid scenery of the Logarghena meadows, to discover the everyday life of the flock with the herding and guard dogs, and finally the process of milking and cheese: an outdoor experience savoring ancient knowledge.

1.

Excursions in the Tuscan-Emilian Apennine National Park

Wood by night
Wood by night - Credit: Sigeric Servizi per il turismo

Hectares of beech and chestnut woods, green meadows, rivers, waterfalls and pastures embrace numerous villages of eastern Lunigiana including Filattiera, Bagnone, Licciana Nardi, Comano and Fivizzano. A protected area rich in biodiversity and breathtaking views with many "child-friendly" adventures, perfect for bringing kids closer to life in the open air. Starting with the many streams that run through Lunigiana, most of them form more or less known natural pools, water jumps and waterfalls along their path. They are often hidden in the uncontaminated nature perfect for a regenerating break; among the easiest to reach are the Anguillara and the Mulini di Marzo in Bagnone, also the Bozzi delle Fate and the Marmitte dei Giganti in Fivizzano.

There are plenty of ideas and opportunities for itineraries and quiet walks to discover the natural beauties. Just think of the Via Francigena stretch that winds through the villages of Ponticello, Filattiera, Filetto and Villafranca in Lunigiana or to Lago Paduli at the Passo del Lagastrello where it is possible to walk around the perimeter of the big lake. Also, the particular Big Bench of Comano cannot be missed, a giant bench from which you can admire the imposing peaks of the Apennines and the Apuan Alps and enjoy the view of the pastures, where it is also possible to find horses in the wild. And why not let yourself be fascinated by visiting the woods of the Park at night, to discover nature and animal life that awakens from dusk to dawn. Only the natural light of the stars and fireflies will show the way and through the reproduction of sounds we will try to contact the most characteristic inhabitants of the wood. 

1.

Fun and magic in the castles of Lunigiana

The Malaspina Castle of Monti - Licciana Nardi
The Malaspina Castle of Monti - Licciana Nardi - Credit: Matilde Ferrari

A land steeped in history and a pinch of mystery, dotted with mediaeval villages, imposing fortresses and ancient churches are all a symbol of a borderland and meeting point between different cultures. Among the most evocative historical centres we find Bagnone, Filattiera, Filetto, Fivizzano, Fosdinovo, Mulazzo and Pontremoli. It is thanks to the fortifications erected mainly by the Malaspina family which governed over centuries, Lunigiana has often been defined as the "Land of the Hundred Castles". Although over time many have fallen into ruin or disappeared completely, some have now become stately homes that are still inhabited and seven of them are still open to the public and can be visited: the Piagnaro Castle in Pontremoli, which houses the Museum of the Statues Steles of Lunigiana, the Fortress of the Brunella in Aulla with the Museum of Natural History of Lunigiana, the Castle of Castiglione del Terziere, which houses the Niccolò V Humanistic Studies Center with a very rich historical library, the Lusuolo Castle in Mulazzo, with the Museum of the Emigration of the People of Tuscany, the Malaspina Castle in Fosdinovo, the Monti Castle in Licciana Nardi and the Malgrate Castle in Villafranca in Lunigiana.

For all information on opening hours please click on the following link www.istitutovalorizzazionecastelli.it

 

1.

Riding the E-bikes along the Ciclovia dei Castelli

On the tracks of Lunigiana Bike Area
On the tracks of Lunigiana Bike Area - Credit: Matteo Dunchi

If you love family bike rides, the Ciclovia dei Castelli is for you! Thanks to this easy loop cycling itinerary, mostly along the banks of the Magra river, you can reach and discover some of the most evocative villages of Lunigiana such as Pontremoli, Filattiera, Bagnone, Villafranca and Mulazzo, as well as castles, museums and hidden treasures along the way.

The itinerary partly follows the path of the Via Francigena in Lunigiana with no particular starting point and is indicated by means of special signs, for a length of about 47 km, between tarmac and dirt road, and a maximum height difference of about 150 meters. It can be done in a day or divided into stages, to give the chance to connect with other itineraries and have the time to visit all the attractions that the area offers.

For more information on itineraries and bike rental please click on the following link www.lunigianabikearea.com
 

1.

Incredible adventures in the Caves of Equi Terme

Caves in Equi Terme
Caves in Equi Terme - Credit: Matilde Ferrari - Sigeric Servizi per il turismo

There are many family activities that can be done inside the Geo Archeo Adventure Park in Fivizzano, in the heart of the Regional Park of the Apuan Alps, a UNESCO Global Geopark. Immersed in a priceless geological and naturalistic heritage, anyone can become a geologist for a day by entering the millenary karst cave or by visiting the ApuanGeoLab, the interactive Museum of geological sciences: why do earthquakes occur? How were the Apennines born? And how did the waters excavate the Apuan Alps creating the karst caves? Discovering our planet and its transformations can only be fun! For the little ones a Kids Adventure Park is available, a play and educational area with acrobatic routes that include ziplines, footbridges, suspension bridges, and an aid climbing gym. For the older ones it will be possible to fly for 200 meters on the Fagli stream with an adrenaline-pumping zipline, climb a fascinating rock cliff or try their hand at a Speleo Adventure to explore a section of the cave where until recently only speleologists managed to get inside!

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