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Biancane Geosite
Photo © Alice Russolo e Nicola Santini
Photo © Alice Russolo e Nicola Santini

UNESCO Global Geoparks in Tuscany

Two parks all to discover for unforgettable adventures

A Geopark is an area that possesses a significant geological heritage and a sustainable development strategy that also includes the constant involvement of the local population.
One of the main characteristics of geoparks is the presence in each of them of geological sites of significant scientific importance, rarity, aesthetic or educational value: geological heritage is one of the main qualities of these places, but their interest can also be archaeological, naturalistic, historical or cultural.
The Global Geoparks Network, of which UNESCO Global Geoparks are members, is a nonprofit organization for the exchange of ideas and best practices aimed at improving geoparks themselves.

Italy has 11 Geoparks, including 2 in Tuscany.
Let’s discover them together!

  • 1.
    Parco Minerario Toscano
  • 2.
    Apuan Alps Park

Parco Minerario Toscano

Metalliferous Hills Park

The Tuscan Mining Park - or Metalliferous Hills Park - embraces an area of more than 108 thousand hectares in a vast territory between Grosseto and Livorno.
A visit to the geopark offers the chance to see hot springs, gas and steam jets, rocks caused by ancient underwater landslides - evidence of an ancient ocean - and Cretaceous fossils dating back 150 million years.
The park includes 34 different mining sites, 41 geosites, 19 thousand hectares of protected areas dedicated to biodiversity and more than 130 sites of historical, archaeological and scenic interest.
In order to visit the park more easily throughout the area - which includes as many as seven municipal territories - gates are in place to welcome visitors and guide them to discover the place.
The park’s gates are located in Follonica, Massa Marittima, Gavorrano, Monterotondo Marittimo, Montieri, Roccastrada and Scarlino and consist of info-points, museums, theaters, archives and visitor centers where receptionists and guides offer the chance to learn about all the resources, experiences and opportunities of the protected area.
Of note are the MUBIA - GeoMuseum of the Biancane, set up in what was once the former Lagoni Boraciferi power plant, in Monterotondo Marittimo - and the Massa Marittima Mining Museum, which winds its way through a series of tunnels underground in the town’s historic center.
The forested area is made accessible through an efficient network of trails.
The park area is also particularly suitable for bike experiences: from bicycle touring to road bikes, from gravel and MTB to e-bike everyone can find what they want most.

Apuan Alps Park

Apuan Alps Park
Apuan Alps Park

The Apuan Alps Park encompasses the entire territory of the regional park of the same name and stretches between Versilia - sea side of the Apuan Alps, Garfagnana - inland side - and Lunigiana.
The park’s special features are its majestic peaks from which there are incredible views of the sea, rugged morphology, deep valleys, spectacular caves, and verdant lakes: the Apuan Alps here touch two thousand meters in height and the most characteristic rocks are marbles. There are about 200 types of minerals, 18 of which were discovered in the area.
The Geopark’s territory includes 20 municipal territories and includes the Antro del Corchia cave system and the Geo Archeo Adventure Park in the Equi Terme caves, two tourist geosites with mercury mines, underground quarries, museums, caving trails, paleontological sites and hot springs.
There are 4 visitor centers for easier access to the park: in Bosa di Careggine, Equi Terme, Seravezza, and Massa; the visitor centers are places equipped for tourist information about the park as well as environmental education spaces that include museums, botanical gardens, exhibition rooms and workshops.
Among the many activities offered by park-recognized guides are birdwatching, nature photography, MTB, hiking, caving, canoeing and rafting, snowshoeing, ski hiking, sea watching, sea kayaking, snorkeling and joelette excursions.

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