We start at the Badia (abbey), an old Benedictine convent that was built in the eighth century and of which only the structure and the beautiful Romanesque church dedicated to St. Peter remain. The latter houses important works of art. A few hundred metres away, we arrive at Camaiore’s main square, dominated by the thirteenth-century collegiate church dedicated to St. Mary of the Assumption, which is flanked by the imposing fourteenth-century bell-tower (originally the civic tower). Here are some paintings and statues of considerable artistic value.
Not to be missed is the Church del Suffragio, also known as the church of St. Vincent, Dolori or Angelo, as well as several other places of worship, all of which are interesting from an artistic perspective in addition to showing the long-lasting devotion of the place.
Moving a little way from the centre, we reach the Borgo della Pieve, which was named after the church, an old parish church dedicated to St. John the Baptist and St. Stephen. It appears to be of Longobard origins. Also not to be missed in Massarosa is the parish church of St. Pantaleone a Elici, rebuilt in the twelfth century on top of the early medieval building. Rising up on a spur that slopes towards the sea in a dominant position over the Massarosa plain, the parish church is a significant example of pre-Romanesque Lucchese architecture.
In Massarosa, other than the characteristic medieval village, the Roman archaeological area is also worth a visit. It is connected to the Paleolithic age, where the remains of a Neanderthal man were found. The little town also boasts a varied Civic Museum that holds numerous remains found in the Massarosa countryside.
Numerous also are the stately villas, built from the sixteenth century onwards by noble people from other cities who fell in love with the striking views and local beauty, and chose Massarosa as the “ideal retreat”.