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Via della ginestra in the areas around Bucine

A tour among the nature of the Valdambra to discover an ancient sanctuary

If you love adventures, you have to visit the area of Valdambra, with its paths among the forests and history of the Etruscans. Here you can admire the nearby ancient fortifications, parish churches, towns and majestic trees: discover an untouched corner of Tuscany with every turn, where memories are conserved in their entirety.

To take in all of the beauty of this area, you should try the “via della ginestra,” or the broom road, in the areas surrounding Bucine, the capital of this valley, once belonging to the noble Guidi Counts.

Autumn in the Valdambra
Autumn in the Valdambra

The departure point for this tour is the village of Perelli, built along a road which, in the past, saw the comings and goings of travellers and pilgrims.

From the centre, where the Church of Santi Tiburzio e Susanna stands, take the unpaved hiking trail on the left (CAI 41 a) which twists and turns among the typical colours of the Valdambra countryside.

Cross the two bridges over the Poggiano stream (one of the streams from the Ambra river) to find a collection of abandoned houses almost hidden in the pines. Here, stop following the CAI signage to walk through the rows of a vineyard. Re-join the path on the cart-track and take the road on the left which descends to the next broom, where this route gets its name.

Finish the descent and take the road on the right under the railway line and walk along via Faliano until you reach the Palazzetto II area of Levane.

Etruscan well near Santa Maria della Ginestra
Etruscan well near Santa Maria della Ginestra

In Levane, it is worth a visit to the Church of San Martino, where there is a magnificent 17th-century painting depicting the deposition and thought to be from the school of Caracci.

From here, follow the canal of the Caposelvi river to then turn right towards via Terracini. Follow the asphalt road of via Parri and via Gramsci before taking a white road which will take you back to the silence of the fields and the nature.

The street has a slight slope but the brief effort is worth it for the incredible views from the residential area of Levane, Valdarno Superiore and Ambra.

Church of Santa Maria della Ginestra in Levane
Church of Santa Maria della Ginestra in Levane

Wander around the villa of Castelvecchio and reach the ancient Sanctuary of Santa Maria della Ginestra, a thousand-year old place of worship which stands near a well from the Etruscan-Roman era. Legend has it that the water in this well is miraculous, especially for breastfeeding.

From this square, among oaks, cypress trees and water sources, you turn back towards where you started: go up the trail on the left and then again on the right, to get another view of Levane. The slope takes you back to the asphalt road of Perelli, where you turn right and continue to follow the red and white signage of the CAI 41 a.

At the fork in the road, go left to cross the Poggiano stream once again. The walk ends at the church in Perelli.



This tour is part of the guide book Il Diario del Viandante, by the municipality of Bucine. On the official website, you can find details about the routes, useful information and maps to download.


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