The Maremma Territory
The Maremma territory develops along the Tyrrhenian coasts from the north of Grosseto to the southern border with the Lazio region, comprising the Maremma Natural Park and the Monte Argentario headland. The Maremma Natural Park covers the natural reserve of the Monti dell’Ucellina, which extends parallel to the shoreline from Principina a Mare to Talamone. This natural park has been one of the earliest protected areas established in Italy.
It is obliged to add that the whole territory of the Maremma is one of the few natural remaining jewels in Tuscany that hasn’t been still completely discovered. Nowadays, the relative lack of concentrated cultivation in the most uneven soil of the Maremma has induced to preserve its rich intrinsic wildlife.
The region includes thirteen Nature Reserves and other additional protected places like: Reserves of Repopulation, Biogenetics, Protection and Comprehensive Protection, as well as several wild flora and fauna oasis, which is equal to 40,000 hectares, more or less, of nature reserves.
The Etruscan civilization was the first one to settle the productive earth of the Maremma area. Its subsequent inhabitants were the Romans, who developed a significant part of the soil into a fertile agricultural and cattle-raising one, making also an extraordinary plan of internal communication routes. The Romans started as well to develop the Maremma into a holiday area, building gorgeous villas and temples in the surroundings of the seacoast and near the numerous sulphurous thermal springs placed in the territory. The age-old tradition of building luxury villas, carried on by the most important families in Tuscany in order to maintain that wealthy Roman holiday culture, was changed in the 19th century into the construction of prestigious and stylish spa centres standing around the main curative springs.
On the other hand, the extended coastline, with its lush Mediterranean vegetation mainly composed of oaks, maritime and italic pines and flourishing plants, is covered as by exclusive small holiday towns as by fishing villages, full of charm and with immaculate beaches. These peaceful spots included in the Maremma seacoast have nothing to do with the congested shoreline villages located in Northern Tuscan.
Only few other areas in Italy have so many ancient enchanting and ideally preserved small towns so simply reachable from the coast. Furthermore, as a result of the prolonged presence of the Etruscan and Roman civilizations in the region, there are many interesting archaeological remains along the territory, which can be seen as in some isolated rural areas as next to a good number of villages and towns.
The coastline is also lined by headlands, which develop from the peninsula of Piombino to the north of Grosseto, running southwards to the Lazio region.
The most important peninsulas are Piombino, situated opposite to the Elba Island, and Monte Argentario, looking towards the Giglio Island.
The Tuscan Archipelago comprises the islands of Elba, Capraia, Giglio, Montecristo, Pianosa, Giannutri and Gorgona. All of them have a mountainous nature. For example, the Capanne Mountain located in the Elba Island is 1,019 meters high.
In contrast, the inner prairies contain a significant number of river basins coming from the large rivers going through the territory, which since the 18th century have changed the former marshlands into a fertile soil, like the marvellous Valdichiana Valley, running from Arezzo’s province to the Trasimeno Lake, on the border line with Umbria region, or the splendid Arno Valley, divided into two separated areas: the upper and the lower one.
Other outstanding aspect of the Maremma is it superb gastronomic tradition where sea specialties vie in exquisiteness with the inland ones, always prepared with its golden genuine olive oil and accompanied with its celebrated DOC wines.
So, the Maremma is a perfect choice for travellers who want to live enthusiastic experiences between an exceptional nature and the captivating atmosphere of its historic villages, where their charming inhabitants are proud of the beauty of their land still immersed in a rich age-old culture.
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