Agnano and the Graceful valley!
- Hiking in Tuscany through olives tree orchards and prehistoric fossilized beaches -
One of the amazing thing about hiking in Tuscany is the feeling of balance between man and nature that we can get from certain areas. Agnano is one of those areas where nature and man coexists perfectly and in harmony.
This walk is truly amazing and breathtaking. During its lenght we walk on wide forest roads as well as paths, ascending in the Agnano valley and descending in the parallel "Val Graiziosa" literally "The Graceful valley".
Agnano is a tiny village on the south face of the Pisan Mountains famous for its mineral waters. From its base, we start our walk on a path that gently rises through a tunnel made of vegetation that leads us to "La polla" a water spring set right in a middle of the forest.
From there we continue to climb up. Our path crosses triassic beaches, which are now huge patches of beautifully placed rocks, that give our walk quite a eary feeling. We then get to our saddle, which leads us into the Graceful Valley where our gentle decent begins. We walk through a Oak and Pinewood forest on a twisty path that take us to the "valle buia" (the dark valley).
The dark valley takes is name from the little amount of sunlight it gets in winter, but it's gemmed with ancient water mills and medieval houses that make it unique. From there we don't lose quote and cut across the Graceful valley enjoying breath-taking sceneries on Calci and the Pisan flat and leisurely make our way back to Agnano.
Distance : 17km
Type: Ring walk
Elevation Gain: +600
Footwear needed: trekking shoes or boots
For kids: yes
Links: Agnano on Wikipedia
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My fiancee and I were vacationing in Pisa/Florence for a week and we came across Azimut's flyer at our hotel. Giulio couldn't be nicer.
He came to pick us up at the hotel on the designated day, he gave us a quick 5 minutes talk about our fitness level to make sure we would be comfortable with our trek, check with our walking gears, and agreed on how much we wanted to walk. He also suggested we stopped at a local panini spot where he advised us what to order for our packed lunch, which we were so happy with. Best panini of the entire trip!
The walk started in Castelmaggiore, a lovely little village on the Pisan Mountains, were we started walking through a marvelous olive's grove. The path was very pleasant because it was well undulated so that we had stretches of more intense hike and parts of more relaxing downhill roads. The view was stunning and Giulio kept us busy with very informative chats about the mountain and all the different settlements we encountered
Giulio spoke in perfect English, in fact we discovered that he is an English teacher, and he kept checking on us to see whether we were tired or wanted a more active hike so that we felt completely taken care of and well attended. The hike was totally worthy, we had a complete immersion in the Italian culture and lifestyle, discovering things that you would not without a local.
Who would have thought that Pisa had mountains worth discovering!! A must try experience! The only drawback was that we could not stay longer to discover more.
Check Geraldine's review on trip advisor: www.tripadvisor.com/azimutdaytreks
“The undiscovered marvels of the Pisan Mountain” by Geraldine