Massa Marittima is a charming Tuscan hill town, located in the area known as the Colline Metallifere – an area full of silver and copper mines. If traveling by car, it is easy enough to find. There is a large municipal parking lot right at the entrance to the town. Park here, as, believe me when I tell you this, you will not want to be driving through the streets of this city. Streets are narrow and many of them are stepped. Leave the car in the lot, and walk, walk, walk. By public transportation, getting there can be a bit trickier! The best way is to take the train to Follonica and there get onto a bus, (which departs from the Follonica train station), or take a taxi (which is what I did). Once again using Booking.com, I reserved a two bedroom apartment at the Residenza D’Epoca Palazzo Malfatti. This is THE place to stay in Massa, as far as I am concerned. It is simply stunning! The palazzo was built in the 13th century, and is in incredible condition. Some of the original frescoes are still adorning the walls. The living spaces all have high ceilings, huge windows and there is an open cloister that is charming, to say the least.In the above photo, Palazzo Malfatti is the building with the open umbrella in front of it. These are the windows to my apartment.As beautiful as the apartment was, I couldn’t wait to get out into those windy, narrow streets and explore!The heart of the city is Piazza Garibaldi. On this square one can find cafes/restaurants, the city’s town hall, museums, and the Cathedral of St. Cerbonius. Massa is also on what is called the Strada del Vino, a wine route through the area. All of this information can be found at the Tourist Office, which is located on a small street right off of the piazza. Free maps are available there, as well as info on wine routes, hiking trails, etc.The city’s main church, or Duomo is the Cathedral of St. Cerbonia. It was built in the 13th century, like much of Massa, and is very beautiful. There is a walkway at the top of the stairs leading to the church which takes you around to the back. Do take a moment to walk back there, as the view is lovely.Take the time to explore the interior of the church. Walk down any of the side streets off of Piazza Garibaldi, and you are immediately transported to another time.Walking these streets, you will be thankful for all of the hours of cardio that you’ve put in at the gym! This is Italy, though, so when you need a break, there is always a cafe nearby.Massa is built on a hilltop, with the main part of town in the lower section, while various roads wind up to the top of the city.
Next up: Massa Marittima – Day One – pt 2
Note: this blog is written in English, and Spanish, and the author takes no responsibility for the quality of any other translations which may appear. If you have enjoyed this post, please check out our archives for more posts from Massa Marittima as well as other Italian destinations. Grazie!