The Heart of the Maremma
Grosseto and the Tyrrhenian Coast
Grosseto can be considered the capital of the Maremma. The area around Grosseto and the coast, with Marina di Grosseto, Castiglione della Pescaia and the small villages that lie in the plain between the city and the coast, represents the heart of the Tuscan Maremma.
Many artistic, historic or naturalistic treasures can be found in this corner of the Maremma. The city of Grosseto itself is of very ancient origins, as the historical part of the city centre evidences. The Catherdral (or Duomo) of San Lorenzo dates back to the 1200s and it’s architecture recalls the Duomo of Siena. The church is dedicated to the city’s Patron Saint, who is celebrated every year on August 10th with a solemn procession. The Duomo is just one of the many interesting sights which are to be found in the centre of Grosseto. The church of San Francesco is another remarkable religious monument: it is built in the Franciscan Gothic style and contains a wonderful crucifix painted on wood and attributed to Duccio di Buoninsegna. The church of San Pietro in Corso Carducci is also very interesting.
Still within the city walls, a Renaissance well, known as “Pozzo della Bufala” (end of the 16th century), is well worth a visit. Just a few steps away from this little square, which used to be the cloister of the old monastery of San Francesco, visitors should not miss the Archaeological Museum. It contains archaeological finds mostly dating back to the Etruscan and Roman era which have been found in the numerous archaeological sites of the surrounding area.
The hexagonal Medicean city walls are almost intact and the beautiful Fortress with the newly restored Cassero Senese (1344) dominates the Grosseto city centre as if it were a medieval fortified citadel. The Fortress is a very popular location for civil weddings.
The area around Grosseto has been inhabited for millennia, and therefore spending a day or more visiting the many archaeological sites of this part of the Tuscan Maremma is well worth it. Roselle, which was once one of the twelve main Etruscan cities, and the Etruscan necropolis of Vetulonia are among the most remarkable historical sites in Italy. Near the city, another village which is well worth a stop is Montepescali, which is also known as the “terrace over the Maremma” and which has charming narrow streets and several bell towers which make its skyline recognizable from a distance.
More towards the coast, travellers can visit Follonica, a modern town and a popular beach resort which has grown considerably in recent years; Scarlino, with its castle on a sheer cliff, which can be reached with a simple but scenic hike with beautiful views of the Tuscan archipelago; Punt’Ala, a beach town which is very popular among Italian celebrities and VIPs and well-off travellers; Castiglione della Pescaia, a lovely village with a castle which looms over the coastline and which is very lively in the summer; and, finally, Marina di Grosseto, the most popular beach town for the people of Grosseto and surroundings.
Farther away from the sea, the little hilltop hamlets of Tirli and Buriano make for an excellent off-the-beaten-track daytrip and, of course, one should not miss Scansano, the capital of the wine region where the excellent D.O.C. Morellino wine is produced. For further information about this area of the Maremma including Grosseto and its surroundings, you can visit the website of the Maremma APT and download their brochure “The Thousand Facets of the Maremma: Grosseto, Castiglione della Pescaia, Scansano“ (auf Deutsch; en français).
Click on the following link to see the Google Map of the Maremma!
And now, go back to the introduction to the Maremma or keep on reading about our recommended itineraries in the Tuscan Maremma:
- The Coast, the Beaches and the Sea of the Tuscan Maremma
- The Hills of the Upper Maremma: Pitigliano & co.
- The Colline Metallifere: the North of the Maremma
- The Interior: The area of Civitella Marittima and Casina di Rosa