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February 27, 2014

Mountains and Sea

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — Darren Hackett @ 7:20 pm
Serra Pistoiese

Serra Pistoiese

 

There are many beautiful walks up around the mountains near to Vellano.  Some of these we have chartered before in this blog, but we love to share them with you anyway.  The walk we completed a few weeks ago was from Panicagliora to Serra Pistoiese.  It is a walk that meanders delightfully down through a wooded valley past lovely streams, full from winter rains.  From the valley pathway you can look up to snow covered alps in the distance.  The peaks are still covered with snow at this time of the year, an undisturbed frosting even though the winter has been milder than of late.  In Vellano barely a flake has fallen in these last months, with some sadness on our part as it is a winter wonderland after snow.  Many of the pathways are ancient by-ways and important historical trading routes through the countryside. On this walk there is a little ruined chapel abandoned in the woods on the track between the two mountain villages, a lost remnant from the times of monasteries and pilgrim’s ways over the Apennines.  The early signs of spring are here in abundance; early bright blue crocuses, yellow mimosa blossoms on tall shrubs; lots of fresh green grass among the well-tended Accacia woods.

We can always direct visitors to a number of excellent and interesting walks around the area. Walk in February 016 There are always some interesting historical sights in among the medieval towns and villages that abound in the area.  As well as plentiful wildlife to see.  The hunting of wild boar has now ceased for the season so there is more peace to be had as well.  We are still amazed at the light that there is here in the Winter, it is the one difference in Italy that seems to make the winters here a brief respite between hotter seasons.

There are other important events in early spring here in Tuscan, among these is included the fantastic experience of the Viareggio carnevale, in the lead up to Lent.

War child

War child

 

Casa Verde holiday Accommodation Vellano  www.tuscanyholidays-casaverde.com - Holidays Accommodation & B&B near Pisa, Lucca & Florence Tuscany Italy 5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is probably the biggest and most spectacular carnival after Rio.   What makes this event, in particular, so important is the enthusiasm of the local population.  They help to pull and push the gigantic floats.  They dress up in the craziest and festive of costumes, throwing confetti, dancing and generally having a great time entertaining the crowds, for hours on end.There are the crowds of visitors too.  They arrive in their many thousands, often themselves dressed up.  Especially the children, disguised as little princes and princesses, the adults as witches and devils.  Many gay people here too dressed to celebrate and enjoy the day with the main theme being lots of  fun.  The loud music is jolly and energising as everyone seems to bounce and dance along to the entertainment will little sense of inhibition. As if all the people of Tuscany have emerged from hibernation as fantastic bright butterflies. The sense of fun is laced with a strong sense of political irony too; there were lots of lurid and lampooning images of former Prime Ministers Letta, Berlusconi, Chancellor Merkel, the Pope and the new ‘golden boy’ of Italian politics PM Matteo Renzi.

We will rock you

We will rock you

The theme is that very little in Italy will change and that it is a country with many political troubles.  However, for Italians it is their country and despite all of this they are rightly proud of their cultural heritage, and the Carnevale is very much a part of that heritage.

Even better that we can visit in lovely sunny warm weather, choosing the best day of the 5 day festivity, and we are glad to share this with you. Many of our friends have never been but we love it, it is so much fun and the floats are brilliant and we will no doubt visit again.

Casa Verde holiday Accommodation Vellano  www.tuscanyholidays-casaverde.com - Holidays Accommodation & B&B near Pisa, Lucca & Florence Tuscany Italy 6

 

 

 

 

 

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