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will drive along the Viale della Principessa that runs along the
Rimigliano Park, in the direction of Piombino. For today there is no need
to linger, having reached almost its limit in the area called "La
Torraccia" we will continue for about 2, 5 Km until we reach the fork
on the right that indicates Golfo di Baratti.
circular gulf with a very long narrow beach with maritime pines and green
meadows behind it. We don't feel like recommending a stop for sunbathing
on holidays and pre-holidays in August, unless you then have to complain
Then again, the place is beautiful, the sea on certain
days of flat calm is spectacular, even at this juncture worth at least a
dip. Baratti is totally devoid of tourist settlements except for a few
small houses, a few small restaurants, a small bathing establishment, a
tourist landing for small boats, and of course the Etruscan necropolis.
Those interested in wind surfing can find a well-equipped spot with a
related school for apprentices. In the peak summer period it would be advisable
to go there in the early morning or late afternoon, when the daily
commuters will be more or less displaced, the really special atmosphere
will remind us of places with more exotic names.
the end of the gulf the road climbs toward Populonia Alta and after a
short stretch at a hairpin bend there is a small parking lot the
"Piazzale del Reciso," if you have time stop the car and follow
the signs, a steep well marked path leads to a wild bay protected from the
winds, it is " Buca delle Fate." The magical name was given by
the woodsmen who lived on the headland, they thought the hollows were home
to supernatural beings. The effort will be rewarded by a crystal-clear sea
with turquoise and deep blue features that reminds us in some ways of the
more pristine Sardinia, where possible.
a variant we can take the path that leads from Reciso to the small church
of San Quirico and then to the ruins of the monastery, continuing further
we will arrive first at Cala San Quirico and then at Buca delle Fate.
coastal path continues to Spiaggia Lunga and Fosso delle Canne until Cala
Moresca in a succession of solitary bays and spectacular views where at
one point we will seem to "touch" the Island of Elba, strange to
say, yet we are in Tuscany.
Buca delle Fate, Cala San Quirico, Fosso delle Canne, Punta Falcone
the Piazzale del Reciso continuing it for a very short stretch of road you will
arrive at Populonia and be greeted by a large parking lot under the ramparts.
The founding of the city of Populonia
Populonia represented a nodal point in the maritime trade of the time as well
as a safe port for routes in the Tyrrhenian Sea. The trade in copper produced
in the area was flourishing at the time.In this context, and in other ways,
Populonia was also able to take advantage of the rich iron mines located on the
island of Elba opposite. This favorable circumstance, combined with the
commercial prowess of the Etruscan poplo provided Populonia with a strong
impetus for its development, effectively turning it into the most important
center for iron production in the Mediterranean Sea.
The period of maximum development for Populonia was 4th and 3rd centuries B.C.
when Rome, then in power in Italy, required a large amount of metal especially
for making weapons. However, this circumstance was also the cause of the
Etruscan decline as Rome perennially expanding after finding within its own
borders marked the irreversible decline of the Etruscan town.
Populonia Alta is a village of Etruscan-medieval origin of indescribable charm
situated on top of a hill overlooking the entire Gulf of Baratti on one side
and,the horizon to the Island of Elba on the other. Populonia was one of the
most important Etruscan city-states of the Etruscan
The fortress and its fortifications were erected in the 15th century to protect
against pirate raids.
Today the unsuspecting tourist visiting Populonia cannot help but be astounded
by so much beauty. Once we look out from the ramparts on whichever side we wish
to lean our view will be gratified by a postcard-perfect panorama, such that it
will remain etched in the memory,