Have you ever heard of Massa Marittima in Tuscany? It is a lovely little town on a hill in South-West of Tuscany with unique historical buildings and a wonderful view over the Maremma region of Tuscany. Visit Massa Marittima and I show you the things to do in this charming hilltop town.
I left Lucca in the morning, took the side roads along the seaside and spontaneously decided to stop in Massa Marittima on my way to Val d’Orcia. I checked in at the charming Bed and Breakfast Residence Massa Alta on the top of the hill with a private parking space. The historic part of the town is very small and you cannot enter it with the car. It’s characteristics are similar to towns in North-Tuscany, that’s why Massa Marittima is so unique in Maremma. All the imposing buildings were built in the 13th century and can be found on the main Piazza Garibaldi which you will definitely pass during your stroll through Massa.
Even the town is quite small and you will cover the best things to do in one day, you should really visit Massa Marittima, an Etruscan town from the 13th century.
The walk through the historic town leads you through picturesque alleys with little shops and restaurants. It is quiet and peaceful and the best you can do is to pay attention on the tiny things and the details of the streets and buildings, the beautifully arranged flowers and plants in front of the buildings, the door signs, benches and the arches. Mind your step though – some roads are steep with small stone steps as you can see on the photo here.
A must thing to do in Massa Marittima is to visit Il Bacchino right by Piazza Garibaldi. Magdy and his wife run this pretty shop and Enoteca together. Don’t miss to try a local chilled white wine with a plate of salami, cheese, mortadella, prosciutto and truffle. They are located in Via Moncini with a view on Piazza Garibaldi. You can sit outside, enjoy some delicious snacks and watch the scenery on the busy Piazza.
Piazza Garibaldi is the heart of Massa Marittima with all the main historic buildings, shops, restaurants and bars. The main and most probably the biggest point of interest is the huge Duomo from the 13th century with its stunning architecture. Next to the cathedral there’s the Archeological Museum showing exhibits of the Etruscans and the excavation of houses and tombs. The Piazza is crowded during the day but also quite lively in the evening due to the restaurants around it. If you want to capture the cathedral with less people, you should do that when everyone sits down with his pasta. Also walk behind the main areas and alleys. There are some beautiful vantage points you wouldn’t notice.
Speaking of vista. A must thing to do in Massa Marittima is to capture the town under the setting sun. There is a viewpoint at Parco di Poggio from where you have a marvelous view on the landscape and the roofs of Massa. The spot is quiet and invites to sit down and enjoy the Tuscan flair below you. The shot below was taken before sunset with an ND filter and 91 seconds exposure time.
When you talk a walk outside the old city wall you will find a quiet area where you can capture a wonderful panorama view on the countryside. There are stone benches where you can sit down for a moment, relax and forget the world around you. Just follow the path and you will find your way back to the historic town.
Have you read my Tuscany itinerary post yet? It’s showing the best of Tuscany in one week: landscape, photo spots, little medieval cities, wine & food.