Strength and beauty in a wild land
Isolated, welcoming, authentic and unique, Pomarance is the capital of geothermal energy with ancient Eturscan and medieval roots.
DOverlooking the surrounding area from the top of its hill at the heart of the Valdecina, Pomarance stands out for its immense cultural heritage. Larderello, part of Pomarance’s municipality, is the perfect example for this, with its use of geothermal energy, the cooling towers that are now part of the landscape and the natural surfacings of hot water shaping the area.
Unique sceneries filled with vapours and water bodies, woods and “borghi”, trails and ancient roads, nature and the outdoors, the landscape fading from forests to the sea.
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The territory within the Commune of Pomarance extends between the Cecina and Cornia valleys.
The Rocca Sillana, majestically crowning the surrounding landscape and visible from a great distance, has been recently restored and lit up at night. Rebuilt in 1386, the Rocca Sillana stands as a significant model of military architecture designed by Giuliano da Sangallo.
The territory is carpeted with lush forests and woodland. One of the most luxuriant is the forest of Monterufoli which thrives in Mediterranean vegetation and a wide variety of animal life including deer and wild boar. The
forest,renowned since antiquity for its copper, magnesite, lignite and chalcedony deposits, also contains the “Villa delle cento stanze” (the villa with a tundre rooms) built on the remains of a Medieval castle.
Pomarance still preserves remains of its historical heritage. The 12th century parish Church which houses valuable works of art by Tamagni, Cercignani and Roncalli, the buildings in the centre of town and the traces of
the defensive wall all stand as testimony of the importance of the castle during the Middle Ages.
With the industrial development in Larderello, Pomarance particularly flourished in the last century to which era the palaces overlooking the Via Roncalli (Palazzo De Larderel, Bicocchi, Ricci) and two elegant theatres (De Larderel and Dei Coraggiosi) date.
The village of Libbiano built on a ridge once surrounded a Medieval castle and church, ruined traces of which still remain on the top of the hill from where you can admire a magnificent panoramic view.
Micciano located at 470 metres above sea level is a hamlet crowned by the S.Michele Arcangelo church. Once a castle in the Middle Ages, only the Romanesque church remains, situated in the countryside on the north side of the hamlet. The church dates back to at least the 900 A.D. and still retains visible traces of its original structure.
Of the ancient Montegemoli castle only parts of the walls and a cylindrical tower remain. The Romanesque parish church dedicated to S.Bartolomeo has recently been renovated to its original splendour and houses a noteworthy 14th century painting by Francesco Neri da Volterra.
Lustignano also preserves traces of medieval architecture including the church dedicated to S.Martino which treasures a splendid 14th century wooden bust of the saint himself.
The village of Serrazzano, founded by the Longabards, shows traces of its medieval fortifications. The 11th century church dedicated to S.Donato still conservesbeautiful 14th century cross vaults. Just beyond the walls, the S. Antonio Oratory still retains its original structure.
The Geothermal world centre at Larderello offers an interesting Geothermal Museum displaying photographs, models, tools and machinery that retrace the history of the production of boric acid and the use of the hot water vapour in the production of electricity. The church dedicated to the Madonna di Montenero designed by the architect Giovanni Michelucci stands in the residential area.
In the Larderello countryside, incorporated within the structure of a farmhouse, you can just perceive the remains of one of the most important churches of the area the Pieve di S.Giovanni a Morba not far from the remains of the Roman baths of Bagno a Morbo assiduously frequentedin the Middle Ages and Renaissance.
The village of Montecerboli still retains its original nuclekenswertes us with the circular shaped castle that incorporates the 15th century church of S.Cerbone. The modern church, Madonna delle Grazie houses a 13th century painting (from the church at Morba) attributed to Coppo di Marcovaldo and a 14th century crucifix.
On the road from Montecerboli to Pomarance are the thermal springs of Bagno di S.Michele, first discovered by the Romans and utilized right up to the end of the18th century. On the hill above amidst the vegetation you can just about see the ruins of a Celestine convent.
San Dalmazio is a small village which developed on the site of a convent surrounded by towers and a defensive wall. The Church which probably dates back to 1146, houses paintings by Roncalli and a glazed terracotta tabernacle by the Della Robbia workshop.
Just beyond the village are the enchanting ruins of the 10th century Pieve di S.Giovanni Battista a rare example of Romanesque-Norman architecture.