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Description

Hillsides offering beautiful views and waters with therapeutic properties: these are the most characteristic elements of an area once called Castrum ad Aquas, today Casciana Terme. These areas were inhabited beginning with the Etruscans (as demonstrated by recent excavations in Parlascio and Colle Montanino) but detailed information can be found starting with the 9th century attesting the existence of a parish church. There are various other later documents on the benefits of these thermal waters, apparently a common thread through the centuries, up to the present day. It is said that the first to realize the benefits of the waters of Casciana was Matilde di Canossa, who saw an oldand sick blackbird regain its strength after daily dives in “steaming water”. Since then the blackbird has been a symbol for the baths, still particularly appreciated today for cardiovascular therapy and motor rehabilitation.
Numerous small villages litter the hills around Casciana Terme.

In 2014 the “diffuse” municipality Casciana Terme Lari was established.

Like many other villages in the Pisan countryside, Lari had a very lively history during the Middle Ages, because it was fought over for its strategic position. It belonged first to the Pisa then to Florence, under the control of the Vicars, who built an imposing Castle also used as a prison and a torture place. Until 1848 the vicars used the castle to host important Tuscan politicians from Medici and Lorraine families. Today the Castle houses the Filippo Baldinucci museum, which contains Etruscan, Roman, Medieval and Renaissance finds.
Lari is surrounded by trails spreading into the countryside to approach charming cozy villages such as Usigliano, or to climb the roads leading to Casciana Alta, with a Romanesque church of San Martino and the Oratory of the Madonna della Cava. In the hamlet of Parlascio there are some 15th-century frescoes depicting the saints, the image of the Holy Face and a Nursing Madonna.

Information
Ufficio informazioni e accoglienza
turistica Casciana Terme Lari
. Casciana Terme
Piazza Garibaldi, 1
56034 Casciana Terme Lari
t. + 39 0587 646258

Lari
Via delle Mura, 3
56035 Lari
t. +39 0587 646107
www.visitcascianatermelari.it

Geographical area
Valdera

Population
over 12.000

Distance from Pisa
Casciana Terme 40 km
Lari 32 km

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Culture

The Castle of the Vicars
In the centre of the village of Lari is this castle, originally the home of the Vicars abolished only after the Kingdom of Italy in mid 19th century. Today this ancient seat of government is a venue and location for ceremonies and weddings. The Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage has listed it as one of the five most innovative museum displays in Tuscany.
The Castle hosts also the civic museum “Filippo Baldinucci” containing artefacts and collections from the Etruscan to the Renaissance period.

Museum of Agriculture Activities and Christmas cribs
Set in Usigliano, at the Agriturismo Vecchia Fattoria Castelli, it has been open since 2003. Visitors can tour the outdoor section, the cellar, the “coppaio” and the oil mill, in addition to an original collection of Tuscan, Italian and foreign cribs with nativity scenes

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Food and wine

Lari Cherries
Cherry cultivation is a centuries-old tradition, thanks to the climate and the soil particularly suitable for the ripening of this juicy fruit. The Committee for the Protection and Valorisation of the Lari Cherry was recently established to protect and respect the numerous locally grown varieties. The traditional cherry festival takes place evey year end of May – beginning of June.

Wine
The municipality of Casciana Terme Lari is included in the  Wine Route of the Pisa Hills. In this area, high quality wines are produces thanks to the geographical indications (IGT) or the denomination origin (DOCG) which play a fundamental role in the protection of cultural heritage of traditional methods and natural resources. Among these, the Chianti wine DOCG one of the first symbols of Made in Italy, made from Sangiovese, lively ruby ​​red color.
Since 
2011, the DOC Terre di Pisa has been recognized in the two versions: “Red”, made from Sangiovese, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, and “Sangiovese” made from Sangiovese with a minimum of 95%. In addition, IGT wines hold a wide variety, among which the so-called Supertuscans, great structure and longevity wines, thanks to an accurate selection of varietal, careful vinification and aging in small barrels (barriques) or large (tonneaux).

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Crafts

Furniture and furnishing
The village of Perignano is famous in Italy for its family-run workshops and many show rooms. Handicraft or industrial factories are still bringing on the tradition of furniture and furnishing, despite the economic crisis

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Activities for visitors

Loop walking and cycling routes
Several trails of interest for history, natural surroundings and landscapes, for beginners as well as experts. Among the area’s marvellous landscapes, there are several trails immersed among the hills, winding through olive groves and vineyards. Some of the trails wind toward the south, in the mountainous part of the territory, for an excursion among waterfalls and freshwater ponds.

Thermal Baths of Casciana Terme
Though the Romans were already aware of the advantages of the waters of Casciana Terme, it was the chief magistrate of Pisa, Federico da Montefeltro, in the 14th century, who was responsible for the first spa centre there. It has undergone various changes over the centuries, the most significant made by the architect Poggi, who had designed Piazzale Michelangelo in Florence. Casciana Terme still offers relaxation, a space for a break from the stresses of everyday life, as well as an outdoor thermal pool suitable for families with children.

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Camper area