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Description

The 13th-century Pieve di San Martino parish church bears witness to the most prosperous period in the history of the town of Palaia. It has three naves and features Romanesque and Gothic elements. The church of Sant’Andrea is found in the Piazza Sant’Andrea, and is finely decorated with works by Valdambrino, Andrea Pisano and Luca Della Robbia.
Montefoscoli’s permanent exhibition of the Civiltà Contadina (peasant civilization) preserves the heritage of vintage tractors and tools used by generations of farmers.
Numerous towns and villages are scattered throughout the municipality, which in recent years has become not only a tourist destination but also a location for weddings and ceremonies. From Palaia, one can get lost among the narrow roads that lead to medieval towns, to reach Villa Saletta, which has been a shooting location for films by Virzi and the Taviani brothers, and Toiano, an abandoned town set among hills and sandy ravines.

Information
Ufficio turistico
Piazza della Repubblica, 56
56036 Palaia
t. +39 0587 621437
www.palaiatoscana.it

Geographical area
Valdera

Population
over 4.000

Distance from Pisa
44 km

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Culture

Church of Sant’Andrea
This Romanesque brick church in thirteenth-century style contains noteworthy sacred works of art such as the wooden crucifix attributed to Andrea Pisano (1330) and two statues of the Madonna with the Child, one by Francesco di Valdambrino (1403), the other attributed to Della Robbia.

Museo del Lavoro e della Civiltà Contadina di San Gervasio
This museum of peasant life and work is found inside a farmhouse, and is home to works purchased and donated to the San Gervasio farm. The library has over 300 volumes.

Museo della Civiltà Contadina di Montefoscoli
This museum of peasant life opened in 1996 and was expanded in 2005 with the addition of the Vaccà Berlinghieri family home. Visitors will rediscover equipment and furnishings from long ago, the tools that the farmers of Montefoscoli used in their work in the fields.

Pieve San Martino
The majestic Pieve di San Martino parish church is located just outside the town walls. It was built around the second half of the thirteenth century, in late Romanesque style with Gothic elements in brick and stone. Worthy of note are an ancient baptismal font made of local stone and a marble stoup.

Temple of Minerva
This mysterious place of esoteric charm lies within a holm oak grove near Montefoscoli. Andrea Vaccà Berlinghieri, the brilliant surgeon of the University of Pisa, decided in 1822 to dedicate this temple to his father Francesco and to the goddess Minerva. Open every Sunday afternoon from April to October, it is worth a visit for the mysterious history enclosed within its walls.

Toiano and the ravines
Toiano is a small abandoned town that offers a beautiful view over the ravines. It was the site of a medieval castle fought over by Lucca, Pisa and Florence. Toiano was in the press in 1947 after the murder of a young woman who became known as “bella Elvira”, and again when Oliviero Toscani offered a photo contest to revive the village.

Villa Saletta
The village of Villa Saletta dates back to the tenth century and still has the typical structure of an ancient castle, surrounded by walls, and one central street. Its name is apparently of Longobard origin, literally “country villa”. The height of the town’s splendour was in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries when the Riccardi family of Florence made it one of Tuscany’s most thriving estates. In summer, the town hosts is an important review of popular theatre dedicated to Tuscan actor Mario Monni.

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Food and wine

White truffles
Truffle hunting and the sale of truffle products is very widespread in this area. The historic company Savini Tartufi proudly carries Palaia’s name across Italy and abroad.

Wine
There are many wine producers in the Palai area. The Municipality of Palaia is part of the Pisa Hills Wine Trail.

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Activities for visitors

The complete list of pathways  PALAIA TREKKING are available by connecting at the link :
https://it.wikiloc.com/wikiloc/user.do?id=3697689   
Alternatively, it is possible to follow and discover updatings of “PALAIA TREKKING” by App or by PC