Home of the famous Italian poet Giosuè Carducci, the village of Castagneto Carducci is a cosy hamlet located on the top of a hill in front of the Tirreno sea. This place belongs to the circuit of the Etruscan coast. Actually, it has a very ancient origin, linked with noble families from Volterra – also this city has Etruscan origins. During the medieval time it became a feud and was part of the territory of Pisa. From that period, the Castle of Gherardesca is still standing.
You can see a great and thick stone wall that surrounds the church of “San Lorenzo” and the home of the Gherardesca family. It is positioned in the highest point of the village, overlooking the sea and the back hills. The wall that surrounds the hamlet offer a stunning “belvedere” with view over the Mediterranean sea and also the many vineyards and olive groves below.
Just reached the lower town, you park your car and go uphill walking (it is not allowed to enter the historic village by car except for residents). The way along the Belvedere is full of antique shops, restaurants, cafes and wine shops. This way takes to the main square where you can see the Town Hall, old “Pretorio” Palace (was always been the local government’s seat), from the 1716. Now holds also the museum and the Public Records.
The “Centro Carducci” – association about the poet Giosuè Carducci – is located in 59, Via Giosuè Carducci, the very centre of this village. Downhill through Via Vittorio Emanuele, the central street, passing by the many shops, handicraft shops, cafes, wine shops, ice cream shops and restaurants, you reach a magnificent park called Piazza del Popolo that leads you the Piazza Belvedere (square), from where the views are simply stunning.
Castagneto Carducci is a cosy typical Tuscan “borgo” (which in Italian means hamlet) with Etruscan origins and medieval characteristics, specially the lots of hidden arched alleys (called in Italian “vicolo”). In another hand it is a very active village, there are many events during the whole year, which involves food, obviously wine, sometimes music or sometimes sport.
The town is delicious during the day, if you like to walk around rummaging in the many small shops, to buy the local typical products like wine, “prosciuto” (local ham), “marmellata” (jam), handicraft and much more. Or, during the evening, have a delicious Tuscan meal in a local restaurant or simply stay in a wine shop tasting the famous local wines, specially the “Bolgheri D.O.C.” and the Supertuscans “Ornellaia” and “Sassicaia” from the neighbor town of Bolgheri, while having some appetizers.