Fairy Valdinievole

Explore the area of Valdinievole, home to Montecatini Terme and other enchanting places, where nature, culture and a little touch of magic give an indescribable air to the landscape.

Start your tour in Collodi, at the theme park dedicated to Pinocchio, the puppet who wanted to become a boy. He was the creation of local author Carlo Lorenzini (also known as Carlo Collodi). Visit Padule di Fucecchio to take in some pristine nature and observe protected species in their natural habitat. Finish off your visit in the town of Vinci, technically just outside the Valdinievole area, but historically part of it. This is the birthplace of the great Leonardo da Vinci.

Duration: 1 or 2 days


As well as being the birthplace (and nameplace) of to the father of Pinocchio, Collodi is a medieval town of special beauty. Walk up the panoramic hill it stands on and let your senses be enchanted by the intense green and scents of freshly-squeezed olive oil from the surrounding groves. Retrace the childhood locations of Carlo "Collodi" Lorenzini, before he grew up and became forever associated with the adventures of Pinocchio.

After seeing the town, visit the enchanted park dedicated to the boy-puppet where you can let yourself daydream between lush nature and creations of famous architects. These modern-day attractions, modelled on the legendary characters of the Blue Fairy, the Cat and the Wolf have a timeless charm.

Padule di Fucecchio  

Just 30 km from Montecatini Terme is the Padule di Fucecchio, a hidden oasis for the protection of biodiversity. This is the largest marsh basin in Italy with more than 200 hectares of reserve to explore. Go for a walk among plants that date back to ancient times, having found their ideal habitat here, along with water lilies and ferns.

Stay completely still and you’ll get close to beautiful specimens of rare birds: during nesting periods the reserve is populated by more than 200 different species. This park was once owned by the Medici family, and today, as well as walking and bird watching, you can take a guided tour or glide over the water in picturesque "barchini”.


Although not geographically part of the Valdinievole area, Vinci is considered as part of the area for historical and cultural reasons. Head up to the slopes of Montalbano and lose yourself in this ancient village protected by vineyards, olive groves and terraces among the green hills of Tuscany. Visit the spots where the future genius Leonardo da Vinci would walk every day, breathe in the same air. One stop you should not miss is the Museo Leonardiano, which is home to the largest collection of the great master’s models and inventions. The museum space, the Uzielli palace and the castle of the Guidi Counts, a majestic medieval fortification, are other reasons to buy a ticket. Finish off your tour of Vinci at Anchiano, where Leonardo's Birthplace still stands intact. In this modest country home, between the sketches of genius and the traces of his life, you will come to understand the indissoluble link between his art and his birthplace.

Useful tips:

  • What to taste: a slice of local bread with excellent local extra-virgin olive oil with some classic Tuscan dishes;
  • What to sip: a glass of the excellent Chianti Montalbano DOGC and, in summer, a fresh IGT Toscana white.


Excursions in Tuscany: Fairy Valdinievole Recommended by Francia & Quirinale