Field trips

The following field trips will be organised for the day 19th of October. In the registration form you will be asked to give each of them a level of priority.  We reserve the right to cancel field trips in case of a few registrations (minimum 20-30 participants in each field trip).

Stone Tour
Meeting point at 9.15 in front of the Conference venue.
Visit to the centre of Florence
Lunch at a restaurant in Florence at 12:30
Visit to the Pietra Serena quarries in Fiesole
battiFlorence is famous in the world for its medieval, renaissance history and beautiful architectural monuments. The stone materials used in Florence are different.     In Florence has been used local material from Appennine area (Pietraforte, Pietra Serena, Verde Prato, Rosso Cintoia…) and ornamental stones from Roman Monuments reuse or main extraction basins (i.e. Carrara Marble). The excursion in the centre of Florence allows us to admire the stone materials of Florentine monuments and buildings. In the afternoon we will visit the Pietra Serena quarries in Fiesole. The Pietra Serana extraction has been active from VII century b.c. to 1950. The Fiesole quarries have provided material for monumental and miniature building in Fiesole and Florence. The uses of pietra serena in the city of Florence are very enormous especially in interior or covered works. The pietra serena stonecutter’s trade was once widespread, the high costs of manual extraction brought abocavaut the closure of the Fiesole area quarries starting in the early 20th century. The early abandoned in 1950 led to the reforest of the area. The Pietra Serena quarries have been active for 2.700 years. The quarries history and cultural technical have been into oblivion. The recent studies are proposing for a cultural and geo-tourism restoration. During the excursion we will admire the open, underground (Latomie) and Pietra Serena quarries.


Geothermal Museum in Larderello & fumaroles (Larderello-Sasso Pisano)
Departure from Florence at 8:30: meeting point the carpark near the last stop of tramway T1 “Villa Costanza”
Lunch at a restaurant in Monterotondo Marittimo at 13:00
Visit to the Biancane Naturalistic Park at 15:00
Departure from Monterotondo Marittimo around 17:00
Back to Florence by 19:30
larderello2larderelloDescription: Larderello Geothermal Complex, comprising of 34 plants with a total net capacity of 769MW, is the second biggest geothermal power plant in the world. The power produced from the geothermal field, accounts for 10% of all geothermal energy produced worldwide and caters for 26.5% of regional power needs. Previously referred to as Valle del Diavolo (Devil’s Valley), the Geothermal Plant at Larderello is an important attraction for its geological and development history, unique landscape and for its historical and educational features. The Geothermal Museum in Larderello, established at the end of the fifties and housed on the recently renovated ground floor of Palazzo de’ Larderel, tells the story of geothermal energy and illustrates the investigative and drilling techniques through the aid of models and is an excellent introduction to the surrounding area. Monterotondo Marittimo, of medieval origin, is famous for the geothermal energy and its aboveground manifestations like boraciferous fumaroles, and industrial witnesses of an ancient exploitation activity. The naturalistic park of Biancane, inside the National Park of the Metalliferous Hills of Grosseto – part of the European Network of Geoparks (UNESCO) – , is located near the village of Monterotondo Marittimo and has a wonderful panorama that reaches the sea.

The Fantiscritti quarry (Carrara)
Departure from Florence at 8:30: meeting point at the carpark near the last stop of tramway T1 “Villa Costanza”
Visit to the Fantiscritti Quarry and Quarry Museum
Lunch at a restaurant at 13:00
Visit of Colonnata
Back to Florence by 19:30
fantiscrittiDescription: In the Apuan Alps, in the core of the Carrara Marble quarring district, where Michelangelo spent months selecting the marble he would use, is seated the Fantiscritti marble underground quarry. It is also known as the Marble Cathedral, because of the huge and cavernous rooms. Shortly distant, the open air Museum Quarry, inagurated on the 16th of August 1987, commemorates the work and life of quarry workers. The visitor will find himself experiencing the culture of quarry workers and the history of these mountains. Thanks to the great collection of tools by Mr Walter Danesi, the museum offers a testimony not only to quarry work, but also to the social condition of marble labourers: in fact the museum contains a reproduction of a tipical labourer’s house-a humbledwelling for a large family where the only treasured possession was the pair of hob-nailed boots without which the father could not work and which cost fifteen day’s work to resole.
Colonnata is a tiny village in the hearth of the Apuan Alps, funded around 40 B.C. for accommodating slaves working in the quarries during the Roman Empire, instead of importing the more expensive white Greek marbles. The name of the village may derive from the Latin word columna, (referring to the marble columns to be sent to Rome) or to the Latin terms collis (“hill”) or columen ( “top”). Colonnata is also well known for its traditionally made Colonnata lard (which has been awarded the IGP quality certification). This is made from pork lard, alternated with herbs and spices and cured in local Carrara marble. This way gives it soft consistency and sweet flavour, enriched by the flavours of herbs and spices.

The Grotte di Equi karst complex (Fivizzano – MS)
Departure from Florence at the carpark at the final stop of tramway T1 “Villa Costanza” – at 8:30
Visit to the Equi Canyon (Solco di Equi)
Lunch at a restaurant in Equi at 13:00 (da Remo)
Visit at the Equi Caves (Grotte di Equi)
Back to Florence by 19:30
Warning: the cave tour is not physically taxing; nevertheless, it is not recommended for people with heart conditions, who tire easily, or have problems walking on uneven surfaces. Although the outdoor paths can be walked by anyone, the surfaces are often irregular, similar to mountain trails.

Description:  this area of the Apuan Alps is particularly interesting for the karst phenomena. Of particular interest is the narrow and deep natural canyon (Solco di Equi), formed by the erosion of the water stream Catenelle, along with the marble road leads to the glacial valley of Pizzo d’Uccello. The canyon is included in the Site of Community Interest “Glacial Valleys of Orto di Donna and Equi” and it’s characterized by numerous geomorphological peculiarities and endemic plants, unique plant rarities around the world beside the golden eagle that nests on its cliffs. The groove of Equi, together with the complex karst of the caves, is one of the most important Geosites of the Apuan Alps Regional Park, recently recognized as a Geopark under the auspices of UNESCO.
The Grotte di Equi cave complex, developed over hundreds of thousands years thanks to the action of water penetrating into the fractures of the calcareous rock. In this cave complex many features of great beauty and naturalistic interest like shafts, galleries, chambers, and underground lakes can be visited.
grotteDescription: The Grotte di Equi karst complex is a registered geosite of the Apuan Alps Regional Park, recognized also Geopark in the European and Global Geoparks Networks (EGN-GGN) under the auspices of UNESCO.
The Equi cave complex developed over the course of hundreds of thousands of years thanks to the action of water, which for millennia penetrated into fractures in the calcareous rock, eroding it and leaving behind features of great beauty and naturalistic interest: shafts, galleries, chambers, and underground lakes.


The San Silvestro Park
Departure from Florence at the carpark at the final stop of tramway T1 “Villa Costanza” – at 8:30
Visit to the San Silvestro Park
Lunch at a restaurant
Back to Florence by 19:30
DSC_8610 The San Silvestro Park covers only a part of the mining district of the Campiglia region, but it constitutes its most important historical nucleus.  Extending over an area of some 450 hectares, the Park takes in the south-western slopes of Monte Calvi, Monte Rombolo, Poggio all’Aione and the valley systems of the Temperino, Lanzi, Manienti and Botro ai Marmi.  What characterises the Park above all are the signs of mining activity diDSC_4071 copiarected towards copper, lead and silver ores, as well as marble; activity that started as long ago as the 7th century BC and extended through various ups and downs into our own period.  Traces of hundreds of Etruscan, medieval and modern mining operations, dozens of kilometers of tunnels from the 19th and 20th centuries, some still viable today, the imposing remains of the medieval village of San Silvestro, as well as the spectacular geological and mineralogical phenomena, make the San Silvestro Park one of the principal places of interest, on a Europe-wide level, for the history of mining and metallurgical technology.  Following the numerous signposted routes, the visitor also enjoys the possibility of grasping the profound modifications that human settlements and activities of mining and metal-working have stamped on the countryside over the centuries.  Some of the Park buildings, originally employed in productive and administrative functions, have been restored and house the Museums, the Reception Centre, a restaurant complex, a Research Centre, an hostel.