The Castles of Lunigiana
Lunigiana is always been a border territory, an area squeezed between the sea and the mountains, a compulsory passage when moving north to south since the roman times.In the inland of Marina di Massa, circa 40 km towards north, are located lots of castles that were protagonists of the history of this land.
Lunigiana is indeed known as the land of the hundreds castles: wonderful monuments full of history, strategic outposts, forgotten towers hiding in the nature.
Of course some of these castles are just ruins, some blocks of stone and mud where you can recognize walls, towers and gates but nothing more. But there are many fortresses still showing off their majesty from the top of the hills encouraging the imagination of visitors. Just think about the Bastia Castle, the Fosdinovo Castle and the Verrucola Castle or about the Brunella Fortress, a fortress built by the Medici family in 1553 and today used as Natural History Museum.
The castles of Lunigiana are the most important testimonies of history, traditions and culture of this territory. They were strategic outposts to control the trading routes, the villages and the rivers. The majority of them responded to the Malaspina family, the most powerful of the area.
During centuries the Malaspina have used the castles as stage for family intrigues, perversions and other follies. The stories of their lives in the castles are still known and told by the elders of the area.