Hiker on top of the mountain in Apuan Alps

Hike and Explore the Wild Heart of Tuscany

For most, the name Tuscany brings to mind a vision of cobbled piazzas, combed vineyards in Chianti, or marble basilicas sparkling with Renaissance art—but beyond the luster of Florence and Pisa, Central Italy hides a more dramatic side.

This all-inclusive 8-day hiking tour is your ticket to the wild heart of Tuscany. Set off for the luxuriant forests of the Garfagnana region, traipse through medieval history in the Serchio Valley, and explore mysterious mountain ranges dripping with legend and lore—all while tasting the sweet life at a cozy rustic farm.

In the Tuscan countryside, life moves at hiking pace

Confined and cleaved by over 4,000 mountains, Tuscany is a region whose soaring beauty has to be admired from above. The perfect place to do it is Garfagnana, a historic area north of Pisa, nestled between the Apuan Alps to the west and Apennine Mountains to the east.

For eight days, you will follow hidden trails through dense chestnut forests, along rolling alpine meadows, and up to fantastic peaks that vanish in the clouds. These are Tuscan treasures you won’t find in tourist brochures—but ones your local guide will know a thousand stories about.

  • GRAND TUSCAN VISTAS
  • MOUNTAINS OF MARBLE
  • LUSH VALLEYS & FORESTS
  • ITALIAN HOSPITALITY
  • LOCAL DELICACIES
Hiking on the summit of Apuan Alps in Tuscany.

Where hiking and hedonism meet

IDYLLIC COMFORT ABOVE THE FORESTS OF GARFAGNANA

Throughout this tour, your homebase will be the newly restored Lavacchio Farm, an organic oasis where there are no guests, only friends. After 5-7 hours of hiking in the mountains, coming back to a homemade meal, fine wine and a swim in the pool feels like paradise.

In the spirit of Italian culture, you will dine together with your hosts, who will make sure your bellies are full and your faces alight with laughter. All the while, you’ll enjoy sweeping views of Garfagnana and the Apuan Alps glistening from afar.

Sunset at the pool in Tuscany.

IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF POETS AND PARTISANS

Start your hiking adventure in the Serchio Valley, where sleepy villages, medieval churches, and preserved WW2 bunkers hide behind every corner. This is an area steeped in history—just as Dante traveled these mountains in search of inspiration, Italian partisans found freedom on its long-forgotten paths.

Pay a visit to a 900-year old Romanesque church tucked away in the hills before taking an old shepherd’s path to the rolling pastures and endless vistas of Prato Fiorito. Nothing speaks to the immense power of the mountains like the image of nearby hamlets buried by landslides centuries ago.

Foce Carpinelli, mountaIn landscape between Lunigiana and Garfagnana (Tuscany, Italy) at summer
Hiking on the hills of Tuscany.

Discover the wild side of Tuscany

Climb to the top of Central Italy

VIEWS ALL THE WAY TO THE ALPS

The highlights of Garfagnana are the two craggy kings of Tuscany—the Apennine Mountains and the Apuan Alps. Extending for over 1,200 kilometers, the Apennines form the rugged backbone of the boot-shaped peninsula.

When you reach the snaking ridge of Monte Prado, the dividing line separating the regions of Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna, you’ll feel like you’re walking on air. And if you direct your gaze northwards, the Alps will greet you with their snowy peaks.

VIEWS ALL THE WAY TO THE COAST

The Apuan Alps are known as Italy’s Mountains of Marble—the world’s purest has been quarried here since Roman times. Sparkling just as bright is the Mediterranean Sea lapping the Ligurian Coast in the distance.

You’ll start by following an old trading route to Monte Forato, where the forces of wind and water have carved natural arches into the mountain. Then, after a pizza night and wine tasting, it’s time to ascend Pania, the Queen of the Apuan Alps.

Trekking on Monte Forato also called Pania Forata, the highest swing in the world.

ITALY’S LOVE LETTER TO MOUNTAINS

Owing to its enchanting rural scenery, Garfagnana has always been a region rich in folklore. One of the most beautiful local tales tells a story of the Dead Man—a ridgeline of Pania that forms the profile of a sleeping giant.

According to legend, a young shepherd, plagued by unrequited love, lay down on the pasture and perished from sadness. Moved by his tragic fate, the spirit of the mountains transformed him into this crest of the Apuan Alps.

As you say goodbye to the Tuscan countryside, the giant will remain in slumber, forever awaiting the return of his loved one.

Daffodil-covered field under Monte Croce in Tuscany
Barga cityscape in the Garfagnana region of Tuscany.

Your guide

Born and raised in Lucca, Italy, Stefano Lera has been working as an eco-friendly hiking guide since 2013. He leads customized hiking tours all over Central Italy, the Apuan Alps and the Apennines. Stefano is the founder of Wild Trails Hiking Guides, as well as a park guide in the Tuscan-Emilian Apennine National Park, where he organizes outdoor activities for local school children.

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