8 Random Facts You Won’t Believe Exist In Tuscany, Italy- Mediterranean Sea 8

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Porto di Livorno, Tuscany, Italy

Located in the northwestern part of Tuscany region, Porto di Livorno is one of Italy’s major ports. It does not only provide maritime services to Tuscany but also to the nearby regions of Umbria, Marche and Emilia-Romagna as well.

Porto di Livorno handles bulk raw materials for the town of Livorno’s heavy industries like ship building and repair. There is also a large oil refinery which it handles including general cargo, bulk foodstuffs, timber products, new cars and containers.

This is the gateway to Tuscany when you arrive by the sea. Porto di Livorno is a crossroad for Mediterranean and transoceanic sea traffic. It is a multi-functional port of great importance for business and tourism in Northwest Italy.

A Short Overview On Tuscany:

Ancestral land of the Etruscan tribes and later annexed by Rome in 351 B.C., the region of Tuscany in Central Italy has been dominated by several rulers after the fall of the Roman Empire. By the Medieval period Tuscany was on its steady growth in textile, agriculture, banking and commerce. The towns of Pisa, Siena, Pintoia and Florence rose into economic powers but it was Florence that overshadowed them all.

The Medici & Lorraine Dynasties:

Florence was governed by a series of oligarchs (wealthy clan) during the Middle Ages especially the Medici dynasty. During their regime, the town became the cultural seat of the world, promoted the arts and literature, (especially Catherine Di Medici) that produced legends like Dante Alighieri, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Machiavelli among others. It was also in this period that the Tuscan dialect became the basis of the Italian language that is being used today.

The Medicis remained in power, generation after generation until the 18th century which saw the establishment of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany. In 1737, another dynasty would rule over the region, the Lorraine clan who built the first railway in Italy. Their rule ended when in 1861, Tuscany was united into the Kingdom of Italy with Florence as the capital from 1861-1871.

From Fascism to Modern Italian Republic:

Fascist leader Benito Mussolini dominated the whole of Italy in the 1930s until World War II. Tuscany became a part of the German-controlled Italian Socialist Republic in 1943 and conquered by Anglo-American forces in 1944. After World War II, Tuscany once more flourished as a cultural center of Italy and saw the birth of modern Italian Republic.

The Tuscany region, Central Italy which include cities of Florence, Livorno, Carrara, Siena, Pisa, Chianti, Val d’Orcia, San Gimignano, Lucca, and the Island of Elba.

After our oil discharging at Naples, we sailed northward to the Tuscany region in Central Italy, still aboard with the Front Hunter in 2009. You know, just the mere word “Tuscany” will already conjure images of gentle rolling hills, acres of vineyards and olive orchards, gastronomic delights and Renaissance wealth. It is a destination where tourists keep on coming back for indeed there is so much to explore and discover. Let me open for you the Pandora’s box of 8 random facts you won’t believe exist in Tuscany Italy.

Michelangelo’s “David” Is Made Of Marble From Carrara

Michelangelo‘s famous work, “David” was made of marble from the Carrara area of Tuscany. In fact all the greatest sculptors of Italy used the very same marble and this town can be visited to see its stunning marble mountains. A random fact you won’t believe exist in Tuscany, Italy. L’angelo nel marmo.

The town of Carrara with their fabled marble mountains at the background.

Pinocchio Is From Tuscany

The town of Collido in Tuscany.

Pinocchio, the wooden toy who turned into a real boy in the Disney story is actually of Tuscan origin. A man named Carlo Collido has written, “The Adventures of Pinocchio” in 1883 inspired by the beautiful landscape of Tuscany where he grew up. A random fact you won’t believe exist in Tuscany, Italy there is even an actual Pinocchio Park in Collido to celebrate the story. “Saluta Collido (Figarro)!”

The Pretty Town Of Chianti Is Tuscany’s Wine Capital

The picture-perfect images of rolling hills you usually see of Tuscany is that of Chianti, the famous red wine capital of the region. A random fact you won’t believe exist in Tuscany, Italy, the landscape of Chianti is so beautiful that it had inspired photographers to capture its charm and became postcards and calendars scattered throughout the world. This town offers a unique scenery of green, sloping hills covered with rows of vineyards and olive groves, quaint villages and countryside stone-built villas. Oh bella Chanti!

Tuscany‘s high-end red wine, Chianti from Chianti.

Leaning Tower of Pisa Is Not The Only One in Tuscany

The Leaning Tower of Pisa is not only one you can find in Tuscany. There are different towers that lean in this town including the bell towers of St. Nicola and St. Michele dei Scalzi which are also worth to visit. A random fact you won’t believe exist in Tuscany, Italy. And the reason for its leaning was because it has been constructed (in 1137) on a soft ground which has a difficulty supporting the weight of the tower (15,500 tons). E incredible.

Dante’s Death Mask In Dan Brown’s “Inferno” Is Real

A random fact you won’t believe exist in Tuscany, Italy that you too can have the chance to “steal” Dante’s Death Mask as told in Dan Brown’s novel, “Inferno”. The said death mask actually exist and can be found at Palazzo Vechio (town hall), along Piazza della Signoria (the city’s main square) in Florence. Impossibile ma vero.

The grand Palazzo Vechio (town hall) that houses Dante’s Death Mask in Florence.
The city of Florence, Tuscany, Italy.

And Hollywood Explored Tuscany

Orcia Valley in Tuscany was used as the film location of the movie Gladiator.

If you are a movie buff, you’ve seen Tuscany several times. The beautiful landscape of the region was chosen as backdrop for the following films: Gladiator, Hannibal, James Bond’s Quantum of Solace, Twilight and others. A random fact you won’t believe exist in Tuscany, Italy. Bel paesaggio.

Siena, Tuscany as it appeared in James Bond’s Quantum of Solace.

There’s No Legal Drinking Age In Tuscany.

Piazza in Lucca, Tuscany, Italy.

That’s right, there is no legal drinking age in the Tuscany region. Younger teens can consume alcohol legally. E gratuito per tutti. A random fact you won’t believe exist in Tuscany, Italy. However, you must be at least 16 years old to be served with wine or other spirits in bars and restaurants. E Chiaro?

You Can Go From A Desert To A Snowy Mountain All At Once

Accona Desert

It’s true, a random fact you won’t believe exist in Tuscany, Italy but you can go from a desert to a snowy mountain in just one day. For aside from its image of verdant, rolling hills…there is also a desert in the pulse of Tuscany– the Accona Desert. And of course, you can also look forward to 81 km. of ski slopes during the rest of the day high up at the Apennines. Ottimo!

Tuscany is a region that you must have to visit even once in your lifetime. It will give you the chance to witness with your own eyes precious milestones and attractions. As the novelist/writer Frances Mayes wrote: “Life offers you a thousand chances…all you have to do is take just one.” (Under The Tuscan Sun) So grab it. Bouna fortuna!

Reference: Wikipedia