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Volterra, the etruscan site of the Guardiola

Volterra is a city located in the Tuscany region of central Italy. It is about an hour’s drive from Florence and Pisa. It is a beautiful place to visit with many medieval and Renaissance buildings. The city is known for its alabaster handicrafts.

Thanks to the springs’ days of FAI (Fondo Ambiente Italiano), it’s allowed to visit “La Guardiola” of Volterra, one of the most fascinating places of the city. Its Quartiere (“Neighborhood”) is almost detached from the others, as it is rich in hidden treasure from the Etruscan and medieval epochs, close to a city wall long 7km built by Etruscan and extended during the Hellenistic period.

It overlooks the Balze, a typical local view characterized by a crevasse in the rocks. It is also possible to admire also the later improvement of the Medieval epoch. Guardiola’s heart is the majestic church of San Giusto and the wide-open garden in front of it: a little plateau that dominates the entire city. Under it, you can also find some wide Etruscan, Roman, and Paleochristian necropolises. Unfortunately, this part went almost entirely lost due to important landslides.

Photo: FAI