The Garfagnana is an historical region of Italy, today part of the province of Lucca in the Apennines, in northwest Tuscany, but before the unification of Italy it belonged to the Duchy of Modena and Reggio, ruled by the Este family. For a short time, in the 16th century, it was governed by the poet Ludovico Ariosto, Commissary of the Duke. It is one of the most rainy regions of Italy, so is in a large part covered by forest vegetation (mainly chestnut, oak and pine).
Characteristics of the region
Located between the Apuan Alps (famous for the production of marble) the main part of the Apennines, the Garfagnana is a mountainous region of Tuscany. It considered a particularly striking and beautiful part of Tuscany owing to its mountains, the rest of Tuscany being generally more flat.
The native trees are mostly deciduous, the most common being Chestnut, which provided an important food for the region until World War II. However, after the war, disease infected most of the chestnut trees and caused widespread devastation to the chestnut population. A program of tree planting was introduced to limit erosion, using pine trees. As a result it is common to see pine in the region. Chestnut has started to recover, however.
The capital of the region is Castelnuovo di Garfagnana.
The region is primarily agricultural, however in recent years there has been an upsurge in Agritourism and holiday homes, which has now become important to the economy of the region.
There is a huge connection with Scotland as a great many people left the region in search of work from the late 19th century onwards.They settled mainly in Glasgow and the West of Scotland and there is a museum marking this connection in the town of Barga.
- Crete senesi
- Mugello region
- Val di Chiana
- 1920 Garfagnana earthquake
- Picking olives and making olive oil in Garfagnana
- Grape picking - vendemmia in Garfagnana
- Recipe for Castagnaccio - chestnut flour cake
- 24 December - Palio dei Natalecci
- Restaurant guide for the region
- Video footage of a village in Garfagnana
- Lucca Italian School - Courses of Italian for Foreigners
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