Day Trip from Lucca: Villeta

Hunting for the perfect swimming hole

Last week-end was really hot, so, we decided to go swimming. We like swimming pools and the Sea, but above all, we love rivers.

So we started looking for swimming holes in the Garfagnana Mountains, which is the closest region where we can find streams around here. It is also usually cooler in the mountains than in Lucca. Googling for Garfagnana nuotare (nuotare means "to swim" in Italian), gave us a promising lead. We quickly identified la splendida chiesetta della Sambuca mentioned in the text as being near Sambucca, about an hour and a half from Lucca.

Finding San Romano wasn't too hard, the road from Lucca to the Garfagnana follows the Serchio river valley, so you can't really get lost. In Villeta San Romano, we saw the sign for Sambucca, did not find an access to the river, came back to Villeta, asked our way, took the road to the train station, followed a really narrow road down the hill, and finally parked under the railroad bridge, hoping to find a path to the Serchio river. Which we did! In fact we found the exact spot that we were looking for.

The Hole

A nice pool, quite deep in places, flanked by two tall rocks from which jumping in the water is possible, a fairly large beach, shallow water for our son to play, the cool air of the mountains: A great spot!

We weren't the only one to have found it either. We arrived around 2 pm and enjoyed our picnic while watching a few teenagers jumping from the rocks, but after 3 pm the beach started to fill up. More and more people arrived, entire families with chairs and inflatable boats. The entire village seemed to have chosen this spot to spend their Sunday afternoon. It wasn't too crowded though, just busy.

The place had really everything you'd expect from a swimming hole. The only problem we found was that you had to wear shoes in the water because of the rocks and of a few pieces of glass (very few, but our son was unlucky enough to get a small cut on his foot). Overall we really enjoyed our afternoon and we will be back soon.

posted by michel, 2005-08-08

[Tuscany] [Kids] [Day Trip] [Outdoors] []


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