First this depressing start…don’t worry, the day got much better.
It took a while for us to wake up today. The length of today’s walk was at least filled with interesting sights.
First we woke to a scene shrouded in mist and cloud. It was really pretty and make the morning feel like the start of an adventure.
Our history lesson started in the Copper Age about 4000BC. It is around this date when the Lunigiana people of this region created stone carvings or stele. The reason is uncertain but the human representations are interesting. The oldest are symbolic representations of people on rectangular stone. As the ages progressed the representations began to take more human form eventually become more statues that stele.
As was common practice, buildings were made from existing materials and some of the stele were incorporated into churches. One such church is Santo Stefano di Sorano near the village of Filattiera. While visiting we dropped by the Tourist Information booth and got a stamp and a gratis coffee.
The previous village was founded in the early Middle Ages around 550AD. A surviving tower demonstrated an interesting defensive principle. The entrance was on the first floor (for Americans that would be the 2nd floor – the first about Ground Floor). To reach the entrance, a ladder was lowered. The second floor (3rd floor for Americans) was reached by another ladder lowered from that floor etc. All that was interesting but just the fact that the tower still stands and has been incorporated into a house is amazing.
After visiting the Stele sight, we climbed to the town of Filatteria itself. This small town has a medieval layout and was the sight of the Hostel of San Giacomo di Altopascio. The 2nd church in the small town dates to the 12th century but houses the funerary stone of Leodegar of the Longobard Age (752AD)
The final history lesson came with the village of Filetto. This town is of Byzantine origin and has a precise square pattern. The portals to the city are still used by traffic and walking through the main square was like stepping back in time.
Our day ended with pleasant ups and downs that weren’t too tasking but enough to get the heart pumping. The weather however was humid so….let’s just say, we needed a shower.
Finally we headed off for a much deserved 5star dining experience.