Provincia di Pisa
Official Tourism Website for Pisa Province

Protected areas

A waterfall on the Sterza Stream in the Caselli Nature ReserveThe natural beauty of Pisa province is also the result of a wealth of protected areas characterized by a remarkable variety of environments dominated by the presence of water and wooded areas.

Nature, history, tradition, culture, art and hamlets entwine to offer visitors an unspoilt and surprising landscape where ponds, pools, marshes, canals, streams and rocks alternate with deciduous woods and pine forests to create a charming environment where variety paves the way for an extraordinary richness and diversity of animal and plant species.

The environments vary, each with its distinctive features, to communicate different emotions and ignite intrigue.

A countryside parted by levees, with flood beds and ponds that are remnants of olden lakes characterize the Bientina basin, where the colours change from a grey bordering on black to the pearly grey of farmed lands.

The Monterufoli Reserve in Val di Cecina is a hilly area characterized by vast expanses of wood and scrubland rich in biodiversity and criss-crossed with a dense network of streams.

This is a valley of many water springs that have been exploited since the XIV century to supply water to the city of Pisa by means of an early aqueduct and the ingenious collection structure that are still visible today along the route that leads to Pisa from the district of Asciano (San Giuliano Terme).

The natural setting provides important ranges in vegetation, from stretches of maritime pine forests - used by the Maritime Republic of Pisa for ship building - to sixteenth century Monti Pisani oaks that have supplied food to the farming and mountain foothill populations.

There are remarkable sporting, recreational and nature activities in the protected areas, all of which are linked to forms of a tourism that works in harmony with the locations. There are bicycle rides along the winding streets that cross the characteristic hamlets set on the slopes of the Monti Pisani or Pisan Mountains, or along the edges of the river Serchio; in boat or canoe for the more active; trekking in the Cecina Valley or in the Monti Pisani.

A fine spot for bird watching and photo hunting is the hidden lay-bys in the Oasis of Lake Santa Luce, on the Pisan Hills.

For those who wish to delve deeper into the history of the land, expert environmental guides will lead you through the various visitor centres to uncover their past.