Pescia & Collodi Tourist Attractions
SituationThe town of Pescia lies in northern Tuscany, half-way between Lucca and Pistoia. It is the principal center in the fertile valley of the River Pescia and is famed for its asparagus, its olive oil and its flower-market.
The most prominent building in the part of Pescia which lies on the left bank of the river is the cathedral, built in the late 17th century on Romanesque foundations and raised to cathedral status in 1726. The façade dates from the late 19th century; the massive campanile (1306) may be a relic of the earlier Romanesque church. The interior of the cathedral is Baroque.
Church of Sant'Antonio
The little Church of Sant'Antonio (1361) has 15th century frescoes of scenes from the life of St Antony Abbot.
Church of San Francesco
On the left bank of the river is the Gothic Church of San Francesco (begun 1298), with an interior partly remodeled in Baroque style. The finest work of art in the church is a panel-painting by Buonaventura Berlinghieri (1235) depicting St Francis with the stigmata and six scenes from his life. The part of the town lying on the right bank of the river is Pescia's secular center.
Palazzo dei Vicari
In Piazza Mazzini in Pescia is the Palazzo dei Vicari (13th-14th century), with coats of arms on its facade and a tower; it is now the town hall. Near by, in Piazza Santo Stéfano, is the Museo Cívico (Municipal Museum), the main items in which are pictures of the 14th-16th centuries.
The village of Collodi gave its name to the author of the world-famous children's book "Pinocchio", Carlo Collodi.
Carlo Collodi is commemorated by the Parco di Pinocchio, a children's amusement park.Pinocchio Park opened in 1956 offers workshops, rides, a mechanical toy theatre and an art exhibit.
On a hill to the west of Collodi is the little village of San Gennaro, which has a charming 12th century Romanesque church, with a fine pulpit of the same period.
West of Collodi is Segromigno, with the Villa Mansi and Villa Torrigiani.
The Mansi, a patrician family of Lucca, acquired in the early 18th century, the 15th century villa at Segromigno Monte (14km/8.5 mi north) which bears their name and set about enlarging it on the most sumptuous scale. The façade, to which a flight of steps leads up, is decorated with statues of classical divinities. In the course of the 18th century the house was given its present Baroque appearance and the gardens were laid out in the English fashion.