The provincial capital, Massa is situated 65 meters above sea level, in the narrow Frigido Valley, in the western part of Tuscany. It is dominated by the imposing Apuane Alps and borders Liguria. An administrative center, above all in the tertiary sector, it is also an active commercial and industrial center, especially for the activity of the Carrara marble caves. Massa’s unique geographical position, between the sea, the Park of the Apuane Alps and beautiful Liguria, has favored the development of tourism
Known since the 9th century, Massa was a dependency first of the episcopality of nearby Luni and subsequently of the Obertenghi Signoria (11th century). It was fought over by the Pisans and Lucchese, and was the property of the Visconti and the Florentines until it passed, together with Carrara, to the Signoria of the Malaspina Marchesi (1442). In the 16th century, the Cybo-Malaspina, who promised urban improvements, took control. The transfer of Massa to the Este family by way of matrimony (18th century) signaled the end of independence for the Duchy of Massa and Carrara. In 1796, it was occupied by the French. After the Unity of Italy, the city underwent notable economic and demographic development.
|How to Reach Massa|
Highway A12, from Pisa-Genoa
Highway A12, from Florence-Lucca
Highway A15 and then A12, from Parma
State Road SS73, from Siena
The rail connections follow the routes of the highways. Connections with Florence, Pisa, Rome, Genoa, Parma, Lucca-Aulla.
The nearest airport is G. Galilei Airport of Pisa; tel. 050-500707.
|How to get around Massa|
The small downtown can be easily visited on foot. One can park a car either downtown or in the suburbs
Office of Tourist Information, Viale Vespucci, Marina di Massa, tel. 0585-240063.
Fire Department: 115
Doctor on Call: 118
Road Assistance: 116
Railway Station: 0575-22663
The cooking in this area is of ancient tradition and reflects the influence of Liguria and the mountains. The “ravioli lunigianesi,” rich and tasty, are flavored with a sauce made from chard, veal, sausage and Parmesan cheese. The “testaroli” are of mountain origin. These are macaroni cooked on flat pans and flavored with garlic, basil and pecorino cheese. The “manifregoli” is a simple and nutritious dish made with chestnut flour and milk. The chestnut polenta is also flavored with olive oil and pecorino cheese (“incaciata”). Among second dishes are pigeon flavored with a sauce of pine nuts and parsley, “tomaselle,” pork rolls, and “valiset” or valigette (veal rolls), both filled with meat, cheese, egg and aromatic herbs.