I’ve lived in Florence, on and off, for eight years. You’d think that by now I’d know all this beautiful city has to offer. It’s true that I’ve seen more than what your average visitor would see, and maybe even more than some less adventurous locals. But Florence is the gift that keeps on giving. What a gorgeous place I live in! Today, I decided to explore the paths in the southern part of the city and what a surprise! Wonderful scenery available so close home, passing through Galluzzo and reaching the outskirts of Impruneta, an area famous for the quality of terracotta ceramics.
We will start the walk from Via Senese – the golden arches mark the spot. I know, you wouldn’t expect a beautiful hiking path to start at a McDonalds but trust me, soon you’ll forget this minor detail. Going up Via Bernardo Poccetti, we leave the trafficked road to start enjoying the first views of the bucolic Florentine countryside. We take the left on Via delle Campora, a charming and narrow street. It is one of my favorite streets in Florence, offering us peaceful landscapes, stone townhouses and elegant villas, before it changes to Via delle Romite. The path opens to green olive groves and rosemary bushes cover the walls that flank us on the right, eventually bringing us to Galluzzo.
We head down Via Santa Chiara for a brief walk around town, arriving at the main square and passing by the public park before continuing to the carthusian monastery on the top of the hill. La Certosa (Charterhouse) can be visited year round. Few monks remain – there were 11 last time I visited – and they are very welcoming and available to lead visitors for an hour around the complex. The times are fixed so check their website beforehand. It’s worth a visit, but I’m not doing that today. It’s a lovely winter day and I want to continue on this hike.
We are going up again in Via Luigiana, taking us southeast towards Pozzolatico, a neighborhood of Impruneta. Allow plenty of time on this road for breaks, gasping at the sheer beauty of the breathtaking panoramas. At times, the views are so fantastic that they seem fake, like a perfectly designed movie set. The hike to Pozzolatico is a happy one, just take in the olive groves and vineyards sprawling in the valley below. This is Tuscany at its best.
The wonder continues on Via Vecchia di Pozzolatico, another gorgeous country road, the peace only disturbed by the startled doves and pheasants that populate the area. Clumsy creatures – or maybe I’m the clumsy one. This old road leads us back to Galluzzo while we admire Monte Morello on the other side of the Florentine valley, and on a lucky clear day, the towering Appennines in the far distance. We arrive at the public park of Galluzzo crossing the timid Ema river. After crossing a provincial road at a very confusing roundabout, we find the quaint church of San Felice a Ema, where we take the path on the left for a last walk in the countryside before we reach Via Senese and the end of this amazing hike.
I hope you enjoyed this hike! Let me know what you think!
Due Strade – Galluzzo – Pozzolatico
- 6.2 mi (10km)
- Depart/Arrive: McDonalds at Via Senese
- How to get there: Bus ATAF n. 11, 36 or 37 from Piazza Santa Maria Novella