In August I spent a week, with Giulia and the children, in Castiglione della Pescaia. It was mainly the classic holiday dedicated to beach life but I also managed to get a few hours for a couple of itineraries in the heart of Maremma nature.The first of these, just 4 kilometers away from Castiglione della Pescaia, is the Diaccia Botrona nature reserve, characterized by a typical marshy environment and declared a wetland of international value according to the Ramsar Convention.
We arrived around 7 in the morning, not before having had breakfast with the exquisite Tuscan donuts at the Pasticceria Giuliani, immediately heading towards the Ximenes Red House. This building owes its name to the Jesuit engineer and mathematician Leonardo Ximenes who in 1765, commissioned by the Grand Duke of Tuscany Pietro Leopoldo of Lorena, oversaw the construction of the complex as part of the reclamation works of the Maremma.
The reserve is home to foxes, wild boars and other mammals but above all an abundant number of bird species among which pink flamingos stand out. From the hide located near the Ximenes Red House, I was able to admire and photograph the "flamingos".
The second trip to the Uccellina Park forced us to make a longer transfer (about twenty kilometers) than our base but it was definitely worth it. We arrived early in the morning in Alberese, where the Visitor Center of the Maremma Natural Park is located and there we paid for the entrance tickets to the park and rented bicycles. From Alberese we cycled along a wonderful path, which initially involved crossing an olive forest where we also saw some beautiful fallow deers.
We then crossed the classic Maremma pine forest to arrive at the beach of Marina di Alberese, characterized by the white sand and the presence of isolated tree trunks from the nearby mouth of the Ombrone river. These trunks and branches can also take on suggestive shapes that increase the charm of this wild beach.
After a day spent at the beach, we came back along a different path from the one we took in the morning. With the golden light of sunset we observed the typical Maremma cows, raised in the wild, closely followed by cattle egrets.
A worthy end of a beautiful day!
This beautiful holiday encouraged me to come back to Maremma in a more favorable period of the year (spring or autumn) where the reduced human presence should allow better wildlife sightings.