Tuscany - several kilometers of lavender planes in the background with high poplar poppers like in a softener adds. It is said to be the most beautiful corner of Italy, so I chose it for my very first seaside holiday. However, I do not see the best of Tuscany.
I chose a place for a quiet holiday and we wanted to avoid crowds of tourists. We headed to Camaiore on the coast of the Ligurian Sea. It is a small town approximately 1100 km away. Practically highway leads to it, so it is very comfortable to travel, although the Italian pedaggio1 is not cheap and summer heat can also exhaust. We were judged to be close by the increasing number of hotels, beach shops, restaurants and palms along the road. Everything as a movie.
If you are interested in Tuscany, have any questions or you want to share your experience, you can find us also here.
Tuscany - Lido di Camaiore is basically a few kilometers long, filled with hotels and weekend houses. Almost every Italian town near the coast has its own "lido" or "marina". This is the part of the coast that belongs to the city. We stayed in a three-star hotel on the main road with a very pleasant atmosphere. The room met the required standard, under the window we find swimming pool and overlooking the endless Ligurian Sea. As always in Italy diet is excellent.
Primo piatto some pasta or brodo2,3 meat and dessert tiramisu or gelato tipico italiano4. Throughout the procedure we were overcome and we could not even move. Ideal for lovers of healthy and light cuisine. The waiter was comic because he spoke to us in a different languages every night, even though I still spoke to him in Italian. Of course I was immediately depressed that I have been learning this language for nearly 100 years and the Italian does not understand me. I was pulled out of the depression by “Neanche noi non lo capiamo”5
Immediately after arriving and having a great dinner, we went to look for the beach, which we were watching from the balcony for whole stay. Getting to the sea is not that easy. You have to pay to enter one of the thousands of "bagni", which are separate sections of the beach, where for a fee (about 20 euros / person / day)they will provide un ombrellone6 e due lettini 7and some locker in the dressing room. Every bagno has its own salvataggio8who willingly provide some barca or pedalina in addition to pronto soccorso9.
Except of these paid beaches you can also find spiaggia libera10a piece of sand without ombrellone and lettino, where you can lay out a blanket and bath without someone asking you for money. However, you need to look for such beaches carefully and for a long time.
We settled down on the beach, which we had to reach by car, because it was about 5 km from the hotel in the area called Forte dei Marmi. Parcheggio11 was free, and the phlegmatic lifeguard Marcello didn't care who was lying on the beach, whether the two Slovaks or a stack of Germans barricaded in the tent. Of course we all used it. Romanian holidaymakers soon joined.
The beach is sandy, the sea is clean, although the tide always washes out some plants. There are a lot of shells that pleased me because they are missing in the Adriatic. You are constantly tripping over children and often adults who hunt shells from the sea and take over which would be the best souvenir. There is basically an open sea, there are often quite big waves. At the command of onda12 they all rushed into the water. After a while we understood why.
The hobby of all the tourists on the beach is waves skipping, which Marcello was most pleased about, because everyone was in sight and he did not have to worry about where the pedalina numero 613was. He could have a discussion with his Italian colleague or read newspapers. According to the number of adults in the water, this hobby was enjoyed by more adults than children. Of course, Japanese tourists have not forgotten their cameras and documented every new wave very vigorously.
The whole lido comes alive with the sunset. In restaurants, bars, on the street, it starts to fill up and hear Italian singing everywhere. Even Marcello disappeared. Just we misunderstood tourists we continued to enjoy sea. Generally, there is a lot of tourists but minimum of Slovak ones. Slovak travel agencies do not offer this destination.
Camaiore is a small town where you can find some basic things like a supermarket, some typical shops like panetteria, macelleria, latteria, pasticceria14 and of course a typical Italian mercato - market. The town is very quiet and has almost no rare monuments. It is rather a larger village completely extinct during the day. That is why I am not surprised that tourists do not come here very much.
There are other towns nearby like Lucca - the birthplace of Giacomo Puccini with his Piazza dell´Amfiteatro - the square where the Roman amphitheater originally stood and the houses were built in the shape of a circle, Massa - with its fortress Malaspina on the rock that was just that day closed, Cararra - known worldwide for her marble.
All these towns are little known to tourists. Not very popular. They live their peaceful lives. Here you can watch the life of locals and see the real Tuscany. You will see the real Italian temperament especially in the market, in restaurants they offer homemade meals, because the Italians would not eat others. So you don't have to worry about getting a pizza that won't resemble its shape.
If you have a car and take trips in the area, you will have a nice holiday . It is quite likely that you will feel lonely here. To speak English is not common here. In most hotels you will meet only Italians. This place is suitable for lovers of Italian mentality and Italian connoisseurs. If you meet these 2 requirements, don't worry. All we need to do is to be prepared for this popular destination for Italians.
The beautiful thing about it is that it is very calm on the one hand, radiates direct peace of mind, carefreeness and tranquility, and on the other hand, in the evenings, you can watch a demonstration of true Italian nature with all its noise, temperament and appetite to attract as much attention.
Tuscany is not only Firenze, Bologna, Pisa and many world-famous cities with stunning monuments that keep your breath away and the idea of "How could a man create this?", but Tuscany is also such a quiet place, very livelytoo. So if you have seen Tuscany but would still come back and just have a walk on the beach or visit any place, go to the region of Viareggio. You will certainly relax here and draw on Italian optimism. Yet their eternal “dolce far niente”15 is not bad at all.
See you in Tuscany! Nice holiday!16
2 First course, pasta, broth
4Tipical Italian icecream
5 Neither do we understand him
7 Two beach deck chairs
9 Pronto soccorso = first aid; barca = boat; pedalina = water bike
13Water bike no. 6
14 Panetteria = bakery; macelleria = butcher; latteria = dairy shop; pasticceria = confectionery
15Sweet doing nothing
16 See you in Tuscany! Nice holiday!