The Garfagnana is a mountainous area in the north-west of Tuscany, a long narrow valley of woods squeezed between the Apuan Alps and the Apennines. It’s a wild, lesser-known part of Tuscany with a ribbon of the river Serchio at its base and two excellent National Parks on either side. It has excellent restaurants, a number of small villages perched on hanging valleys, and very good walking, climbing and cycling - as well as some good villas to rent.
Holiday Villas in the Lunigiana
Just north, on the other side of the Apuan alps, is the area known as Lunigiana, once controlled by the Lunis until conquered by the Romans. The city of Luni is still visible by the coast, near where the Magra river meets the sea. The Lunigiana is similar to the Garfagnana but with faster access to the sea - you can ski in the morning and swim in the mediterranean in the afternoon.