Once the subject of many quarrels over ownership, Minucciano is now a peaceful destination that can be used as an excellent base for exploring Garfagnana and the surrounding parts of Tuscany, Italy. Although it is not one of the busiest villages in the region in terms of tourists, Minucciano does have something to offer, with an array of historical attractions, good amenities and a number of local festivals held throughout the year.
Minucciano has a population of just over 2,000, with the majority employed in fruit and vegetable production or the service industry. As you may imagine then, eating and drinking are popular pastimes in the village, with cafés and restaurants to be found both in the centre and on its outskirts, and the offerings generally of a high standard.
Minucciano has three main sites of historical interest within its boundaries, namely the Pieve di San Lorenzo, the Sancturio della Madonna del Soccorso and the Palazzo Baldini: a parish, a sanctuary and a palace respectively. Of the three, the parish is perhaps the most interesting, with its octagonal bell tower and picturesque position on the banks of the Tassonara stream.
An interesting time of the year in which to visit Minucciano is the Christmas holidays. This is when the annual 'Palio dei Natalecci' competition takes place, which requires Minucciano and neighbouring villages to compete to construct the finest tower out of only branches and shrubs. At the end of the festival the tower is then burnt. More festivals and events take place throughout the year, and are a great time to meet the locals and brush up on your Italian.
Minucciano borders seven other municipalities, so exploring the area during your stay is an easy task. Camporgiano (18km) is one of these municipalities, and something of a favourite with tourists due to its excellent weekly market and fantastic fortress – which dates back to 1300. Also bordering Minucciano is Piazza al Serchio (12km), a lesser-frequented destination that will allow you to escape the beaten tourist trail.
The weather in Minucciano is at its best between June and August, when the daily average temperature is 27C, and above 30C is common. Outside of this period a holiday in Minucciano can still be enjoyed, but you may need to take a raincoat if visiting between October and February.
Minucciano is well positioned when it comes to airports, with both Pisa Airport (PSA) and Florence Peretola Airport (FLR) under an hour and a half drive away. The distances from Minucciano are 112km and 90km respectively. This means you can shop around and find the best prices available at the time.