The Maremma is one of the most fascinating areas of Tuscany, with its own strong, wild character that is very different from the normal Tuscan landscape. It is a variegated landscape, gentle and harsh at the same time: dense beech and oak forests alternate with olive groves and plains of wheat and sunflowers.
The Maremma is one of the least populous parts of Italy, a place of large spaces where herds wander in a state of nature. Even the coast is very varied: long sand beaches, forests that descend to the sea, steep rocks and pristine islands. In these suggestive glimpses of landscape, the visitor suddenly finds himself before a spectacle of medieval villages, fortresses, mighty bastions and ancient cathedrals and monasteries.
The Maremma's provincial capital is Grosseto and sits on a plain traced by the Ombrone river. Grosseto was originally surrounded by a marine gulf that, over the centuries, was transformed into a large lagoon.
Although it was damaged by bombing during the 2nd World War, the city has a lovely old town center enclosed by its marvelous Hexagonal Walls. They were built by the Medici at the end of the 16th century from a design by Baldassarre Lanci; the Fortezza Medicea, the northeast bulwark of the walls, is a site of particular fascination consisting of tunnels, magazines and gatehouses.
The Duomo is the city's most interesting monument even though its many renovations have removed much of its primitive splendor. While the north side remained unfinished, the façade and south city feature bands of white and red stone. The interior is in the shape of a Latin cross divided into three naves by strong pillars. In the second bay on the left, you will note a lovely octagonal baptismal font from 1470 with very elaborate work.