The marble quarries and Colonnata

Where: Carrara and Colonnata
Duration: About 6 hours
Type of service: Car rent with driver
Departure place: By choice
Number of participants: 1-8 persons

The Apuan Alps are an immense marble deposit some cubic kilometres in volume of which the largest mass is the one in Carrara. Quarrying is carried out in three valleys, Colonnata, Fantiscritti and Ravaccione, where, as well as quarrying the plain white, other varieties of marble are quarried.

The Apuan Alps with their spectacular marble quarries reflect a suggestive image. It is here that the precious white stone has been quarried since ancient Roman times. Since then it has been used for all different sorts of articles : from simple objects to the most famous works of art and architecture. In the past marble blocks were transported using an ancient manual technique: the “sloping sledge”, re-evoked each year, thanks to the courage and skill of the last living “sledge drivers”. At the artistic laboratories in Carrara, and the Marble Museum and open-air exhibitions, one can closely follow the history and craft of this incredible stone.

Colonnata is one of the many villages situated around the Apuna Alps, inhabited by quarrymen who, in the past, walked to work at the overhead quarries.

Without doubt, the tiny nucleus of Colonnata is renowned for its marble, but it is the mouth-watering lard which has rendered this tiny piece of Tuscany a symbol of high quality Italian gastronomy, famous and appreciated all over the world.

Colonnata lard is said to be the choicest of lards in that it is preserved using specific methods.

We advise you not to miss a snack made with lard when visiting the local trattorias. These, still to-day, preserve the atmosphere of by-gone times and the flavours of traditional home cooking.

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