Venturina Terme in Val di Cornia
Venturina Terme is part of the Municipality of Campiglia Marittima in the Province of Livorno. The city is located in the heart of the Val di Cornia a few kilometers from the sea and the beaches of the Etruscan Coast. As its name suggests, Venturina Terme is a spa town and clearly the spa is the main reason to spend a holiday here. Those in Venturina Terme are in fact holidays dedicated to relaxation and well-being.
The thermal springs of Venturina have been known since ancient times. The first to take advantage of it were the Etruscans who were followed by the Romans. As evidence of this presence there are the remains found in the Caldana area. Caldana (which means warm land) is the name by which this locality was called In Roman times, while its thermal waters were known as “Aquae Populoniae”. The toponym “Venturina” is much more recent since it dates back to 1600.
During the Middle Ages the town was completely abandoned and the population poured into nearby Campiglia Marittima. To witness the rebirth of Venturina, one must wait until the nineteenth century, when the reclamation of the Piombinese Maremma and the construction of the railway station led to a strong development of the center.
What to see and what to do in Venturina Terme
Venturina Terme owes much of its fortunes to thermal springs but its location is also a great strength. The city is located a few kilometers from the beautiful sea of the Etruscan Coast, while in the hinterland there are several historic villages that deserve to be visited. Also, in Venturina there are some things to see.
- Venturina thermal baths
- What to see in Venturina Terme
- What to see around Venturina Terme
- How to get to Venturina Terme
- Where to stay in Venturina Terme
Venturina thermal baths
Known since ancient times, the Venturina thermal baths are fed by two different sources that guarantee an inflow of 12,000 liters per minute. The thermal waters of Venturina are renowned for their beneficial and curative properties. Being rich in sulfur, calcium and magnesium, these waters are suitable for treating numerous respiratory, rheumatic and digestive system diseases. The temperature of these waters reaches 36 degrees.
Today you can take advantage of the therapeutic properties of these waters thanks to the two spas located in Venturina Terme: the Calidario and the Hotel Terme di Venturina. These are two hotels which, however, give the possibility to access the thermal baths even by paying an access ticket for a full day or half a day.
At the Venturina spa you can enjoy muds, baths, beauty treatments, massages, whirlpools, aerosols, and mineral water treatments.
What to see in Venturina Terme
If you want to alternate relaxation at the spa with some cultural visits, you could visit the Mausoleum of Caldana, the Museo della Civiltà del Lavoro. Immediately outside the town of Venturina Terme there is the Lake of Tufaia.
Mausoleum of Caldana
The Roman mausoleum of Caldana is located in the town at the intersection of via dei Molini and via Mattarella. The complex dates back to the 1st century AD. This monumental mausoleum was built along the route of the ancient Via Aurelia; often, in Roman times, the burial places were located near the main roads. Today only the supporting structure of the mausoleum remains, while the marble slabs that covered it have been lost. Even the sarcophagus that was kept there, and which probably belonged to the Roman patrician Caius Trebatius, is now missing.
Museo della Civiltà del Lavoro
The Museo della Civiltà del Lavoro (Museum of the Civilization of Labor) in Venturina Terme is located in the area of the fair (Via del Lavoro, Largo della Fiera). As the name implies, this museum is entirely dedicated to the world of work and, specifically, deals with all those works that characterized the economy of the Val di Cornia between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Inside there is a huge amount of tools and instruments used by peasants, blacksmiths and various types of craftsmen such as the cooper and the saddler.
Lake of Tufaia
Lake Tufaia, with its park, is located in the westernmost area of Venturina Terme. This is the ideal place to relax surrounded by greenery, take a relaxing walk and rest for a while. Very popular with families with children, Lake Tufaia is full of animals such as ducks, fish and numerous water birds. Right next to it there is also the hot water lake.
Monument to Lampo the traveling dog
If you go to Venturina by train and stop at Campiglia Marittima station, you must stop and visit the Monument to Lampo, the traveling dog. Lampo is also known as the “railway dog” because in the course of his life he has made numerous train trips and even learned the train timetables. Every morning he accompanied the station manager’s daughter from Campiglia to Piombino where he went to school, and then returned home alone by taking another train. He also took other trains and then always returned home with the right train: Lampo was really a special dog! It seems that he arrived in Livorno in 1951 with an American ship. There he was adopted by a homeless man and in 1953 he arrived alone in Campiglia Marittima… obviously by train!
In a few years, Lampo became quite famous and in 1958 RAI dedicated a TV special to him. A few years after his death in 1961, the sculptor Andrea Spadini created the monument dedicated to Lampo which was also financed thanks to a subscription launched by the American magazine This Week. If you want to learn more about the history of this extraordinary dog, I suggest you read the book entitled “Lampo, the traveling dog”.
What to see around Venturina Terme
Venturina Terme is a very good starting point for exploring the Val di Cornia and the Etruscan Coast. In Val di Cornia there are several interesting villages such as Sassetta, Suvereto and Campiglia Marittima. Moving along the coast, on the other hand, the places closest to Venturina Terme are San Vincenzo, Baratti, Populonia and Piombino. Going up the Etruscan Coast, the first places we find are Castagneto Carducci and Bolgheri.
How to get to Venturina Terme
Venturina Terme is easy to reach both by public transport and by car.
The nearest train station is Campiglia Marittima which is just a couple of kilometers away and is connected by a regular bus service (there are 5-10 minutes by bus between the station and Venturina). The station is regularly served by regional trains that make the Pisa-Grosseto route. Journey times can be a bit long depending on how many stops the train makes, but it is doable.
By car: if you come from Florence (2h) you have to take the FI-PI-LI to the Vicarello junction and continue on the A12 motorway and finally on the SS1 Aurelia. Those coming from Pisa (1h) and Livorno (30 ‘) must take the Aurelia towards the south. From Siena (1h 30’) and Arezzo (2h 30 ‘), you have to go towards Grosseto and then go up the Aurelia.
Where to stay in Venturina Terme
The Calidario and the Hotel Terme di Venturina are certainly the two main hotels in the city as they have direct access to the thermal springs and all related services. These are two high-level structures that inevitably require a certain budget. Alternatively in the area there are several Bed and Breakfasts, villas and farmhouses, often also equipped with a swimming pool, which represent a valid alternative to hotels with spas.