Above Ponte a Serraglio going towards Colle is an area called Il Paretaio. It was one earliest areas settled in Bagni di Lucca.
It is a delightful walk up from the river, past the Hotel Bernabo, through the archway called dello Spiffero, past the church of San Martino built in 1292, past the decaying residence of the grandduke of Tuscany Leopoldo II of Lorena and up the hill.
At the end of a tree lined road you come to a little square. Last century there was a cafe there.
It was clearly popular.
Now it is a private house.
What a pity. It would be wonderful to walk up there on a summer evening for an aperitivo.
From Il Paretaio it is possible to keep heading uphill to Colle and further on to the park at the top of the hill.
The tiny Cheisina Alpini was built in 1951 to honour the brave Alpini soldiers.
There is also a track leading down from Il Paretaio towards La Villa. The pathway is called Via dell’Amore, Lovers’s Walk. The path is a bit overgrown now, but you can see that it must have been beautiful once. There are stone seats along the way and it is easy to imagine well dressed people strolling on a warm afternoon and enjoying the pretty surroundings.
In spring I will walk with my camera and show you the wild strawberries, mini crocuses and primulas growing beside the track.