The Sterpaia Coastal Park, 296 hectares of beaches and nature
- Category What to visit in Maremma
Discover the Sterpaia Coastal Park: Territory, Beaches, Historical Notes and Useful Info.Number of views: 2299
- The Sterpaia Coastal Park
- History of the Sterpaia Coastal Park
- The beaches of the Sterpaia Coastal Park
The Sterpaia Coastal Park
The Sterpaia Coastal Park, whose beaches have been decorated with the Blue Flag since 2008, extends along the wide gulf between Piombino and Follonica, occupying an area of about 296 hectares.
Blue Flag sea, as already mentioned, 8km of beaches, 124 hectares of dune areas and behind the dunes together with 155 hectares of woods and agricultural clearings, this is what distinguishes the Sterpaia Coastal Park.
To access the park and its beaches, there are several roads that branch off from the "Geodetica" road, which connects Piombino to Riotorto. In fact, a complex set of parking lots allows regulated access to the many beaches on the coast.
History of the Sterpaia Coastal Park
Until the first hydraulic reclamation intervention in 1558 by the Medici, the territory of the current Sterpaia Coastal Park was characterized by the presence of marshy areas and extensive woods, alternating with sporadic plots of cultivated land.
A large part of the territory was already occupied by the so-called "Lake Piombino" which was entirely reclaimed by "refilling" (i.e. by depositing the sediments of the Cornia river) at the behest of the Grand Duke of Tuscany Leopold II, together with the broader rehabilitation project of the Tuscan Maremma.
Among the economic activities that were practiced in the past there were: agriculture, pastoralism, fishing, hunting, the production of salt from sea water and the collection of leeches subsequently used for therapeutic purposes.
The more recent history of the Sterpaia Coastal Park, on the other hand, goes through 30 years of real civil battles, or since the first illegal constructions entered the territory.
Despite the ban on building, the area was divided into 2000 lots, small plots of land in which precarious houses were built, reserved for summer holidays.
During the 1980s, an estimated 10,000 people stayed there.
Starting from 1976, the Municipality of Piombino undertook a long struggle against this phenomenon and decided to create a public park and was able to demolish the illegal buildings and proceed with the expropriation of all the land subject to subdivision.
In 1994 the Sterpaia returned to being an asset usable by everyone. In 1998 the demolition of the 2000 illegal buildings was completed and the territory occupied by the Sterpaia Coastal Park was included in the system of protected areas of the Tuscany Region.
The beaches of the Sterpaia Coastal Park
The beach of the territory of the Sterpaia Coastal Park is characterized by clear and fine sand. The beach, bordered by a narrow band of dunes, on which there is the tenacious pioneer herbaceous vegetation, suitable for living in particularly arid and salty soils.
Some dunes, the more extensive ones, host strips of coastal pine forest, where it is possible to stop pleasantly during the hot summer days under the shade of the large umbrellas of stone pines, surrounded by the chirping of cicadas.
The coastal area is organized with services such as bathing establishments, refreshment points, toilets and public showers, picnic areas, rest areas for cars and motorhomes.
The beaches are located in Perelli, Carlappiano, Mortelliccio, il Pino, Carbonifera, Torre Mozza, equipped with paid parking for cars and caravans.