An old legend tells us that the Apuan Alps were formed by the "fiery tears of stone" wept by the stars one night over the sad love affair of the young daughter of a shepherd. Tears, salt water turned to stone, crystallized into white marble that reaches up towards the sky, offerings to the moon which is the mysterious and fascinating symbol of this land. Earth and sky, what is below and what is above, form the character of this extreme corner of Tuscany where contrast and contradiction have become a way of being, feeling and expressing things. The sea, the narrow beaches and just a short distance away, the majestic amphitheatre of the Apuan Alps, a wall of stone reaching as high as two thousand metres, a paradise for mountaineers but also for less daring visitors who walk along its footpaths, ride along its mule tracks or drive more comfortably in their cars along panoramic roads that have no reason to envy the more celebrated Alpine "corniches", leading to Pasquillio, Pian della Fioba and Campocecina.From up there we can look down on the scene, both natural and manmade, of the marble quarries; white scars open up the sides of the mountain where tiny men move enormous blocks of stone while all around is the sparkling silence of the marble debris that flows down into the valley like streams of hard white water. Marble, as Corrado Alvaro says, clothes final things; for about two thousand years these mountains have provided material to which men the world over have entrusted their desire to hand down their idols and memory, leaving a tangible sign of their achievements.

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