A walk around the walls of Volterra, and a visit to the bustling market
Just some highlights of the walls around. I should say the sights and sounds of Volterra. Today is Saturday, which is market day. So, the market might actually be in the carpark or in the main square - we'll have a look. Ruins of the Roman Theatre and Baths.
Unearthed in the 1950s. If this stone looks newer than the others, it is. This is a recent undertaking... ...to build a little stairway up through another part of the walls of town. Only recently opened. Pigeon holes... literally... pigeon holes everywhere!
Really clear day today - you can see the Apuan Alps in the background there. Nice! Walking this part of the walls is probably the most hazardous part. That view, though, my God! This is the Porta San Felice. I think I'll head off the road, where I'm less likely to be killed! In the background there... I think... is the nearby town of Saline di Volterra. They actually make salt to this day; for centuries they've made it.
I don't know why, or by whom... but it's still pretty cool! Onwards... Ah, I don't believe it! They've put box-hedging over... the view of... one of the best views in Volterra! Lovely! :( Many garages remain open 24/7 in Volterra, but they're self-service. I don't know if you can see in the background there, some smoking stacks.
It's not smoke, it's steam. This is an active geothermal area, so a lot of the energy... we get comes from that source. There's war memorials... and that's the road up to the viewpoint, which we won't be taking today. And that's the Medicean fortress... a prison.
Look at those hills! That's as good as anything Val d'Orcia has got! Pretty cool! Phew! It's going to be a hot one today, maybe 30, 31... later on. A glimpse of the... fortress tower. Parking follows general Italian rules here; the blue spots are paid. In Volterra they're usually from 8 in the morning until 8 at night paid , and then free... overnight. Apart from the underground carpark and resident's carparks, obviously.
I was hoping to find a shaded spot, where I wouldn't be blinding you all, but anyway. That is hospital grounds, and in the background... the ex-manicomio... grounds. The insane asylum. I mentioned earlier on (no, I did not - I cut it out!), the inmates of which dug up the theatre ruins. At one time there were 6000 residents in the... the asylum. It's gone to ruin now, but it's still open for tours and I hope to visit in a couple of Fridays time.
More fabulous views of the colline... the hills. Nice shaded part of the walk. I think... those are some stones from the old Etruscan walls. They're certainly big enough, and they look the right colour. That's one way to get up to the centre of town. I'll take that walk another day.
Fab! It's gorgeous. The camera just doesn't do it justice, so vast the view scape is, really. Nice view the campers have. This is 'La Docciola' free free carpark; Volterra's main carpark. There are a couple. This is certainly the handiest one, except if you'd watched a couple of videos back I took the gateway up and...
...it's about 200 steps. So, convenient, but at the same time not so convenient! I won't be doing those stairs today! No, thank you! However... the rest of the walk from here on in is all uphill, so... another heavy-breathing warning! Another lovely view of the hills. I'm walking on the wrong side of the road, which doesn't help either me or motorists. Nice! They must have some view in that... that place there. I don't know the name of it. Cool! It would have been nice if these stairways had been... a little earlier.
This is the park around the walls of Volterra; part of them, anyway. I can't remember what the name of it is, of course! And back in through the Porta we came out of when we started the walk. Porta Fiorentina. You can climb up that tower for the princely sum of 2 euros, and get some amazing views of the town.
So this is the Volterra market. It has everything from clothes to modern cookware, electronics, bedwear. Not books or antiques, though. And of course there's food! <Sounds of diesel generators and lively Italian chatter throughout> There seems to be more here than there was last year. Covid restrictions not as bad this year. You've got meats, fish, cheeses, fruit and veg.
The size of those chillies! (In the previous stall, I mean!) It's busy today! A good selection of flowers.