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Fosdinovo and Malaspina Castle

Fosdinovo dominates today still with his intact fourteenth-century massive structure, from the tall one of his 550 meters altitude, big part of the coast underlying Tirrenica.


Malaspina Castle in FosdinovoFosdinovo dominates today still with his intact fourteenth-century massive structure, from the tall one of his 550 meters altitude, big part of the coast underlying Tirrenica, distant about ten kilometers, and of the val of Thin that is opened to his shoulders. The position was ideal to check the result to the sea of the Lunigiana and its roads and passes appenninici, among the more you frequent of the Middle Ages.

The suburb:
With its 12th century walls still intact, Fosdinovo Castle crowning a hill 550 meters high. The castle still dominates a great part of the Thyrrenian coastline. During the Middle Age its position was ideal to maintain control of the Apennines outlet to the sea and the Lunigiana region, with its roads and mountain pass linking the Thyrrenian coast to northern Italy.
 One of the coat of arms walled on the main gate walls. 

We have records of the existence of Fosdinovo Castle as fief of the Erberia family since the year 1124, under the direct control of Bishop-Counts of Luni. This arrangement continued until 1317, when the unstoppable rise of the marquises Malaspina, strictly connected with the Ghibelline cause, brought the Episcopal power to a rapid decline and the leader of the family Spinetta Malaspina took possession of the castle. Immediately after Fosdinovo was conquered by the great commander Castruccio Castracani, Lord of Lucca, that besieged the castle with 6000 soldiers and 1000 knights. In the 1334, after the decline of Castruccio, the castle returned into possession of the Malaspina .
Malaspina Castle in Fosdinovo

The front towards the town with one of the powerful round towers. 

At the beginning of the 14th century the Malaspina, now masters of the entire Lunigiana thanks to the help of the powerful family of the Scaligeri of Verona and Enrico the 7th, moved the seat of the family from the nearby castle of the Verrucola di Fivizzano to Fosdinovo, and made the village the administrative center of their lands. The castle was enlarged. The original keep of the 12th century was widened and strengthened with turrets and a new cylindrical tower, ghibelline battlements (with 'tail of swallow' form), machicolation on the sides towards the Lunigiana and with towers and ramparts on the side facing the village; inside, the castle became one of the finest nobiliary residences of that time, rich of frescoed rooms. The magnificent inner courtyard was a 16th century addition. Over the main gate, defended by a breteche, is still visible a coat of arms representing a dog holding a plant with thorns (known as "Spino") in its mouth to symbolize the strong alliance between the Malaspina and the Scaligeri. All around, in the walls are opened gun loops for cannons and other fire arms.

Malaspina Castle in FosdinovoThe Castle:

The castle has the reputation of 'indestructible' and even the earthquake of 1922, that destroyed great part of the Lunigiana, made no serious damage to its structure. A legend says that the great poet Dante Alighieri passed some days at the castle, an event historically impossible. Another legend is connected with the presence in one of the rooms of the castle of the 'well of oblivion': the marquise Cristina Adelaide Pallavicino, bride of Ippolito Malaspina, attracted her lovers into this room and then threw them down in this pit full of blades which ended in a water channel beyond the walls. Most likely the trap was used, but for the elimination of enemies! The castle is still owned by the marquises Torrigiani-Malaspina and it's visible by a fee.
Malaspina Castle in Fosdinovo

The legend wants that also in this castle Dante Alighieri has sojourned, of fact the event is historically impossible. 
Another legend is tied up to the presence in one of the rooms of the castle of the well of the dimenticanza': 

it is told that the marquise Cristina Adelaide Pallavicino, bride of Ippolito Malaspina, attracted her own lovers in a room and once satisfied his instincts them facese to fall in the booby-trap irto of blades that flowed nearby then in a channel. The trabochetto was used more probably, but to eliminate the political enemies of the powerful gentlemen!
It anchors the castle today it is ownership of the marquises Torrigiani-Malaspina, recently has suffered an important work of restauration and it is visitable to payment on appointment.

Malaspina Castle in Fosdinovo










Useful information:

Is possible to visit the castle.

Visits are with guide.
For information and bookings:
phone 0187/680013-68891


Fosdinovo: discover the surroundings

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Accommodations in the area


    • Massa (Massa)
    • 19 km from Fosdinovo

    Villa Palatina

    Villa Palatina is a wonderful villa for rent with swimming pool and panoramic view that sweeps from the Versilia sea to the Apuan Alps immersed in the green hills of Versilia.
    The ideal solution for those who want a villa in the hills of Tuscany in a position of absolute privacy and relaxation but at the same time not far from the sea.

    Availability request


    • Forte dei Marmi (Lucca)
    • 21 km from Fosdinovo

    Villa Orchidea

    Beautiful villa with pool and dépendance surrounded by greenery, in privacy and tranquility on the outskirts of Forte dei Marmi about 2 km from the Tuscan sea.
    Excellent solution for those looking for an important villa in an excellent position in Forte dei Marmi

    Availability request


    • Forte dei Marmi (Lucca)
    • 21 km from Fosdinovo

    Villa Top Forte

    Villa Top Forte is a splendid villa for rent in a central area of Forte dei Marmi and only 800 meters from the Versilia sea.
    The ideal solution for those looking for a luxury villa in Forte dei Marmi not far from the sea and center.

    Availability request


    • Forte dei Marmi (Lucca)
    • 21 km from Fosdinovo

    Villa Puccini

    Beautiful Luxury Detached Villa with swimming pool, recently built, located in an exclusive complex, with a pitch in common and private spacious underground parking, in the Caranna area of Forte dei Marmi, about 1.5 km away from the sea.
    Villa ideal for those looking for comfort and luxury in Forte dei Marmi not far from the sea.

    Availability request


    • Forte dei Marmi (Lucca)
    • 21 km from Fosdinovo

    Villa delle Rose

    Villa delle Rose is an elegant villa for rent in Forte dei Marmi with private pool which stands out for its superior class finishes and quality furnishings.
    Villa delle Rose is the ideal solution for those wishing to stay in Forte dei Marmi in a classy villa equipped with exclusive finishes.

    Availability request


    • Forte dei Marmi (Lucca)
    • 21 km from Fosdinovo

    Villa Gucci

    Splendid luxury villa with swimming pool located in Forte dei Marmi, Vittoria Apuana area, in the context of extreme privacy and tranquility, only 950 meters from the Tuscan sea.
    Excellent solution in Forte dei Marmi not far from the sea appreciated for its beautiful garden and privacy.

    Availability request


    • Forte dei Marmi (Lucca)
    • 21 km from Fosdinovo

    Villa Sweet

    Splendid villa with large swimming pool and fine finishes located in Forte dei Marmi the exclusive area of Vittoria Apuana, about 700 meters from the Tuscan sea.
    Excellent solution for spending holidays in Forte dei Marmi in a luxury location with all the services of an exclusive residence.

    Availability request


    • Forte dei Marmi (Lucca)
    • 21 km from Fosdinovo

    Villa Gioconda

    Beautiful newly built villa located in the Vittoria Apuana area in Forte dei Marmi about 800 meters from the sea.
    Ideal solution for those looking for a large villa in Forte dei Marmi with swimming pool and large garden.

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    • Forte dei Marmi (Lucca)
    • 21 km from Fosdinovo

    Villa Brenda

    Villa for rent in the private area of Forte dei Marmi about 1000 meters from the sea of Versilia with swimming pool and 1300 sqm garden.
    The prestigious villa for rent can accommodate up to 10 people and thanks to its privileged position is the ideal solution for those who want a solution that guarantees their privacy.

    Availability request


    • Forte dei Marmi (Lucca)
    • 22 km from Fosdinovo

    Villa Costes con dependance

    Villa Costes is a villa for rent in Forte dei Marmi with depandance and swimming pool surrounded by a private garden just 1 km from the sea on the Tuscan coast.
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    Availability request



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