Bandite di Scarlino and the ancient Roman roads
The “Bandite di Scarlino” extend in the territory of the municipalities of Gavorrano, Scarlino and Castiglione della Pescaia on an area of 5690 hectares. They are managed in a unitary form by the three municipalities. The forest is divided into two bodies: the largest is located between the sea and the villages of Scarlino and Tirli, the other with a lower surface, is close to the village of Castiglione della Pescaia. The landscape has a hilly course and is an integral part of the system of the “Metalliferous Hills”, so named for the important mineral deposits of iron and copper. It was the Etruscans who started the mining activity, which was then abandoned in Roman times. Mining then resumed in the Middle Ages following the spread of the use of currency for commercial exchanges.
Throughout the territory of the Bandite there is a dense network of roads and paths, many of which date back to Roman times and are characterized by the typical stones used at the time to pave the streets.
The territory of the Bandite is covered with holm oak woods, associated with other typical species of the Mediterranean scrub such as heather, strawberry tree, cornflower, cork oak. Where recent woodland uses have been practiced, a shrub layer develops formed by a multitude of species which makes it interesting also from a wildlife and landscape point of view.
There is no shortage of other types of wood: in the innermost part and in more favorable location conditions, there are deciduous stands such as turkey oak, downy oak, chestnut and pine forests of maritime species.