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The Garfagnana lakes

Cool in summer, suggestive in autumn, snow-covered in winter: the Garfagnana lakes are a spectacle of beauty in every season.

Always a destination for curious tourists, they are mostly of artificial origin. The Garfagnana area is very rich in water, thanks to numerous streams that descend from the Apennines to the valley. These waterways were interrupted to produce electricity, by means of the construction of dams that caused the formation of the lakes.

Are you ready? Let's discover the best known in the area around Lucca.
 

The most famous: Lake Vagli


A few kilometers from Castelnuovo Garfagnana, a small town - Vagli di Sotto - hosts the famous Lake of Vagli. The latter was created in 1947, when a private company of the time built a dam, blocking the course of the Edron stream. Among the largest artificial basins in all of Tuscany, the lake can contain 35 million cubic meters of water.

But what makes Lake Vagli truly unique? To make way for the construction of the dam, the inhabitants had to leave the town of Fabbriche di Careggine, which was completely covered by water. During maintenance, the lake is emptied and the ghost town re-emerges under the sunlight. The last time it happened in 1994; the next appointment is set for 2023.

The Vagli Park also contributes to the popularity of Lake Vagli, a real park within which there are various types of attractions along the lake, and the Park of Honor and Disgrace. Here, 20 marble statues depict the blurred boundary between vices and virtues. These two parks are connected by the Suspension Bridge, from which it is possible to observe the water of the lake thanks to the crystal plates that form the base of the bridge.

 

The most fascinating: the Pontecosi Lake


Although the first settlements in Pontecosi date back to pre-Roman times, Pontecosi owes its name to a bridge of Roman origins. The building crossed the Serchio river and was located on via Clodia Nova, an important center for trade in the Garfagnana area.

Bombed during the Second World War by the Americans to hit a German garrison built in the country - in which 13 people died - Lake Pontecosi was born in recent times, thanks to the construction of a hydroelectric dam on the Serchio. Characterized by a generally low water level, it represents one of the most important wintering points for migratory birds in the Garfagnana.

A group of white geese generally welcomes all tourists, so much so that over time it has become a nice attraction.

 

Framed in nature: Lake Gramolazzo


Lake Gramolazzo was born by the hand of the same company that built the dam of Lake Vagli. This time, the course of the Serchio di Gramolazzo river was blocked with a 96-meter dam.

Lake Gramolazzo contains 3.6 cubic meters of water and is framed in a mountainous landscape that creates a postcard setting. The lake, suitable for bathing in summer, also offers a point of interest for the sighting of numerous species of birds that allow themselves a stop on the reeds during the migratory period.

The lake offers a well-organized welcome to tourists. From sport fishing to touring the lake with pedal boats and canoes, there is no shortage of experiences to experience the lake at 360 degrees.

  

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