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  • Rock Theatre, Natural Mining Park, Gavorrano.zoom in altra finestra
  • Quarry amidst thick Mediterranean vegetation, Natural Mining Park, Gavorrano.zoom in altra finestra

Parco Minerario Naturalistico di Gavorrano [Gavorrano Natural Mining Park]

On the side of Mount Calvo (468 metres a.s.l.) in the heart of Tuscan Maremma, the initiative of a small group of inhabitants of Gavorrano gave rise, in 1898, to what in the following decades was to become one of the most important centres for the extraction of pyrite in Europe. It all started from a limonite outcrop which developed into a complex and intricate system of tunnels that ended up joining different mines such as those of Ravi, Valmaggiore and Rigoloccio.

The mine field of Gavorrano, which remained in use until 1981, has been recently rehabilitated and restored to become part of the Natural Mining Park inaugurated in 2003. Two major areas can be visited today: the Tunnels Museum which houses a modern multimedia museum where it is possible to "relive" the experience of miners active around the mid 20th century, and the Ravi Marchi mining area where the plant for the first processing of pyrite can still be admired. Particularly fascinating are the Rock Theatre, an open-air structure situated in a small, semicircular quarry at the foot of the old San Rocco quarry, and the impressive Pozzo Roma, at the gates of the town of Gavorrano, from which most of the mineral extracted from the mine reached the surface.

The Gavorrano Natural Mining Park is part of the vaster Technological and Archaeological Park of the Metalliferous Hills of Grosseto, recently instituted by national law.


Texts by Elena Fani

English translation by Victor Beard

Last update 28/gen/2008