The hamlet of Monsummano Terme has grown around the Sanctuary of Santa Maria della Fontenuova, at the centre of an important road network. The village lies at the foot of Monsummano Alto hill, that overlooks the whole Valdinievole and Fucecchio Marshes.
The foundation of the village was due to the grand duke Ferdinando I de Medici and his entrusted architect. After the prodigious events happened at the end of the XVI century, like the apparition of the Virgin close by a local tabernacle (1602), the grand duke charged the architect Gherardo Mechini with projecting a great sanctuary in honour of the Madonna. The sanctuary was called Fontenuova because of a spring that gushed spontaneously after the miraculous apparition.
In 1775 Pietro Leopoldo set up the Comunità delle Due Terre, linking the territories of Montevettolini, the castle of Monsummano and the main village of Monsummano Terme. The XIX century was a great time for Monsummano, thanks to the presence of two big political and literary personages. The poet Giuseppe Giusti (1809 – 1850), whose home with neoclassical furnishings and decorations, has been recently renovated and turned into a Museum; Ferdinando Martini (1841 – 1928), scholar and politician, whose villa, known as Villa di Renatico, is currently seat of meetings and exhibitions of art.
The Thermal Grottoes have been discovered in the middle of the XIX century. You will find lovely natural caves where to enjoy relaxing and detoxifying steam baths, mud therapies, ozonized baths in thermal water, massages, inhalation treatments and so on.
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