An unusual theme park in Tuscany brings the puppet Pinocchio to life. Pinocchio Park is located in Collodi, between Lucca and Pistoia. It's not far from the spa town of Montecatini Terme. Here amidst the dense natural vegetation is a fairy tale land where crickets talk and a snake in the grass spurts smoke. It's dedicated to the famous puppet whose author spent much of his childhood here. Carlo Lorenzini came to his mother's hometown often, and took its name as his pseudonym.

This literary trail starts at the Village of Pinocchio and wends through a sculptural wonderland of artistic masterpieces that embody the story, The Adventures of Pinocchio. The book's scenes are played out in the mosaics and sculptures that tell the story and spark kids' imaginations. As the trail meanders to the Land of Toys, there are plenty of surprises along the way, including a crab that spurts water and a pirate's cave.

The park includes a carousel and vintage carnival rides. There is also a restaurant, face painting, puppet-making workshops, as well as shows and minstrels. It's an imaginative place for kids of all ages. Across the street is the Renaissance-era Villa Garzoni; don't miss the gorgeous gardens!

Pinocchio Park is open daily from 8:30 until sunset.

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Address in Collodi:

Via di San Gennaro, 3.

Ph. +39 057 242 9342.

Fax +39 057 242 9342.

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