Local Information

Castello di BagnoneBAGNONE - THE LOCAL VILLAGE

Bagnone itself is a beautiful medieval village with cobbled streets, narrow alleyways and a town square overlooking the impressive waterfalls of River Bagnone. An old Medici castle perches on top of the hill above the town. With a handful of shops, four restaurants and three or four cafés and bars, the village has everything you need just 5-10 mins walk away.

Weather forecast

LOCAL RESTAURANTS

In Bagnone

Pizza Roma (+39 340 2303037 / +39 0187 429094) - situated in the main square. Great for pizzas. Profiteroles also recommended. Great value and usually serves food until around 10:30 / 11pm, later in the summer and also does take away pizza. Sometimes open at lunchtime too. Usually closed on Mondays.

Ristorante I FondiI Fondi (+39 0187 429086) - a well appointed but slightly over-priced restaurant situated on the right hand side of the road between the main square and the bridge over the river (as you go from the main square towards the villa). A blue sign hangs above the restaurant and its doorway leads you down a dark alleyway to a cosy inside eating area, beyond which is a summer terrace overlooking the pools and waterfalls of the river. The location and the antipasti are very good, but the other courses are sometimes a little disappointing. Probably worth a visit for the view from the terrace though.

Locanda La Lina (+39 0187 429069) - this is the restaurant of the local hotel, situated in the second square (Piazza Marconi) next to the church. Good value and good quality, with some good wines available. It is usually best to arrive before 8:30pm and sometimes worth booking a table in advance. The restaurant is closed on Thursdays.

Trattoria Bicchierai (+39 0187 429077) - situated at the bottom of the hill near the bridge across the river (on the house side of the town). Good quality, hearty food and a nice outdoor area in good weather. Best to arrive before 9:30pm in the evening or before 2pm for lunch.

The green café - situated on the main square. Although this isn't a restaurant as such, they do serve hot paninis on request at lunch time and some good pastries in the morning. The freshly squeezed orange juice (arancia spremuta) is highly recommended.

Nearby

Locanda GavariniLocanda Gavarini (+39 0187 493115) - possibly one of the best restaurants in the area. Great antipasti, great tagliata di manzo and good slightly fizzy local red wine. Located in the small village of Mocrone, 5 minutes drive from Bagnone. From the house head towards Pontremoli: go through the main square in Bagnone and carry on towards Aulla. Shortly after leaving the outskirts of Bagnone take a straight ahead-ish right turning signposted Pontremoli. After another 2 or 3 minutes you'll enter the outskirts of Mocrone. Take the second or third right turn which has a white and blue sign for Gavarini. Follow the road past the statue on the right and round a couple of narrow twisty bends. The restaurant is on your right just before the church. There is a car park further up the road.

Taverna Il Tempo Ritrovato (+39 0187 494366) Via del Borghetto, 10, Filetto di Villafranca -this is a great little restaurant with a slightly medieval theme. Located in the tiny village of Filetto about three kilometres from Bagnone, it has a very cosy atmosphere and serves great food including a huge selection of pizzas cooked in a wood fired stove, steak and grilled meats and other local specialities. From the main square in Filetto, walk in the direction of Villafranca. The restaurant is at the top of the first or second alleyway to the right and has a suit of armour standing outside. It is only a fairly small restaurant and gets very busy at weekends and during the summer, so arrive early or ideally book a table in advance. It is also possible to eat there at lunchtime if you book in advance. The restaurant is closed on Mondays. Click here for a map

Ristorante Pizzeria Al Pozzo (+39 0187 495104) Via San Genesio, 33, Filetto di Villafranca - this is a large restaurant just on the outskirts of Filetto with a canvas covered outside eating area and also has a massive selection of pizzas and some good local fare. To get to it from the main square in Filetto walk towards Villafranca and then turn right just beyond the village wall - it's a couple of hundred metres along on the left. The restaurant is closed on Thursdays.

La Tavernetta del Borgo Freddo (+39 0187 429036) Pastina - this small and quirky bar and restaurant is located in the tiny village of Pastina, just east of the villa. It is a pleasant 45 minutes walk up the hill to Pastina (it's possible either to take the road or to walk through the woods by taking the track which starts by the hut on the right just below the villa). The restaurant is very, very basic - the only food on offer will probably be a simple pasta dish followed by cheese but it has a certain rustic charm and if you fancy a stroll through the countryside on a sunny morning it's a good place to stop off for a spot of lunch or a drink. The restaurant often looks closed, but the lady who runs it will usually open up especially for you. Click here for a map

Locanda All'Antico Mulino (+39 0187 495000) Via XXV Aprile, Villafranca Lunigiana - located in Villafranca close to the white fountain. A nice restaurant located in an old Tuscan building with vaulted brick deilings and serving good quality local dishes.

Ristorante Enoteca Per Bacco (+39 0187 420637) Piazza Cavour 9, 54011, Aulla - a very nice restaurant / wine shop in the centre of the old town in Aulla which serves Italian food with a refreshingly modern, more cosmopolitan twist. Reasonably priced for somewhere a little more upmarket. It is worth checking that it is open before setting off. Closed on Tuesdays. Click here for a map

LOCAL HOTELS

If you have some friends visiting or there are too many of you for the villa then these nearby hotels are recommended.

Locanda La LinaLocanda La Lina (+39 0187 429069) - the nearest hotel to the house, situated in the second square (Piazza Marconi) next to the church in Bagnone. The hotel has a total of 5 rooms which are about 55 Euro per room per night. Good value and good quality. It also has a restaurant (see above).

 

 

Locanda GavariniLocanda Gavarini (+39 0187 493115) - a lovely countryside hotel with a handful of rooms, about 5 minutes drive from Bagnone. Also has one of the best restaurants in the area. Located in the small village of Mocrone. From the house head towards Pontremoli: go through the main square in Bagnone and carry on towards Aulla. Shortly after leaving the outskirts of Bagnone take a straight ahead-ish right turning signposted Pontremoli. After another 2 or 3 minutes you'll enter the outskirts of Mocrone. Take the second or third right turn which has a white and blue sign for Gavarini. Follow the road past the statue on the right and round a couple of narrow twisty bends. The restaurant is on your right just before the church. There is a car park further up the road.


La Nuova JeraLa Nuova Jera (+39 0187 428161) - situated in the small village of Jera above Bagnone.

 

 

 

 

Albergo Ristorante Manganelli (+39 0187 493062) Piazza San Nicolo' 5, 54028, Villafranca Lunigiana. A reasonably priced hotel in nearby Villafranca.

PLACES OF INTEREST

Florence (Firenze)

FirenzeMichelangelo's DavidIt takes about an hour and three quarters to drive from the house to the outskirts of Florence, so it's easy to visit for a day trip, or you can spend a night in a hotel and stay a little longer. Alternatively you can travel by train, directly from the local station at Villafranca, or from La Spezia, from Pisa or any of the stations in between. The most central station in Florence is Florence San Maria Novella. We would actually recommend travelling into Florence by train as the traffic and parking in the centre of the city can be a nightmare. Terravision also operate a coach service from Pisa airport to Florence.

Ponte VecchioRecommended hotels in Florence include Hotel Perseo (+39 055 212504)- info@hotelperseo.it - which is very smart, right in the centre of the city 50m from the Duomo and fairly reasonably priced at about €140/night for a double room. Recommended bars include the very trendy Noir (+39 055 210751) - Lungarno Corsini, 12/14R - next to the British Embassy, at the northern end of the Ponte a Santa Trinita (which is the bridge just to the west of the Ponte Vechio). It does great cocktails and is an ideal place for watching the sunset. Recommended restaurants include Osteria del Cinghiale Bianco (+39 055 215706) - Borgo S. Jacopo, 43R, 50125. Closed on Wednesdays.

Lucca

Piazza Anfiteatro, LuccaLucca's wallsThe romantic walled city of Lucca is only an hour from the house. Apparently hiring bikes and cycling all the way around the fortified walls is a good way to see the city. The oval Piazza Anfiteatro is also worth seeing and a good place for a drink or some food.

Pisa

The Duomo, PisaThe Leaning Tower, PisaPisa and its leaning tower are only an hour from the house too. The area around the tower and the cathedral is the nicest bit and there's a good pizzeria in a small courtyard down an alleyway on the right hand side of Via Santa Maria just to the south of the tower. For the tower, leave the motorway from the Pisa Nord exit if you are travelling from the house.

 

Cinque Terre / Portofino / Portovenere / Lerici

See Beaches / Coast below for details of these beautiful coastal towns and villages.

Further afield

Elba

Paulella Beach, ElbaCapobianco Beach, ElbaThe island of Elba was Napoleon's home during his first exile and is an hour's ferry trip from the mainland. The ferries depart regulary from Piombino (approx. 2.5hrs drive from the house). There are some stunning beaches on the island.
Click here for a map or see the link below for more info:
www.travel-tuscany.net/Elba%20island.php

Siena / San Gimignano

These are both within about 2.5hrs drive of the house.

BEACHES / COAST

TellaroTellaro

Tellaro is a small fishing village on the coast not far from the house. Overlooking the "Gulf of the Poets" it is an ideal place for a drink and an evening meal watching the sun go down. The village is at the end of the coastal road to the south east of Lerici, just beyond Fiascherino. Click here for a map. For more information see: www.tellaro.net

FiascherinoFiascherino

Fiascherino has a couple of beaches: a beautiful private one - "Eco del Mar" which has a very exclusive feel, waiter service to your sun lounger and a price tag to go with it - and a more modest public one slightly further down the road. The private beach is open to the public, but there is just an entrance fee and it is compulsory to hire a lounger and umbrella. It's very nice though. Click here for a map

 

Lerici

LericiLerici is one of the nearest coastal towns to the house and has a picturesque habour overlooked by a medieval castle perching on the edge of the town. There are a few impressive churches, seafront restaurants and an open air cinema in the town as well as a nine hole golf course, an olympic size swimming pool and a go kart track nearby. Click here for a map.

Lerici is situated on the eastern side of the gulf of La Spezia, nicknamed "The Gulf Of The Poets". In 1822, Percy Shelley and his family hired a villa just outside Lerici and he and Lord Byron sailed their boats around the coast nearby. It was on an ill-fated trip from Livorno to Lerici that Shelley's boat was caught in a heavy storm and went down under full sail.

Cinque TerreCinque Terre

The Cinque Terre are five cliff top fishing villages set within a few kilometres of each other along the coast just north of La Spezia. The five villages are Riomaggiore (the Southernmost and nearest to the villa), Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso (the Northernmost and furthest from the villa). The train line and a coastal foot path link the villages and it's possible to reach them from the house by car in 45 minutes or by train in less than an hour. We would strongly recommend travelling by train as parking is very, very restricted in the whole of the Cinque Terre and you may find the only place to park is a few kilometers away from the centre of each village. You can catch a direct train from the station in Villafranca. For more information on trains, timetables and other tips, see "Trains" under the Transport section below.

It is also possible to take a boat between any of the five fishing villages and also on to Portovenere, La Spezia and Lerici, and in the other direction to Portofino. One of the best ways to see the villages is from a boat and a good option is to get the train to the furthermost village (Monterosso), get a boat back down to Riomaggiore and then get the train back to the villa from there. Alternatively, you can walk along the coastal path for some of the way. The boats stop at all the villages, but not all the trains stop at all the villages.

For more info on the Cinque Terre see:
www.cinqueterre.it / www.cinqueterre.com / www.cinqueterreonline.com

PortofinoPortofino

Portofino is a elegant coastal town between La Spezia and Genoa, with some of the clearest water and best swimming anywhere on the Italian Riviera. Click here for a map. Portofino has an exclusive and sophisticated atmosphere, so if you plan to stay overnight be warned that hotels can be quite pricey.

PortovenerePortovenere

Portovenere is a small town set on the headland on the northern side of the gulf of La Spezia with stunning views across the bay and of the nearby island. Click here for a map. The town is a maze of alleyways dotted with small shops and restaurants. The black and white striped church at the end of the headland is also impressive.

 

Marina di Massa

The strip of coast between Sarzana and Livorno is more or less one long beach, very much in the Italian Riveria style: covered densely with sun loungers, umbrellas and during the peak season crowds of people and small children. However, there are one or two choice spots worth visiting. Around Marina di Massa there are some quite exclusive private sections of beach with good beach front restaurants and stunning swimming pools set back from the beach. One called San Francisco is reccommended. Click here for a map to the approximate location...

SKI RESORTS

There are four ski resorts within easy reach of the house - Cerreto Laghi, Prato Spilla and Zum Zeri are within an hour's drive so perfect for a skiing day trip whereas Abetone - the fourth, larger resort - is further away but ideal if you want to stay in the resort and get two or three full days of skiing in. They are all situated in the Apennine mountain range which runs down the centre of Italy and, although small by the standards of the Alps, the local resorts have plenty of character and are normally much more peaceful and less crowded, with queues for the lifts being a rarity. Although each of the three smaller resorts nearby are not large enough for much more than a day's worth of skiing, there is plenty of variation available by visiting a different resort each day. Bear in mind, however, that the Apennines are further south and generally a little lower than the Alps, so it is worth checking snow conditions before setting off. Outside the peak season and mid-week it is also worth checking that the smaller resorts are actually open the day you are visiting as they may close during off peak periods. The resorts normally open for skiing from around mid December and it is sometimes possible to ski as late as Easter.

We have several pairs of skis and ski boots at the house which guests are welcome to use but do so at their own risk. Ski bindings should always be adjusted by a professional and most ski hire shops will do this for you if you ask. There is also two sets of snow chains at the house (one for a small / intermediate sized car - e.g. a Fiat Punto - and one for a larger car), plus a magnetic ski rack for transporting skis to the mountain.

See also: http://www.realpointitaly.com/ski.htm

Local ski resort map

CERRETO LAGHI

Cerreto Laghi is the second biggest resort close to the house, and much nearer than Abetone, so probably the best option for a full day of skiing. You can be on the slopes within about an hour of leaving the house and there's a good selection of red and blue runs and several ski hire shops, bars and restaurants. There is a "magic carpet" conveyor belt lift and a very easy slope for absolute beginners, but there is quite an increase in difficulty between this and the rest of the slopes so this is not the best resort for learning to ski. Abetone has a better selection of beginners' slopes. There is also a modern indoor ice rink in Cerreto Laghi.
The best way to get there from the house is to go via Aulla and then follow the SS62 through Fivizzano to Cerreto Laghi.

No. of lifts: 5
No. of blue runs: 5
No. of red runs: 3
No. of black runs: 1
Total length of runs: 28km
Altitude: 1354m - 1890m
Ski pass per day: 28€ (weekends and holidays) / 20€ (weekdays)
Enquiries / info: +39 0522 89815 / +39 0522 714135

Click here for a map

Cerreto Laghi

Cerreto Laghi

Cerreto Laghi

Snow Report

Cerreto Laghi snow report

Weather

Cerreto Laghi weather report

Piste map

Cerreto Laghi piste map

Webcams

Cerreto Laghi webcam 1
Camera 1

Cerreto Laghi webcam 2
Camera 2

Cerreto Laghi webcam 2
Camera 3

Click the photos for larger images

Ski schools

Scuola Italiana Sci (+39 338 4243814 / +39 0522 897509 / +39 0522 297509)
Email: direzione@scuolascicerreto.com / enricoferretti@libero.it

Other links

Official website - www.cerretolaghi-ski.it
Skiinfo.com - www.skiinfo.com/destinations/detail.jsp?product.skiinfo.DESTID=EITCERRETOL
Appennino Bianco - www.appenninobianco.it/cerretolaghi
Sciweb.it - www.sciweb.it/localita_index.php?id=5008&idreg=8
Local ski club - www.sciclubcerretolaghi.it
Tourist board - www.reggioemiliaturismo.provincia.re.it/page.asp?IDCategoria=792&IDSezione=4767&ID=91684
Snoweye.com - www.snoweye.com/?page=it-apennines&big=9

 

Zum Zeri

Zum Zeri

ZUM ZERI

Zum Zeri is one of the smallest resorts nearby with just a few kilometres of slopes, 3 lifts, one ski hire shop and one restaurant, but it is picturesque, peaceful, quite close to the house and well worth visiting for a day or half day of skiing. Being a little lower than the other resorts snow is not guaranteed, so it is worth trying to check in advance if the resort is open. If it has snowed recently, snow chains may be needed for the journey up. There are snow chains to fit a small / intermediate size car (such as a Fiat Punto) and a larger car at the house.

No. of lifts: 3
No. of blue runs: 2
No. of red runs: 6
No. of black runs: 1
Total length of runs: 8km
Altitude: 1370m - 1588m
Ski pass per day: 25€ (weekends and holidays) / 19€ (weekdays)
Enquiries / info: +39 0187 449550 / +39 0187 447127

Click here for a map

Snow Report

Zum Zeri snow report

Weather

Zum Zeri weather report

Piste map

Zum Zeri piste map

Webcams

Prato Spilla webcam 1
Camera 1

Click the photo for up to date images

Ski schools

There are no official ski schools in Zum Zeri

Other links

Official website - www.zumzeri.net
Skiinfo.com - www.skiinfo.com/destinations/detail.jsp?product.skiinfo.DESTID=EITZUMZERI
Appennino Bianco - www.appenninobianco.it/zumzeripassoduesanti
Sciweb.it - sciweb.it/localita_index.php?id=5067&idreg=9
Local ski club - www.sciclubzeri.com

 

PRATO SPILLA

On a clear day the drive to Prato Spilla is one of the most spectactular and dramatic drives in northern Tuscany. Around an hour from the house Prato Spilla is another tiny resort, with mainly red runs.

No. of lifts: 3
No. of blue runs: 2
No. of red runs: 4
No. of black runs: 2

Total length of runs: 7km

Altitude: 1360m - 1750m
Ski pass per day: 25€ (weekends and holidays) / 15€ (weekdays)
Enquiries / info: +39 0521 890194 / +39 331 9481820

Click here for a map

Check which lifts/slopes are open

Prato Spilla

Prato Spilla

Snow Report

Prato Spilla snow report

Weather

Prato Spilla weather report

Piste map

Prato Spilla piste map

Webcams

Prato Spilla webcam 1
Camera 1

Click the photo for up to date images

Ski schools

Scuola Italiana Sci (+39 0521 890121) - email: scuolaitalianasci@pratospilla.pr.it
Individual lessons from €27/hour

Other links

Official website - www.pratospilla.pr.it
Skiinfo.com - www.skiinfo.com/destinations/detail.jsp?product.skiinfo.DESTID=EITPRATOSPI

 

Abetone

Abetone

Abetone

Abetone

ABETONE

Probably the largest resort in Tuscany, Abetone is a little further from the house, but is worth the drive. It takes around 2hrs-2.5hrs to drive there door to door, so it is worth booking a hotel in the resort and spending a couple of days there rather than trying to make a day trip of it. Abetone is closer to Pisa (about an hour and a half), so if you're flying into/out of Pisa a good option can be to visit the resort direct from the airport or at the end of the holiday. With a wide range of slopes and a great area for beginners served by two small chair lifts, this resort is ideal for all abilities.
The best way to get there from the house is to take the motorway to Lucca and then follow the SS12 through Bagni di Lucca all the way to Abetone.

No. of lifts: 25
No. of blue runs: 20
No. of red runs: 12
No. of black runs: 1
Total length of runs: 70km
Altitude: 1388m - 1900m
Ski pass per day: 36€ (weekends and holidays) / 29€ (weekdays)
Enquiries / info: +39 0573 60231 / +39 0573 60557 / +39 0573 60556

Click here for a map

Recommended hotels:
Albergo Regina (+39 0573 60007) - info@albergoregina.com
Residence La Riva (+39 0573 607092) - info@residencelariva.it

Other hotels near the centre of the resort include:
Hotel Granduca (+39 0573 60067) - granduca@abetone.com
Hotel Sport (+39 0573 60034) - albergosport@abetone.com
Hotel Excelsior (+39 0573 60010) - albergoexcelsior@abetone.com
Hotel Bellavista (+39 0573 60028) - info@bellavista-abetone.it

It is usually necessary to book a hotel in advance, particularly during high season or Italian national holidays. There are details of other hotels on some of the websites linked below.

Abetone is the only resort in the area which has anything approaching après ski. There are several bars in the centre of town, the best of which are Bar Grog (also a pizzeria) and Bar Ciustè which serves an endless selection of warm snacks for free in the early evening. During peak season they get lively particularly between 6pm and 8pm and after midnight. Bar Grog also has wireless internet and a computer available with internet access.

Snow Report

Abetone snow report

Weather

Abetone weather report

Piste map

Abetone piste map

Alternative map

Webcams

Abetone webcam 2
Camera 1

Abetone webcam 3
Camera 2

Abetone webcam 4
Camera 3

Click the photos for up to date images

Ski schools

Abetone
Scuola di Sci Abetone (+39 0573 60032)
Scuola di Sci Montegomito (+39 0573 60392)
Scuola di Sci Colo' (+39 0573 607077)
Val di Luce
Scuola di Sci Montegomito (+39 0573 609020)
Le Regine
Scuola di Sci Abetone (+39 0573 60322)

Other links

Official website - www.abetone.com
Skiinfo.com - www.skiinfo.com/destinations/detail.jsp?product.skiinfo.DESTID=EITABETONE
Appennino Bianco - www.appenninobianco.it/abetone
Snow-forecast.com - www.snow-forecast.com/resorts/Abetone.shtml
Sciweb.it - www.sciweb.it/localita_index.php?id=5063&idreg=9
Abetone.it - www.abetone.it
Tourist board - www.pistoia.turismo.toscana.it/mappaimpianti/mappasci.php
Snoweye.com - www.snoweye.com/?page=it-apennines&detail=abetone
We Love Abetone - www.weloveabetone.it

 

LEISURE FACILITIES

SWIMMING POOLS

Villafranca swimming poolVillasport, Villafranca (+39 0187 494076)
Located in Villafranca just on the northern edge of the town, you can see the Olympic diving boards of the swimming pool set back on the right as you drive from Villafranca to Pontremoli. There are two or three outdoor pools, a jacuzzi, sun loungers, warm showers, a bar and a restaurant. The swimming pool area is surrounded by a lawns with natural shade from the trees. The centre also runs swimming and aquafitness classes. There are two clay tennis courts next to the swimming pool centre (see below).

Villafranca swimming poolEntrance prices - weekdays: 5 Euros for adults, 4 Euros for children; weekends and holidays: 5 Euros for adults, 5 Euros for children
E-Mail: piscinevillasport@lunigiana.net

www.luniholidays.co.uk/active_swim.php

TENNIS

Villafranca tennis centre (+39 0187 494100)
Located right next to the Villasport swimming pools just outside Villafranca, there are two clay courts - one covered and one open air. The courts are both floodlit so can be used until 10pm or sometimes later. To book, call the number above or go down to the courts in person during the day. The attendants don't speak much English, so it may be easier to drop by in person if your Italian is not great. There are basic showers and changing facilities on site. The hire cost is about €7 - €10 per hour.

Country Club Pontremoli (+39 0187 832065 / +39 338 8015959)
Palestra
Via IV Novembre 4
Pontremoli (MS)

Parco estivo (+39 0187 832581)
Via Veterani dello Sport
54027 Pontremoli (MS)
Email: countryclub@lunigiana.net

CRAZY GOLF

Green Point (+39 347 2664283)
Via Ronco
Quercia di Aulla (MS)
Minigolf, table tennis, table football, "word game", mountain bike hire, restaurant and bar
Email: greenpoint@lunigiana.net

GOLF

Lerici Golf CourseVersilia Golf ClubThere is a decent nine hole golf course in Lerici, about 40 minutes from the house. There are several good larger golf courses in Tuscany including Versilia Golf Club in Pietrasanta (eighteen holes), Montecatini Golf Club (eighteen holes), Golf Club Tirrenia (nine holes), Golf Club Fontevivo (nine holes), and the Cosmopolitan Golf & Country Club (eighteen holes) in Tirrenia. See the links below for more info:

www.toscanagolfmore.com/golfclubs_ing.htm
Golf in Tuscany and More golf in Tuscany

GO KARTING

Go karting near LericiThere is a large outdoor go karting circuit in Senato near Lerici:
Pista Funny Land (+39 0187 988274 / +39 338 4001474)
Via Ameglia 19032 near Senato
Click here for a map
For more details see www.pistafunnyland.it or
www.comune.lerici.sp.it/contenuto_secondo_liv.asp?id=413&sez=30&res=1

WATERSPORTS

www.venereazzurra.com/sci_nautico.html

FAIRGROUND

Luna Park in Marina di Carrara

CINEMAS / THEATRE

Cinema Teatro Città di VillafrancaDuring the summer there is an open air cinema service which tours all the local towns showing a selection of current films (in Italian). There is normally a film shown in Bagnone about once a week. Entrance is just a few euros and the screen is set up on the car park next to the post office just above Piazza Marconi. There are normally posters around the town displaying which films are on when.

There is a cinema and theatre in Villafranca: Cinema Teatro Città di Villafranca, via Roma 2, Villafranca (+39 0187 498011) and other local cinemas include:

Cinema Teatro AstoriaCinema Teatro AstoriaCinema Teatro di Aulla, P. Gramsci Antonio, 54011 Aulla (+39 0187 409870)
Cinema Verdi, via Barbarasco, near Terrarossa, 54019 Licciana Nardi (+39 0187 409054)

There is also a cinema in Lerici with permanent indoor and open air screens: Cinema Teatro Astoria, via Gerini, 40 Lerici (+39 0187 952253)

All films are normally dubbed into Italian rather than subtitled.

SHOPS AND SUPERMARKETS

There are several shops in Bagnone including a food and grocery store, a pharmacy, a newsagent's / stationer's, a butcher's, two bakeries, an electrical shop, a hairdresser's, a fruit and vegetable shop, a toyshop and a patiserie and ice cream shop. There are large supermarkets in Villafranca (Conad City), Aulla (Conad, Lidl and more) and Pontremoli (Conad City). There are also a handful of clothes and boutique shops in the old town area of Aulla.

There are good clothes and accessories shops in Lucca, Sarzana, Pisa and Parma.

Shops in Italy are generally open from about 8:30am or 9am until around 12:30pm and then from about 3:30pm until 6pm or 7pm, although some of the larger supermarkets are now open for the whole day. Most shops are closed on Sundays, although bakeries are usually open in the morning to sell bread. Some supermarkets are also open on Sundays. Many smaller shops usually have another day or half day during the week when they are closed - often on Mondays.

Internet

There is a computer with free internet access in the library close to the post office in Bagnone (near Piazza Marconi).

TRANSPORT

Trains

The closest train station to the house is in Villafranca (approx 5km away) and the station is officially called "Villafranca-Bagnone". This is on the main line between La Spezia and Parma. You can travel easily to Parma (1hr45), La Spezia (35min), Pisa (2hr), Pisa airport (2hr25), Genova (2hr20), the Cinque Terre - Monterosso, Vernazza, Manarola, Corniglia, Riomaggiore - (1hr15), Lucca (2hr), Florence (3hr) and further afield. It is easy enough to get to/from all the airports by train (see getting there for more info) - this is useful if you have friends arriving or leaving on a different day from you.

There is parking near the train station in Villafranca so it is easy to drive there and go off somewhere by train for the day. Alternatively you can get to the station by taxi, bus (if you manage to catch one of the two buses a day) or you can even cycle (there are three bikes at the house).

For more details of train times see www.ferroviedellostato.it or the typically efficient German train timetable website www.db.de which also covers Italian train times.

Taxis

There are a few private taxis in the local area. There are no taxi ranks as such in any of the nearby towns so the only way to hire a taxi locally is to phone one, ideally some time in advance. Taxis in Italy are generally quite expensive, so it's best to avoid very long journeys by cab - a taxi from the house to the airport for example would be at least €100-€120. Taxis are much more abundant in the bigger towns and cities - there are normally plenty at the airports and train stations in Genova, Parma and Pisa and a taxi from the station to the airport is normally no more than €10-€20.

Local taxis include: Michele in Villafranca (+39 338 2247403)

Buses

There is a sporadic bus service operated by CAT serving the local area including Bagnone, Villafranca, Aulla and Pontremoli. There are only two or three buses a day through Bagnone and on some days there are none. If you're lucky enough for there to be a bus at the time you want to travel then there is a bus stop very close to the house and you can also catch the bus down in the town. Click here for full timetables. The most useful lines are Linea 15 (Bagnone - Pontremoli) and Linea 22 (Bagnone - Filetto - Villafranca - Aulla). Both operate Mon-Sat only. The bus timetables are changed about every six months.

OTHER LOCAL SERVICES

Health and medical services

There is a pharmacy in Bagnone (+39 0187 429060). The nearest hospital is in Pontremoli (15km) - Ospedale di Pontremoli (+39 0187 462111). Emergency services can be called on 113 (all emergency services), 118 (medical emergency services) or +39 0187 429234 (misericordia - ambulance).

If it is less of an emergency you can contact Bagnone Ambulatorio Medico (+39 0187 429273) - guardia medica - the local duty doctor service situated on Piazza Marconi in Bagnone (the upper square near the post office and hotel). This service is available on Saturdays and Sunday only - on other days you should contact Distretto di Villafranca, Palazzo Baracchini (+39 0187 493500) an alternative service situated in Villafranca.

Police

There are at least three types of police in Italy: Carabinieri (112 or +39 0187 429023) - national police, Polizia Municipale (+39 0187 427826) - local police, Polizia Stadale (113 or +39 0187 42211) - road police, Forest police - 1515

In an emergency call 112.

Fire service

In an emergency call 115

ACI assistance on the road

Call 116 in an emergency

Banks

There are several banks and cash machines in Bagnone.
Banks are normally open approx 8:30am-1pm and 2:45pm-3:45pm Mon-Fri.

Tourist Information

There is a tourist information office (+39 0187 429773) in Piazza Roma in Bagnone