The Middle Serchio Valley is a very special land, a theatre of natural, historical and artistic beauties that confer on it an enchanting appearance, representative of past ages and of the works of great artists. It is by no means an easy task to organise a tourist guide covering all the numerous aspects of these places, presenting the facts in an organic, accurate and attractive fashion. Indeed, until now there has been no truly organic guide, synthetic yet exhaustive, capable of presenting the Middle Serchio Valley in its entirety. The book fills a gap. The volume is embellished with maps, drawings and numerous photographs. It is an important resource for public bodies, libraries, cultural associations and tourist boards, useful for businesses and individuals, and of educational value for an understanding of the territorial patrimony that we have inherited. In the Middle Serchio Valley there are a great many excellent agritourist structures, for which a book of this kind will be extremely useful in encouraging high-level cultural tourism, and offering an adequate treatment of our territory. The author has decided to describe these lands Comune by Comune. This is not so as to subdivide and break up places that have in fact a high degree of landscape homogeneity, but on the contrary so as to describe, synthetically, the greatest number of ‘objects’, of villages and of monuments found in the area. Every portion of these lands encloses within itself monuments and characteristic itineraries that can reasonably attract the visitor’s interest, but can also renew the understanding of the inhabitants. It therefore makes sense to divide the abundant material into chapters concentrating on a single Comune, and exploring all of its fractions, even the smallest. Lastly, the volume investigates some subjects in greater detail, with the help of ‘boxes’ that focus on particular features, such as the historical importance of chestnut trees to the economy of our territory; the agricultural terracing that covers large areas of the hillside overlooking the Serchio; the art of the ‘figurinai’ or makers of plaster statuettes; the history of the thermal baths. It is our hope that this book will not only guide the tourist to a better understanding of the beauties of these places, but will also direct our initiatives as citizens and as administrators, in the spirit of a renewed culture of the beauty and quality that here, for centuries, has characterised human endeavour.