FOREST OF VALLOMBROSA
The Forest of Vallombrosa is located on the western slope of the Pratomagno mountain chain, and extends over an area of 1279 hectares at altitudes ranging from 450 to 1450 metres a.s.l. Developed entirely on the left of the torrent known the “Borro di Lagacciolo”, the reserve involves a territory that has a rather uneven morphology, one that is characterised by remarkable slopes and by frequent incisions, thus resulting particularly variable to all and any types of exposure. The geology consists of an alternation of huge beds of sandstone of differing structures and compositions.
The forest covers the territory uninterruptedly (tree density: about 99%), thus performing an invaluable hydro-geological function. For this reason, there are numerous springs of very cool water, most of which are used for drinking-water purposes. The waterways, which are short and highly torrential in character, are reduced to almost zero during periods of drought.
In addition to a numerous and diversified fauna, the reserve contains one of the most well-known experimental arboretums in Europe. In it cohabit, in a state of admirable stability, more than 3000 exemplars of more than 1300 typologies belonging to 85 genera and coming from different parts of the world. All things considered, thanks to its floristic variety the Forest of Vallombrosa represents an ecosystem of great biological, environmental, aesthetic, and scientific-didactic value.