Standing above the Tuscan town of Montecatini Terme, Alto is reached by Fenicular railway in this spa town. €5 single and €7 return journey, gets you a bumpy but pleasant ride up the steep hill to the top of the hill. Just why you would want a single ticket is puzzling, since the track down is more suitable for BMX bikes rther than pedestrian traffic.
It is then a short walk from the small terminal to the town’s centre. Bristling with tourists and open air cafes. this delightful urnabisation retains the magic of Tuscany’s rural past. It was very hot (31C) the day I ventured around the town, discovering narrow streets and wide vistas over the town of Montecatini Terme. Many of the homes appear not to be inhabited, bing boared up or completely deserted. They are, maybe, holidy homes, but there are a few working hotels dotted around the ouskirts of the town and they can be approached by car if required.
Whilst I was visiting, a Leonardo da Vinci exhibition was tking place in the old fort above the town and at the top of the central square. Worth a look, for those interested in Leonardo’s scientific experiments with machines. Some of his contraptions have been recreated in the gounds of the fort.
The fenicular runs from 09.30 to 00.00, but be warned, it closes from one and a half hours for lunch, so timing id important if you need to be back in Montecatini Terme during that period, which starts at 1.pm.
This trip may not be suitable for the infirm without assistance.