If you’re looking for a location far from the unbearable heat of Florence in the summer months then San Godenzo is exactly what you are looking for. At 404 metres above sea level, this little town nestles on the side of the mountains between the Mugello and Casentino valleys surrounded by acres of woodland.
Here the Florentines choose to spend their summers and weekends in the same peace and tranquillity which attracted the hermit Godenzo in the 7th century. A beautiful Benedictine abbey was built in 1028 over the grave of the holy Godenzo. Inside you can admire the 1090-1100 capitals within the crypt and many works of arts of great interest such as the extraordinary mosaic of Giuseppe Cassioli. When the Germans razed the village in 1944, because it was on the Gothic Line, they spared the abbey in consideration of the Bavarian origins of Bishop Jacob who had it built.
In the territory of San Godenzo, Castagno d’Andrea sits at the foot of Mount Falterona and is one of the gateways to the magnificent National Park of the Foreste Casentinesi, Monte Falterona, Campigna. This park covers an area of about 368 square kilometres on the two sides of the Apennines between Romagna and Tuscany. Well worth a visit this park has a wide selection of flora and fauna, amongst these the Apennine wolves, various species of deer and the common buzzard, just to mention a few.