ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION CENTRE (CEA)

THE ALTA VAL DI CECINA ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION CENTRE

Environmental Education activities in the Protected Nature and the Alta Val di Cecina territory

About CEA

The Centro Educazione Ambientale dell’Alta Val di Cecina (CEA) is a cultural centre, made up of people, knowledge and actions, committed to making a contribution to improving the environmental and cultural quality of the territory with a view to a new ecological wisdom aimed at sustainable development of the Alta Val di Cecina. It is open to everyone’s contribution and supported by a “Technical Working Group” set up by the Region and the Mountain Union. The CEA has two operational centres, the Villa di Monterufoli and the Fattoria di Caselli, in the Monterufoli-Caselli Nature Reserve, which are located in natural, historical and cultural sites of extraordinary value.

What it offers

In collaboration with numerous associations and bodies in the area, the CEA offers an annual programme of activities, excursions, guided visits and events, which – together with the Educational Trails and Nature Trails of the Nature Reserves – offer opportunities for environmental enhancement and cultural rediscovery to discuss a different relationship between man and nature and the values that our territories preserve. Not only guided hikes but also courses on wild edible herbs, mycological days, thematic activities on forests, night-time activities on birds of prey and wolves, with the help of our guides and experts and through meetings with the entire local community. We celebrate the European Park Day, the World Animal Day, the National Tree Day and the Walk for Peace. We organise treks and stays for everyone, in the parks and throughout the Alta Val di Cecina. Particular attention is paid to sharing experiences and stays for schools of all levels, applying the criteria of Outdoor Education. The green classrooms, the didactic paths in the forest, the laboratories and the equipment available make it as easy as possible to create educational and training experiences. Research and training activities for teachers can also be carried out here. All the activities on offer never neglect knowledge, traditions, dialogue with local people and responsibility in the use of environmental resources.

The CEA team

It is made up of professionals and environmental guides with years of experience in environmental education and issues for the protection and sustainable and responsible development, particularly in protected areas.

The CEA’s accommodation facilities

These are two residences of historical and artistic importance located in the two the heartbeats of the Monterufoli-Caselli Reserve, i.e., Monterufoli and Caselli. The structures offer accommodation and diversified services to further the fruition and knowledge of the protected area and of the whole territory and allow an educational experience in a rich and involving natural and human environment.

The Villa of Monterufoli

Known as the “Villa of the 100 rooms”, it was built on the remains of a rural castle, then a noble residence, farm and hunting lodge for rich families, first the Maffei and then the Della Gherardesca. It has always been the centre of an area linked to an agricultural-forest economy and the exploitation of important mineral resources. Today, the Centre has a capacity of 52 beds, a catering service, classrooms, teaching laboratories and exhibition rooms. The facility can accommodate school groups, excursionists and research and workshop groups interested in discovering and studying the naturalistic features and the various environmental issues of the entire Val di Cecina territory.

The Caselli Farm

It dominates the territory of the ancient feud of the same name, once owned by the Della Gherardesca counts and known since the early Middle Ages. After a past as a castle, then as a villa and a farm, it is now a multi-purpose reception centre. The main building, the Castelletto, is still divided into flats, while the rooms on the ground floor are used for reception and representation by the managing body. The adjoining building houses service rooms on the ground floor and rooms for offices and collective activities for study, teaching and conferences on the upper floor, a learning-recreational laboratory and the guest rooms for the excursion and learning-naturalistic users.

Contact details:

Environmental Education Centre

cea.altavaldicecina@gmail.com

fabioguiducci@libero.it (per soggiorni nelle strutture del CEA)

https://www.facebook.com/CEAValdiCecina

Consorzio Turistico Volterra Valdicecina Valdera

www.volterratur.it; info@volterratur.it; tel. 0588 86099

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