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Along the Bisenzio river

The Bisenzio river was crucial for the development of the textile industry in Prato. Its banks hosted the first mills and factories that exploited the power of water. With the Industrial Revolution, the city's textile district expanded significantly, and many industrial sites, now outstanding examples of industrial archaeology, are still located along this route, which can be explored in a leisurely walk of about one hour.

The Cavalciotto of Santa Lucia, dating back to the 11th century, was crucial to Prato's water system and its complex system of canals. Originally, it was created to reclaim the marshy plain. Over the centuries, it became essential for irrigation, defense and hydraulic power for mills and other productive activities.

Continuing, you will reach the complex of the Abatoni Mill and Coiano fulling mill, a precious example of industrial archaeology. The fulling mill preserves intact the original hydraulic structures (millpond, margone and supply outlets) and the entire production process, including machinery, pulleys and transmission shafts.

Continue your itinerary towards the former Fabbricone, currently home to the Lanificio Balli and the Fabbricone Theatre, one of the most prestigious theatres in the city.

Complete the route along Viale Galilei, admiring the imposing structure of the former Lanificio Calamai, one of the largest textile factories in the area which once also contained offices and homes, which is now a student residence. A curious note: the mural that decorates the walls along the avenue was created by the street artist DEM.

N.B.: The visit to the Coiano fulling mill and the Fabbricone is by appointment

On foot: 50 min

By bike: 20 min

Information

  • Involved Municipalities: Prato