Italian Comune
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Massa is a town and comune in Tuscany, central Italy, the administrative centre of the province of Massa-Carrara. It is located in the Frigido River Valley, near the Alpi Apuane, some 5 kilometers from the Tyrrhenian Sea.

The Massa area is of high touristic value and also hosts a concentration of some 600 industrial and craft activities, located within the so-called Apuan Industrial Zone, with a direct employment of more than 7,000 people. Together with the twin town of Carrara, Massa is worldwide known for the extraction and production of marble.


From the 15th to the 19th century, Massa was the capital of the independent Principate (later Duchy) of Massa and Carrara, ruled by the Malaspina and Cybo-Malaspina families. Massa is the first recorded town in Europe in which the magnetic needle compass was used in mines to map them and determine the extent of various mine owners' properties.

In 1829 the city was handed over to the Austrian branch of the Este family. In 1859, during the unification of Italy process, it joined the Kingdom of Sardinia.

Main sights

Massa's attractions include:
  • The Malaspina Castle (15th century), overlooking the city from a hill
  • The Renaissance Ducal Palace, on the Piazza Aranci
  • The Cathedral
  • Piazza degli Aranci
  • Piazza Mercurio
  • Marina di Massa

The Orto Botanico delle Alpi Apuane "Pietro Pellegrini" is a mountain botanical garden maintained by the city.


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