River Merse and the nature reserve
The Merse river originates from the metalliferous hills in the province of Grosseto, to be exact between the hills of Prata and that of Montieri, flows through the province of Grosseto first, crosses the province of Siena and flows into the Ombrone, near the Bagni di Petriolo, another place mythical to spend a beautiful day.
The Merse is approximately 70 km long and is almost entirely within wooded land, it crosses the Maremma and the Val d’Orcia, and meets famous monuments along its route, one above all the Gothic Abbey of San Galgano.
But not only that, in the upper part of the river, it also meets the historic “Mulino Bianco” famous for advertising and for having given its name to the famous brand of biscuits. Its real name is Mulino delle Pile, a building built in the early 1200s by the monks of the nearby Abbazia Serena.
Along the whole course, especially in the Brenna area, you can find large pools that form real small basins, also used by the ancients as a meeting place and refreshment.
It is possible to run into natural or artificial waterfalls, the most important is certainly the one found in Orgia, in the province of Siena, which we can only reach after traveling at least 5-6 km inside the wood.
We must mention the Farma, an important tributary of the Merse, where a few kilometers before meeting on the left side the Petriolo spas, famous for their sulphurous water, spring forth.
How to get?
For the gullies of Farma: take the SS73, or the Siena-Grosseto highway, reach the village of Monticiano, from here continue towards Torniella, before the bridge over the Farma River, on the left there is a dirt road where you can park the by car, from here it’s about 2 km on foot.
For the Merse river: to get to the San Lorenzo bridge of the Merse river, take the SS73 (both from Siena and from Roselle (Grosseto) on the road you meet Locanda il Ponte, right there is the famous bridge a few tens of meters , and from there there are also trekking routes that you can do.