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Creuza de Ma: seaside mule track

The main characteristic of Liguria is that of being a mountainous territory overlooking the sea and therefore a succession of small villages connected to each other by a widespread network of narrow paths and mule tracks called in Italian crose, a term that derives from the Genoese dialect creuze.

The Ligurian croses often follow the highest slope of the hills, instead of valleys, privileging sunny and steep sections that favor the drainage of rainwater and prevent the formation of ice during the winter; more strenuous tracks to go, but fast and accessible in every season of the year.

They are often paved in the center with bricks and at the sides with round pebbles; those that surround the Gulf of La Spezia are, on the other hand, for the most part in cobblestone pavement or irregular blocks also in the center with the risers of the steps in blocks of sandstone or light limestone to better distinguish the steps in conditions of poor visibility.

The peculiarity that makes La Spezia mule tracks particularly interesting is that they allow an incomparable view of the Gulf of Poets from above: a deep natural inlet surrounded by hills, which for beauty and morphology is unique in the whole Mediterranean Sea.

The splendid paths of the Gulf have been traveled for centuries by the inhabitants of the surrounding hills who daily with great effort transported alone or with the help of mules the agricultural products of the cultivated terraced strips or other merchandise to be sold in the city of La Spezia.

The high path that follows the ridge of mountains and hills on the Gulf has been called AVG, i.e. Alta Via del Golfo and intersects on the western side with the Cinque Terre trails and more precisely with the AV5T, i.e. Alta Via delle Cinque Terre, former path n. 1.

Poets, writers and painters who have come to our gulf in past centuries have described through their works the beauty of the panorama of this little corner of paradise.

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