Once Maremma was a marshy and unhealthy place. Then the reclamation work was begun by the Lorraine grand-duke of Tuscany (Leopoldo II) and the marshes were gradually drained. Nowadays the Tuscan Maremma is a wide area which offers its visitors wonderful landscapes, the green of the pine woods, the fascinating macchia mediterranea and the enchanting atmosphere of the medieval villages.
The Tuscan Maremma has several protected areas. The tourists can learn about the variety of vegetation and animals present in this land. One area we should mention is the Parco Naturale della Maremma, the first natural park of the Tuscan Maremma and one of the first in Italy (1975) . Others are the Riserva Naturale del WWF near Lake Burano , the Parco di Montioni and the Parco Faunistico dell'Amiata. All these areas extend for about 40,000 hectares and they make the Tuscan Maremma one of the most important naturalistic heritages of Italy .