Erected on a hill behind the town lies the town fraction of Montale Alto, today a small rural village from which you can enjoy a magnificent view of the surroundings. If the sky is clear, it is possible to see the fortress of Montemurlo, the architecture of the nearby Pistoia, and even the dome of Santa Maria del Fiore and Giotto’s bell tower in Florence. Montale Alto can be easily reached taking the provincial road from Montale, heading down Via Eugenio Montale once you reach the cemetary. You can also pass through the Piazza Matteotti, entering dia Crispi. Not much of the ancient defensive castle has been preserved. Some remains are partially visible, even though it has been converted into a home, the “Palazzo del Podestà”. It overlooks a square with two small votive tabernacles. The walls are decorated with seventeenth-century crests while in the atrium you can still see an ancient fresco of the Madonna and Child.
Descending from Montale Alto from Via Pasolini, you will meet the public park called “Parco dell’Aringhese”. The park is dominated do by a monument in memory of the fallen soldiers of the two world wars and is surrounded by woods. It is a perfect natural amphitheater immersed in silence. In the past it has hosted musical and cultural events and today it is part of a redevelopment program that will value its features and will soon reopen it to the public. Back on the provincial road take Via Garibaldi and head towards the village of Stazione. It is a residential area that spreads over the plain and connects with the town of Agliana, which is separated from Montale by the course of the railway. Along the way, near the junction with Via Tobagi, you will meet the breezy keeping of the “Selva Vecchia” (trans “Old Forest”), a historic property of the Sozzifanti family faced by a long avenue of trees. Following Via Pacinotti through fields and old farms, where native vegetation is mixed oddly with palm trees and exotic species grown in greenhouses, you come across the modern parish of San Giacomo, founded in 1981 as part of a reform promoted by the bishop of Pistoia Mario Longo Dorni.