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Medieval Villages rise from the Deep

Two once submerged medieval villages, one in Italy and the other in the German Alps, have recently re-emerged, much to the delight of tourists.

Curon, German Alps

The medieval town of Curon in the South Tyrol region of what was once part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire was also recently drained so repairs could be made to the nearby dam.

Completely submerged by Lake Resia in the 1950s, usually only the 14th-century bell tower is visible, poking its spire above the water.

With the water now drained, tourists are enjoying the opportunity to check out the ruins of a village that once had over 1,000 residents.

Fabbriche di Careggine, Tuscany

Abandoned in the 1940s when a hydroelectric dam was constructed nearby and the valley flooded in order to provide much-needed power to the region, The 13th-century village of Fabbriche di Careggine in Tuscany was founded by a group of blacksmiths. Once famous for its ironworks, today, many of its 31 buildings still stand, as well as a bridge that once crossed the nearby river, a Church, and a bell tower, all of which once served over 150 residents.

The society that owns the dam plans to empty the lake sometime in 2021 to encourage tourism. The last time the lake was drained was in 1994. At that time, as many as a million tourists visited the medieval ruins over the few months the lake remained drained.

The lake and dam are located about 1.5 hours by car from Pisa.


To see a video of the village prior to it being flooded in 1947, click here.

To see a video of the village when the lake was drained in 1983, click here.


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