Posts Tagged ‘Things to see and do in Chianti’

Volterra, Italy, a charming mediaeval Tuscan hilltop town

Church of San Giusto in Volterra

Volterra is a charming Tuscan hill town that was “discovered” by a popular author of travel guides a few years back and more recently became the setting for a series of vampire movies. Despite the consequent upsurge in tourism, Volterra is still a “must visit” for anyone interested in Tuscan life, art and history. Volterra […]

Val di Greve – the valley of the river Greve in central Tuscany

Greve in Chianti on the flood plain of the Greve river

The Greve river (fiume Greve), 43 km in length and among the best known rivers of Tuscany, arises on the hill known as Querciabella, in the Chianti hills just below Lamole, where it is fed by the springs of Fonte di Poggio alle Coste and Fonte del Topo. It flows rapidly down through the forested […]

A tour of the Romanesque parish churches (pievi) of Chianti, Italy

San Polo in Rosso

Chianti, the picturesque wine region that extends between Florence and Siena, is known worldwide for its unique landscape – hills dotted with castles, villas and farm houses, and vast expanses of vineyards and olive groves, the source of Chianti Classico wine and Chianti extravergine olive oil, interspersed with rows of cypress trees. The territory also […]

The pleasures of outdoor dining in Chianti

Dining outdoors in Chianti

The combination of love of family life, a pleasant climate and a passion for food makes dining in the open air extremely popular in Chianti, as throughout Tuscany. The chance to experience the pleasures of outdoor dining in Chianti is one of many reasons to think about spending at least part of your vacation in […]

Funghi porcini chiantigiani – collecting and eating porcini

porcini mushrooms

Funghi porcini, commonly referred to simply as “porcini” (“piglets”, probably based on their appearance; singular “porcino”) are large, edible mushrooms of the species Boletus edulis. English speakers often refer to them as “porcini mushrooms“. Common names for Boletus edulis vary by region. The word “porcino” is Tuscan and hence standard Italian, and reflects the latin […]

Florentine grilled steak – how to prepare it, how to eat it

Bistecca all Fiorentina

Not all tourists realise that grilled steak is very popular in Tuscany and, under names such as carne alla brace or carne alla griglia, no doubt has been, in one form or another, since time immemorial. One of the most traditional grilled steaks in Tuscany is the tagliata Toscana which is basically a simple grilled […]

Tavarnuzze, a Chianti town on the outskirts of Florence

American World War II cemetery Florence

Tavarnuzze is a smallish town within the county of Impruneta. The Greve river flows through it. The Florence American Cemetery and Memorial site is located near Tavarnuzze and can be reached by SITA bus from Florence. The site covers 70 acres and is open to the public daily from 9 am to 5 pm, except Christmas Day […]

The town of Strada in Chianti near Florence

Strada in Chianti Tuscany Italy

Strada in Chianti is a township on the Via Chiantigiana quite near Florence and on the turnoff for Impruneta. It’s quite a good base for those who plan to visit Florence often but who wish to spend their vacation in the country. Florence is easily accessibly from Strada by bus or car (20 km, less […]

The hamlet of Lucarelli in Chianti

Lucarelli in Chianti, Tuscany

Lucarelli is a hamlet of just a few houses, a church, a restaurant and a trattoria, located on the road running from the Via Chiantigiana between Panzano and Castellina, towards Radda in Chianti. The Pieve di San Giusto in Salcio has been mentioned numerous times since the 11 C in the papers of the Abbey […]

The village of Chiocchio on the road between Florence and Greve in Chianti

The vineyards of Chiocchio in Chianti, Tuscany

Chiocchio is useful as a base for exploring the parts of Chianti near Florence and for those who want to stay in the country while being able to visit Florence easily. Chiocchio has an ARCI Circolo for coffee and sandwiches and there is also a quite good restaurant here. This is also a good place […]

The historical village of Sambuca in Val di Pesa, Tuscany

Sambuca Val di Pesa Chianti Tuscany

The small town of Sambuca in Val di Pesa is documented from 1053, but due to bombing during WW II is now mostly modern and forms a centre of light industry. However, the ancient bridge and some nearby mediaeval buildings are still extant and worth noting as you pass through the area. More about Sambuca […]

The village of Tavarnelle in Val di Pesa and its surroundings in Tuscany, Italy

The parish church (pieve) of San Pietro in Bossolo near Tavarnelle

Tavarnelle is mostly modern architecturally but is the location of the Church of Santa Lucia al Borghetto, the most interesting architectural sight within Tavarnelle itself, being a rare example of Tuscan Gothic architecture. In the environs of Tavarnelle, the highly attractive Romanesque parish church of San Pietro in Bossolo contains interesting works of art and […]

San Casciano in Val di Pesa, Tuscany, Italy

San Casciano in Val di Pesa

San Casciano is a small town and also a county on the north-western border of the Chianti Classico area of Tuscany. It can be reached by bus from central Florence in half an hour. Its full name is San Casciano in Val di Pesa, indicating that it is located near the valley of the Pesa […]

The hilltop hamlet of Lamole in Chianti in central Tuscany

Lamole in Chianti

The hamlet of Lamole, famous for its Chianti Classico wines, is situated high up in the Chianti hills near Greve in Chianti and Panzano in Chianti. Lamole is a popular vacation location on account of its fabulous views and its temperate summer weather. The one and only restaurant in Lamole, Ristoro di Lamole, is a […]

Private wine tasting and winery tours in Chianti and Tuscany

wine tasting tours

“Degustazione” – wine tasting – is the word to watch for on the winery signposts along the various wine routes in Chianti and Tuscany. This means that you can taste the wine produced at that vineyard and if you like it you can buy a few bottles. You might also want to keep your eyes […]

Improve your Italian with lessons from a professional Italian language teacher in Tuscany during your vacation.

Italian lessons in Tuscany

Why not learn some Italian or improve your Italian skills during your holiday in Tuscany? Italian lessons in Italy Lorella Federico offers Italian lessons at all levels for individuals and small groups visiting Chianti. Lorella, who is a professionally trained Italian language teacher, lives in Panzano in Chianti. You can attend lessons at her location […]

Italianate gardens of the villas of Tuscany

Tuscan garden of Villa Gamberaia

The formal gardens of Tuscany have been an integral part of the villas of Tuscany since Renaissance times when they first made their appearance as conscious attempts to create for wealthy and influential Florentines the ideal place for humanist debate, based upon ancient Roman ideals. After a period of landscape design in the English style […]

Tuscan wines, Chianti Classico wines, “Super Tuscans”, Brunello, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano

chianti grapes

Tuscan wines, particularly Tuscan red wines, have improved out of all recognition during the course of the past 45 years. This generalisation applies almost universally throughout the Region of Tuscany to the extent that one no longer has to search for a good wine but rather for either an outstanding wine and/or a wine that […]

Abbeys, basilicas, monasteries, hermitages and parish churches of Tuscany

Abbazia di Sant'Antimo

The Abbeys, Basilicas and Monasteries of the Tuscan countryside and villages are sometimes overlooked as we enthusiastically feast on the masterpieces in the churches of Florence, Sienna and the other “art” cities of Tuscany. In fact there are abbeys (abbazie), basilicas (basiliche), monasteries (monasteri), hermitages (eremi) and parish churches (pievi) in every corner of Tuscany, […]

Greve in Chianti activities, castles and other sights

Piazza Matteotti in Greve in Chianti

The whole area of Chianti around Greve is packed with castles, even more so than other parts of Tuscany, in addition to walled villages such as Montefioralle, Vertine and Volpaia, fortified abbeys and farmhouses that have developed from watch towers. Day excursions taking in several of these sights add enormously to the enjoyment of a […]

Food and wine in Greve in Chianti

porchetta sandwich

Greve in Chianti is the market town of the Chianti Classico wine zone and so, not surprisingly, a great place to buy both wine and typical Chianti food products. Indeed, if you stay at an agriturismo, a working farm and usually a winery, you’ll be able to see wine during its development as well as […]

All about Greve in Chianti

Greve in Chianti, Tuscany, Italy

Greve in Chianti is a small and quite charming town located, unusually for a Tuscan village, on the floor of the valley of the Greve stream. It has always been a market place but only in the past few hundred years has it developed as a town. Greve is now probably the most popular centre […]

Castelnuovo Berardenga – villas, gardens and other sights

The Vicolo dell' Arco in Castelnuovo Berardennga

During the days of the Republic of Sienna, the territory or district of Berardenga was the area between the headwaters of the Bozzone torrent and the  Ambra river, and between upper Chianti and the Biena river as far as Taverne d’Arbia. Today, Castelnuovo Berardenga marks the southern limit of the Chianti Classico wine zone and […]

The Chianti town of Barberino Val d’Elsa

Barberino Val d'Elsa

Although is is mentioned in a document dating from 1054, Barberino Val d’Elsa developed as a township in the first decades of the 13 C after the Florentine destruction of the city of Semifonte in 1202. After a long siege, Semifonte was razed to the ground by Florence in 1202, and the Florentines forbade its […]

Tuscan Specialities – fashion, food and wines

Tuscan specialities

Tuscany is famous not only for fine wines and fabulous food, but also for a wide range of artisanal work, especially handmade leather fashionwear and fashion accessories. Top fashion labels are available at the famous discount fashion outlets and throughout Tuscany there are leather workshops, paper makers and binderies, gold workers and jewellers producing extremely […]

Useful Tuscany Tourist Information

Useful tourist information

Visitors to Tuscany are spoiled for choice when it comes to things to see and do in this beautiful region of Italy. And there are a few things to be aware of in terms of having your vacation tarnished. Events in Tuscany – fairs and festivals, large and small, plus costume re-enactments are frequent in […]

Sights of Massa Marittima and the Maremma in Tuscany, Italy

Massa Marittima

Massa Marittima is an under-estimated Tuscan destination: it is what Volterra was five years ago – an “undiscovered” Tuscan hill town full of interest and charm. Massa Marittima was founded by the Etruscans, like many cities in Tuscany, and is located in the Colline Metallifere so that its history is closely linked to the copper […]

Events, festivals, fairs, exhibitions and historical re-enactments in Tuscany

Events in Tuscany

Tuscany is famous for the number and quality of its festivals and events. Why are they so many and so good? Several reasons. One is that annual folk festivals such as grape and wine festivals as well as religious holidays have lasted longer or been revived more often in Italy than in most other European […]

The Chianti village of Gaiole in Chianti

Gaiole in Chianti - Castello di Barbischio

Gaiole in Chianti is a village located in the “Chianti castles” area on one of the roads running from central Chianti to the Val d’Arno. This area is characterised, obviously, by numerous picturesque castles, both intact and ruined, together with several beautiful pievi (parish churches) and fortified abbeys. The surrounding hills are dotted with wineries […]

The wine village of Radda in Chianti, Tuscany

Radda in Chianti

Radda in Chianti, along with Gaiole and Castellina, was one of the three founding towns of the Chianti league and is to this day located on a ridge between the Val d’Arbia and the Val di Pesa, within the Chianti Classico wine zone, surrounded on all sides by cypress forests and vineyards. Radda is of […]

Impruneta and terracotta manufacture in Tuscany

Impruneta and terracotta manufacture

Impruneta is located just outside the Chianti Classico wine zone and in fact is much more famous for terracotta manufacture than for wine, despite holding on of the most entertaining grape festivals in Tuscany on the last Sunday of September. Impruneta is within easy reach of Florence by car, by bus and even by bicycle, […]

Panzano, the Tuscan hilltop town in the middle of Chianti

Panzano in Chianti

Panzano in Chianti makes an ideal base for your holiday in Chianti. It is located exactly halfway between Florence and Sienna, with a comfortable bus connection to Florence (one hour). The altitude of Panzano ensures that it avoids excessive heat during the Tuscan summer. The entire surrounding territory consists of Chianti Classico vineyards, olive groves and […]

The walled mediaeval village of Montefioralle in Chianti, Italy

The "Castello" of Montefioralle near Greve in Chianti

The small village of Montefioralle is one of the best-preserved and most interesting mediaeval fortified villages in Chianti, indeed in the whole of Tuscany. The original name of Montefioralle was Monteficale – it claims an entire verse under that name in the Ninfale fiesolano, composed by Boccaccio in 1344-45. Montefioralle has a double circuit of […]

Castellina in Chianti, history, accommodations and things to see

Castellina in Chianti

The town of Castellina in Chianti is one of the most popular destinations and vacation bases in Chianti. Castellina is central in terms of visits to anywhere in Chianti and the nearby areas of Tuscany, including Volterra and the Val d’Orcia, located as it is at an important crossroads on the via Chiantigiana. It is […]

Pieve a Pacina, an ancient parish church near Castelnuovo Berardenga

The parish church at Pacina (Pieve a Pacina), located near Castelnuovo Berardenga, is worth a visit by anyone interested in the Romanesque churches of Chianti. It is documented from a remarkably early date (650 AD) and has a very unusual, cylindrical campanile which is probably a remnant of the original structure. The Pieve a Pacina is an […]

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