Tuscany: Val d’Orcia and the Renaissance
Val D’Orcia is a region of Tuscany in central Italy, extending from the hills south of Siena to Monte Amiata. Its gentle, cultivated hills are occasionally broken by gullies and by picturesque towns and villages. And the countryside is breathtaking with narrow streets surrounded by cypress lined roads. In the centre of Val D’orcia and Val di Chiana there are many attractions worth visiting.
Departure in the morning from the meeting point in Rome and arrival at our country house near Pienza. After check-in visit to the town of Montepulciano, known as a jewel of the XV century thanks to its Renaissance art and architecture: visit Piazza Grande, which is at the highest point of Montepulciano, and have a look at the tower and the Gothic façade of the Palazzo Comunale and the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta. Lunch in a local restaurant. Visit to a cellar of vino Nobile di Montepulciano. Return to the country house for Wine lesson no. 1 with our professional sommelier on the history of wine and its cultural importance, main vines of Tuscany, wine cultivation tecniques, the correct glasses to use, tasting of 3 wines. Dinner in a local restaurant.
After breakfast a visit to Pienza, the hometown of Pope Pius II, which has hardly changed over the centuries. In 1996 Pienza was declared a Unesco World Heritage Site thanks to the magnificent views, Piazza Pio II, the streets with “romantic” names such as Via del Bacio (Kiss Street) and Via dell’Amore (Love Street) and… for the cheese. At lunch time we will be busy with the first cooking class with the professional chef Paolo Trippini. We will then discuss ingredients and prepare a real Italian lunch that we will of course eat ourselves! After lunch, it’s time for San Quirico d’Orcia a small village with a beautiful church dating from the year 714, a Rose Garden and green spaces within the ancient, narrow streets. We will then visit a cellar and have Wine lesson no. 2 (how to smell wine, typical scents of white and red wines, how to sharpen your senses, identifying aroma and bouquet). Dinner in a local restaurant.
After breakfast we meet our top chef Paolo Trippini for the second cooking class. We will make fresh pasta, a few main courses and a dessert. After lunch visit to the town of Montalcino and historical centre dominated by the imposing Rocca or fortress built in 1361 to mark the passage of Montalcino under the domination of Siena. Visit to a cellar to taste the famous Brunello of Montalcino. Dinner in a local restaurant.
Day Four After breakfast visit to Bagno Vignoni, a popular destination known especially for its hot springs and the central Square of Sources with a 16th century tank containing thermal waters. There are also great views on Rocca d’Orcia and on the Orcia River. Lunch in a local restaurant and visit to a cellar for Wine lesson no.3 (tasting wine, the senses of tasting, the link beetwen wine and territory). In the evening return to Rome.
Before breakfast, our more energetic guests are welcome to join us on a 40 mins slow jog among olive groves and vineyards.
On request a Yoga session can be provided with: Youryogaroma teachers.
The tour will take place with a minimum of 8 participants.
- Visit Val D’Orcia, Unesco World Heritage site.
- Admire the towns of Montepulciano, Montalcino, Pienza.
- Enjoy the countryside with its gentle hills surrounded by scenic cypresses.
- Walk in the streets of Pienza with “romantic” names such as Via del Bacio (Kiss Street) and Via dell’Amore (Love Street).
- Dont miss the rose garden in San Quirico d’Orcia.
- Have a bathe in the hot spring waters of Bagno Vignoni.
- Follow the lessons of Paolo Trippini, pupil of Gianfranco Vissani. His creations are becoming increasingly famous in the international gastronomic world.
- Learn to love the wines of Tuscany through the lessons of our certified sommeliers.
Ask for a quote for tihs tour. Our proposal includes: minivan pick un and drop off at Rome airport and local transport.
3 night accomodation in a Country house with breakfast (in double room).
2 lessons with our chef Paolo Trippini, and 3 meals (not including drinks). 3 wine lessons with our certified sommelier.
Professional guide tours to historical and artististic sites.
Prices are not inclusive of entrance tickets to musems, archeological/historic sites and other extras.
All lessons and tours are in english. Every member of group should provide to his own travel insurance against theft, loss and medical problems (we suggest Direct travel or Alliance).