Tuscany Itinerary for Wine Lovers

Dec 15th, 2001, 05:04 PM
  #1  
JoAnne
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Tuscany Itinerary for Wine Lovers

My husband and I are planning a trip to Italy in October. Planned on staying in Florence for 3 nights then 5-6 nights throughout Tuscany. Trying to decide which towns to visit in Tuscany and where to stay. Should we have a home base or stay in a new town each night. We really don't want to worry about getting home after a nice night out tasting the wonderful Italian wines. Really no price range for accomodations, but would prefer private bath. Willing to slurge ($200+) for something really worth it/special, but mostly want a place with character that is friendly, clean and convenient.

Thinking of Siena, Montalcino, Montepulciano, Pienza, Radda, Cortona, San Gimignano. Would love to visit lesser known places, too. We are interested in touring wineries and in general learning about the local wines. Thanks for any itinerary help and accomodation info.
 
Dec 15th, 2001, 05:40 PM
  #2  
Henry Schulte
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Try an agriturismo in southern Tuscany (e.g. La Crociona 3km south of Montalcino) and tour places like Pienza, Montepulciano, Monte Oliveto
Maggiore, Sant'Antimo, Bagno Vignoni, San Quirico, Murlo, and Buonconvento all within a half-hour of Montalcino.If you want more information e-mail me.
 
Dec 16th, 2001, 07:22 AM
  #3  
Diane
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We stayed in two Tuscan towns (besides Florence) when we were in Italy last May. Our first two nights in Italy were spent in Chiusi, from which we visited Montepulciano, Montalcino, Citta della Pieve, and wish we'd had more time to do Chiusi itself justice. You can learn about local wines easily, by visiting shops in these towns, and talking with people there. While we didn't tour any wineries, we have a better idea how to do that for our next visit. In Chiusi we stayed at Residenza re Porsenna, which was a delightful B&B right in town. Later during our trip (after Verona, the Dolomites, Venice and Florence) we spend two nights near Monteriggioni at CastelBigozzi. It was probably the nicest place we stayed on our entire trip, with fantastic views, exquisite furniture, and a huge bathroom with a jacuzzi tub and plenty of hot water to make it worth while. (Even the view from the bathroom was stupendous) The off-season rate was 200,000 lira/night for a double. Quite a deal. We plan to return and spend a week in one of their apartments, one day. From there you can visit all of chianti country, Siena, Volterra, San G...it is a very convenient place to stay. (My "review" plus another from this forum are here, somewhere...)
 
Dec 16th, 2001, 07:40 AM
  #4  
BOB THE NAVIGATOR
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Hello JoAnne, You have very good advice above. I would split the time between 2 locations--one between Florence and Siena and the other in south Tuscany. In addition to places above look at Relais Della Rovere near Colle and Castello Spaltenna near Gaiole. For the south, look at Hotel Vecchia Oliviera in Montalcino and Il Chiostro in Pienza. It will be hard to go wrong at any of these places. Cortona will be a stretch geographically from any of these.
Good luck !
 
Dec 16th, 2001, 03:12 PM
  #5  
Ismael
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JoAnne,
In October I don't an agriturismo is a good idea. It can be a little cold.
I'd like to suggest a few days in Firenze and a few more in Siena or around it. We did this in October and liked it very much.
In Siena we stayed in a villa outside the town. It was a lovely experience.
This is a message that I posted before:
I've been in
Tuscany many times, but I wonder to stay for a long period to know it with
more details.
So after a homework I decide to rent a villa in the outskirts of Siena. That
was a lovely experience!
From this point we went to the Chianti region, San Gimignano, Florence
(twice), and south of Siena to Montalcino, Montepulciano, Pienza, etc.
A car is a must. The roads are great and the little back roads very nice.
Le Meridiane ís a villa in Siena. It could suit you.
>>My wife and I have been at Le Meridiane, for a week, last year.
>>We liked it very much. The accomodations are very clean, large (you can
see the bedroom where we slept at the website), comfortable and has all
amenities. It has all cooking facilities and we had many meals at home.
There is a good view to the gardens with many olive trees and to a valle
with a avenue. It is located at the outskirts of Siena, fifteen minutes by
car to the Centro Storico and very near to the auto-route to Florence.
>There is a small grocery store nearby and a supermarket (COOP) a ten
minutes ride near the railstation.
>>The street, with many houses, ends at a cul-de-sac at Le Meridiane in a
small plaza where you can park your car. We had a car (leased from Renault
in Paris) and we've made many trips to the Chianti Region and south of Siena
(Montalcino, Montepulciano, Pienza, Sinalunga, etc.). Twice we went to
Florence (50 minutes by a no-toll auto-route). La signora Ana, who is in
charge of the villa, is very helpful and lives in another house nearby. I
looked for the website and I found it:
http:www.rpilo.it/meridian/meridian.htm
>>I'm a travel consultant in Belo Horizonte (Minas Gerais State) in Brazil
and I'll be glad to give more informations.
Ismael
 
Dec 16th, 2001, 07:27 PM
  #6  
Dean
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IMHO, I could not disagree more on the subject of agrotourismo than the previous post. Staying on a farm in a small apartment, especially those with kitchens or where the owners will cook for you is a treat. Going to the local market is a splendid way to get to know a place and to capture the pace f Italian life. I will top my Tuscany suggestions for more ideas.

I would stay in Castellina in Chianti. I cannot make an accomidations reccomendation as I stay with friends. But the location is central to most anything south of Florence. MOntalcino, Montepulciano are about 1 hr and 15 minutes south, san galgano or Massa Maritima are less than 2 hours south. I personally would rather drive more and spend less time packing and transferring between hotels so we stay in one place and do day trips.
 
Dec 17th, 2001, 09:00 AM
  #7  
freddy
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Hi Joanne,
we planned a trip for next April in Tuscany, 12 days divided in florence,San Gimignano,Pienza,siena. We are a group of six friends and find in short time ,for good price, three and four stars hotel by an italian operator we met in Florence three years ago.([email protected])
 
Dec 17th, 2001, 09:24 PM
  #8  
Dayle
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Dear JoAnne: We stayed in San Sano, a TINY village about 20 minutes drive on the Chianti Highway north of Siena. We absolutely loved the Hotel Residencia San Sano. Lovely rooms, pool, breakfast & dinners (optional) served under the arbor in the front garden. In the middle of the olive groves and vineyards. Perfect! From there we drove to San G. (it's late I can't spell!) and Volterra, Greve, did some wine tasting at Castello di Brolio, plus a fabulous lunch at La Badia di Coltibuono. Great location for the northern Tuscany towns. I would stay further south, perhaps Montepulciano or Chiusi for other nights. I don'd mind packing/repacking as much as I mind spending a lot of time driving back & forth to the same place too many times, but that's just me.
 
Dec 17th, 2001, 09:52 PM
  #9  
K
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Diane- Do you know a web address for Castelbigozzi?
Can anyone recommend good lodging in or around Castellina in Chianti?
Thanks
 
Dec 18th, 2001, 03:37 AM
  #10  
Diane
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www.chiantiturismo.it
It is probably about 40 minutes to an hour from Castellino in Chianti.
 
Dec 18th, 2001, 04:24 PM
  #11  
Steve
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Check out www.case-spante.com. My wife and I stayed at Muricciaglia just outside of Castellina last August and recommend it without hestitation.
 
Dec 18th, 2001, 08:43 PM
  #12  
K
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Thanks Steve and Diane. I appreciate the info.
 
Feb 14th, 2002, 06:57 AM
  #13  
a--z
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Up for Joel --- here's another thread re: Tuscany that'll give you ideas for your trip.
 
Feb 14th, 2002, 10:44 AM
  #14  
sally
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About 5 years ago I stayed at the Vicchiomaggio vineyard in Greve with my family in October. This is another agritourism establishment which we found through a travel agency but now has its own website www.vicchiomaggio.it. It is a working vineyard and really beautiful. The setting is absolutely gorgeous, up on a hill, really spectacular. We had a huge suite (4 people) and there were a few things that weren't great about it (being such an old place) I remember the doorknob falling off in my hand, but overall a nice place to stay and extremely memorable. Greve has a great restaurant in the town square which is tiny and is a fast drive to Florence and many other Tuscan hill towns. Vicciomaggio has lots of character but you do need to drive everywhere (including into the town center) on curvy roads which must get worse with a few glasses (bottles!) of vino. They have a restaurant there. I don't remember the room being cold at all.
have fun.
 
Feb 14th, 2002, 10:50 AM
  #15  
Grasshopper
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Check out Castello Banfi, www.banfi.com

I've heard the Brunello is unbeatable.
 
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