Friday 31 January 2014

Tuscan winery vacation accommodations

I recently visited the Il Santo winery on the outskirts of Greve in Chianti. I'd forgotten just how good their wine is. Il Santo is also an excellent example of the kind of Tuscan winery vacation accommodations available in this area of Chianti - both comfortable and economical. Budget travellers without a car will find Il Santo additionally attractive because it is within reasonable walking distance of the Florence bus stop in Greve (1 km). The owner and manager is the kind and attentive Alessandro Turchi.

Tuscan winery vacation accommodations
View out from Il Santo Tuscan winery vacation accommodations

Il Santo offers accommodation for up to 11 persons in four small apartments, two of which are air conditioned. Each has a private entrance and its own outdoor table and chairs on a terrace or in the garden. The views are panoramic, taking in the Il Santo vineyards and olive trees, and then the forested Chianti hills. The large swimming pool is available to guests and there is a good WiFi connection.

Il Santo winery and vacation rental in Chianti, Tuscany
Dining room of one of the vacation apartments at Il Santo
The great thing about Il Santo as a Tuscan vacation location is that it is centrally located in Chianti, half way between Florence and Sienna, making it an ideal base for exploring almost every corner of Tuscany. Greve in Chianti is on the Via Chiantigiana, one of the most scenic motoring routes in Tuscany, if not in all Italy.

You can't go wrong choosing Il Santo as your holiday home in Tuscany.

More about Azienda Agricola Il Santo near Greve in Chianti, Tuscany.

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Thursday 30 January 2014

A great vacation apartment with pool in Chianti

Are you in search of a great vacation apartment with pool in Chianti? I have an excellent recommendation for you! Il Cascino is a former Tuscan farmhouse and farm buildings that have been converted into vacation apartments which are available at very economical weekly rates. The holiday apartments sleep from 2 persons up to 12 persons in two of the larger apartments opened into one another. There is a beautiful swimming pool for the guests with plenty of deck chairs available, and the whole property is surrounded by a dense forest of cypress trees.
Vacation apartment with pool in Chianti
A double bedroom in one of the Tuscan vacation apartments at Il Cascino.
The great virtue of Il Cascino vacation apartments is their location just 1 km away from the beautiful mediaeval walled village of Montefioralle and 2 km from Greve in Chianti, the gateway to Chianti. There are two restaurants in Montefioralle which is within easy walking distance of Il Cascino, while Greve offers everything you need for a great holiday in Tuscany, including restaurants, a supermarket, many speciality food outlets, a post office, banks etc. Greve lies halfway between Florence and Sienna, so that both cities, as well as the entire Chianti Classico region, are easily accessible by car and, in the case of Florence, also by bus (one hour to the centre of Florence).
holiday rental in Tuscany
The swimming pool of Il Cascino vacation apartments in Tuscany
The Chianti Classico wine region is rightly very popular as a holiday destination with its beautiful landscapes, villages, abbeys, castles and towers. Chianti is also a good base for visits to almost every corner of Tuscany due to its central location. Although you can reach major sights by public transport (bus to Florence and then by train or bus), a car is extremely helpful in getting around Tuscany in an efficient manner.

More about Il Cascino Chianti Classico vacation apartments.

Self-catering holiday apartments and B&B rooms in the Chianti Classico wine zone.

Vacation accommodation in Tuscany
Author: Anna Maria Baldini

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Saturday 25 January 2014

Pienza is a must see when you visit Tuscany

The little town of Pienza in the Val d'Orcia of southern Tuscany seems to the visitor to be an ideal town, filled with light, human in its balance and proportions. This is no accident. Enea Silvio Piccolomini, a Renaissance man in every sense, as Pope Pius II, had his native village of Corsignano rebuilt to embody in urban form the humanist ideals of the architect Leon Battista Alberti. The work was supervised by Bernardo di Matteo del Borra Gamberelli (1409–1464), better known as Bernardo Rossellino, and the outcome was a model for many later Renaissance towns and cities. Corsignano is now known as Pienza, from the name of its greatest benefactor, Pio II.

Pienza seen from the Val d'Orcia

Without doubt I can say that Pienza is a must see when you visit Tuscany. The focal point for a visit to Pienza is the trapezoidal main piazza which is defined by four buildings: the Palazzo Piccolomini, the Duomo, the Palazzo Vescovile and the Palazzo Comunale.

To me the three storey Palazzo Piccolomini is one of the most beautiful secular buildings of the Renaissance, enhanced as it is by an interior courtyard and a splendid italianate garden on the south side, looking out over the Val d'Orcia to Monte Amiata in the distance. This integration of the garden into the architecture of the villa, together with the wonderful vista beyond the garden, is the hallmark of Renaissance domestic architecture.

A visit to Pienza can comfortably be combined with visits to the wine towns Montalcino and Montepulciano, or a visit to Villa La Foce, if formal gardens are among your enthusiasms.

And let's not forget that the sheep of the Val d'Orcia together with the skill of its artisans make Pienza the home of the best Tuscan pecorino, ewes' milk cheese. Don't forget to buy some during your stay in Pienza!

More Pienza tourist information.

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Author: Anna Maria Baldini

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