Transfer to Villa Casalta - approx 1.5 hours from Pisa airport.
We head to the mediaeval market town of Greve in Chianti walking through a magnificent setting of olive groves and vineyards. On the way, we will stop in the fortified hilltop village of Montefioralle, considered the most ancient 'borgo' in Chianti. We return to our farmhouse in time for a tasting of the local wine before dinner. Total walking approx. 9 km
Using a combination of bus and train we make our way to the centre of Siena for a day exploring this fascinating city. We have time for visits to the numerous museums and stunning Duomo, to relax in one of the many outdoor cafes in the main square, the Piazza del Campo, home of the world famous Palio horse race, and a visit to one of the many boutique shops specializing in local products and cutting edge Italian fashion. In the afternoon we also have the fantastic opportunity to learn about Tuscan wines on a 2-hour fun interactive course at the Tuscan Wine School.
This morning we will set out for a local history walk, covering the route from Villa Casalta to Castellina in Chianti before breaking for lunch in charming Castellina. This afternoon we take a short bus ride to start our walk around picturesque Fonterutoli; famed for acclaimed Chianti Classico wine. We will take a stroll through local woodlands where we may be lucky enough to spot the prized Cinta Senese Tuscan pigs! Total walking approx. 12 km
Today is free to rest any potentially tired legs at the poolside. Alternatively, your leader can advise on local Chianti wine tasting tours and cooking classes, offer assistance for unguided walks, or help you plan a day trip to Montepulciano.
Our destination today is the magnificent city of Florence, the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance with an enormous wealth of historical sites, museums, galleries, churches and architectural delights. Most of the great artists, thinkers and builders from Renaissance history passed through or lived in Florence when it was under the rule of the Medici family, the most famous patrons of the 16th century. But Florence is not just a Renaissance showpiece: once you have had your fill of the historical trail there are many other things to see and do. The city has not ceased to be a centre of learning, and there is a university, many art and language schools and a large student population to liven up the cafe-bars, restaurants and nightclubs. There are some good flea markets and chic boutiques. From April to July, Florence also holds one of Europe's major cultural events, a festival of opera and classical music called the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino.
After a short transfer to the quaint hamlet of San Donato, we walk through the farm grounds following the pathway to Montauto and on up to the picturesque mediaeval town of San Gimignano. The walk is not long and should take approximately 2 hours. The afternoon is spent exploring this beautiful town including visits to the Palazzo Comunale, Pinacoteca and Torre Grossa and there is some free time to wander and soak up the atmosphere. Before returning to the Villa, we enjoy a wine tasting in the nearby Villa Il Palagetto, where excellent Vernaccia wines are produced. Total walking approx. 10 km
Transfer to Pisa airport.