My boyfriend and I are traveling to Florence and Tuscany mid March. I saw your blog post about a customized travel service and I was hoping to get more information. We are really interested in suggestions from a local for restaurants, wine, cheese tasting/farm visits, cooking classes, hikes, etc. It will be just the two of us.
I was hoping you could help us narrow it down. We plan on 1 or 2 night in Florence and 1 or 2 nights in Tuscany and perhaps a night in Cinque Terre based on your suggestions.
Hi! Thanks a lot for contacting me. I’m glad to give some advice 🙂
Are you staying in Italy for 5 nights, or more? A whole week would be the ideal time to discover all the beauty of Tuscany without not being too much in a hurry.
I’d suggest staying 1 night in the beautiful Cinque Terre, 1 night in Florence, 2 nights in the Chianti wine region, and 2 nights in the wonderful Val d’Orcia area south of Siena. This itinerary will allow you to cover the most beautiful sights of Tuscany!
Florence is a must, the art town par excellence and a lively city full of events, restaurants, and fashion shops.
Once you’ve left Florence head in the direction of the Chianti area between Florence and Siena. With its scenic landscape, great wines, nice hill towns, and castles, Chianti will make you feel the real essence of Tuscany. You can find useful tips about Chianti and what to visit from there here on the blog.
My favorite wineries, that are also restaurants in Chianti are:
– Badia a Coltibuono, also a great restaurant
– Badia a Passignano, the place is fantastic, not to mention the wine and the osteria!
While in Chianti, also take the chance to visit the wonderful San Gimignano, the famous medieval village with towers, and the beautiful Etruscan town of Volterra.
Leave Chianti to reach the Val d’Orcia area but before makes a stop in Siena, an authentic medieval masterpiece, really unique! Once you get to the Val d’Orcia a new spectacle will open to your eyes! Here is one of the most impressive and breathtaking landscape of all Italy! Not to mention the many small hill towns here and there atop hills with never ending views. Pienza, Bagno Vignoni, and Montepulciano are all worth a visit, here food and wine are excellent; this is the land of the precious Brunnello di Montalcino wine.
My favorite wineries in Val d’Orcia are:
– Ciacci Piccolomini: a farm with splendid vineyards and ancient wine cellars in the fabulous Montalcino. Here is produced the most precious wine of Tuscany, the Brunello of Montalcino. A fantastic panoramic terrace will make your wine tasting unique.
– Poggio Grande the wine is excellent, the location beautiful.
For cooking courses in Tuscany have a look here.
Do contact me again for any other suggestion,
Enjoy planning your trip,