All you need to know about... Val D'orcia

The extraordinary, harmonious landscapes of Valdorcia, the stunning vistas of rolling hills, avenues of cypresses, medieval castles and isolated rural homes will leave you breathless! Val d’Orcia is a land of rare beauty, recognized by UNESCO a World Heritage Site since 2004.

Crossed by the Orcia river, this wonderful region in southern Tuscany, is home to the most precious and appreciated Italian wines including Brunello, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano and other superb and fine wines. You will be captivated by the harmonious renaissance hilltop town of Montepulciano, built along a narrow limestone ridge and, at 605 m above sea level. The town is encircled by walls and fortifications designed by Antonio da Sangallo the Elder in 1511. Inside the walls the streets are crammed with Renaissance-style buildings and churches, but the town is chiefly known for its good local "Vino Nobile" wines. You will enjoy wine tasting and lunch at a prestigious vinery famous producer of Nobile and you will visit their cellars and their round vineyard.

You'll discover villages like Pienza, a real bijoux, a unique Renaissance monument designed by the great humanist Pope Pius II, with narrow winding streets and the beautiful Piccolomini Palace, that boasts an remarkable hanging garden overlooking the Orcia valley. The Cathedral dell' Assunta - a unicum in the history of art -  hosts very fine paintings by the most renowned artists of the period, while the octagonal bell tower, standing over the ancient crypt, points to the sky, dominating the surrounding landscape as you view Pienza from afar. If you are a cheeseaholic you are in the right place, as Pienza is renowned for its “Pecorino” (sheep's milk cheese). You can taste different kinds of it during our “foodie explorations” and even join our “cheese making lesson hands-on”!

The fairytale hilltop town of Montalcino, west of Pienza, is  famous for the magnificent views across the Orcia and Arbia valleys, with the best vantage point being the 14th century Fortress. Once you get up to the town, a magnificent spectacle unfolds for your eyes: rolling sunny hills dotted with yellow and red flowers, ancient oak trees, picturesque olive groves and scenic country roads winding through perfect vineyards. Montalcino is renowned all over the world for the production of its precious Brunello wine. On this tour you will have the chance to visit one or two wineries, famous for their “Brunello”, and discover just how this wine is produced and what makes it so special. You will visit ancient cellars, gaining an insight into the ageing process and the use of the oak barrels, followed of course by a tasting session. Lunch will be booked at the most exclusive restaurant in town where you can sample delicious local cuisine and of course vino!

Finally, a must-see is the beautiful and suggestive Romanesque Abbey of Sant' Antimo, one of the best examples of medieval monastic architecture; here you can really breath a mystic and medieval atmosphere and listen to the beautiful “Gregorian chanting” of the monks. The Abbey rises in a valley just below the medieval hamlet of Castelnuovo dell'Abate and, when kissed by the sun, its magnificent travertine stone facade shines with golden reflections. Enjoy this a unique journey between sweet tastes and marvelous vistas, in this corner of paradise you will never forget!

Italy is open to American travelers.

Visitors are welcome to visit Italy without a mandatory 10-day quarantine if arriving on a Covid-tested flight to Rome, Milan, Naples or Venice.

Travelers on these flights, regardless of vaccination status, must be tested before departure and again upon arrival to be exempt from quarantine.



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