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Tourist activities

What to do in San Gimignano and Val d'Elsa

We stopped and listened to the silence that surrounds this place, until a red sunset illuminated the towers of San Gimignano, then the song of the crickets awakened us from a dream that turned out to be reality…” This is how some French guests described their arrival at our structure. Which means that the first thing to do here is indeed enjoying the tranquillity and peace of this place, admiring the enchanting landscape that nature offers us, possibly sipping a good glass of red wine while sitting comfortably in the garden. Those who want succulent grilled meats, notably the excellent local Chianina meat, will find the barbecue available. The Tuscan landscape changes its colours every season of the year, allowing for a walk or bicycle ride to admire the flowering fields of sunflowers, the vineyards filled with grapes ready for the harvest or blonde wheat fields before the reaping. Numerous gravel roads are suitable for those who love hiking or mountain biking. Starting from our farm, you can follow a path that leads directly to San Gimignano passing through the archaeological site of Torretta di Chiusi (excavations of an ancient Roman villa).

Along the road, some of our lands host marine fossils dating back to 5 million years ago, when this area was under the sea. In addition to Siena, Florence and Volterra, we would like to point out to those who love history and art that there is a less-known side of Tuscany, yet surely not less interesting. It is a Tuscany made of small villages, where to breathe the air of a distant time, living in contact with the locals. Upon your arrival, we will be more than happy to provide you with information and directions to discover these small towns. If you like to know Tuscan traditions, we are available to tell you about rural life experiences or to give you some piece of advice on the ingredients of some of the typical dishes you had the chance to taste. If you enjoy shopping, besides the renowned crystal of Colle di Val d’Elsa and the alabaster of Volterra, you can also take advantage of the factory shops of some of the most prestigious Italian fashion brands. In fact, in the near surroundings you will find the Valdichiana Outlet Village – Foiano della Chiana (Ar), Prada – Loc. Levanella Montevarchi, R. Cavalli – S. Fiorentino.

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San Gimignano

Standing on a hill overlooking the Elsa valley, San Gimignano is entirely surrounded by city walls, and it houses two main squares: Piazza della Cisterna and Piazza del Duomo, where both the Cathedral and Palazzo Comunale are located. In the Municipal Palace (XIII century) you will find a room in which Dante Alighieri carried out a diplomatic mission in the 1300’s. The building also hosts the Civic Museum and the Pinacoteca. Visiting the Duomo, you will be able to admire frescoes such as the Universal Judgment (T. di Bartolo), along with canvases and tables from the XVI and XVII century.

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Monteriggioni

Built by the Sienese Republic to prevent the Florentines from accessing Via Cassia, today the town welcomes its visitors sporting its full city walls, on top of which runs a walkaway that offers suggestive views over the surrounding area. Everything in this small village appears charming and projects the visitor into the past. The Parish Church of SANTA MARIA, in the central square, reflects the passage from Romanesque to Gothic forms.

volterra

Volterra

 Also known as the “city of wind” due to its elevated position on a hill that separates the valleys of Cecina and Era, Volterra is surrounded by the so-called “BALZE”, impressive chasms created by crumbling sandy and clayey terrains. As an ancient Etruscan town, a double layer of ramparts encloses the city: the Etruscan walls and the medieval ones. Despite its medieval appearance, it retains abundant remains of the Etruscan period such as PORTA ALL’ ARCO and the ACROPOLIS. A visit to the ROMAN THEATER will also testify to the presence of the Romans.

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Colle di Val d’Elsa

Famous for its crystal production, Colle Val D’Elsa is divided into three parts. CASTELLO is the oldest part of the city, which houses the birthplace of Arnolfo di Cambio. Via delle Volte is the most striking route, whereas PIAZZA DEL DUOMO is the most valuable monumental site. The Civic Museum and the Tower of Arnolfo are also of major importance. Descending from the CASTELLO district lies the BORGO. As you pass by PALAZZO DEL CAMPANA (XVI century), you will reach to the lower district called PIANO, where the industrial city has developed. Here, it is possible to admire the wonderful portico of PIAZZA di ARNOLFO DI CAMBIO. A recently constructed and very peculiar elevator connects Piano with Castello.

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Siena

Art, tradition and culture make Siena a monumental treasure of incomparable value. The city is set on three hills. According to legends, it was founded by Senio, son of Remo, who fled from Rome after the murder of his father, carrying with him the simulacrum of the she-wolf that nurses the twins. The centrepiece of the city is the harmonious shell-shaped space known as PIAZZA DEL CAMPO, slightly sloping and enclosed by a courtyard of palaces. On the edge of the tiled pavement lies FONTE GAIA, a jewel of the Renaissance made by Jacopo della Quercia. Piazza del Campo is the wonderful scenery that hosts the Palio delle Contrade.

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Bike rentals

Thanks to our partnership with local firms, we offer the possibility to rent city bikes, eco-friendly mountain bikes, off-road bikes equipped with shock absorbers or even racing bikes. It is also possible to make excursions accompanied by a local guide that will suggest several routes and trails. Prices and conditions available at the farm.