Benvenuti a Firenze! Today, you arrive to Florence and check into our hotel. As we “follow the light” in the birthplace of the Renaissance, we quickly see that Florence has something for everyone: art museums and architecture, food and markets, stunning landscapes and sunset points, all soaked in centuries of history.
Transfer to Val d'Orcia
This morning, we transfer south to the “big sky country” of Tuscany as we enter the Val d’Orcia. This is quintessential Toscana: layers of rolling verdant hills topped with cypress trees, stone farmhouses and wide-open vistas that appear in Renaissance paintings and have been coveted by artists and photographers from around the world.
Val d'Orcia: Montalcino & Brunello Wine
We begin with a gorgeous sunrise stroll to capture the sun-dipped layers of mist rising above the rolling horizon. After a delicious breakfast, we take a slow drive to the hilltop of Montalcino, which offers gorgeous views over the Asso, Ombrone and Arbia valleys. Next stop is a stop at a local, family-run winery that makes the famous Brunello wine, where we learn the secrets of Italian organic wine-making and enjoy a guided tasting of this prestigious wine.
Val d'Orcia: Castiglione d'Orcia
Today after an early morning visit to the village of Castiglione d’Orcia, we tour a local farm that grows medicinal and aromatic plants. It’s the largest in the Val d’Orcia. The project is multi-faceted and eco-sustainable.The farm is self-sustaining in terms of energy and water and doesn’t use any chemical products.
Val d'Orcia: Renaissance Pienza & Pecorino Cheese
This morning we take a leisurely walk from San Quirico to the beautiful town of Pienza. Lunch is held in the private home of our local friend Angela (a home cook). We meet her entire family, learn about and taste the different ‘ages’ of pecorino cheese, and sip wine on her terrazza overlooking Pienza. This will certainly make for an unforgettable Tuscan feast!
Transfer to Chianti: Volpaia
This morning, we have a transfer to our villa base in the Chianti countryside. We then have a welcome aperitivo and lunch in the garden. And later, we review our photo goals and Ossian’s objectives for the week and head out to capture the magical Tuscan light on our first afternoon walk into the Chianti woods.
Chianti: Castelvecchi & Surrounding Villages
This morning, we walk to Castelvecchi. We walk through vineyards, olive groves and across tiny streams, passing old and abandoned ancient mills, restored borghi (villages) and a tiny forest chapel. On this walk, we reach an elevation that allows views of the Valdarno, Chianti hills and the Casentino area of Tuscany. In the late afternoon, we visit a winery in Castello di Lamole.
Chianti: Castello di Volpaia
Today, our photo walk takes us to the top of local Monte Querciabella. The views reach the other side of Volpaia, offering spectacular views of Tuscany’s precious Monte Amiata. We pass through several tiny hamlets and Torniello Vineyard as we make our way along the famous battle boundaries between Siena and Florence provinces. Later in the day, we return to Volpaia for a mid-afternoon photo class.
This morning, it’s time to say arrivederci to Tuscany! After breakfast, we have a 9 am transfer to Florence Airport. Interested in extending your stay in Florence, Rome or Venice? Download the full itinerary and check out our new city extensions!