Florence & Chianti Tour Itinerary
AN AUTHENTIC EXPERIENCE
Explore the Heart of Tuscany
Tuscany is one of the greatest destinations in the world. The majestic scenery comes from the large tracts of agricultural land carefully placed amongst the rolling hills lined with cypress trees and crossed with the famous "strade bianche" or white-colored dirt roads. It's hard to say whether Tuscany is better known for its food or its wine but one can surely say that the combination of both together with the landscapes and the people make it the perfect vacation!
This tour begins on October 14th at the hotel in Florence. There will be a group transfer on the last day to the Florence Train Station and the Florence Airport. Please note that this itinerary is subject to change without notice. Tour Host: Marc Berarducci. Tour Guides: Flo Bettini & Veronica Blomkvist.
8 Nights Lodging (Historical City Hotel in Florence & 2 Wineries) double occupancy
Transfer (to airport at tour end)
Land transportation with private coach throughout the tour
4 Lunches, 6 Dinners (naturally wine with all dinners)
5 Winery Tours & Tastings (Castello di Gabbiano, Badia a Coltibuono, Castello di Verrazzano, Poggia Alloro Winery, La Santa Giuliana in Montalcino).
Cooking Class & Cheese Farm Visit & Tasting
3 Guided City Tours incl. Accademia Gallery (Florence, Siena, San Gimignano)
Country Tour Val d’Orcia + visit to Pienza
2 Market Visits (Florence Central Market + Greve-in-Chianti)
Bi-lingual escort throughout the entire tour
WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED:
Air Travel, Travel Insurance
Transfer to hotel from airport on day 1
Tips & gratuities, Hotel City Tax (will vary from 1.5 to 3.8 euros per night according to lodging class)
After dinner drinks or wines at tastings that are not part of what is provided to the group
Gelatos and Coffees while on visits or in transit
Entrance fee to gardens or museums (optional items)
DAY 1: WEDNESDAY OCTOBER 14
Upon arrival in Florence, you will go directly to the hotel in Florence. Taxi & tram service are available from the Florence airport. At 5:30 we will meet for a welcome drink and review the program for the next day (this will be done daily). We will then have a relaxing dinner and a stroll around the city center. Early to bed as you will most probably be jet-lagged. Included: Lodging, Welcome Drink, Dinner
DAY 2: THURSDAY OCTOBER 15
Following breakfast you will embark on a private City Tour of the Renaissance City of Florence, starting with a visit to one of the city’s iconic museums, the Accademia Galleria to pay tribute to Michelangelo and his David. Following the museum visit your tour will continue on to visit such sites as the Basilica di Santa Croce, Piazza della Signoria and Palazzo Vecchio, Santa Trinita’. Your tour will end up at the central market or “Mercato Centrale” where we will explore the food halls. Marc will meet you for lunch at a typical Florentine eatery located in the market area around 1:00 (lunch included). You will have the afternoon free to shop and visit the city on your own. We will meet up for an “aperitivo” (prosecco is my choice) at 5:30 then dinner (optional) at one of Marc’s favorite trattorias in the city center. Included: Lodging, Breakfast, City Tour with museum entrance ticket, Lunch
DAY 3: FRIDAY OCTOBER 16
Following breakfast, we have a mid-morning transfer to our Chianti residence located near Gaiole-in-Chianti, the Badia a Coltibuono, a 12h century abbey and winery producing magnificent wines that we will have the opportunity to taste. On our way out of Florence, we will stop to pay a visit to the Basilica San Miniato al Monte located at Piazzale al Michelangelo. You’ll have time to visit the cathedral, according to Michelangelo it is the most beautiful in all of Tuscany. We’ll then stop for lunch at a favorite dining spot by the Florentines, the Beppa Fioraia, famous for its charcuterie and cheese plates. We will be taking the scenic route to the Abbey and will arrive around 3:00. After you have settled in, around 4:30 we will be given a tour of the estate and the cellars followed by a wine class and tasting paired with some wonderful Tuscan appetizers and naturally a fantastic dinner at the Badia at 7:30. Included: Lodging, Breakfast, Transport, Lunch, Winery Tour & Tasting, Dinner
DAY 4: SATURDAY OCTOBER 17
Following a magnificent Tuscan country breakfast, our private bus will take us to Greve-in-Chianti. This village is considered the capital of Chianti. Historically, Greve hosted Saturday markets where farmers throughout the Chianti area brought their produce as well as small animals, wines & cheese to sell at the market. The market, today has toned down somewhat but it still is wonderful to experience. After a visit, we will proceed to the winery Castello di Verrazzano where our tour begins at 12:00. We will visit the castle’s gardens and historical aging cellars followed by tasting about 5 of their carefully selected wines that will be accompanied by some wonderful Tuscan hams, wild boar salami, cheese. The tour ends around 3:00 and we will head back to the abbey however we will be stopping at the family-owned winery Cantalici located in Gaiole for a late afternoon wine & olive oil tasting. You are free for the evening. Included: Lodging, Breakfast, Transport, Winery Tour with Lunch and Tastings
DAY 5: SUNDAY OCTOBER 18
Following breakfast, our bus will take us on a short trip over the hills to Siena, a medieval hill-top city that really hasn’t changed much in 800 years. We will make a point to stop at the Nannini Café, famous for the panforte for a morning cappuccino. We will have a guided City Tour starting at 9:30-ish after which you will have time to lunch and explore on your own. At 2:00, we will head back to the abbey to have a glass of wine and walk the vineyards under the Tuscan afternoon spring sun. 4:00 begins an amazing cooking class where you will take part in a hands-on course preparing a full course meal, naturally followed by dinner consisting of everything the group prepared, along with good wine and good fun! Included: Lodging, Breakfast, Transport, City Tour Guide, Cooking Class with Dinner Following.
DAY 6: MONDAY OCTOBER 19
You have time for a relaxing breakfast then, for those who wish, a morning hike is on the agenda (nothing rigorous) through the adjacent woods to get your blood flowing before the busy day ahead of you. At 12:00, our private mini-coach will be picking us up to head south to the country tour of Val D’Orcia which is considered one of the most beautiful country-sides in Italy, if not Europe and is designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your Guide for the day is Flo Bettini. Our first stop will be at the organic farm Il Pianporcino where you will see how the wonderful cheeses are made and yes you will be tasting as well in addition to a light lunch. Our next stop is the medieval town and capital of the Brunello wine region, Montalcino where we will have a brief stop to visit the Enoteca della Fortezza for some tasting then we’re off to one of the most beautiful hill-top towns south of Siena, the town of Pienza that was commissioned by the Renaissance Pope Pius II. We will pick up a good expresso & gelato and explore this panoramic town. Then around 5:30 we’ll arrive at the family-operated winery and farm Santa Giulia a Torrenieri for a tour and a wonderful rustic farm to table dinner that will include three courses as well as three of their showcased wines. Included: Lodging, Breakfast, Cheese Producer Visit with lunch, Winery Tour with Dinner & Pairing, Transport.
DAY 7: TUESDAY OCTOBER 20
Following breakfast, you will pack up your belongings and we will transfer late morning to the Winery Castello di Gabbiano (lunch en-route included) where we will stay for the remainder of the tour. This 17th-century castle is located in the most northern area of the Chianti region and is spectacular, its location is breathtaking. We will have an afternoon winery tour beginning at 3:00 and taste the estate wines as well as olive oils. You will have the opportunity to walk vineyard paths that lead to this award-winning castle’s 14th-century cellars. We will dine together off the estate at the trattoria Il Gallo Giallo, a casual atmosphere with amazing dishes! Included: Lodging, Breakfast, Transport, Lunch, Winery Tour & Tasting, Dinner
DAY 8: WEDNESDAY OCTOBER 21
Following breakfast we will head to another hilltop Tuscan town, San Gimignano which is known as the city of towers and is very proud of its Vernaccia white Tuscan wines. You will have a City Tour followed by lunch at the winery – Fattoria Poggio Alloro (included). At 3:00 we head back to Castello di Gabbiano to relax before our farewell dinner on the estate at Il Cavilieri. Included: Lodging, Breakfast, City Tour, Lunch, Dinner
DAY 9: THURSDAY OCTOBER 22
A morning group transfer to the Florence Airport & Train Station SMN.