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Discover Florence, Siena, San Gimignano, and Italy’s famed Chianti area. Explore a region of sprawling vineyards, rolling hills, charming old cities, masterpieces of art and gourmandize. Visit wineries and sample excellent wines, rare cold cuts, cheese & olive oil, and shop for delicacies in the many food shops! This tour departs every Thursday but can be modified for departures on other days.
Arriving in Florence you’ll find your private driver waiting to bring you comfortably to your hotel located in the very heart of the city and within easy walking distance of Florence’s most important sites. Check-in, relax and then perhaps set out again to start exploring this historic city, often referred to as the 'Cradle of Renaissance'.
The morning is free to enjoy as you choose. Take a leisurely stroll across the Arno River on Ponte Vecchio, Florence’s oldest bridge best known for the tiny goldsmiths & jewelers stores built on its arches, browse for souvenirs at the 16th-century Loggia del Porcellino arcade or simply relax and people watch while sipping your favourite drink at one of the sidewalk cafés that line Piazza della Signoria square. This afternoon you’ll discover the ancient traditions of the Tuscan countryside, enjoy breathtaking landscapes of vineyards and olive groves, visit two ancient cellars, taste the famous wines and typical Tuscan products and be captivated by the unparalleled charm of Greve and Castellina in Chianti. A comprehensive experience in one of the fascinating areas of Tuscany, known all over the world for its wine and its countryside of unrivalled charm, where woods alternate with vineyards and olive groves, in a landscape dotted with Romanesque parish churches, farmhouses, villas and castles of rare beauty. The first stop of the tour is in the heart of the Florentine area of Chianti Classico, in a historic Winery with Castle producing also one of the most appreciated Chianti extra virgin olive oil. Here we experience an original tasting tour with four different wines and local products, guided by an expert winemaker, while visiting the ancient wine cellars under the Castle, admiring the vineyards and enjoying the delightful garden. Continue onto the picturesque medieval village of Greve, the birthplace of the famous navigator Giovanni da Verrazzano, where every year takes place the most important wine fair of the Chianti region. Here we will have free time to admire the famous main square of the ancient "market" with its characteristic arcades and to browse through the local artisan shops. Moving along the ancient "Via Chiantigiana", we cross the heart of the Chianti Classico, admiring the breathtaking views of the rolling hills that made so famous this part of Tuscany. We reach a family-run Winery located in the Sienese area of the Chianti Classico, which stands out for the excellent quality of its wines. Here we will be warmly welcomed by its passionate winemaker and after the guided tour of the cellars and the lovely aromatic garden, a delicious tasting of four different wines and local products will be waiting for us. The last stop of the tour is Castellina, a fortified hilltop village of Etruscan origin, among the most lively and picturesque of Chianti, characterized by an imposing fortress: here, walking through the picturesque medieval covered street "Via delle Volte", the tour leader will guide us to discover the charming historical centre and its picturesque houses, squares and shops before an early evening return to Florence. (B)
Spend a leisurely morning to relax or perhaps visit one of the city's famous palaces & museums - the world-renowned Uffizi & Accademia Galleries with their famous masterpieces are a ‘must’ for any art lover - before this afternoon's walking tour. The ‘Art is in the air!’ This is the first sentence thinking about Florence's old town and today you can discover the beauty and art of this wonderful city. Join a one-hour walking tour with one of our expert tour guides who will lead you on a discovery of Florence’s main historic and artistic sites in a fun and informative way. You’ll be marveled by the sight of its many Renaissance monuments and discover the places that have been central to Florentine public life over the centuries such as Piazza Duomo, Piazza della Signoria and Ponte Vecchio, while learning about the facts & secrets of two thousand years of history - from Florence’s Roman origins to its 15th-century palaces, the famous Uffizi courtyard and, the spectacular architecture of Brunelleschi Dome which overlooks the Baptistery golden ‘Gates of Paradise’. Experience Florence like a local and feel the art & history all around! (B)
Enjoy a full-day tour of Tuscany’s villages and wine regions from Florence and travel into the heart of the beautiful Tuscan countryside. Visit the town of San Gimignano, the wine territory of Chianti, the medieval town of Siena, and the Monteriggioni fortress. They are all compelling stops for those who want to learn about the region’s history and traditions. The first stop will be San Gimignano, a magnificent example of a Medieval urban town; in fact, it is a UNESCO world heritage site. Here you will have free time to visit the village and its splendid squares, palaces, churches and magnificent towers. The tour continues to the splendid area of the Chianti Classico. We will stop by a typical Tuscan winery where you will visit the cellars and vineyards and enjoy a tasting of the wine produced. In the afternoon the tour continues with sightseeing in Siena. Here our official guides will lead you on a tour of the old town centre where you can admire the magnificent Cathedral and the Town Hall in the Piazza del Campo, the scenery of the world-famous Palio horse race. Then enjoy lunch in one of the restaurants in Piazza del Campo, admiring the beauty of this suggestive square. The tour will end with a visit to the marvelous Monteriggioni medieval fortress. Today's tour will return to Florence around 8:30 in the evening. (B.L)
Learn to cook like an Italian at our 'market to table' cooking class and enjoy a Tuscan meal in Florence. Visit the central food market with your chef, before learning tips and techniques to make a full Italian meal that you can recreate at home. The class will start with a visit to the market: our Italian chef will help you choose the best ingredients. Once you got everything you need, we will move to the unique location where the class will take place, in the heart of Florence. During the four hour lesson, you will prepare a full Italian meal, from appetizer to dessert. We will first prepare all the needed ingredients by washing and cutting them. Our chef will show you how to make fresh pasta from the raw ingredients and you will have the chance to knead it yourself! You will also cook the sauce (Tomato, Ragù Bolognese or Pesto), ‘bruschetta’ as a starter, as well as a dessert! Our chef will show you how to decorate your plate and you will finally have lunch with the amazing dishes you made. Lunch will be accompanied by a local wine, water or soft drink as you prefer. At the end of the class you will also get a Graduation Certificate signed by the chef, as well as the receipts for the dishes you made, so you can recreate back home and impress family and friends with your cooking skills! The remainder of the day is free to spend as you choose. (B.L)
On Sundays and bank holidays - when the central market is closed – the visit to the market will be skipped.
Today marks the end of your Resplendent Florence & Tuscany Tour. At a time to suit your departing flight make your way to the airport or railway station to begin your journey home. Arrivederci! (B)
Some excursions included in this tour do not operate daily and itinerary will be modified to suit.