Artistic places near Gargonza Castle

borghi e luoghi d'arte da visitare in Toscana

Are you planning a weekend getaway in the tranquility of the Tuscan countryside?
A weekend getaway could be the perfect opportunity to visit the magnificent artistic sites that Italy and Tuscany have to offer. 

Here is our selection of artistic sites that you can find in the surroundings of Gargonza Castle.

Monte Oliveto Maggiore Abbey

The Benedictine abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore is located in Chiusure di Asciano, south of Siena, immersed in the greenery of the woods and the ochre yellow of the Sienese clays. Here, today as in the past, peace and tranquility reign.

It was founded seven centuries ago by Saint Bernard Tolomei, a Sienese nobleman, together with Patrizio Patrizi and Ambrogio Piccolomini. From illustrious families of the city, the abbey rises in the “Desert of Accona” to allow them to live according to the Rule of Saint Benedict.

The Renaissance village of Monte San Savino

Monte San Savino is a village with a fairytale charm, characterized by the castle tower and its charming historic center. The town owes its fame to the Renaissance sculptor Andrea Contucci, known as “Il Sansovino“, and to Pope Julius III, born here. Throughout its history, Monte San Savino has been contested between Florence, Perugia, and Siena.

What to visit in the village of Monte San Savino? Today, the village welcomes visitors with its well-preserved center. It develops along the main street, Corso Sangallo, where the main historical buildings are located. Among these, the Palazzo Di Monte (or Palazzo Del Monte), which houses the town hall. Built in the early 16th century at the behest of Antonio Di Monte, it was designed by Antonio da Sangallo the Elder, who created the facade and the layout.

The palace is a perfect example of Renaissance elegance, with a large Italian-style hanging garden, irrigated by the waters of a 16th-century underground cistern. A visit to the “Cisternone”, as it is called by the locals, is not to be missed: a 400 square meter work, the second largest in Tuscany, was recently restored and open to the public free of charge. Also not to be missed are the Palazzo Pretorio with its Civic Tower and the famous Logge dei Mercanti, the church of Sant’Agostino with the splendid Assumption by Giorgio Vasari, and the church of Santa Chiara, which houses precious glazed terracotta altarpieces by Andrea Sansovino and the Della Robbia. The Cassero, a 14th-century fortress, dominates the village.

Not far from the historic center, the Sanctuary of Santa Maria delle Vertighe, already documented in the 11th century, preserves a table by Margarito and Ristoro d’Arezzo. Do not miss a walk in the Jewish quarter and a visit to the Synagogue of Monte San Savino, which housed a flourishing Jewish community until the end of the 18th century. Finally, you cannot leave Monte San Savino without tasting the famous porchetta, a local gastronomic specialty celebrated since 1964 with a festival that takes place on the second weekend of September.

The medieval village of Lucignano

Lucignano, known as “The Pearl of the Valdichiana“, is a charming village in southern Tuscany that represents one of the most extraordinary examples of medieval urban planning. This village was perfectly preserved over time thanks to its characteristic elliptical shape with concentric road rings. Located in a strategic position on the top of a hill overlooking the Valdichiana, Lucignano has played a crucial role in controlling the historical route between Siena and Arezzo, making it of great strategic importance since ancient times.

This position made Lucignano a medieval castle contested by the surrounding territories for centuries. Between the 13th and 16th centuries, the village underwent continuous changes in jurisdiction between Siena, Arezzo, Florence, and Perugia. The link with Siena had the most significant influence on the urban and architectural development of the historic center.

Today, Lucignano retains the charm of the ancient village intact, offering a peaceful and serene atmosphere. The local agricultural and artisan tradition offers visitors a variety of typical products: from fine extra virgin olive oil to honey, refined ceramics to Chianina, and Cinta Senese meat to salami.

h2 Cortona: the village to discover in a weekend

The small town of Cortona, located south of Arezzo, on the border with Umbria, is a historical and cultural gem of Tuscany. Between the 7th and 8th centuries, it became an important base for the Etruscans, thanks to its strategic position among the hills. Rich in fortresses, abbeys, ancient churches, and historic villas, Cortona offers breathtaking views and lush nature.

8 Reasons to Visit Castello di Gargonza this Summer

reasons to visit Gargonza Castle during summer season

Nestled amidst the rolling hills of Tuscany, Castello di Gargonza is a captivating medieval fortress that invites you to step back in time and immerse yourself in its rich history and enchanting atmosphere.

As summer approaches, here are many compelling reasons why Castello di Gargonza should be at the top of your vacation itinerary:

  1. A Journey Through Time

Embark on a fascinating journey through centuries of history as you explore the castle’s ancient walls, towers, and courtyards. Imagine the knights, nobles, and artisans who once inhabited these spaces, leaving their indelible mark on the castle’s soul.

  1. A Haven in the Heart of Nature

Immerse yourself in nature: surround yourself with the breathtaking beauty of the Tuscan countryside as you wander through the castle’s vast grounds. Stroll through vineyards, olive groves, and lush forests, breathing in the fresh air and enjoying the serenity of nature.

  1. An Authentic Tuscan Experience

Live the authentic Tuscan culture: immerse yourself in the heart of Tuscan culture and traditions at Castello di Gargonza. Participate in local festivals, demonstrations, and festivals that showcase the region’s rich heritage, from winemaking and extra virgin olive oil production to traditional crafts and local cuisine.

  1. Unveiling the Culinary Culture of the Region

Indulge in delectable culinary delights: tantalize your taste buds with the flavors of Tuscany at the castle’s renowned restaurant. Savor dishes prepared with fresh, locally sourced ingredients, accompanied by fine Tuscan wines, all while enjoying breathtaking views of the Chianti countryside.

  1. Discovering Authentic Flavors

Castello di Gargonza’s cuisine is an unmissable experience for food lovers. The dishes, prepared with fresh, seasonal ingredients, reinterpret traditional Tuscan recipes in a modern and refined way. You can savor authentic flavors, such as pasta with Chianina ragù, Florentine steak, or cantucci with Vin Santo, accompanied by a selection of the finest Tuscan wines.

  1. A Stay Dedicated to Relaxation and Wellness

Castello di Gargonza is the ideal place for those who want to relax and rejuvenate. The historic residence offers a perfect retreat to escape the summer heat. In addition, you can go horseback riding, play tennis, or simply enjoy the peace and tranquility of the surroundings.

  1. Unique Experiences

Castello di Gargonza also organizes special activities and events to make your stay even more memorable. You can participate in cooking classes, wine tastings, classical music concerts, or falconry shows. In addition, the castle is an ideal venue for weddings, corporate events, and private parties.

  1. Charming Hospitality

Castello di Gargonza offers various accommodation options to suit all needs. You can choose from elegant rooms inside the castle, apartments in the outbuildings, or villas immersed in the Tuscan countryside.

  1. An Unforgettable Experience

Castello di Gargonza is more than just a castle; it is a magical place where history, nature, culture, and tradition intertwine to create an unforgettable experience. Whether you are a history buff, a nature lover, or simply looking for a relaxing getaway, Castello di Gargonza has something to offer everyone.

And if that’s not enough, here are more reasons why Castello di Gargonza should be at the top of your vacation itinerary:

  • Strategic location: the castle is located in a strategic position, close to some of the most beautiful cities in Tuscany, such as Arezzo, Siena, and Florence.
  • Dream weddings: the castle is a dream location to celebrate an unforgettable wedding.
  • Corporate events: the castle offers elegant and equipped spaces to organize successful corporate events.

Wedding Season Trends in Tuscany: What to Expect in 2024

eventi matrimonio in Toscana: le tendenze del 2024

Weddings are unlike any other type of celebration because they balance a series of expected traditions with a desire to have fun.

But what are the 2024 trends for the wedding season?

At Castello di Gargonza, we have the pleasure of hosting many unique and exclusive receptions every year to celebrate love, let’s see what to expect throughout 2024.

Friday Ceremony, Saturday Party

Consider the idea of getting married one day and having the party the next day. Separating the sacred from the profane kills two birds with one stone. In this way, you open up unlimited possibilities for the party (themes, decorations, dress codes, entertainment, menu).

Flowers Inspired by Dutch Floral Designers

The influence of floral design inspired by Dutch masters is also evident this year: couples are adapting to the trend of artistic scenographies, full of fruit, with creative arrangements, often darker.

Slices of Wedding Cake and Dessert Islands to Take Away

The dessert moment becomes more informal: many people choose to serve slices of wedding cake only to the guests who want them and to put the remaining ones in personalized takeaway boxes to leave to the guests before the farewells.

The switch to more original desserts is nothing new, but themed islands are! More and more often we see stands of only fruit, mignon pastries or themed desserts based on the location.

Drone Shows Instead of Fireworks

Enter the era of the drone show! This innovative show offers a fresh and elevated version of the traditional fireworks display (often too expensive). Drone shows are not only more environmentally friendly, thanks to the absence of smoke associated with fireworks, but they also provide more customization and choreography options to reflect the couple’s unique story.

Digital Guest Books

In 2024, the traditional guest book gives way to an innovative digital experience. The digital guest book offers couples a more engaging journey through the wishes shared by their guests. Imagine reliving your special day with the possibility of revisiting moving photos, engaging videos and touching audio messages, all interwoven with the narration of the day you shared.

Documentary-Style Photography

A documentary style in photography and social content will be a top priority in 2024. Couples want fewer posed portraits and more candid content. A dedicated team of photographers, videographers and content creators will be brought on site to capture and publish the event in real time.

Private Ceremonies

2024 will bring less exaggerated and more intimate, friendly and accessible events, where the feeling you want to convey is warmth and community, not how big the flower arrangements are.

More and more couples are choosing to organize more intimate and private ceremonies: for this reason the location of Castello di Gargonza is highly recommended.

Meaningful and Informal Menus

The menu should seem very personal and not generic just for formality’s sake. Consider including a family recipe and printing it on the menu. If you don’t have one, consider a dish from an important dinner.

Increasing Focus on Sustainability

Guests and couples are much more attentive to sustainability. This is also reflected in party favors and leads the celebrants to ask themselves: what are we giving away? Could the trinket be a little less full of plastic? For this reason, the choice of party favors today follows different logics and leads the couple to support associations, fundraising projects and renowned brands for their ecological and sustainable footprint.

The Wedding Party Sit Down and Relax

The wedding party continues to evolve, reaching a middle ground between the absence of a wedding party and a wedding party without traditional responsibilities. There is a change in the way brides spend their wedding day with their favorite women, and everything revolves around the guest experience. More and more women relax in the bridal suite, choose their own dresses and sit down during the ceremony.

The Outfit Change: Not Once But Twice

Brides love to ditch the wedding dress in favor of a second eye-catching look. But what about a third? We see brides tackling a second outfit change, often during key transition moments, such as after the aperitif hour and before the after-party. This is the time to pull out your dramatic sequin caftan that precedes the late-night mini.

A Focus on the Cocktail Experience

Incorporating signature cocktails with unique mixes into your wedding creates a dazzling drink experience that will surprise and delight. These bespoke drinks elevate the aperitif hour.

Wedding Content Creators

Wedding content creators started to be part of wedding services in 2023 and will continue to make their way in 2024 as well.

In Italy, wedding content creators aren’t that common yet, but they represent an additional creative service besides the classic photographer and videographer. Their sole focus is capturing your wedding for social media. They’ll create reels that bring the genuine moments to life, capturing all the in-between moments that might not make it into the official wedding video.

A Weekend Cycling Trip through the Chianti Hills

un weekend in bicicletta in giro per il Chianti

Ready to make the most of the beautiful season? The Chianti region is beautiful all year round, but milder temperatures allow you to explore it extensively, even by bicycle. With its rolling hills, picturesque vineyards, and charming medieval villages, Chianti offers an idyllic setting for cyclists seeking both physical activity and natural beauty.

Here are some itinerary ideas to experience during the milder months.

First day of the weekend biking in Chianti

Morning: Start your journey from a base location like Greve in Chianti or Castellina in Chianti. If you’re not already equipped, rent a bicycle from one of the local shops and make sure it’s properly geared up for your ride.

Late Morning: Traverse the scenic countryside, pedaling along winding roads flanked by vineyards and olive groves. Enjoy the fresh air and breathtaking views as you head towards your first destination.

Late Morning: Visit a local winery for a guided tour and wine tasting experience. Learn about the winemaking process, taste some of the renowned Chianti wines, and indulge in a light snack to recharge for the journey ahead.

Afternoon: Continue your cycling adventure through the countryside, exploring hidden trails and admiring the beauties of rural Tuscany. Make stops along the way to capture photos of the stunning landscapes and to refuel.

Evening: Reach your accommodation for the night, whether it’s a cozy farmhouse or a charming bed and breakfast. Relax and unwind after a day of cycling, enjoying a delicious dinner with typical Tuscan specialties paired with exquisite wines.

Second day of the weekend biking in Chianti

Morning: Rested and energized for another day of exploration, enjoy a hearty breakfast to fuel up for the day ahead.

Late Morning: Resume your cycling journey, this time heading towards the hilltop town of Radda in Chianti. Pedal along scenic paths and forest trails, immersing yourself in the tranquility and beauty of the surroundings.

Late Morning: In Radda in Chianti, take some time to stroll through the cobbled streets of the historic center. Admire the medieval architecture, browse artisan shops, and perhaps stop for a coffee in a local café.

Afternoon: After exploring Radda, hop back on your bike and continue your tour through the countryside, returning to the starting point. Along the way, make detours to visit other charming villages or points of interest that catch your eye.

Late Afternoon: Return the rental bike and take a moment to reflect on your cycling adventure among the Chianti hills. Whether you’re an experienced cyclist or a casual enthusiast, this weekend offers a perfect mix of outdoor activities, cultural immersion, and natural beauty.

Evening: As your weekend draws to a close, treat yourself to a final dinner at a local trattoria, savoring the flavors of traditional Tuscan cuisine one last time before heading home.

Biking itinerary in Chianti, starting from Siena

The hills of Chianti, with their breathtaking landscapes, medieval villages, and historic wineries, are an ideal destination for a cycling weekend filled with biking and nature. This itinerary, suitable for intermediate cyclists, will take you to discover the most scenic places in the area, between enchanting panoramas and tastings of fine wines.

Day 1

Departure from Siena: Arrive in Siena and take Provincial Road 408 towards Greve in Chianti.

Greve in Chianti: After about 20 km, you’ll reach Greve in Chianti, the heart of Chianti Classico. Explore the village, visit its famous square and artisan shops.

Lunch: Stop at one of the many typical trattorias in the village and enjoy traditional Tuscan dishes.

Afternoon: Continue your journey towards Panzano in Chianti, along Provincial Road 222. In Panzano, visit the famous butcher shop of Dario Cecchini and taste his cold cuts and premium meat.

Dinner: Dinner at a farmhouse overlooking the Chianti hills.

Day 2

Departure from Panzano: In the morning, take Provincial Road 101 towards Radda in Chianti.

Radda in Chianti: Visit the village of Radda in Chianti, with its medieval castle and fortified walls.

Lunch: Lunch at a typical trattoria in Radda in Chianti.

Afternoon: Continue your journey towards Castellina in Chianti, along Provincial Road 125. Visit the village of Castellina in Chianti, with its wine museum and wine shops.

Wine Tasting: Wine tasting at a Chianti Classico winery.

Return: Return to Siena by bike or train.

Tips for a biking itinerary in Chianti

  • For a more challenging itinerary, you can add the climb to the Consuma Pass to your route.
  • If you prefer a more relaxed itinerary, you can choose to cycle only part of the route and use the train or bus for longer transfers.
  • Book your accommodation in advance, especially if you’re traveling during high season.
  • Bring enough water and food for the entire day.
  • Wear comfortable clothing suitable for the weather.
  • Respect the traffic rules and safety regulations.

A weekend biking among the hills of Chianti is an unforgettable experience that will allow you to discover the beauty of this unique land.

The charm of the Valdarno: a territory to discover

i 10 luoghi imperdibili in Valdarno

The Valdarno is a geographical area of Tuscany that stretches between the Province of Arezzo and the Metropolitan City of Florence. This valley, traversed by the Arno River, is rich in history, culture, and picturesque landscapes.

Here are 10 must-visit places.

1. Gargonza Castle

Let’s start by exploring our characteristic village and castle, where you can spend an unforgettable stay. Gargonza is indeed a perfectly preserved medieval castle, located on a panoramic hill that offers guided tours, wine tastings, and typical product tastings, as well as events and weddings.

2. Vallombrosa Abbey

A millennium-old abbey immersed in a forest of firs, an important place of worship and spirituality that houses a library with precious ancient manuscripts. Founded in the 12th century, this abbey is nestled in the lush nature of the Casentino Forests National Park. In addition to the beauty of the building itself, visitors can enjoy wonderful walks in the surroundings and admire the tranquility of the place.

3. Santa Maria in Alpe Nature Reserve

An oasis of peace and unspoiled nature, ideal for walks, trekking, and picnics. The reserve is home to a rich variety of flora and fauna.

4. The city of Arezzo

Arezzo: a city rich in history and art, with a well-preserved medieval old town. Don’t miss the Santa Maria Parish, the Cathedral, and the Vasari House.

5. Ponticino

A medieval village located on the Arno River, famous for its Romanesque bridge and artisan shops. Ponticino is the ideal place for a stroll and to enjoy typical Tuscan cuisine.

6. The Masaccio Museum

Located in Arezzo, this museum houses works of art by the famous Renaissance painter Masaccio, who was originally from the Valdarno region. It is an ideal place for art lovers who want to learn more about the work of this important Renaissance master.

7. San Pietro a Gropina Parish Church

This Romanesque parish church is located near Loro Ciuffenna and represents one of the finest examples of medieval religious architecture in the area. The interior of the church is adorned with frescoes of great historical and artistic value.

8. The characteristic village of Loro Ciuffenna

Imagine a village where time seems to have stopped when water energy was still used. Here, at the foot of the Pratomagno, the Ciuffenna river still turns the blades of a mill built on a boulder. It is one of the oldest functioning water mills in Tuscany, and the only one remaining of the 14 mills along the river. Dating back to the year 1000, it is still used for the production of wheat, corn, and chestnut flours.

Loro Ciuffenna – one of the “Most Beautiful Villages in Italy” – revolves around this mill and the civic tower whose clock has marked the days of the locals for centuries. A stone Romanesque bridge, called the old bridge, connects the two banks of the river. A pleasant walk can be taken along the streets and walkways that run alongside the flowing water, with a familiar atmosphere in this small rural center surrounded by woods.

In summer, the particularly cool river water is a destination for many seeking relief from the heat.

9. The Pratomagno Park

This mountainous massif offers spectacular panoramic views of the Valdarno and the surrounding mountains. It is the ideal place for hiking and trekking enthusiasts, with a network of trails that wind through forests, alpine meadows, and ancient villages.

10. The cliffs of the Valdarno

le balze del Valdarno come in Arizona

Not everyone knows it, but there is a part of Tuscany that seems twinned with Arizona. In the upper Valdarno (particularly in the municipality of Reggello), there are rocky peaks, pinnacles that can reach heights of 100 meters, and deep gorges: the clayey rock formations known as the Cliffs of the Valdarno create unusual and fascinating views that you would expect to see on a journey to discover the Grand Canyon in the American parks.

Also called “smotte,” the cliffs in this area are a characteristic geotope and represent a natural spectacle that amazes anyone who witnesses it: Leonardo da Vinci was so fascinated by them that he captured the unique aspects of this landscape and used them as a backdrop for his most famous work, the Mona Lisa.

The Cliffs not only provide a spectacular scenic backdrop but also a habitat of unique naturalistic value protected by the Locally Protected Natural Area.

The Zolfina stream trail is one of the hiking trails that allows you to better admire the spectacle of the Cliffs. It is an easy loop route that starts and ends in one of the Most Beautiful Villages in Italy, Castelfranco di Sopra, and takes its name from a Zolfine water source touched by the route. The valley has the typical tones of the Tuscan countryside, with orchards and vineyards. Midway through the route, you will encounter a road that leads to the small and delightful hilltop village of Piantravigne.

In addition to these must-visit places, the Valdarno region offers many other attractions, such as medieval villages, Romanesque parish churches, castles, and villas. The area is also renowned for its production of Chianti wine and its typical cuisine.

Arezzo Cuisine: Typical Dishes of Arezzo

arezzo cuisine

The area of Arezzo is famous for the production of various types of products. Among these are olive oil, beans (Fagiolo Zolfino, Fagiolo Coco Nano, Fagiolo dall’Occhio, Cece Piccino), cheeses (goat, sheep, ricotta, and Abbucciato Aretino), and honey.

The area is also renowned for its meats (Valdarno chicken, Chianina beef) and cold cuts (Capocollo, Finocchiona, Tuscan Dop ham, Tuscan salami, Soprassata, Tarese del Valdarno). Among the local classics are Mugellano tortelli (filled with potatoes and meat sauce), “all’aretina” (sliced beef), ribollita (a type of soup), pici with wild boar (pasta with wild boar), tripe alla aretina, rabbit with fennel, and pappardelle and Aretine goose.

The local wine of the Colli Aretini is the perfect accompaniment to the meal, which should end with a plate of cantuccini and Vin Santo.

Being in the Tuscan hinterland, the typical dishes of the city of Arezzo refer to meat, particularly Chianina.

Other traditional dishes include pork liver and acquacotta, eggs beaten with onions and tomatoes. Scottiglia is a hearty stew with beef, chicken, guinea fowl, and rabbit. Rabbit in porchetta and grifi, veal snout with tomato, are other typical dishes of Arezzo meat.

Arezzo Cuisine for Food Lovers. Dinner Places: the Best Restaurants

The Arezzo minimalism is the main distinguishing feature of local cuisine. Arezzo chefs pay attention primarily to the taste of dishes, while the aesthetics of the place and the unusual service are not considered of primary importance.

Traditional Tuscan cuisine might seem too simple to some tourists, but lovers of a rustic and authentic lifestyle will appreciate it. Only the freshest and finest products are used to cook the food, chefs carefully control the optimal combination of ingredients to create nutritious and healthy dishes. Every national cuisine restaurant offers homemade food and magnificent Italian wine.

Meat delicacy lovers will appreciate the Florentine steak.

This dish is prepared with prime quality beef. The fresh meat is cooked over the fire with almost no spices and various marinades to preserve the natural taste and aroma. It’s important to remember that in Arezzo, meat and fish are rarely grilled or roasted in the oven: locals prefer to roast them over fire or in a bonfire. Prosciutto crudo is a traditional dish of the region. It’s usually served together with stewed beans as a side dish. Extra virgin olive oil has always played a significant role in national cuisine. Freshly baked bread and olive oil are always present on Italian tables. Tuscan appetizer is another interesting dish recommended for tourists to try. Sliced salami and ham are served with bread and a little olive oil. Among the first courses, locals prefer the first soup. Of course, every restaurant offers traditional Italian pasta and risotto. Vegetarian guests will have the pleasure of trying various salads and vegetable soups that are always on the menu regardless of the season.

If you want to try something truly authentic, order crostino, a dish usually found in small restaurants and cafes. It consists of small appetizers made of slices of bread, olives, sauces, pâté, and fresh vegetables. Locals often start dinner with this appetizer. When it comes to desserts, here Arezzo guests truly have an embarrassment of choice. They can order traditional European sweets or choose to try a truly Italian dessert: a plate of cheeses with schiacciata.

Typical dishes of Arezzo cuisine

Arezzo cuisine is rich in flavors and tradition. Here are some of the typical dishes:

Starters:

  • Crostini neri: roasted Tuscan bread soaked in a broth of liver, anchovies, capers, and chicken.
  • Tortelli alla lastra: fresh pasta tortelli stuffed with ricotta and chard, baked.
  • Pappa al pomodoro: a soup made of stale bread, tomato, basil, and extra virgin olive oil.

First courses:

  • Maccheroni aretini: fresh pasta similar to tagliatelle, seasoned with goose sauce.
  • Bringoli: hand-pulled spaghetti, dressed with tomato sauce or wild boar ragout.
  • Bread soup: soup made of stale bread, vegetables, and beans.

Main courses:

  • Scottiglia: stew of mixed meat (beef, chicken, pork, and lamb) with vegetables and tomato.
  • Peposo: beef stew with black pepper and red wine.
  • Bistecca alla fiorentina: Chianina beef steak, grilled.

Desserts:

  • Baldino: sponge cake with chocolate glaze.
  • Lattaiolo: milk pudding with amaretti and candied fruits.
  • Apple pie: rustic cake with apples, pine nuts, and raisins.

Wine:

  • Chianti Classico: red wine DOCG produced in the Chianti area, between Florence and Siena.
  • Vino Nobile di Montepulciano: red wine DOCG produced in the Montepulciano area, in the province of Siena.
  • Val d’Orcia DOC: red, white, and rosé wine produced in the Val d’Orcia area, in the province of Siena.

In addition to these typical dishes, Arezzo cuisine also offers many other specialties, such as cold cuts, cheeses, mushrooms, and olives.

Chiantigiana: Wine Road in Chianti close to Arezzo

chiantigana street

The Wine Road in Chianti, the Chiantigiana (or simply SR 222), is the road that connects Florence to Siena: one of the most beautiful driving routes in Italy, passing through acres and acres of vineyards producing the famous Chianti Classico DOCG.

Chianti has been one of Italy’s most important wine regions for over three centuries. It was here that the family of the Grand Duke of Tuscany began cultivating the vine in the XVIII and XIX centuries in the region that would become modern Chianti.

The Chiantigiana winds its way with a series of zigzags offering enchanting views of the Tuscan countryside, charming medieval villages, and of course, delightful wines to taste.

For a truly stimulating tour of the Chiantigiana, take the time to visit at least some of the ancient towns along the route and explore the vineyards. Most wineries are open to the public, but be sure to check carefully before visiting to avoid disappointment.

When is the best time to travel the Chianti wine road?

The best time of year to visit Tuscany is during the September grape harvest or just before seeing the Sangiovese vines bend under the weight of ripening grapes, the variety from which Chianti Classico is produced.

Another good reason to go in September is to participate in one of the local festivals celebrating the harvest, such as Vino al Vino, held the third week of September, in the small town of Panzano, where you can taste numerous local wines by the glass.

What to do along the Chiantigiana

  • Visit wineries: The Wine Road is home to numerous wineries, where you can taste local wines and learn about the wine production process. Many wineries also offer guided tours of vineyards and production facilities.
  • Taste local food: Chianti Classico DOC Vinsanto, a liqueur aged for up to 5 years in small wooden barrels called “caratelli” and produced from Malvasia bianca and Trebbiano grapes; Chianina meat, handmade pasta, and cured meats, including pork, wild boar, and cinta senese pork.
  • Explore villages: Characterized by narrow streets, houses with red tile roofs, and ancient churches.
  • Go hiking: The Wine Road is a paradise for hiking enthusiasts. There are trails for all levels of difficulty, crossing vineyards, woods, and meadows.
  • Visit castles: Along the Wine Road, you’ll find numerous castles, with a small detour towards Arezzo you can also find the Castello di Gargonza with its typical village.
  • Go cycling: The Wine Road is a great destination for cycling enthusiasts. There are cycling routes for all levels of difficulty, offering breathtaking views of the hills and vineyards.
  • Relax: An ideal place to relax and enjoy the peace and tranquility of the countryside. There are numerous agritourisms and hotels offering a welcoming atmosphere and impeccable service.

How to plan your trip along the Chiantigiana

Here are some tips for planning your trip on the Wine Road:

  • Choose the best time to travel: The wine road is beautiful to visit all year round, but the best times are spring and autumn when the weather is mild and the vineyards are in bloom or fruit.
  • Book your accommodation in advance: The Chiantigiana is a popular tourist destination, so it’s important to book your accommodation in advance, especially if you’re traveling during peak season. You can take advantage of a unique stay in a castle.
  • Rent a car: The best way to explore the Wine Road is by car, if you arrive by train or plane make sure you have a car available to stop where you want and visit the wineries and villages that interest you the most.
  • Wear comfortable shoes: If you plan to hike or walk, wear comfortable shoes and layered clothing.
  • Bring a camera: The Wine Road is a truly picturesque place, so don’t forget to bring a camera to capture your memories.

Photography Guide: the best places to capture memorable photos (near Gargonza Castle)

the most beautiful places to take picture in Tuscany

Tuscany is a region rich in natural and cultural beauty, making it an ideal place for capturing breathtaking photos and selfies.
One of the most beautiful places is undoubtedly Florence, with its magnificent Duomo and the iconic Ponte Vecchio, providing perfect backdrops for photography. Pisa is another must-visit destination, with its iconic Tower attracting tourists from around the world.

But Tuscany offers much more: the picturesque Tuscan countryside with its hills and cypress trees, such as in Val d’Orcia, is a true paradise for photography enthusiasts. Even the medieval city of Siena, with its majestic Piazza del Campo and unique architecture, offers many opportunities for capturing unforgettable photos.

Where to Take the Best Photos in Florence?

Florence, with its rich history and breathtaking architecture, offers numerous places to capture the best tourist photos. One of the most iconic spots is Ponte Vecchio, with its characteristic overhanging houses reflecting on the Arno River and timeless charm shops.

Another fascinating area is the square enclosing the Duomo of Santa Maria del Fiore, with its majestic dome and Giotto’s bell tower. Art lovers shouldn’t miss the Uffizi Gallery, which houses masterpieces by artists such as Botticelli and Leonardo da Vinci. For a panoramic view of the city, take the time to stroll up to Piazzale Michelangelo, where you can enjoy a spectacular panorama of the entire city with the Duomo in the background. Lastly, the Boboli Gardens are the ideal place to take photos amidst beautiful gardens and fountains.

Where to Take Photos in Pisa?

In Pisa, there are many picturesque spots for taking beautiful photos. One of the most popular points is certainly the famous Piazza dei Miracoli, with its magnificent Tower where you’ll always find someone posing.

If you prefer to stay away from the crowds, along the Arno River, you can find several scenic spots from which to photograph the city’s picturesque landscape, with its charming bridges and historic palaces. The historic center of Pisa, with its cobblestone streets and colorful characteristic houses, also offers fascinating scenarios for capturing unforgettable photos. Lastly, you can’t forget to immortalize the beauty of the imposing Pisa Cathedral, with its grandeur and splendid white marble.

Where to Take Photos in Siena?

Siena offers numerous picturesque locations for capturing breathtaking photographs. One of the most iconic places for photos in the city is undoubtedly Piazza del Campo, famous for its shell shape and the Palazzo Pubblico. Here, you can capture the energy and unique atmosphere of the square, especially during the Palio di Siena, one of the city’s most important traditions. Another point of photographic interest is the Siena Cathedral, a masterpiece of Italian Gothic with its intricate façade and panoramic view of the city from its tower. Finally, Siena’s medieval streets, with their charming alleys and arches, offer many opportunities to capture the historical essence and charm of this Tuscan city.

Where to Take Photos in Livorno?

Livorno offers numerous picturesque locations for capturing memorable photos. One of the most popular options is the waterfront, where you can capture the beauty of the sea and the historic buildings surrounding it. Don’t miss the unmistakable Terrazza Mascagni: especially wonderful at sunset. The picturesque district of Venezia Nuova, with its canals and colorful facades, also offers a unique backdrop for photos. For nature lovers, the gardens of Villa Mimbelli are an ideal option, with their green lawns and blooming flowers. Additionally, Livorno’s picturesque port, with its fishing boats and breathtaking sunsets, offers an ideal location for photography enthusiasts.

Where to photograph San Gimignano from?

San Gimignano is a beautiful medieval town located in Tuscany famous for its medieval towers and timeless charm. When it comes to finding the best spot to photograph San Gimignano, there are many options to consider. One of the most iconic views is from Piazza della Cisterna, with its towering towers in the background: from here, you can capture the unique essence of this historic city and immortalize its architectural beauty. Another scenic location is the Rocca di Montestaffoli, a medieval fortress situated atop a hill, which offers breathtaking panoramic views of the city and the surrounding countryside. Regardless of the chosen spot, photographing San Gimignano will be an unforgettable experience, thanks to its magical atmosphere and picturesque cobblestone streets.

Nicole and Rolf

Nicole e Rolf

Searching for the right wedding venue in Tuscany, for the most important day of your life, is one of the first thing to do when you decide to get married. Castello di Gargonza, a medieval Village castle, in the central part of Tuscany, not far from Siena and Arezzo, is the perfect location for a catholic or civil wedding ceremony in Tuscany, a top wedding venue for your wedding in Tuscany.

Castello di Gargonza offers rooms and apartments for your stay with your family and friends so all your requests will be satisfied leaving you free to enjoy this special occasion. We can accommodate up to 100 people. It is privately owned and privately managed both for the accommodation and most important for the catering of your wedding. 

We have had the pleasure to work for and with incredible vendors coordinated and planned by Sara Barni founder of Floé weddings. We would like to share with you the wonderful wedding weekend of Nicole & Rolf who have decided to get married in Gargonza. Thank you very much!  

A welcome dinner was organized in one of our gardens, facing a peaceful forest which surrounds Gargonza. The next day a symbolic ceremony was organized inside the village with beautiful flowers. A congratulation cocktail was set in our Lemon Garden facing the medieval tower. Dinner and dancing were set in the terrace of our restaurant with amazing lights for both the dinner and the DJ set. Wedding cake was made live for our bride and groom and a super dancing with DJ and live sax with incredible lights created an unforgettable wedding party. 

Thanks to
Nicole & Rolf for sharing their special moments- @nicoledao @ieuter_rolf
Sara and her staff for an amazing planning @floeweddings
Flowers and decoration by Stiatti Fiori-  @stiattifioriflowers @stiatti_fiori_
The memorable journey was captured by Aberrazioni Cromatiche @Aberrazionicromatichestudio @aberrazioni_cromatiche_studio
Hairstyle and makeup The Porfirio (Barbara Corso) @theporfirio_
Lighting and amplification Wedding Music and Lights @weddingmusicandlights
Stationery Pink Ink Studio @pinkinkstudio.it
Wedding Cake Arte Dolce di Stefano Lorenzoni @artedolcedistefanolorenzoni @stefano.lorenzoni
Dj Stefano Nannicini @stefano.nannicini.dj
Sax Stefano Bresciani @stefanobresciani1981
Band Train Jazz Band @TrainJazzBand @trainjazzband
Harp&Violin Annalisa de Santis @annalisarpa
Voice&Guitar Welcome event Gin Sonic @gin_sonic_
Rentals Preludio Noleggi @preludionoleggi @preludiodivisionenoleggio
Bridal dress Jane Hill Bridal @janehillbridal
Bridal shoes Loeffler Randal @LoefflerRandall
Wedding rings Ring Concierge @ringconcierge
Wedding rings Cartier @Cartier
Groom’s outfit Suit Supply @suitsupply
Groom’s shoes To Boot Ny @tobootnewyork
Parfum Jo Malone @JoMaloneLondon