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8FO - Through Southern Tuscany

Monday, June 4, 2018 | Ursula Peter / Johanna Reiser | Edelweiss Bicycle Tours

Thank you very much for a wonderful week all you tough riders. Thanks a well for all the coffees, wines and the nice talk  an the fun we had.

It was a pleasure guiding you. Hope seeing you again.

And never say the "s" word

Ursula and Johanna

 

Day 7: Citta della Pieve - Orvieto

 

We pedal south like the old pilgrims, constantly towards the Eternal City. At the very northern part of the Lazio region, stands the Monte Rufeno Nature Reserve, that was established in 1983 and safeguards wide woods in a gentle, hilly landscape crossed by the Paglia river. The area is lonely and quite. There is only one bar along the way, where we can have a last Cappuccino. We`ll cross the border Latium before we ascend to Orvieto, clinched on a tuff plateau, our last highlight on the trip.

Last coffee stop with Ursula at a magic forest hut. We came to try garlic tribes, homegrown olives and Cantuccini "orvieto style".
and inside it was really magic
Mulberrystories and -testing
Incredible steep last uphill ride to our final destination Orvieto
Colorful traditional marches at Orvieto
view to Orvieto

Day 6: Pienza - Citta delle Pieve

We are heading south, all roads lead to Rome!  Have your swimming suits ready and take a muscle relaxation in the warm thermal water. We cross the Via Cassia, the old trading route to Rome. The area is famous for pecorino, the goat cheese. We are entering Umbria. Citta della Pieve is located on top of a hill and needs again some efforts to go to. But it`s worth.

a morning in Pienza - view from our hotel Il Chiostro
a hidden Edelweiss treasure. Where it is? We don`t tell to avoid tour buses and mass of tourists
Jim is enjoying the warm water
a fabulous picnic high above the Orcia Valley

Radicofani

The Rigo Valley
Casciano dei Bagni
last climb up to Citta della Pieve

Day 5: Siena - Pienza

An exciting, but also a long  day is waiting for us. We leave Siena in a spectacular way, only possible on a bicycle. Wir ride downtown, enter the city through the massive Porta Camollia, cross the Piazza Il Campo and exit through the Porto Romana, the city gate facing to Rome. Right outside the city walls we meet the Via Francigena, the old pilgrim route. 

We are heading south to an area well-known from postcards and calendar pictures. You`ll see rolling hills, topped with medieval towns, olive groves and a skyline punctuated with cypress trees – this is the area south of Siena the „Crete Siensi“. 

We turn into the Val di Merse. There is almost no traffic, probably because of the curvy roads and the endless up and down over the hills. Vescovado, Murlo or Buonconvento to just name some of the hidden gems along the way. Sleepy villages surrounded by cypress trees. It is quite, chucks are picking aside the road, old men are sitting in plastic chairs in front of the houses and time is not an issue.

The road goes up to Montalcino. The grapes for the famous Brunello are grown here. We leave the town towards the South. The road is narrow and curvy, I can smell fresh hay. Monte Amiata on the right is a dormant volcano.

A small unpaved road leads to Bagno Vignoni. It has been a thermal spa since the Middle Ages where the pilgrims cured their muscle ache. The whole market place is a huge thermal pool. 

We keep going towards Pienza on a panoramic road. In the South  you see the Val d’Orcia, in the North Il Crete. Pienza is home of pope Pius II and our destination for tonight.

 

Mr. Eroica and his friend at breakfast in the Garden Hotel
ready to go
a short briefing and on the road we are
leaving Siena quite through the middle of the city
on the Eroica
Murlo
the Capellone
calendar pictures
long way up to Montalcino - but a shuttle is no option
our beautiful hotel in Pienza - Relais Il Chiostro

Day 4: San Gimignano - Siena

A easy ride today! For our morning workout and descent up to Castel San Gimignano we get recompensated by a great view back to the towers and down into Val d`Elsa.. A complete fortified city with 14 towers and a 1970 feet long city wall, attracts our attention from faraway – Monteriggioni. First raised in 1203as a forward defensive position against Florence, the walls and towers today are the most complete example fo such a fortified bastion in Tuscany. One of Italy`s most enchanting cities – Siena, the Gothic – is our destination for tonight. The world famous horse race takes place her, the "Palio di SIena". It is said that the city has the most beautiful piazza in Italy - Piazza Il Campo and the cathedral is a must. How about  "Pici Cacio Pepe", a delicous and typical Sienese dish?

Col Val d`Elsa

slowly, slowly

Go-Pro Foto machen

Coffe in Col di Val d`Elsa

Monteriggioni

our two secret E-Bike critics
sightseeing program in the afternoon - the Cathedral of Siena first
like in a fairy taile
and the amazing floor
we climbed up the Facciatone and had an unbelieveable view
Il Campo - one of the most beautiful plazas in Italy

Day 3: Castellina in Chianti - San Gimignano

We can`t say good-bye yet to the Chianti region, too beautiful, too much to see. The morning ride brings us to the old Etruscan town of Castellina in Chianti, long ago a frontier town between warring Siena and Florence. The black rooster is the icon of the whole Chianti area and you`ll find it everywhere but for sure on every bottle of DOC Chianti wine.

 The „Manhattan of Tuscany“ is our highlight in the afternoon.Around 1500 there were more than 72 examples of this picturesque nonsense. Today there are only 14 left but the result is still a must-see tourist attraction nicknamed “Manhattan of the Middle Ages” for its skyline. The daily tourist leave San Gimignano in the late afternoon. Not us! We stay and enjoy the medieval atmosphere inside the walled city. 

waiting for breakfast in Villa Casalecchi

Il Gallo Nero - the black rooster

Jim let it run through the Chianti vineyards

a Tuscan drive-way

this is a picture for the wifes back home - so that you get an idea how they will come back after a week of Tuscan food ;.)

Gambassi Terme

we coming closer to our highlight of the day - San Gimignano

Due to a lack of Ferraris, Rolex and Prada the rich and important families who ruled the region in the past needed to find their way to outdo each other. They came up with building higher towers than their neighbours. Around 1500 there were more than 72 examples of this picturesque nonsense. Today there are only 14 left but the result is still a must-see tourist attraction nicknamed “Manhattan of the Middle Ages” for its skyline.

Dinner in La Mandragola - San Gimignano

Day 2: Florenz - Castellina in Chianti

perfect weather, everybody exited - so we start and leaving Florence by train, which will bring us directly into the Chianti area.

Strade bianche - gravel roads

a street was blocked,but with a little detour we made it to Greve in Chianti
Macelleria Fallorni - paradise
it was a long way up to Lamole, but it was worth it. Beautiful views and awesome food on top

our hotel in Castellina is a treasure! 500 years family owned and one of the first hotels in the Chianti area. Just beautiful!

Day 1: Tourstart in Florence

Travelling on a Pedelac through Tuscany means an indulgence of all senses: landscape, culture, food and „la dolce vita“

We are ready to go! Nearly all our guests already arrived. We tourguides are busy with the last preparations.

artist Johanna prepares the welcome briefing
after welcome briefing and handover of the pedelecs we went downtown
the guided city walk started of course with the Duomo
Piazza della Signoria and the David
Ponte Vecchio
some art in Palazzo Strozzi
Bistecca Fiorentina for our vegetarian
a little bit later
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Add a comment Rate this post
Alice
Sunday, June 3, 2018 at 13:43

Thank you, Ursula, for this blog! The children and I have enjoyed reading of your adventures and seeing all of the pictures. Be well!
Ursula Peter
Monday, June 4, 2018 at 19:40

Hi Alice,
it was a pleasure. Hope the homesick dad and husband arrived safe and sound back home . Hope seeing him again.
Regards to all of you
Ursula
Susan Vallario
Thursday, May 31, 2018 at 21:32

Ursula--I'm really enjoying your blog and the wonderful photos. It almost makes me feel like I'm there with Nick, Jim and the rest of you enjoying the beautiful Tuscan countryside. Thank you!
Ursula Peter
Monday, June 4, 2018 at 19:41

Hi Susan,
next time you have to come.
Say regards, we had a really great week.
all the best
Ursula
Michaela
Sunday, May 27, 2018 at 23:10

WOW, tolle Karte
Wünsche Euch eine tolle Tour
Wetter passt
Ursula Peter
Monday, May 28, 2018 at 09:05

Hi Michaela,
danke. Ja schaut alles gut aus soweit.
LG Ursula

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