Casentino: La Verna Sanctuary (AR), perched on the steep southern wall of Mt. Penna, where St. Francis received the stigmata; Camaldoli (AR) with its monastery, which still houses the old pharmacy and the suggestive hermitage.
Certaldo (FI): situated in the hills of Chianti, the village preserves its original medieval structure. Worth a visit: the Palazzo Pretorio (Magistrate’s Palace), the ancient center of power and local justice with its dungeons, “torture room” and panoramic tower.
Crete Senesi: the landscape becomes surreal near Chiusure (SI) and the Mount Oliveto Maggiore Abbey: the clay, shaped by the wind and water, forms spectacular ravines.
San Miniato (PI): the very old St. Galgano Hermitage, where we can see the famous sword in the stone where the warrior Galgano used to kneel to pray, is located near the village.
Other villages: Anghiari, Buonconvento, Cortona, Collodi, Pitigliano, Poppi, Vinci, Pienza, Certaldo, Castelfiorentino, Montalcino, Poggibonzi, San Quirico D’Orcia.
Tastes and flavors in Tuscany
Cantucci: dry cookies with almonds that are dipped, if desired, in Vin Santo.
Crostini: toasted Tuscan bread spread with various toppings; the typical one is spread with a mixture made from chopped liver.
Panzanella: cold soup made from dry bread and tomato, basil and onion, served with oil, salt and pepper.
Ribollita: bean soup “left over” and reheated in the oven with the addition of herbs.
Wines: Brunello di Montalcino, Chianti, Morellino, Nobile di Montepulciano, Vin Santo.
Handicrafts in Tuscany
Crystal: Val d'Elsa is the city of crystal par excellence.
Ceramics: the ceramics from Montelupo, with the characteristic Harlequins (the lively figurines that were the forerunners of the comic strip) and the Zaffera (the classic decoration with the blue palmettes in relief) are famous worldwide.
Necklaces: the production and craftsmanlike processing in silver, gold and stones is typical in Arezzo.
Terracotta: the processing of ‘cotto’ (terracotta tiles) has been practiced in Impruneta as far back as can be remembered.
Tuscany: events & exhibitions
Florence: June 24th - Calcio Storico (Historical Soccer) It takes place between the four quarters of the city and each team has 27 players.
Greve: September – Chianti Classico Exhibition. With tastings.
Sansepolcro: second sunday in September - Crossbow ‘Palio’. Contested in costume with historical procession in which the local crossbowmen and those from Gubbio compete against each other.
San Gimignano: June – Medieval Harvest Festival. Jousts, stands and medieval re-evocations.