Il Chianti

Chianti is without a doubt one of the most renowned wine-producing areas. And that’s not all. When thinking of the territory we cannot help but recall the cypress trees, the churches, the castles which dot the region.

During Medieval times Gaiole in Chianti was an important merchant town set along the road to Valdarno. The many castles and parishes in the surrounding area are a testament to the flourishing and prosperous farms and businesses.

Castellina in Chianti was turned into a fortress; the imposing stronghold set in the main town square is all that remains of it today. From its crenellated fourteenth-century tower you can admire the lovely Chianti landscape.

Castelnuovo Berardegna is often viewed as an offshoot of Siena, since tourists do not consider it part of the province of Siena. The city and the surrounding countryside are charming areas, full of character and history, rich in architecture, gardens and historical locations.

Radda in Chianti is set in the rolling hills surrounding the vale of the rivers Pesa and Arbia. Mentioned for the first time in a 11th century document, the town, the court and its castle were property of the Florentine Abbey.
All that remains of the castle today are some sections of towers and segments of the wall; the framework of the old medieval town has been preserved. It surrounds the old church of Saint Nicholas and the fifteenth-century Palazzo del Podesta, currently the headquarters of City Hall.
Radda is an important wine producing town, as well as the hub for trade in Chianti, the junction for the network of roads which link all the small towns and isolated farms

San Gimignano rises with the outline of its towers on a hill (334 meters) overlooking Val d’Elsa. The site of a small Etruscan village during the Hellenistic era (III-II century b.C.) its story begins around the tenth century, when it was named after the Bishop of Modena: San Gimignano, who saved the town from barbarian hordes. It flourished during Medieval times thanks to the Via Francigena which crossed the town.
The existing 15 medieval towers (a distant memory of the 72 towers the city had at the height of its glory) proclaim from afar the splendor of the Tuscan city.

Events

Everyone has heard of the Palio di Siena, but few know of the myriad events which take place in the surrounding area throughout the whole year. A cycling race is the main event in Gaiole in Chianti named: L'Eroica. It’s a historical pageant commemorating olden-day cycling which generally takes place on the first Sunday of October. The first Sunday of November a running race is held.

Moreover, there are many town festivals which, in keeping with the Christian calendar, celebrate the local patron saint. A score of events celebrate the passing seasons, animals, traditional products and historical pageants. The most noteworthy are the “Sagra del Cocomero” (Watermelon Festival) in Castellina in Chianti, “Calici di Stelle” which takes place in many town in the region, the “Sagra della Cinta Senese” (Festival of the Cinta Senese breed) in San Casciano dei Bagni and the “Festa del Barbarossa” in San Quirico d’Orcia.