Between Siena, Florence and Arezzo in a succession of hills with vineyards and small villages, lies the Chianti. A place where you can admire the countryside and relax throughout the year, devoting yourself to the pleasures of the table and good wine.
Castelnuovo is the witness of the battle of Montaperti, a central place in the Sienese history: here in 1260 the Florentine army was defeated by the Republic of the Palio.
The Sienese Republic, after Montaperti, decided to equip this outpost with new fortifications (hence the name Castelnuovo) which, however, were never completed. In Castelnuovo Berardenga we suggest you to visit Villa Chigi Saracini of excellent architectural elegance refined by an Italian garden, and enriched by a nineteenth-century park of remarkable botanical importance. Castelnuovo Berardenga has to offer the order of its alleys, a precious fountain on the main square, some taverns where you can satisfy your appetite.
GAIOLE IN CHIANTI
Gaiole, founded between the 14th and 14th centuries, has no military origin, but trade. At the beginning it was a market serving the many castles in the surroundings. In fact, the heart of Gaiole, which today is one of the centers of production of the Cinta Senese, is a street-square: via Ricasoli along which the market and the life of the town took place, and still takes place. Gaiole offers food and wine shopping opportunities as well as the charm of the old houses, the riverfront and the urban furnishings that refer to medieval merchant activities.
RADDA IN CHIANTI
Radda is the village of the vineyards. Not to be missed is the view over the narrow streets of the ancient center, over the vegetable gardens that are enclosed by dry stone walls and from which the essence of Chianti is derived. In Radda there is the headquarters of the Foundation for the protection of the Chianti Classico territory which is housed in the monastic complex of Santa Maria a Prato just outside the town walls.
You can also admire the stretch of road that runs along the southern edge of the town, the Ghiacciaia del Granduca, a unique building that is located behind the walls to the north and which was used to produce the ice that is essential for the preservation of rich agricultural products, which has always been the fulcrum of economy of the country.
CASTELLINA IN CHIANTI
In the village, a series of Palazzo Patrizi awaits, renovations of military garrisons built first by the Guidi counts who from the Garfagnana area went as far as the heart of Tuscany trying to control it by diplomatic or directly military means; and subsequently by the Florentines, always on guard against the Sienese. The heart of the built-up area is the ancient fortress designed in the second half of the fifteenth century by Giuliano da Sangallo, the great architect of which Vasari traces his praise in his "Lives of the most excellent painters, sculptors and architects", who was commissioned by Lorenzo the Magnificent to equip Castellina with a large circle of walls interspersed with towers, now partly incorporated into houses. The stop in Castellina is enlivened by the numerous wine-cellars with wine tasting, but also by the great Norcina art of Chianti capable of offering meats of rare value and unforgettable flavors.
Discover wine tastings and where to eat in the Chianti region once you arrive at the Arcobaleno Hotel in Siena...