TO DO

discovering chianti

Gaiole in Chianti

The history of Gaiole in Chianti is closely linked to its location on the road leading from the Chianti area to the upper Arno Valley. Thanks to its position it became a place of exchange for the nearby castles and in 1215 was first recorded as a market town. Due to its increased importance in the fourteenth century, it became the capital town of all the villages of the Lega del Chianti. The countryside around Gaiole is dotted with many castles due to the strong influence of the Firidolfi family, from whom the Ricasolis descend, and later, by the Florentine Republic’s need for defensive positions. In some cases the ancient castles and defensive towers have been transformed into villas. After the second world war the town was hit by the depopulation of rural areas but as of the end of the seventies the former farmhouses have been progressively restored and today they are home to many vacation villas. Nowadays the food and wine tourism constitutes the main source of wealth for the town.

Private chef - Cooking school

At Il Molinaccio you can book the service of a private chef to prepare meals or give cooking classes.

Wine Tasting

The owners of Il Molinaccio are always available to advise and organise visits to local wineries.

Bicycle tours

Eight bicycles are available for the guests to explore the surrounding area. Additional bicycles can be hired in town.

Walks among the vineyards

From Il Molinaccio there are many trails. Gaiole in Chianti can be reached via a beautiful walk through the vineyards (duration approximately 30 minutes)

Discover ancient fortresses

Il Molinaccio is located on the famous Chianti Castles route. There are six itineraries which provide a very pleasant way to discover the architecture, history and present the way of life of the Chianti area.

Trekking routes

From Il Molinaccio it is possible to discover and venture on numerous trekking routes to discover the surrounding nature and admire the beautiful countryside.

Places to discover

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The Chianti

The Chianti Hills are a short mountain range (about 20 km long) between the provinces of Florence, Siena and Arezzo that mark the eastern border of the Chianti region. The highest peak is Monte San Michele (893 meters above sea level) which lies in the municipality of Greve in Chianti. Historically, the Chianti area consisted only of the municipalities of Gaiole, Radda and Castellina, otherwise known as the Lega del Chianti. Founded in 1384 by the Florentine Republic, the League coat of arms bore the black rooster. The territory has always been deeply linked to the production of wine and with the creation of the wine-making area in 1932, the area known as Chianti expanded substantially. Today, only wines produced within this area can be named Chianti Classico (world-renowned Chianti DOCG red wine) and are certified with the famous Black Rooster symbol.

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Siena

Siena is the capital of the province of Siena. The city is universally known for its medieval cityscapes and the famous Palio . In 1995, Siena’s historic centre was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The city is home to the Monte dei Paschi di Siena Bank, founded in 1472 and therefore the oldest bank still in operation in the world. The Palio di Siena is an equestrian race of medieval origin, between the 17 Contrade (districts) of Siena, which takes place twice a year.

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Florence

Florence in the Middle Ages was an important artistic, cultural, commercial, political, economic and financial centre. In the modern age it was the capital of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany from 1569 to 1859 which, ruled by the Medici and Lorraine families, became one of the richest and most modern states. The various political vicissitudes, the financial and mercantile power and the influences in every field of culture have made the city a fundamental crossroads of Italian and European history. In 1865 Florence was proclaimed capital of the Kingdom of Italy (second, after Turin), maintaining this status until 1871, the year that marked the end of the Risorgimento. An important university centre and UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1982.

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Arezzo

Arezzo is the capital of the homonymous province in eastern Tuscany. Arezzo arose in pre-Etruscan times in an area inhabited since prehistoric times. It is known worldwide as the City of the Saracino Joust (Giostra del Saracino), famous for its goldsmiths, birthplace of the poet and scholar Francesco Petrarca and the inventor of musical notation, Guido Monaco and it was the seat of the oldest university in Tuscany and one of the first in Europe.

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San Gimignano

San Gimignano is an ancient walled medieval town in the province of Siena, Tuscany, famous for its tower-houses. Due to this characteristic medieval architecture its historic centre, with its 14 remaining towers, was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. San Gimignano, despite some twentieth-century restorations, has retained its feudal atmosphere and appearance. It is also known as a medieval stopping point for catholic pilgrims on their way to or from Rome as it sits on the famous Via Francigena.

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Volterra

Volterra is a walled mountaintop town in the province of Pisa, Tuscany dating as far back as the 8th century BC. Volterra, also known as the city of alabaster, was one of the “twelve cities”of the ancient Etruscan League. The city was a bishop’s residence in the 5th century and in the Middle Ages an important episcopal power having jurisdiction over a large part of the Tuscan hills. Today it preserves a remarkable historical centre of Etruscan origin with Roman ruins and medieval buildings such as the Cathedral, the Medici Fortress and the Palazzo dei Priori on the square of the same name.

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