2016 Giro d’Italia

Thursday, February 25, 2016

2016 Giro d’Italia To Feature Rolling Ride Through Chianti Vineyards

Posted by Mikolaj (26/02/2016)

The 2016 Giro d'Italia, (tour of Italy) cycle race will feature a stage in Chianti. It’s the last big race in the lead up to the Tour de France, and it’s held in May every year. The 2016 race will take place between the 6th to the 29th of May. Expect to see all the main teams that take part in the Tour de France competing in the Giro, including riders such as Contador, Froome and Porte.

The organisers have announced that one of the most important stages (stage 9) will be hosted in Chianti. It will consist of a 40 kilometre time trial, with barely any flat roads in sight. Chianti is a very hilly area thanks to the famous rolling hills of the vineyards. The Chianti section of the route will be raced as a Time Trial where all riders start in sequence a minute or so apart and race against the clock.

Although this will clearly be a tough and challenging stage, the lucky riders will get to take in some of Tuscany’s most impressive and beautiful scenery. It’s expected to be one of the most visually stunning stages in the race. This stage of the race will start in the town of Radda and end in Greve.

Radda is a picturesque hilltop town and a central point in Southern Tuscany.It’s a locally run town that still retains its traditional charm, and it boasts some spectacular views of the surrounding scenery. From Radda the route goes through Castellina, San Donato and Panzano before finishing at Greve in Chianti.

Thanks to the challenging nature of this stage, it has the potential to have a big impact on the overall race and produce sizeable time gaps. Race director Mauro Vegni explains:

‘This is going to be one of the most spectacular stages of the Giro 2016, both in a technical, riding respect as well as for its unique scenery.’

This is excellent news for the Chianti region, as this year the area is celebrating the 300th anniversary of the world famous Chianti Classico wine. The organisers of the race try to recognise cultural events that are happening around Italy every year, and the 300th anniversary is most definitely one of them.

Chianti was declared as a wine growing region by the Grand Duke of Tuscany 300 years ago, and the route of the Giro will salute that significant event.  Wine has been grown in the hills since Etruscan and Roman times but 1716 is taken as the beginning of the modern era.

There’s a lot of anticipation building around the Chianti section of the race. This is expected to be a thrilling and exciting event. Why not book a trip to Tuscany in May and witness it for yourself? Click here to book a private villa in Tuscany. 
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Top Honeymoon Activities In Tuscany

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Top Honeymoon Activities In Tuscany

Posted by Virginie (19/02/2016)

Tuscany is an excellent choice for your honeymoon. The region is filled with romance and stunning scenery, creating the perfect backdrop for a dream honeymoon. The landscape is absolutely breathtaking, and there are lots of activities for loved up newlyweds to enjoy.

With rolling hills, lush countryside, impressive cities and charming medieval towns to visit, you will be spoilt for choice in Tuscany. The hardest part won’t be deciding to book your honeymoon in Tuscany, it will choosing from the endless romantic activities on offer throughout the region. To help you decide, here are some top honeymoon activities in Tuscany.

Wine tasting
You can't go to Tuscany without going wine tasting. The region is famous for its wine, and produces world class wines such as Chianti. Go on a wine tour where you can learn about the history of the wines and taste a few different wines from the region. You will also get to visit several wineries set in stunning countryside.

Horseback riding
Horseback riding is an extremely special and romantic activity for couples, especially in such a beautiful location like Tuscany. Go horseback riding along the beach or through the countryside and enjoy a romantic ride with some jaw dropping views.

Visit a castle
Tuscany is full of impressive castles that are full of history and authenticity. You should definitely visit a castle or two on your honeymoon in Tuscany. You could even book to stay in a castle overnight and treat yourself to a romantic dinner.

Bathe in the hot springs
Some people don’t know that Tuscany is also home to some natural hot springs and has plenty of spas. Every honeymoon should incorporate some time to unwind, and a Tuscan spa is the perfect place to be pampered with your new spouse. Head to Saturnia, a famous spa town in Tuscany where you can bathe in the hot springs and by waterfalls.

Hot air balloon ride
There’s nothing more romantic than a hot air balloon ride in Tuscany. It’s the best way to take in the gorgeous scenery and see the region from a different perspective. Take a bottle of champagne up with you and enjoy this once in a lifetime experience with your partner.

Tuscan cooking class
Cooking and eating delicious food can really inspire romance and is a fantastic honeymoon activity for you and your partner. There are many cooking classes on offer throughout Tuscany, especially in the cities such as Florence and Pisa. You can also go on a food tour where they take you to the local market to select your ingredients and you visit some of the local food shops.

Ride in a horse drawn carriage
Book a ride in a horse drawn carriage and enjoy a really special experience on your honeymoon. You can go on a ride on a horse drawn carriage through San Rossore, a nature park in Pisa. Other places in the region where you can also ride in a horse drawn carriage include Florence and Lucca.

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Ingredients For A Romantic Break

Friday, February 12, 2016

The Key Ingredients For A Romantic Break

Posted by Ruth (12/02/2015)
When you are thinking of booking a romantic break, there are so many things to consider. You want to try and get everything just perfect, so that you and your partner can have a special trip away. People have different ideas about romance and what makes a holiday romantic, but there are some general ingredients you need if you want romance to blossom. Here are the key things you need for a romantic break.

Delicious food & quality restaurants
Most couples look for a holiday destination with a wide range of top quality restaurants. Gourmet restaurants can provide the perfect setting for a romantic dinner, but authentic local restaurants can be just as charming.

Check your prospective holiday destination has enough restaurants for you to try serving different types of food. Eating out is often a big part of any romantic trip, so you may want to hand pick some restaurants before you go, or you could always be spontaneous and decide when you get there.

Stunning sunsets
There is nothing more romantic than watching a breathtaking sunset with your partner. It creates a beautiful backdrop for adorable holiday pictures and also helps to put you in the mood for romance.

Some spots around the world are known for their stunning sunsets, for example, Tuscany is famous for amazing sunsets. You can catch the sunset by the beach, on a city rooftop or in the heart of the countryside depending on what you think is the most romantic setting.

Romantic activities
A break away with your partner should also include some romantic activities. It’s worth looking up what activities you can do before you go, so that you can plan some romantic surprises for your loved one.

For example. horseback riding along the beach, a hot air balloon ride with champagne or going on a food and wine tasting tour. You want to try and book once in a lifetime activities that you will both remember for a long time.

It’s tempting to try and cram in as much as you can into a romantic break, but romance is unlikely to blossom if you are both exhausted. Try not to plan too many things into your itinerary, and allow gaps in your schedule for some much needed relaxation time. A lot of couples enjoy going to the spa and having treatments together, which can be very sensual and romantic.

Stress free travel
The last thing you want on a romantic break is to get stressed. Make sure you book all your transfers in advance and plan how you will get from one place to another in advance. Stressful situations can cause unwanted arguments, which are not ideal on a romantic trip away. Make life as easy as possible by planning in advance and using a reliable, helpful travel company.

A beautiful setting

Finally, and most importantly, you must have a beautiful setting. Tuscany is known to be one of the most romantic destinations in the world. Here you can lose yourself in wine, Italian food and medieval hilltop towns. Click here to view some of our luxury private villas in Tuscany that are perfect for couples. 
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10 Reasons Why Tuscany is Ideal for Couples

Thursday, February 4, 2016

10 Reasons Why Tuscany is Ideal for Couples 

Posted by Sonia (05/02/2016)

Tuscany is one of the most romantic destinations in the world. It’s filled with rolling hills, charming cities, olive groves, and breath-taking scenery. It’s a region that naturally feels romantic, making it ideal for holidays, weddings, honeymoons and unforgettable proposals.

Whether you and your partner prefer an idyllic escape in the countryside, exploring mesmerising cities or an active break, there will be somewhere in Tuscany that’s perfect for you both. Here are ten reasons why Tuscany is ideal for couples.

1. The scenery
The scenery in Tuscany conjures up images of vineyards stretching for miles, fields filled with lush greenery and hilltop villages. There are 120 nature reserves in the region, so it’s definitely worth taking some time to go walking or hiking during your romantic break.

Some of the most scenic spots where you can take some amazing pictures include the Chianti hills and vineyards, Val d’Orcia (a UNESCO natural heritage site) and Crete Senesi. You will also witness some of Tuscany’s most impressive scenery if you drive on the road that runs from San Quirico D'Orcia to Bagno Vignoni.

2. The cultural sites
Another reason why Tuscany is ideal for couples is because of its rich cultural heritage. If you and your partner love a bit of culture and history then you won’t be disappointed with what’s on offer in Tuscany, which is home to seven World Heritage sites.

The Renaissance era played a big part in shaping the culture of this region. There are lots of castles and iconic churches to uncover. Some of the major cultural gems include the medieval towers in San Gimignano, Siena's historical centre, Palazzo Piccolomini, Florence Cathedral and of course, the world famous Leaning Tower of Pisa.

3. The wine
Tuscany is filled with vineyards and wineries where you can taste the local wine. Head to a vineyard for a few hours and go on a tour or sample the Tuscan wine over a romantic dinner in a local restaurant. The Tuscan wineries are a fantastic place to learn about Italian wine, this region boasts some of Italy’s most famous wines including Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano.

4. The sunsets
On a visit to Tuscany, you will most likely experience some jaw-dropping sunsets. Of all the things you see on your trip, the sunsets will be something that will stay in your mind forever. Share a romantic moment whilst taking in the views and watching some of the world’s most beautiful sunsets. Some of the best places to see a stunning Tuscan sunset include along the pier in Viareggio, The Mascagni terrace in Livorno and from the Piazzale Michelangelo in Florence.

5. Luxury private villas
There are plenty of secluded villas throughout Tuscany where you can enjoy complete privacy. Relax in your very own charming private villa filled with everything you need for a perfect romantic getaway. We have handpicked authentic Tuscan villas that are ideal for couples looking for a quiet escape. Check out our romantic private villas here.

6. Beautiful hilltop villages and romantic towns
Tuscany is well known for its scenic hilltop villages filled with character and charm. There are some classic medieval towns to explore. Perhaps the most famous hill town is San Gimignano and others worth a visit include Montepulciano and Pienza.

If you want to visit some of the towns that are less overwhelmed by tourism then head to Massa Marittima, Pitigliano or Volterra. Lucignano is a small little village between Siena and Arezzo that’s known as the ‘town of love’.

7. Delicious Italian cuisine
Couples who enjoy eating out and sampling the local cuisine will really appreciate the food in Tuscany. You will drink plenty of wine and eat lots of delicious food during your romantic break in Tuscany.

The food here is fresh from local farms as the Tuscan people take a lot of care in the ingredients that they use and aim to maintain local culinary traditions. Sample some of the best regional cuisine in Italy on a holiday to Tuscany.

8. The spas
There are lots of spas throughout the region where you and your partner can find some peace and tranquillity. Treat yourselves to a relaxing massage at one of the excellent local spas. You can also visit the natural outdoor hot springs such as the thermal springs in Saturnia.

9. The beaches
Tuscany is so well known for its beautiful countryside that a lot of people don’t realise it also has gorgeous beaches. From the rugged coastline of Maremma to the secluded islands off the Tuscan coast, there are plenty of places where you can spend some time soaking up some sun on beach.

10. The activities

There’s plenty of things for couples to do in the Tuscany region, from cycling and outdoor sports to wine tasting and cooking classes. You certainly won’t run out of things to do, see Florence on a Segway, walk through nature trails or drive through Tuscany on a Vespa. Create some unforgettable memories in Tuscany on a romantic getaway.
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