Our airbnb hosts offered to give our group a private tour that included checking out the medieval town of San Gimignano as well as 3 different wineries and OMG was it worth it. We got to San Gimignano super early in the morning and literally had the entire town to ourselves. It was incredible to wander the narrow paths through the old stone buildings and see the town without the crowds. The main street was all tourist shops, but the second you step off that path, the town has such an amazing charm -- with teeny little doorways that came up to my shoulders and baby windows to match with flowers along the sills. We came across an old atrium courtyard that was being cleaned by nuns in habits and opened into a medieval church on the side. It was so silent that we could hear the birds chirping as we tiptoed through to try not to disturb anyone. I'm sure this town has a very different feel in the height of tourist season, but I would recommend waking up before the crowds to check it out. You'll be happy you did!
After San Gimignano, we started our afternoon of tasting looots of wines. We started off in a beautiful organic farm that seemed to dabble in a bit of everything (wine, olive oil, beef, cheese, saffron...) and were introduced to the way that Italians do wine tasting. Like pretty much everything food related, the Italians do wine tasting well -- like really well. They don't just pour you a teeny taste that they expect you to spit out -- they pour you a healthy glass and seem genuinely surprised if you haven't finished it by the time they bring out the next one. I think each place had 5 different wines to taste, each pouring healthy glasses and leaving the bottles for us to finish (luckily we had a group of 7 and no, we didn't finish every bottle, but it was still very nice of them to give us the option!) which equaled a lot of wine drinking. Luckily, they all give you constant bread, olives, cheeses and honey to soak some of it up along the way.
The second winery was at a private home, where we were served a 5 course meal to go along with the 5 different wines, and the third was at a medieval castle that had been kept in pretty much its original form from the 10th century. Each had some of the most amazing views I've ever seen with endless rolling hills of grape vines and olive trees and each had incredible wine and food that we happily indulged in. I had always thought that my ideal view was of the ocean, but I think it's now tied with these views of grape vines. How amazing would it be to laze the days away with a glass of wine in hand -- made from your own grapes -- and looking out over these incredible views? I could definitely get on board with that, and since a couple of them had holiday apartments for rent -- maybe one day we will have the chance!
If you would like any info on the places we visited, please let me know and I'll be happy to send it over! xoxo
I was wearing:
Thanks so much for visiting!