How would you like to spend a day wandering the area filmed in Under the Tuscan Sun, and visiting the sites that led millions to fall in love all over again with Bella Italia? Cortona lies far atop a hillside dominating the south side of the Chiana Valley. The surrounding Etruscan walls contain the citys beauty and nobility. From the fortress, you can enjoy magnificent views of Lake Trasimeno and the surrounding forests, along with vineyards and olive groves that produce some of the best wine and olive oil in all of Italy. As you explore the long, narrow streets, you will feel the allure of Cortona, its people and its character.
Besides its mythological origins, as home to Ulysses after his return from Ithaca, this fascinating town is full of history starting from the ancient Etruscan origins, including the battle of Lake Trasimeno, where Hannibal ambushed the Roman army during the Second Punic War, to its importance as a medieval commune.
After Cortona, you will continue your journey by visiting the hill town of Montepulciano, home of the famous Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, a wine that originated in the 1300s. The name comes from the fact that in ancient times, noble families would choose the best grapes from the vine so their tables would be graced with the highest quality of wines. Another fascinating attribute of Montepulciano is that it is one of the only places in the world where there are ancient underground cellars, right in the heart of the town, that date back to Etruscan times. Here, you will visit one of these ancient cellars, below a city palace where the wine rests in oak barrels, maturing into what will be the future Vino Nobile. Take your time and discover that it is not only famous wine that makes Montepulciano special, but also the medieval atmosphere and friendly people.
We will leave Montepulciano, saying goodbye to its beauty, and start the drive back to Rome.
This tour length is 10 hours approximately and is conducted by an English-speaking driver/guide that will not enter sites, but drive you around and show you places, pointing out things while explaining what they are, as well as stopping at the places that require a visit and helping you access them.