A corner of Tuscany where nature, history and art give life to a landscape unique in the world. Gentle hills, ancient medieval villages, vineyards, cultivated fields, castles and abbeys. Val d’Orcia is a land of rare beauty where human activity and nature perfectly blend to give life to a landscape designed in the Renaissance to represent the ideal of beauty. For these reasons Val d’Orcia was recognized in 2004 as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Val d’Orcia is the ideal destination for those who love slow travel to discover and really know a territory, its population, its culture and its history. Our farmhouse Podere Salicotto settled in a great position to visit the Val d’Orcia and all its beauties.
Cosa vedere in Val d’Orcia – Toscana
Here are the 10 must-see places in Val d’Orcia, all of them are easily reachable from our farmhouse.
The “capital” of the Val d’Orcia, the ideal city built by Pope Pius II: Pienza. Pienza is a small jewel set among the Tuscan hills. Its splendid square, its Renaissance palaces rich in history and art, the alleys and the romantic panoramic views that overlook the Val d’Orcia make it unique. And then the famous Pecorino di Pienza to taste and many other surprises to discover…
CAPPELLA DI VITALETA
Surely you have seen the Vitaleta Chapel in a postcard but in Val d’Orcia you have the opportunity to literally enter a postcard. This small church with its cypress trees is one of the symbolic places of the Val d’Orcia. A magical place where you can breathe quiet and serenity. It is located between Pienza and San Quirico d’Orcia along the Provincial Road 146 of Chianciano but to reach it you have to walk a bit.
SAN QUIRICO D’ORCIA
San Quirico d’Orcia is a village of very ancient origins, probably dating back to Etruscan times. To visit here: the remains of the tower of the Cassero and the Horti Leonini, a splendid sixteenth-century garden which leads to the main square of the village. But also the collegiate church and the Pieve.
Bagno Vignoni is one of the most evocative and romantic villages of the whole Val d’Orcia. Famous since Roman times for its thermal waters: popes, kings and knights have stopped here to enjoy its waters. Visiting Bagno Vignoni means taking a dip in the past, its central square is entirely occupied by a large thermal pool, ideal for a romantic dinner.
BOSCO DI CIPRESSI
Here is another icon of the Val d’Orcia. If you travel along the Via Cassia between San Quirico d’Orcia and Torrenieri you will not resist the temptation to stop to photograph the characteristic group of cypress trees on a hill overlooking the road. The landscape changes in every season, green in spring, golden in summer, brown in autumn and white in winter. In the map at the bottom of the article you will find the exact location.
MONTALCINO E SANT’ANTIMO
When we talk about Montalcino we immediately think of Brunello which has made this village famous all over the world. But Montalcino is also a city rich in art and history. A beautiful medieval village from which you can enjoy a breathtaking view. To visit here: the fortress, Piazza del Popolo, churches and museums but above all do not miss the Abbey of Sant’Antimo a few kilometers from the village.
QUERCIA DELLE CHECCHE
La Quercia delle Checche is the first green monument in Italy. A giant in Val d’Orcia, a patriarch of nature. 22 meters high, its foliage widens 19 meters horizontally. The grandeur of the oak leaves without words, it is nice to stay under its branches and admire its majesty.
CURVE CON I CIPRESSI
Another symbol made famous by many shots and car advertisements are the streets characterized by curves and cypresses. The most beautiful and most photographed streets with cypress trees are those of Monticchiello and La Foce. Ideal if you are traveling by motorbike. In the map you find the exact location.
CASTIGLIONE D’ORCIA AND ROCCA D’ORCIA
A small and “proud” medieval village all gathered around the splendid fourteenth-century fortress. In front of Castiglione d’Orcia stands Rocca d’Orcia where you can visit the ancient Rocca di Tentennano. Going up the tower and admiring the view will leave you with a unique emotion. A unique point of view.
Here is the typical medieval village on a hill. Mighty walls, a single access door overlooking the Val d’Orcia and picturesque alleys. A unique beauty just off the main tourist routes. At Monticchiello time stopped.