- NORTHERN ITALY
- CENTRAL ITALY
- SOUTHERN ITALY
- INSULAR ITALY
The territory of Siena is mainly characterized by a hilly context in every direction. To the north and northeast is the Chianti, to the east and southeast the Crete Senesi, to the south an adjacent hilly landscape, while to the west is the Montagnola Senese. Moving away from Siena to the south you will find the Val d'Orcia and the beautiful wine-growing hills around Montalcino.
These are places that mainly recall the classic Tuscan charm, where it is possible to imagine yourself sipping a good wine at nightfall in an enchanting Tuscan village, in front of gentle hilly landscapes that recall the delicacy of the evening.
The Crete Senesi are characterized by particularly clayey soils, which sometimes give it an almost lunar aspect. They are found in a vast territory between the municipalities of Sinalunga, Buonconvento and Asciano. The road between Arbia and Asciano is particularly beautiful and the road between Asciano and the Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore(in the direction of Buonconvento) is also noteworthy. This is a large religious complex dating back to the 14th century, founded by San Bernardo Tolomei, fascinating to visit.
Asciano is a characteristic Tuscan village and an important hub for visiting the Crete Senesi. Although on a dirt road, another nice route is the one that leads to Castelnuovo Berardenga, which is also a section of the Strade Bianche, a famous international cycling race.
Chianti, renowned for the wine it produces, is found mainly in the northeast of Siena. Characteristic villages in this area are Gaiole in Chianti, Radda in Chianti and Castellina in Chianti. Also suggestive is a visit to the Castle of Brolio, nestled among its vineyards.
The Montagnola Senese is the highest hilly complex in the surroundings of Siena, which extends from the vicinity of Colle Val d'elsa to the municipality of Chiusdino. From here it will be possible to see pleasant views. Being a predominantly wooded area and too high compared to the surrounding area, it rarely recalls the characteristic Tuscan hilly landscape and, in the higher areas, it comes closer to the mountain one.
Recommended places are Tegoia, from which it is possible to see a beautiful view of Siena from its five hundred meters above sea level, and Abbadia Isola, for its ancient medieval village. However, the most evocative place remains the small medieval village of Monteriggioni, completely surrounded by ancient walls and visible from the highway.
The town of Monteroni, separated from the Crete Senesi by the Val d'Arbia, offers beautiful hilly views along the road to Radi and around Ville di Corsano. It is located exactly south of Siena.
The province of Siena is vast and extends mainly towards the southeast. Precisely in this direction, about 50 km away, you reach Montalcino, an ancient medieval village, renowned for its fine wines and for the breathtaking views of the surrounding hills.
To the east of Montalcino, on the other hand, there is the Val d'Orcia, another hilly area renowned for its beauty and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Renowned places in the Val d'Orcia are San Quirico d'Orcia, Bagno Vignoni, Castiglion d'Orcia and above all Pienza, whose historic center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Further east, still in the province of Siena, are the prized wine-growing hills of Montepulciano, on which the city stands.
In the opposite direction, always in a hilly context, is the medieval village of San Gimignano, a town renowned for having the highest density of towers in the world, as well as being a World Heritage Site according to UNESCO. It is located northeast of Siena, behind the Montagnola Senese.