B&B Palazzo Malaspina is the perfect base from which to explore the joys of the Tuscan countryside, whether it be art and history, exploring the hill towns, visiting vineyards, or simply just to take a break and relax, Palazzo Malaspina has something to offer...
For art lovers
The drive from Palazzo Malaspina to Piazzale Michelangelo and the beautiful basilica of San Miniato al Monte perched on a hill commands breathtaking panoramic views over the city of Florence can be reached within 20 minutes. From here descend to the historic centre of Florence where every street and palazzo has a story to tell.
Just over 30 minutes to the south of San Donato in Poggio lies the smaller city of Siena one of the shining jewels of Tuscany with its medieval splendours which includes the famed 'campo' square where twice a year the renowned horse race 'Il Palio' takes place.
In both cities you can enjoy a day’s activities of cultural interest and shopping carrying into the evening where you savour the delights of the Tuscan cuisine in a variety of places from the hustle and bustle of the fast moving pizzerias to fine dining of some of the top restaurants.
Further afield lie the most beautiful and famous Tuscan cultural centres but within an easy drive of less than one hour are the towns of Arezzo home to the ceramicist family Della Robbia, Pisa with the learning tower, Lucca with her fine architecture, the towered city of San Gimignano, the Etruscan settlement of Volterra and its prized alabaster... Certaldo, Pienza and the Orcia Valley, Montepulciano, just to mention a few.
For a bucolic interlude
Each season in Tuscany brings a different landscape, during the winter months the air is clear and sharp with almost three-dimensional views stretching to the snow capped Apennine mountains. Colours are bright and vivid, an incredible array of different shades of green, with uninterrupted blue skies, snow is rare and frost occasionally ices the early mornings. Spring arrives early bringing an abundance of wildflowers and the return of the swallows with a grand finale of a bright red landscape carpeted with poppies. The summer displays fields of sunflowers and wheat with various species of butterflies and birds and nights alive with dancing fireflies. With the autumn are misty mornings, and much rummaging in the woods to find the precious porcini mushrooms and chestnuts.
Whatever the season following smaller roads that gently wind through olive groves and vineyards of the Tuscan countryside, you can stop and explore charming little towns and villages of Chianti, such as Greve, Gaiole, Radda, Castellina, Panzano, Badia a Passignano, Linari and many more. For the more energetic explore the countryside by bike or foot, cycling in a popular past time in Italy as is walking and many paths and itineraries have been created to help you explore the real beauty of the Tuscany.
The 'Ugolino' Golf Club, the most exclusive in Tuscany, is only 30 minutes from Palazzo Malaspina. The original course was established in 1889 by the prominent Florentine ex-patriot community. Today's course follows the design of English architects Blandford and Gannon and is considered one of the most suggestive golf courses in the world and named by the American writer Chris Santella as one of the 'Fifty Places To Play Golf Before You Die'.
What to do:
Bike rentals ( www.greenwaystour.com www.gippobike.it www.noleggiochianti500.it ) â‡¢ 7 km
Tennis â‡¢ 3 km
Pool â‡¢ 3 km
Horse riding ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) â‡¢ 5 km
Hot air ballooning ( email@example.com ) â‡¢ 8 km
Golf 18 hole course â‡¢ 36 km
What to see:
San Gimignano â‡¢ 17 km
Certaldo â‡¢ 15 km
Florence â‡¢ 26 km
Siena â‡¢ 25 km
Volterra â‡¢ 33 km
Arezzo â‡¢ 52 km
Lucca â‡¢ 68 km
Pisa â‡¢ 70 km
Cortona â‡¢ 67 km