I went on a holiday last summer to Italy. Italy is a really beautiful country if you love culture, history, churches, Italian food and of course Gelato!
I covered Rome, Florence, Pisa, Milan and Venice. These are the usual touristy places. But I wanted more. I wanted to experience Italy in all it's rustic form. So I decided to book a tour of the Tuscany Countryside from Florence. Till date, I do not regret this one bit as it turned out to be the highlight of my trip! Yes, even more than Venice.
So I boarded an early morning bus to Sienna first. Sienna is about an hour and a half from Florence. Sienna is a province which is divided into 7 neighborhoods. Every year, there is a horse race where the neighborhoods compete to win a prize which gives it's winners an opportunity to celebrate their win for 6 months straight by drinking wine, partying and making merry. How cool is that!
Next we were taken to an organic farm and wine yard where we explored the place and learnt all about the process of wine making. Then we dined for lunch in the farm, ate some delicious food cooked with the farm fresh produce and had 4 wine tasting sessions. There is nothing better than finishing off your meal with some really sweet wine and almond biscotti. (Sorry for that, the foodie in me just woke up :P)
Then we proceeded to this quaint little town called San Gimigniano where we had the world's BEST Gelato( Yes, really! They have won awards for it). After exploring the town for a while, we went to Pisa. The white marble Leaning Tower is absolutely magnificent! While climbing up the tower, we can really feel the lean. So after a round of quirky(rather awkward) picture sessions with the Tower, we headed back to Florence.
If you are heading to Italy this summer, do not miss this! It's worth every penny :)