Magical is not a word that I just toss around like a bone for our dog. In fact, I don’t like the word at all. It seems too girly and feminine and romantic for my tastes. Montemerano, however, is magical. In every sense of the word. The village is located at the top of a hill just 7km from Saturnia and its natural thermal hot springs, and is the best preserved Medieval village in Maremma. We explored the entire village, had an excellent pizza at the Bar Pizzeria dal Moro, and then went back for some moonlit pics of the main square before returning to Saturnia for the night. My words will never describe the rustic villas in tufo adorned with the lush foliage and flowers of the region, the cobblestone streets, or the beautiful silence of a square after dinner.
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112 Kms from Montemerano
Rome 3 days Youth Hostel: Des Artistes This hostel is clean and close to the train station. Their roof terrace and buffet breakfast is a favourite among the travellers. Hotel: Tuscolana This is a value for money hotel five minutes from the metro line and half a block from the city bus line. There are some graffittis that spoil the neighbourhood's ambiance, but don't let that get to you. It is situated in a safe middle class neighbourhood.
114 Kms from Montemerano
Day 6: We had a morning 9:08AM train to Rome and arrived at 10:40AM. We checked into Hotel Massimo. Then headed to the Termini, had lunch and bought the 48-hour travel pass in Rome since all spots were far from each other. We visited the Pantheon and then Trevi Fountain which was packed with people but we managed to get a spot near the fountain. From there we walked to the Spanish Steps that was unfortunately shut for renovation. We then went to the Orange Garden or Giardino Degli Aranci for an amazing view of the sunset with the Vatican in the background.
130 Kms from Montemerano
Florence 3 days Hostel: Ostello del Bigallo Hostels don't get more scenic than Ostello del Bigallo. It is built on a monastery dating back to the 13th century. A beautiful garden upfront and panoramic view of Florence from the terrace adds to its charm. The only catch is that the hostel is an hour's ride from the city and involves a 2 km hike. Hotel: Ginori al Duomo The staff is extremely friendly and its location, a short walk from the train station, is ideal. However, there is no getting around the three story climb as the hotel doesn't have a lift.
218 Kms from Montemerano
5. Manarola, Italy
216 Kms from Montemerano
With what probably is one of the most pristine seas ever, Riomaggiore sits right on the Gulf of Genoa. Serene, and extremely blue, its waters are untouched, and this place is perfect in all aspects.
78 Kms from Montemerano
Day 5: We rested during the morning before heading to the train station to take a 12:10PM train for a day-trip to Siena. Since it was a Sunday we got to know there would be lesser transportation in terms of buses. Siena was about an hour and a half from Florence. It is recommended to travel by bus as you get to pass scenic vineyards on the way. We walked from the station to the city center through the quaint little streets; there we visited Piazza del Campo which is a huge square. Siena is a walled city and the entire city has medieval brick buildings. Given it was a Sunday, most shops were shut which also meant lesser tourists. We then had lunch at one of the cafes in the streets and then went to the Siena Duomo, Cathedral of Siena. Then headed to the bus station and took an express bus back to Florence passing the picturesque vineyards. We later strolled through the streets of Florence and then had our last dinner in Florence.
220 Kms from Montemerano
The hike from Corniglia to Vernazza was the best hikes I have had. Tough terrains, small passages, unknown insects but to top this all a coastal view while you are hiking. We saw people from all ages hiking through this and what everyone told in the end was "It's worth it". That pretty much sums up the hike.
222 Kms from Montemerano
Vernazza, has been rated one of the most beautiful villages in the whole of Italy and it did make sense as to why it is. With the vibrant houses and the perfect aqua blue sea water. It is a dream destination for any hiker. Yes. we hiked through Corniglia for an hour and a half to reach Vernazza with stunning views of the sea beside.