I thought it would be fun to have a professional guide for the day. We arrived by train so we were limited on what We could do on our own. Pamela recommend Serena Baglioni who operates A Day in Tuscany.
This really nice,professional, knowledgeable lady picked us up at 9:00 and we were ready for a fun day.
Our first stop was The church of San Biagio .
The Church or the Sanctuary of the Madonna di San Biagio is located at the foot of the hill of Montepulciano, in the bottom of a driveway lined with cypress trees. The church was built by Antonio da Sangallo the Elder between 1518 and 1545 and is a masterpiece of the sixteenth century.
The origin of the church of San Biagio is linked to a miraculous event which took place on April 23, 1518, when two women and a shepherd, passing in front of a fresco depicting the Madonna and Child in her lap and St. Francis, they saw that the eyes of the Virgin moved like if she was alive. http://www.borghiditoscana.net/en/church-of-san-biagio/
We had been to dinner the night before to the town of Montepulciano so decided to pass on it today and head to Pienza.
Pienza, a town and comune in the province of Siena, in the Val d’Orcia in Tuscany, between the towns of Montepulciano and Montalcino, is the “touchstone of Renaissance urbanism.” Wikipedia
John and I had been here on one of our many Italian holidays and I have fond memories of it.
In 1996, UNESCO declared the town a World Heritage Site, and in 2004 the entire valley, the Val d’Orcia, was included on the list of UNESCO’s World Cultural Landscapes. Interesting to note that Italy has more World Heritage Sites than any other country.
Walking the side streets away from the main square was a great idea. This was May so the height of spring and beautiful flowers everywhere.
This is Serena our guide who really was amazing in her knowledge of everything. I was very impressed, plus she was a lot of fun.
Yes Zoe enjoyed the day as much as we did. I have to brag here and say she is always well behaved and ready for anything. She ALWAYS beats my expectations.
Good bye Pienza I do plan on coming back.
Time for lunch and we were all very ready after all the walking and fresh air. We headed back to Montepulciano To a wonderful very authentic place that had a lovely patio with a view of the valley. I had grilled cheese on a plate of greens.
Since arriving in Florence i have had many people tell me about the various hot springs in Tuscany and
Bagno Vignani is suppose to be one of the best. I was very happy that this was on our itinerary.
The centre of the village is the site of the Piazza delle Sorgenti, where thermal spring water at a temperature of about 49°C has been bubbling up from a depth of 1000 metres for more than 2000 years.
Reflexes is the title of sculptor Daniela Capaccioli exhibit around the pool. Through the use of the wire mesh, the sculptor creates scenarios and characters that can be inserted into a real environment and thanks to their transparency they remain discrete and invisible at first sight. Stunning is an understatement.
This was a great day spent with two nice lady’s and now to the train station to go back home to Firenze.