Walkabout California

Hiking Inn to Inn

In October, 2008 my wife and I did a 6 day, 60 mile inn to inn jaunt across the southern part of Tuscany. This turned out to be our dream vacation. We started at a tiny town called Chiusure, about a 45 minute bus ride from Siena, and from there walked to Buonconvento, Montalcino, Castelnuovo dell'Abate, Bagno Vignoni, San Quirico, Pienza, and finished up in Montepulciano. Speaking not a word of Italian, we nevertheless had a fantastic time. The hiking and scenery is terrific, and the people are wonderfully gracious and helpful -- even though, off in the country, no one speaks English. We made no reservations in advance but found affitacamere (like b&b's) or agriturismi (farm houses which rent rooms or apts.) to stay in each night. These are all hilltop towns, beautifully preserved. Great places to eat and drink every night. We were guided by a fantastic book called Eating and Drinking in Tuscany and Umbria, by James Lasun and Pia Davis (available through Amazon). They lay out each of these walks in wonderful detail, and offer really helpful suggestions about where to stay and (of course) where to eat. The book really contains about all the information you need to know in order to do this trip, and besides covering our route, they have another 35 more suggestions for hikes in these regions. Their web site, which now includes my detailed notes on our trip, is www.walkingandeating.com. The 3 zillion pictures my wife took can be found at http://web.mac.com/seekate/iWeb/Italy%202008/Florence.Siena.html

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