Now we can relax!

Trip Start Mar 17, 2012
Trip End Jun 26, 2012

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Where I stayed
Poggio Del Drago

Flag of Italy  , Tuscany,
Monday, June 18, 2012

The night's sleep in our farm B & B was most peaceful and restful. We had a self-contained apartment in the old stone building which was the main homestead. The typical Tuscan farmhouse sits atop an estate of approximately 18 hectares which are mainly cultivated with olive trees. The large garden and panoramic terrace affords views across the surrounding valleys and beyond.

We start the day with a drive toward the Medici Villa "La Ferdinanda" This grand villa built in the late 1500's by Grand Duke Ferdinando I, could be seen on a distant hilltop from the garden of the farm B & B and it's multitude of chimneys evoked our interest enough to head in its direction.

Before arriving at the Villa, we stop at the small village of Artimino atop a high Tuscan Hill overlooking the countryside with a 360 degree view. Near the Piazza San Carlo is the Archaeological Museum of Artimino "Francesco Nicosia". It is sited in an ancient building along the walls of the Borgo of Artimino and documents the important Etruscan settlement that flourished in the area from the seventh to the first century BC.
Also in the Piazza is a welcoming cafe/delicatessen where the aroma of freshly brewed coffee is more enticing than the Etruscan artefacts.

Further down the road we stop at the Pieve di San Leonardo. This parish church is one of the most intact and evocative of the first architecture Romanesque of XI century in Tuscany.

Arriving at the Medici Villa we take time out to walk around the adjacent resort which offers magnificent views across the Tuscan countryside from the luxury of the manicured gardens and pool setting.

Contnuing on our meander through this Tuscan region near Florence we are driving through the township of Comeana when we spy a small brown tourist sign indicating a 7th century tomb. We park the car and follow the direction on the brown sign into what appears to be a private property. There are some Italian people seated in a small open shed and we head over to them to ask if this is the place of the tomb. After some hand gesturing and pointing we are given an English guide sheet and a rotund Italian woman beckon us (in Italian) to follow her into an area that had been excavated and prepared for display of the Etruscan tombs of Bocchetti, and Montefortini I and II.

Upon completion of this guided tour (conducted entirely in Italian) we continued on our journey to Poggio a Caiano. The town is dominated by the Villa Medicea and there are other notable buildings in the area with prominent architectural features. We arrive at lunchtime, so everything apart from eateries has closed for lunch. The heat of the day is oppressive and we decide to just head south on the A1 Autostrade to our accommodation near Arezzo in the area known as Civitella in Val di Chiana. We will be staying in a highly rated B & B (TripAdvisor) for the next 6 nights and would now prefer to relax by the pool than to battle the heat whilst sightseeing into the late afternoon.

In little more than an hour later we are bobbing around the water under a hot Tuscan sun, wondering what the rest of the world was doing.

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