Getting to know Chianti through its vineyards is certainly one way to get a flavour of this gorgeous region in Italy. Extending from Siena to Florence, the vineyards dotted amongst the rolling hills and gentle valleys that produce the famous Chianti Classico, are celebrated the world over. And, whether it's touring a historic cellar, going on a wine tasting course or simply walking amongst the iconic vines and appreciating the surrounding views, it will be an unforgettable experience.
And what about those views! Ancient olive groves, medieval hilltop towns, pretty honey-hued farmhouses, Renaissance villas, sun-dappled roads and romantic landscapes that change with every season - these picture-postcard scenes will have you reaching for your camera at every switchback turn.
If you manage to pull yourself away from the stunning Tuscany countryside, it's time to explore the delightful dwellings of Chianti, and there's no better place to start than the iconic town of Greve. A medieval town, known for its triangular-shaped piazza, you'll discover a centuries-old weekly market, the Easter Monday antiques fair and the Chianti Classico exposition. But, if you want a particularly photogenic town, head for Montefioralle - considered by many as one of the most beautiful villages in Italy. Surrounded by stone walls, the characteristic cobbled streets and pretty houses are a dream to walk around. And for the perfect panorama, try Lamole. It may be a petite village, but it's sweeping vistas are anything but...
So, yes, stopping for a sun-soaked lunch at a local trattoria or streetside cafe at a town in Chianti is a treat indeed. And if there's a festival on, even better. Whether it's to celebrate the grape harvest, a patron saint or all that delicious Tuscan fare, it's going to be memorable.
Taking the family? Why not cycle the scenic roads that wind their way through cypress tree-lined passages, sunflower fields and undulating hills, stopping at hilltop towns and taking on the odd challenging climb along the well-thought-out cycle paths. Enjoy the Chianti Sculpture Park along the way, where you'll discover contemporary works of art blending in with the surroundings, or head to one of Chianti's grand castles to seek shade from that gorgeous Italian sun.
What’s more, with two of the most spectacular cities in Italy on your doorstep: Florence and Siena - you really are spoilt for choice!