Tuscany Walking Tour – Maremma
This is a great trip for anyone who has already ‘done’ Tuscany, but wants more. This guided walking tour will take you to some lesser-frequented areas of the Val d’Orcia and the Maremma region of west Tuscany.
We pick you up from Orvieto, a fascinating hilltop town, and transfer you to the quintessential Tuscan landscapes of the Val d’Orcia. This area is a UNESCO World Heritage site because of its beauty and cultural importance. Our base for three days is beautiful Montepulciano, which sits majestically above the surrounding countryside of woodland, olive groves, and vineyards. Our guided walks traverse the romantic landscapes so beautifully portrayed in “The English Patient” — much of which was filmed in this area. We then move to the village of Sorano in the Maremma region of southwestern Tuscany to stay three nights at the Hotel della Fortezza, a beautifully-renovated 12th century castle. We explore a unique area rich with Etruscan ruins and breathtaking landscapes. Some of our day hikes take us along the famous Vie Cave, where we wind our way through ancient trails carved out of the tufo (volcanic) rock. Along the way, we’ll explore Etruscan burial sites as well as the flora and fauna of the Maremma region, unique to this micro-climate. After hiking through the “vie cave,” enjoy a late-afternoon soak in the thermal springs of nearby Saturnia. For those who like Italian wines: the Maremma region produces some of Tuscany’s most exciting and renowned wines!
(Luggage is transferred by van. 1 night Orvieto, 3 nights near Montepulciano, 1 night Montalcino, 2 nights Sorano. Tour finishes in Orvieto.)
Tuscany Walking Tour – Maremma itinerary
Meet your group in the hotel lobby at 9:00 a.m. Van transfer to the medieval hilltop town of Montepulciano, then we set off for a beautiful walk departing from the Villa La Foce. Set amidst 3,500 acres of farmland in the countryside near Pienza, La Foce was the home of the writer Iris Origo. Her wartime diaries, “War in the Val D’Orcia,” are a fascinating first-hand account of life during the Second World War in Tuscany. She recounts in calm detail of how she sheltered Italian orphans, foreign soldiers, and Italian partisans from the war just outside (and sometimes within!) her gates. After lunch, a short van transfer takes us to the village of Castelmuzio and the Oliviera Sant Angelo for a visit of this award winning olive oil producer followed by a very informative tasting. Then it is a short walk to the Moscadella, our hotel for the next three nights. Enjoy a refreshing dip in the pool or just relax and take in the beautiful views from the garden. We meet for an aperitivo before dinner on the terrace. Overnight near Montepulciano. Hotel, breakfast and dinner included.
We have a more leisurely start this morning. For those who want to get going earlier you can simply walk into the village of Castelmuzio and explore this tiny but interesting village. We will rendezvous and have a ten minute transfer to the drop off point for a beautiful walk that takes us through the charming village of Petroio where we will stop for a cappuccino break. Then we walk past an imposing villa, through olive groves and vineyards to the village of Montisi for lunch. Montepulciano in the afternoon where you will have free time to wander its ancient streets and piazzas while perusing its contemporary shops. For those who want more walking, we offer an optional walk from Montepulciano to Montefollonico, which sits perched on a high plateau across the valley from Montepulciano. Dinner tonight with our friend Roberto at the aptly named ”Taverna di Roberto”. Overnight near Montepulciano. Hotel, breakfast and dinner included.
After breakfast on the terrace our walk starts from the near the 16th century Palazzo Massaini and weaves it’s way to the hill top village of Montichiello. On the way, vast, sweeping vistas take in Pienza, Montalcino, and Montepulciano while the Orcia valley opens up in the distance. Lunch is had within the walled village. Return to the hotel, optional visit of a producer of terracotta urns in Petroio. It is actually a fascinating visit! Wine tasting of Chianti Classico, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano and Brunello di Montalcino with a knowledgeable resident lush. Overnight near Montepulciano. Hotel, breakfast and dinner included.
A very scenic drive takes us up to the hill top town of Montalcino from where we leave for a spectacular walk to the abbey of Sant’ Antimo. On the way we stop for a light lunch at Villa a Tolli, a producer of Brunello di Montalcino. Lunch will be accompanied by a restrained (still more walking to do after lunch!) tasting of their wines to accompany our lunch. The afternoon walk takes us to the abbey, one of the most important and famous examples of Romanesque architecture in Italy. Van transfer back to Montalcino with free time to visit the town. For those who are interested, an optional tasting of Brunello at the Enotecca del Consorzio di Brunello located in the Medieval castle. Tonight is a “free night,” so you can choose a romantic night alone or go out with your newfound friends to one of the numerous restaurants in Montalcino. Hotel, breakfast and dinner included.
Today we move south to the Maremma region where we will spend the second half of our trip. We will be joined by a local guide, Carlo, whose vast knowledge of his home area will add to your experience. During the 7th century BC the Etruscans inhabited this area, leaving impressive necropoli (cemeteries) and the “vie cave,” Etruscan roads carved from the rock. A 90 minute transfer brings us to the town of Sovana. We spend some time here to buy our picnic lunch and to visit the wonderful cathedral. Our walk today includes a visit to the famous Etruscan tombs of Ildebrando and La Sirena. We then walk to Pitigliano (if time allows, we will see the Jewish Ghetto) and have some free time to visit this charming hilltop village. Heading back to Sorano, we’ll stop to visit the Sassotondo winery to taste the typical wines of this region. We end our day’s walk along the famous Via Cava di San Giuseppe, considered by many the most beautiful cava in the area. Overnight in Sorano at Hotel della Fortezza. Overnight Sorano. Hotel and breakfast included.
Our walk today takes us to Saturnia, famous for its thermal springs, offering wonderful views, centuries-old olive groves and a section of the 2000-year-old Roman road, the “Via Clodia.” After stopping in the beautiful village of Montemerano, we will continue towards the elusive natural waterfalls of Saturnia - an isolated rocky outcrop of white travertine where we will soak our tired feet as a relaxing end to today’s walk. Overnight Sorano. Hotel, breakfast and dinner included.
Transfer to Orvieto train station. You may choose to spend more time in Orvieto or continue on to Rome or beyond. Please let us know if you would like us to book you accommodations in Orvieto for the end of your trip. Breakfast and transfer included.
The walks in Tuscany cover a variety of terrain, from trail to dirt road, with many rolling hills to climb or descend. We have designed the trip so that there is always some free time in the late afternoon so you can relax, read, or enjoy the towns where we stay. Breakfast is included every day, and dinners reflect the excellent traditional food of the region. Daily distance between 8 and 14 kms
Iris Origo and Villa la Foce: basic information about this amazing woman and her beautiful villa
The Etruscans: everything you always wanted to know but were afraid to ask!
Siena Tourist Information: informative site from the Province of Siena, including links to areas like the Val d’Orcia, the Crete Senesi, etc.
Brunello di Montalcino: official site of the Consortium of Brunello producers
UNESCO World Heritage Sites: Italy has more sites in the list than any other country!
Activity rating: 3 out of 5 = Moderate: Rolling terrain with the occasional short, steep ups and downs. Daily activity usually between two to two and a half hours in the morning and two to two and a half hours in the afternoon. Max distance 16 kms.
Trip Cost Includes: All accommodations (1 night Orvieto, 3 nights near Montepulciano, 1 night Montalcino, 2 nights Sorano); 7 breakfasts and 6 dinners; bilingual Customwalks guide(s) to accompany the tour and lead you on the walks; all van transfers and luggage transfers; Etruscan tombs and necropoli, winery visits, Saturnia thermal baths; pick-up and drop-off in Orvieto.
Booking: e-mail us at email@example.com to receive a booking contract (or use the 'Contact Us' link at the top of this page), or click on the 'Book Now' button to the right.
Insurance: We highly recommend the purchase of Trip Insurance. We recommend “Travel Guard” to our North American clients, just click on the logo below. Australian, New Zealander, and British travelers, please consult your insurance brokers.
Getting There: Orvieto is located half-way between Florence and Rome, and is easily reached by train from either of those cities.
Air: the closest airport is either Florence or Rome. You could also fly into Pisa if you find a good deal on a low-cost airline. For a complete list of Italian airports and a selection of low-cost airlines, see our "Transport Info" page.
Rail: Orvieto is only about 1 hour from Rome by train. It is 1.5 – 2 hrs from Florence (some trains depart only from the Campo di Marte station – on the north side of town, a 10-minute taxi or train ride from the main station — so be sure to check which is the departure station! See the Trenitalia website (in English) at this link. For alternative high-speed rail travel, see the Italo website.
For complete information on using the Italian train system, see our blog post.
Getting Away at the End of the Trip: the trip ends after breakfast on Saturday morning with a quick transfer to the Orvieto train station for rail connections around 10:00 a.m.
If you book a trip with us you will receive detailed information about how to get to the start of your trip, or feel free to e-mail us with any specific travel questions.
Wonderful walking tour and very accommodating. I felt I did not want to walk one afternoon and Brett found me a lovely village to explore and I met the group later. It was a mix of beautiful scenery, lovely Italian Hill Top Towns, great lunches and dinners and a lovely group of fellow travellers all masterfully organised by our guides.
Wonderful walking tour and very accommodating. I felt I did not want to walk one afternoon and Brett found me a lovely village to explore and I met the group later.
It was a mix of beautiful scenery, lovely Italian Hill Top Towns, great lunches and dinners and a lovely group of fellow travellers all masterfully organised by our guides.
by Jaye Gregory from Melbourne Australia