Since I first moved to Italy, I've enjoyed being part of Italy's hiking club, the Club Alpino Italiano, which organizes all kinds of outdoor activities across the country.
The Siena section of the club is particularly active, and has been a great way for me to get to know people and make friends in the local community. Last Sunday I enjoyed a wonderful hike in the Chianti territory north of Siena. The group was around 30 people of all ages. We started at San Sano, crossed over the Arbia river, and hiked up to the 11th century fortified church of San Polo in Rosso.
After a very enjoyable picnic lunch (with a tasting of local wine and home-made walnut liqueur!) we trekked over to the antique hamlet of Ama, which is now home to the renowned vineyards of Castello di Ama, which produces delicious wine and olive oil and also boasts an amazing private art collection.
At the end of the afternoon we made our way to Lecchi in Chianti, visiting the castle of Monteluco,
Finally, we looped back to San Sano. The hike was tiring, with a lot of ups and downs, but well worth the effort! We couldn't have been luckier with the weather, enjoying amazing views and the warm autumnal Tuscan sun! :)
In this photo you can see the towers of Siena in the distant background!
If you're interested to get more info about the CAI Siena Hiking Club, you can visit their website http://www.caisiena.it or their facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/CAI-SIENA-388887594533537/
Academic Director and Professor of Visual Arts
Siena Art Institute