Tuscany, famous for its beautiful landscapes, culture and gastronomy, can act as the perfect escape during the festive period as it offers the opportunity to unwind, shop and get in the Christmas spirit.

If you’re planning a December getaway, why not read our tips as to why Tuscany should be top of your list this holiday season!

  • Eat, drink and be merry: At Christmas, Italians boast Pandoro and Panettone as their festive treats, but in Tuscany, you can taste local delights such as Ricciarelli, a delicious marzipan delicacy, which originated in the fourteenth century and cannot be found anywhere else. They even say it’s perfect served with Tuscan Vin Santo – sweet treats and authentic vino. But not only are the deserts unlike any other, the festive gourmet is phenomenal. Visit Le Bindi, in Monte San Savino, and enjoy the atmosphere and cuisine like no other; with the restaurant being made up of only one table and a set menu for all, it’ll definitely be an unforgettable experience.

  • Shop ‘til you drop: Leather bags and purses are at the top of every girls Christmas list and Tuscany has a reputation for the finest! Visit The San Lorenzo Market in Florence, which originated in the 1300s, and explore luxury boutiques, vast bazaars and unique trinket sellers. Experience Tuscany’s Christmas markets in all of its glorious hill-top towns; in one of the most outstanding town squares in all of Italy, Siena, visit “Mercato del Campo” and purchase one-of-a-kind crafts, local delicacies and gorgeous gifts for everyone, all which listening to the chimes of “Astro Del Ciel”.
  • New Year Tuscan style: New Year in Tuscany is all about the food and wine. Whether you’re celebrating in a restaurant, in a town square or in a private villa, look forward to sparkling Chianti, stunning bottles of Brunello and delightful aperitifs made of pecorino and cold cuts. Traditionally the evening ends with a toast, sipping on a piping hot Bombardino – Tuscany’s version of eggnog made with brandy, egg liqueur, whipped cream & cinnamon. Buon appetito!

  • Relax and unwind: Balance the madness of Christmas with some much needed downtime, with a visit to one of the many thermal spas. Rapalano Terme, offers unmistakable landscapes and relaxing spas in the stunning province of Crete Senesi.

We’d love to host your Christmas stay in #Tuscany so visit our booking page to see our fantastic, festive offers!

See you soon!

 

As summer is well and truly over and the crisp Autumn season is now in full swing, your next holiday must be on your mind. But where to go?

October is a wonderful month to visit Tuscany; the harvest offers wonderful markets and experiences, the temperatures start to cool but still allow for alfresco dining on the terrace and last but not least… Cignella has a fantastic offer on stays during this month!

If you join us at Cignella throughout the month of October, you could get up to 2 nights free and lots of lovely goodies! Check out our offers now.

Need some more persuasion to book your next Tuscan trip? Here’s a few reasons why it’s definitely a must-do! (And if you’re a foody… this is 100% for you!)

  1. Amazing food (even more so than usual!): With the harvest in full flow, fresh produce will be readily available at every fingertip! And all of the restaurants will definitely be taking advantage of all of the local produce, making their Tuscan dishes even more delightful!
  2. Great markets: Fruits, vegetables, cheeses, meats – everything you could ask for! The local, hill-top towns of Tuscany, like Pienza and Montepulciano will have fantastic daily markets, that not only sell the delicious produce, but also beautiful goods such as leather, paintings and antiques! They also host brilliant harvest festivals that allow your tastebuds to be tempted, as well as get involved in traditional celebrations.
  3. Truly experience the harvest: October is a fantastic month in Tuscany to experience the harvest; enjoy hunting the white truffle, visit a vineyard during the picking season and taste pecorino like you’ve never tasted before! Our dear friend Paolo can take you just a few miles from Cignella to explore the woodland and discover many wonderful truffles with his four-legged assistants – you can then spend the evening cooking up a Tuscan dinner with your discovered goods!
  4. Stunning weather: Gorgeous morning sunshine, clear afternoon skies and cooler afternoons and evenings – perfect for nights on the terrace, with a blanket and Italian coffee. October offers the perfect weather to gaze over and appreciate the stunning rolling hill views, that Tuscany has to offer!

Come join us soon – we’re waiting for you! 

 

While packing for a holiday might be a walk in the park for some, sometimes essentials can be easily overlooked! To make it easier for you, we’ve broken the necessities you need for your next visit to Tuscany.

1. Camera

This should be the first thing you pack! Take pictures in Tuscany like you never have before…snap away while taking in the breath-taking views, enjoying a Tuscan dinner or walking through the quaint cobbled alleyways. Take as many photos as you can… as they say, you can always delete the blurry ones when you get home!

2. Cardigan

While Tuscany’s rolling hills are beautiful, they can incur a chilly evening breeze! Pack a little cardigan so you can still enjoy sunset alfresco dining on the terrace.

3. Jeans

Your favourite pair of jeans is an absolute essential wherever you go! With jam packed days full of exploration on your itinerary for Tuscany, a comfy outfit is key!

4. Comfy shoes

With Tuscany being packed full of gorgeous hill top towns, and sightseeing musts, you will be out from morning until night. You will just want to go, go, go and with cobbled streets at every turn you will need something comfy so that your feet can keep up with you!

5. Backpack

During your holiday, there’s nothing better than being hands free- to shop, to take photos, to eat, to explore. Bring a backpack along that you can fill with your daily essentials – sun cream, water, map, camera – you name it!

6. Sunglasses

Summer or winter, spring or autumn, Tuscany is always filled with beautiful sunshine (although agreeably some seasons, more so than others!) and so don’t forgot your favourite pair. (Don’t worry too much if you do forget or find yourself in need… Tuscany is renowned for its beautiful markets where you can always find affordable designer lookalikes!)

7. Travel Guide book

Tuscany is full of hidden gems and buying a guide book from the experts is always a great idea! They include maps, must-sees, prices and great information! But should you want a more personalised itinerary, ask our resort manager Luca to assist!

8. Italian phrase book

While out and about, you may come across some locals who don’t speak a common language with you and so carrying a little phrase book will help immensely!

9. Battery packs

With long days of exploration and phones being constantly used to take pictures of every moment, an external charger could save the day! Pop it in your backpack and keep the family fully charged.

10. First aid kit

You don’t want anything to stand in your way of visiting every Tuscan gem you can during your holiday! Pack a first aid kit in your suitcase and take a few essentials in your backpack for your days out, so you’re completely prepared!

At Cignella, we always want our guests to have the perfect holiday. Pack these necessities, and with our help, you’ll never forget your time in Tuscany.

See you soon!

With temperatures sizzling in the UK, you may be wondering if it is worth booking a holiday abroad this year. However a trip to Tuscany offers so much more, especially for those with a special interest or hobby.

If you enjoy a spot of yoga then there is nothing more relaxing than setting your mat down in the grounds of Cignella overlooking stunning landscapes, as you breathe in the crisp, Tuscan air to cleanse your mind and body.

Or if painting is your craft then the jaw-dropping scenery, medieval Tuscan towns and picturesque olive groves and wineries, present unrivalled locations to inspire creativity for your next artwork.

For walkers, there are many trails through the countryside offering walks for every level of fitness from steep to easy gradients, and from short walks to lengthy hikes. You can find many books showing popular routes through the region, so familiarise yourself before you head off.

If biking is your sport then you will know that Tuscany is a popular place for cycling enthusiasts to holiday. Many cycling legends have trained on the hills and slopes of the region, and you can follow in their footsteps and measure your fitness against their athletic prowess!

Anyone with an interest in gastronomy or wine will know that Tuscany is home to some of the best wine, cheese, steak and olive oils. Close to Cignella you can visit the home of fine local produce including Montepulciano, Montalcino and Pienza, to see how it is made and sample the results. And there are no shortage of excellent restaurants close to the estate where you can try delicious local dishes, just ask at reception for recommendations.

 

Cignella is the ideal escape to indulge your interest and leave you energised and refreshed for your return home. We are always happy to help if you need special equipment or advise on suitable locations – just email us before you leave, or check with reception on arrival.

So come and visit Cignella and create some lasting memories with us!

We hope you see you soon.

Cignella

What do you think of when you hear ‘Tuscany’? Like most, you probably instantly think of Chianti – the fantastic, the indescribable, like no other, red wine famously born in the rolling hills. Or the delectable pasta dishes born and perfected only in the Italian land.

But Tuscany has so much more to offer than wine and gastronomy, (although we won’t argue that they are great) – many activities and delights that people are so blissfully unaware of.

One of Tuscany’s best-kept secrets, located roughly 2 hours from Cignella – Cala Violina. Also known as Violin Cove, gaining its name from the story of a local legend who states that walking on the sand produces the sound of a violin, is a sight that some rate as the best in Tuscany, and which holds first place in the official listings of the very best beaches in Italy.

What else, you ask?

If you like to visit touristy destinations but hate the crowds, The Bargello is for you! It is one of the oldest (and most beautiful) buildings in Florence and lacks the huge crows that The Uffizi receives- win win!

Or for the more adventurous, Siena offers a wonderful maze of tunnels and caves that stretch over 25km! There’s even a company that offers quad biking through the rolling hills.

You see, Tuscany isn’t just wine & pasta… it really is so much more!

Why not come and see for yourself?

We, at Cignella, would be honoured to welcome you. Why not join us this summer?

Ciao!

Cignella

If you are looking for a wonderful summer holiday then look no further than Cignella Tuscany where we guarantee you SUN, SCENERY, SIGHTSEEING and pure RELAXATION for the perfect holiday!

In search of sun? Then now is the best time to visit! Sun cream, hats and sandals are the order of the day, but don’t forget to keep covered if visiting churches.

When it comes to scenery you will be spoilt for choice. Quaint hill-top towns, rolling hills and sleepy villages amaze at every turn. Siena, just a 30 minute drive from Cignella, is one of the prettiest places to visit and a climb to the top of the Torre del Mangia is a must for its breathtaking views. Some say the Chianti wine region presents the perfect picture of Tuscany. With red roofed houses adorned with bright flowers, picturesque castles, emerald green hills covered in vineyards and of course some of the best wines in the world, it is hard to compete with this little piece of magic.

The wonders of Florence draw many to the region for its stunning architecture, world famous artwork and enchanting streets scattered with historic buildings, shops and restaurants. But there are many other spectacular sights in the area, including Arezzo, just a 50 minute drive from Cignella, and San Gimignano known as the city of beautiful towers. Montepulciano, the handsome wine town, and its neighbour Pienza can’t be missed, and don’t forget Montalcino with its wine shops, restaurants and stunning abbey, Sant’Antimo.

No holiday is complete without time set aside to simply relax. Sit in the shade by our pool, relax on your terrace with a chilled glass of fine wine, or enjoy some time out at one of the many spas in the region where you can unwind in natural hot springs or indulge in a treatment.

With so many great reasons to visit Tuscany this year, and with summer just around the corner, book early to avoid disappointment. Our staff are always on hand to make sure that your time spent with us is the best it can be and we look forward to welcoming you soon!

Cignella

Cheese, wine, steak, olives, truffles, the list of delicious food native to Tuscany is endless! Many visit to taste the produce, and combined with the wonderful towns, art, architecture and history, it makes the perfect holiday.

To get the inside view on Tuscany we asked Lenny at “Taste of Tuscany”, who runs amazing culinary tours, for her opinion on everything Tuscan!

 

1) You arrange many activities including cookery lessons, truffle hunting and wine tours. What is the most popular? 

Most people choose wine tasting and sometimes a cookery course, but once you tell them about olive oil tastings and truffle hunting, a new world opens up for them.

 

2) You live in one of the best wine regions in the world. Do you have a favourite Italian wine?

I don’t have one favourite Italian wine. The joy of living here is that it’s very easy to explore and experience new wines every day. For me it is fun to visit wineries I haven’t visited before and to try award winning wines like Brunello di Montalcino, as well as local wines that don’t carry this prestige. There are A LOT of pretty good ones out there.

 

3) Which is your favourite month of the year?

Spring is beautiful! It feels like Tuscany is waking from hibernation. Fall is beautiful too because it’s harvest time for pretty much everything, like grapes, olives, porcini and tartufi. Tuscans like to celebrate this with little local festivals, which are just great!

 

4) When you are not working, what do you do?

I like being a tourist, but I guess I’m still working even then! I enjoy visiting places off the beaten track like wineries, cheese farms, restaurants and coffee places. I am always looking for somewhere that would be perfect for my clients.

 

5) If I only had 1 day in Tuscany, how would you arrange my day to sample Tuscany’s delicious produce?

Take it slow and use your time to visit Montepulciano, Pienza and Val d’Orcia. Start at Montepulciano, then enjoy a cheese-picnic lunch with wonderful views at Cugusi Silvana. Here there is a little cheese shop where you can fill your basket with cheeses, salamis and wine. After lunch, drive to beautiful Pienza and enjoy a wine tasting. Complete your day with a beautiful meal at a typically Tuscan restaurant.

 

6) What are your 2 favourite places in Tuscany?

Firstly, Montefollonico, where I live. It’s just the cutest little hilltop village. It has a very small, close community and people are just so nice. Secondly, it depends on my mood: to relax I love going to Pienza on a Sunday morning for a coffee and to enjoy the views across Val d’Orcia; or if I feel lively, I go to Montepulciano.

 

7) What do you like best about living in Tuscany?

I’m from the Netherlands, which is a fast-paced society. In Tuscany, people take their time over everything. Even their high-class wines take a minimum of 5 years before they can sell them! I guess quality really takes time. :)

 

8) Your passion and knowledge of Tuscan food and wine is second to none. What future plans do you have for “Taste of Tuscany”? 

I would love to organise specific group-trips, like a painting week, combined with all the best from Tuscany. I believe that would be really cool!

 

Thanks so much to Lenny for her wonderful insights. If you would like to book a tour then contact “Taste of Tuscany”, or we can arrange it for you when you arrive. At Cignella you are in the perfect spot to enjoy the best of Tuscany, and with spacious, modern accommodation, you can easily relax and unwind too. Check out our availability, as some of the best months of the year are just around the corner!

 

See you soon

Cignella

*All photos are copyrighted to Taste of Tuscany

There is a lot to be said for taking a holiday with all the family. Whether it’s with parents, grandparents, nieces, uncles or cousins, there are so many benefits you might never travel any other way again! Our apartments and villas are perfect as they are spacious, comfortable and offer all the facilities a family needs.

As we love a list at Cignella, here are 5 great reasons to holiday with your family this year!

  1. It is the perfect way to create strong bonds. Life is hectic and we often have little time to do fun things together so a holiday is perfect for spending quality time together, and creating stable and close family relationships.
  2. Create shared memories for life. Try new food, visit new places, meet new people or just laugh around the pool to make memories only you can share when you get home, and in the future.
  3. See things through other peoples’ eyes. Children are inquisitive and when they see things for the first time they give us a greater appreciation of our surroundings. Older family members may know about art, wine or history and can bring a better understanding of where we are. Each generation see’s thing differently, and it will make your holiday more fulfilling.
  4. Always someone to share things with. Perhaps you want a day at the spa, to visit a local market, or try mountain biking? There will always be someone who fancies doing just the same as you!
  5. More ideas for everyone to share. Maybe it’s a new game to play, a restaurant to try or just a good book to read. With all your family around, you won’t be short of ideas on things to do or try!

Travelling with family can make your holiday so much better! If you are thinking of visiting Cignella this summer then don’t delay as our summer availability is running out!

Make it a holiday this year… it might be the start of many!

See you soon

Cignella

Cignella is situated in such a beautiful location and you only need to look at TripAdvisor to see how many happy visitors we receive. Many come back for a second visit and many tell their friends. Our staff always go that extra mile to make sure all guests have the best possible time and nothing […]

What do you think of when you hear ‘Tuscany’? Like most, you probably instantly think of Chianti – the fantastic, the indescribable, like no other, red wine famously born in the rolling hills. Or the delectable pasta dishes born and perfected only in the Italian land.

But Tuscany has so much more to offer than wine and gastronomy, (although we won’t argue that they are great) – many activities and delights that people are so blissfully unaware of.

Read more

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