Tuscany

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i would pretty much describe a road trip through Tuscany like a journey through two wedded worlds of an Aesop fable and one of my favorite paintings, Vincent Van Gogh’s “Les Vessenots” en Auvers from 1890. Its very existence is made up of all the compulsory elements from the romanticism era, especially the clouds. Throw a glance at any corner and you get a different painting telling you a different love story; which gives you a whole new set of butterfly dreams. Once you’re in, you understand the beauty of getting lost.

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It was about 1 o’clock when we abandoned Pisa to embark on this fresh new adventure at the countryside. If you wondered how it looked like outside our car window, it is exactly like the picture above - BEAUTIFUL tree-lined roads after the highway and it is what it is – i don’t think any words are necessary to describe it better.

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Tuscany is huge, so we needed an area to focus on. i chose Chianti; which is famous for its wine. Though it was a tough decision and i believe most people would go for Florence, i insisted on trying a different scenery rather than obeying the norm; especially when we will be going to places like Rome and even Pompeii; which fall under the category of ‘Cities’. So, i picked a:

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{grapes, anyone?}

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Going a little to the west, when my brother and i planned our 1 month trip to Spain, we tried our best to prebook everything we can from our homeland. But we left the planning for some places like the Alhambra in Granada slightly undone, to also taste the rough side of traveling. But that was Spain. When in Rome Italy . . . you can’t quite expect the same thing.

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i am a person who always has a plan B. For this wine tasting tour, i did some research for a few options and kept two grand ones in hand. We started out with plan A: Waze to Machiavelli Estate. i remember with a memory as clear as the Tuscan blue skies in spring that it was a weekday; a Tuesday, to be exact. But it was worse than a siesta. Everything around the huge area was CLOSED. To still make the best of our trip, we loitered around to snap some pictures. After all, we drove all the way there . . .

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We chatted with some people and dogs from the laid back neighborhood and proceeded to commence plan B: Villa Mangiacane.

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Who would’ve known that we needed as far as plan E. Needless to say, this famous villa was closed too. At this point, we have wasted more than one solid hour, without lunch. We got out of the car anyway to see if we have any luck. We found:

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Beautiful scenery, no traditional Tuscan lunch to eat, no wine to drink.

My driver a.k.a. Big Guy is Italian and he was cursing Italians under his breath; which was an irony to me. Looking back now, it’s funny. But back then, all the driving and wayfaring was starting to become: frustrating.

There is a saying that goes “Never let a stumble in the road be the end of the journey“. i don’t remember a time in my life when i have given up what i know i really want. If you want something, why give it up? Because it’s difficult? Impossible? Well. i + m + possible. And with that attitude and persistence, we found a place i can now introduce you to, should you decide to go on a complete wine tasting tour in Chianti sans all the trouble we’ve been through:

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We did a walk-in, but to be safe, book your tour HERE. As we had to wait for an American couple to arrive, we took a brisk stroll along the vineyards and entered what resembled fairyland:

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{Big gave me a a flower that i pinned on my head throughout the day}

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Here is where our tour officially begins! :D

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{indeed? we wish!}

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We walked through the ENTIRE process of how wine is made. (One of my favorite facts: without the grapes’ skin and seeds wine wouldn’t have body and personality.) Following that, we were taught the right way to drink wine, while nibbling on fresh bread generously drizzled with the best EVOO and locally cured hams.

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{wine 101}

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At the end of the tour, we left feeling happy, contented and grateful for such fate, luck and opportunity. Not only because we managed to drink some wine at a vineyard, but for the fact that we gained so much that will make us appreciate wine for many years to come.

Cost (Tour): 25 €

Here at the end of our romantic road trip i leave with you three breathtaking pictures as the sun sets over Tuscany on our way to Rome . . .

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{split mountain, staying love}

Cost (Toll + Gas): 20 € + 75 €

Budget
Cost (Tour): 25 €
Cost (Transport): 95 €
TOTAL: 120 €

You may read my other posts on Italy here:

 

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