Walled towns and Roman Arenas

Volterra Travel Blog

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Chianti region of Tuscany

Beautiful travelling today.  Rolling hills with patchwork hills.  Soft, sunny light, with a constant haze.  Poppies, wild cherry trees, vineyards, olive groves, hemlock, buttercups and great clumps of mauve iris's.  Open up windows and sun roof and turn off the air con to breathe in the scents of Tuscany.  San Gimignano is a walled town atop a hill with 13 remaining towers.  It once boasted 74 which were built by 13th & 14th century wealthy families trying to outdo each other to attract the pilgrims to stop at their establishment.  For lunch we have scallopini al limone, pizza with artichokes and a salad.  The shops are very classy selling local preserves, olive oil, wine, salamis made with game boar etc, proscuitto, chopping boards made of olive wood, alabaster products painted pottery, cheeses and the decorated masks.

a town between San Gimignano and Volterra
  Buy a small mask for a souvenier.

Drive on through God's country to Volterra.  Again it is a walled town way up on a very high hill. It has a Roman Ampitheatre with amazing views across this countryside.  Decide to find a camping spot near here and the tourist map shows one just outside the walls but still atop the hill.  It is clean, quiet with few campers and proves to be one of two that come in as the cheapest at 12 euros for the night.  A few light showers of rain pass over us.  Have a greek salad with crusty bread and some wine for dinner. Church bells ring out as the evening drifts along.  Bliss.

 The only draw back was that the beautiful ameities block was close to being finished but the standard toilets were not all installed so non of those were functioning, just the Turkey (squat) toilets.

San Gimignano
  They can be quite tricky if you have recovering blisters on your feet and a bunion op that hasn't left you with full mobility in the foot!!!!  During the night there were some spectacular thunderstorms as close as about 2 kms, but we sleep well in the tent despite heavy rain.  Next morning we wind our way down the hill and continue through Tuscan country.  A stop/go man nearly drops his paddle when he works out that I am driving from the right hand side of the vehicle, his face was a picture.

On the motorway Andrew takes over the driving and we make our way to the GRA ( ring road) around Rome.  Find the caravan park we are looking for which is on a busy road about 4 kms out of the centre of Roma.  Do washing, shower and cook up a vegetable meal.  Think I smell incense in the air?  Imagination?

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Chianti region of Tuscany
Chianti region of Tuscany
a town between San Gimignano and V…
a town between San Gimignano and …
San Gimignano
San Gimignano
showing the vineyards
showing the vineyards
the patchwork fields
the patchwork fields
typical of the towns
typical of the towns
our cheap, clean,blissful camp at …
our cheap, clean,blissful camp at…
San Gimignanos ampitheatre
San Gimignano's ampitheatre
views from San Gimignano
views from San Gimignano
Volterra
photo by: emperial78