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What is a Tuscan Hamlet?

  • What is a Tuscan Hamlet?

    Picture in your mind the pretty hilltop villages dotted throughout the landscape of Tuscany and Umbria. Tiny collections of buildings perched overlooking the vineyards or working fields of the area. These are the 'Borgo's" (hamlets) of Italy.

    Originally Borgos were a collection of stone barns and farming sheds, connected by winding footpaths with a courtyard in the heart of the buildings, some garden areas and often a small chapel. The occupants of the borgos were share-croppers and their families, who rented the accommodation from the landlords when they were employed to work in the fields gathering crops or harvesting the grapes & olives. The borgos were generally in the heart of the countryside, on top of hills surrounded by fields, vineyards and olive groves so that the workers did not have far to travel to work.

    The industrialisation seen in Italy after the war and the decline in traditional agricultural farming methods led to an exodus of workers from the rural areas of Italy towards the towns and cities, leaving the borgos empty and unused and many fell into decline.

    With the expansion of tourism across the Chianti region over the last 30 years or so, private investment has meant that these tiny borgos have been re-invented into individually privately owned apartments and villas run under 'condominium' status with shared facilities such as swimming pools. Strict local preservation laws forbid any changes to the 'footprint' of the borgos and any exterior walls and window areas must remain exactly where they were. Original materials have to be re-used with tight controls on 'new' period-style materials being allowed in certain circumstances. Interiors, however, are allowed to be altered to ensure that high-quality fixtures and fittings can be installed. What you get today, therefore, is an authentic reconstruction of the borgo with the living accommodations divided to give private self-contained apartments, cottages or villas within the original layout of a centuries old hamlet.

    The hamlets offered by To Tuscany all have a history behind them and often photos of the original buildings can be found within the apartments showing you exactly how things were improved. Each property within the hamlet is self-contained and private with almost every apartment also having some private outside space, either a small garden area or terrace. There are communual areas such as the grounds, shared swimming pools and laundry areas (where available) and some even have tennis courts.  Their positions amongst the fields and vineyards always offer fantastic views over the surrounding countryside for you to enjoy.

Experience an official tuscany tour with

Small-Group Chianti and San Gimignano Sunset Trip from Siena

On this afternoon and evening tour from Siena to Chianti and San Gimignano, explore the beautiful Chianti region – an area rich with dense oak forests and cypress trees – and discover its famous wine cellars. Then head to the UNESCO World Heritage-listed town of San Gimignano after the day’s crowds have dispersed. During the sunset, dine in a beautiful farmhouse overlooking the San Gimignano towers and the rolling, vine-covered hills.

Numbers are limited to eight people on this small-group tour, ensuring you'll enjoy personalized attention from your guide.

from 163,71 US Dollar

Montalcino, Orcia Valley, Pienza and Montepulciano: Wine and Cheese Tasting Guided Tour from Florence

Enjoy a rich and ripe tour through the worlds of grape and gourmet cheese. Experience art and architecture and blend it with good wines and mouth-warming specialties. You will visit the stunning Val d'Orcia and the very special towns snuggling in it. There's the chance to get to know wine cellars while nibbling on sheep's cheese. A prefect day out for the senses and the soul.

from 76,4 US Dollar

Montalcino and Abbazia di Sant’Antimo Day Trip from Siena including Wine-Tasting

Explore Montalcino, the home of Brunello di Montalcino wine, on a half-day trip from Siena, and visit Abbazia di Sant’Antimo, too! Discover Montalcino’s medieval history from a guide, and then enjoy free time in the town to soak up the views and shop for wine. Visit the Romanesque church, Abbazia di Sant’Antimo, and then tour the vineyard and relax in a local winery, sampling a variety of Tuscan wines as well as the famous Brunello.

from 41,47 US Dollar

Chianti Half Day Afternoon Tour

Visit the beautiful region of Chianti with us and immerse yourself in the picturesque Tuscan scenery.
Visit two wineries and taste their amazing wines and local delicacies!

from 61,12 US Dollar
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