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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

MINICRUISE GIGLIO AND GIANNUTRI ISLANDS

A day dedicated to the discovery of two of the pearls of the Tuscan archipelago: the island of Giglio and Giannutri.  Ideal places for lovers of the sea for its beautiful beaches and coves.

from 101,15 US Dollar

Tuscan Winery Tour

A day trip exploring Tuscany with visits to 2 wineries. Taste seven different types of wine, three extra virgin olive oils, balsamic vinegar and Tuscan snacks, enjoy amazing scenery and visit San Gimignano all in one day! This is a great opportunity for 18-to-39-year-olds to meet other travellers and enjoy the Tuscan countryside while sampling and learning about wines.

from 83,3 US Dollar

PASSION FOR FASHION

A fun experience in a luxury shopping mall!!

Salvatore Ferragamo, Dolce&Gabbana, Prada, Versace, Armani, Moschino, Fendi, Valentino… The Kings of fashion are waiting for you at the most famous luxury outlet in Italy, located in the green, gentle hills of Tuscany.

from 213,02 US Dollar

Bolgheri wine tour private shore excursion from Livorno port

Relax and enjoy the beauty of Tuscany on this 8-hour tour from Livorno port to the countryside of Bolgheri. Your English-speaking driver/guide will take you from the port of Livorno passing by the Etruscan Coast to discover the renowned town of Bolgheri and the history of the Italian literature in Castagneto Carducci. See 'Cypress Avenue' leading into Bolgheri with 2500 cypress trees. Enjoy approximately 45 minutes free time to explore the narrow streets of Bolgheri town.Discover how anonymous wine grapes become famous wines known worldwide when you visit a local winery. While here, you'll have some time to enjoy wine tasting and a savoury Tuscan lunch (at own expense) at the wine shop.
Transport by air-conditioned minivan and port pickup and drop-off is included.

from 1071,05 US Dollar
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