Summer 2021 in Italy Travel Stories
With much of the world restricted and travel difficult it was not possible for us to head to our usual summer haunts in South East Asia.
With Thailand out of bounds we headed ‘next door’ to Italy for the summer. Our journey took us through the Barolo to Tuscany and then onto to Sulmona in Abruzzo.
Here are the stories from this trip.
Italy Summer 2021
San Gimignano Stories | Italy
San Gimignano Stories …. From Alessandria we headed off to the Chianti area of Tuscany staying just out of the medieval hilltop town of San Gimignano. We rented a cute apartment in an old converted farmhouse with views of the surrounding vineyards – it was very pretty. The first day we were there it was off to San Gimignano for lunch which turned into a bit of a disaster. The roads surrounding the town were packed and parking was impossible, so we changed tack and settled on lunch at a place we found on our way home. From the road it looked a little like an industrial building, however inside we found a lovely restaurant serving great food and locals wines.
The next day we were up early to try to get to San Gimignano again, this time we were more successful and easily got a park. We then wandered into the old historic centre and enjoyed a coffee and pastries in the cool of the morning before exploring the old town. We liked San Gimi, it has a lovely old town like many of the surrounding villages oozes history. It is however one on the most popular spots on the tourist trail so gets very very busy.
Another day found us heading off to nearby Siena perhaps one of the most famous of the Tuscan walled towns. I spent 6 weeks in Siena many years ago and it was lovely to walk down memory lane. Siena was busy however it was nowhere as busy as it would normally been with the pandemic and resulting restrictions severely impacting the number of international tourists in the country. This area of Italy is normally heaving with English speaking visitors however in our time in Tuscany we barely heard another native English speaker. After a lovely wander around and coffee in the Campo we headed back to our little apartment among the vines.
We enjoyed visiting the nearby ancient and historic village and towns but mostly we enjoyed buying incredible fresh food locally and cooking in our apartment.
After 5 days in Tuscany it was time to move on …. next stop Sulmona in the Abruzzo region.