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Crete Senesi is a territory rich in charm, history and culture but also in surprising flavors.
The various routes we propose intertwine food and wine experiences and breathtaking views that will remain impressed in your memories.
With the collaboration of our partners you will have the opportunity to experience this territory at 360 ° with guided tours in historic cellars; lunches and dinners in typical restaurants, in some periods of the year even with a medieval theme with a total full immersion of the time; visits to museums and characteristic abbeys of the Crete Senesi.
Among the places to visit you can also admire the Site Transitoire, a work of art created by the artist Jean Paul Philippe in 1993; the Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore with its paintings and the famous liqueur “Flora di Monte Oliveto” still produced today by the monks following the ancient recipe; Piazza del Campo and the Cathedral of Siena, passing through the ‘contrade’ belonging to the famous Palio di Siena.
The Via Lauretana insists on an Etruscan-Roman route, which later became an important pilgrimage route in the direction of the Holy House of Loreto. The road, which was very frequented through the fifteenth, sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, from Siena branched off from the Via Francigena to reach Camucia, at the foot of Cortona, then head towards to Umbria and, crossing the Apennines, arrives at Loreto in the Marche Region. Unlike the nearby Via Francigena, which has continued to be travelled even in modern times by those who went to Rome, the Siena-Arezzo Lauretana, an essentially devotional path, over the centuries has lost long-distance travellers and pilgrims, who have chosen new roads to reach the goal. In the stretch of Siena-Arezzo, the Lauretana crosses landscapes of rare beauty and places rich in history: walking slowly along it, offers you a unique and emotional experience. Leaving Siena you enter in the typical landscape of clay of the Crete Senesi, where you walk in a horizon of hills with changing colors according to the seasons, and you meet surprising and evocative modern installations, ancient fortresses and monasteries. You enter, then, in Val di Chiana, touching lightly the Val d’Orcia, to be immersed in natural oases and engineering works that have changed the landscape and economy of these lands, whose potential was already known by a people as fascinating and mysterious as the Etruscans, of which the path often meets the tracks. Cycling on the Lauretana, crossing Siena, Asciano, Rapolano Terme, Sinalunga, Torrita di Siena, Montepulciano and Cortona, will be an exciting journey, full of discoveries, always immersed in beauty.
Discover the most enchanting landscapes of the Chianti and the Val D’Orcia, cycling on the white roads and on the permanent routes of Terra Eroica. The routes are accessible throughout the year and on any type of bike, starting from any of the municipalities along the route, and can even last several days. The Eroica was born in Tuscany in the most beautiful part of the Chianti (area) 25 years ago. It immediately became a ‘movement of values’ related to cycling, exported to other countries around the world through various international versions. The evolution has not, however, lost its roots and founding principles: sharing, friendship, the rediscovery of fatigue, love for the region, protection of the white roads, and respect for the environment.
The permanent route takes life from the values of the Eroica, making it a unique event recognised around the world and a proposal for those who use their bikes on holiday: over 200km of routes from Gaiole in Chianti to Montalcino, crossing the most evocative villages and towns in this region.
From the Chianti Classico up along the streets of Brunello to Montalcino, this landscape offers the most exciting cycling experience for every time of year, as well as being the protagonist of the three Eroica events (Classic Gaiole, Eroica Montalcino and Nova Eroica in Buonconvento).
Unique landscapes, villages, and towns, culture, food, and wine, thermal baths, relaxation, and sport are all the prerequisites for an unforgettable holiday at any time of year. A real philosophy designed to promote ‘slow’ tourism, dedicated to the protection and enhancement of the region, the adoption of good practices and a balanced and healthy lifestyle, while always respecting the environment.
Riding on sandstone used in paving roads in the historic centre of Siena will be a unique experience. Slopes that put your breath and legs to the test, a pleasant effort compensated by a sequence of unexpected surprises and by the changing urban environment: narrow alleys, small squares and wide-ranging openings on glimpses of the city with lots of houses, dotted with bell towers and vegetable gardens. A path through art and history to be completed with cultural and gourmet stops. Departure from near the Medici Fortress, where the Sienese people walk and play sports and cultural events are held in fine weather. From the ramparts you can enjoy a 360-degree panorama that goes beyond the walls to the north and sweeps over the surrounding hills, while facing the hill in the Terzo di Città district on the other side, along with the imposing Duomo overlooking the houses leaning against each other, to cover the entire surface of roofs, bricks, windows, roof terraces: the perception of a ‘pine cone’ with splashes of colours, without empty roads. Then the route crosses the entire centre, never arriving at the Gates and outside the ancient walls. In addition to touching water sources, grazing vegetable gardens and basilicas, the route will also allow you to stop in the magnificent setting of Piazza del Campo with its pinkish shell shape which are overlooked by elegant palaces and the Torre del Mangia stands out and in Piazza del Duomo where the polychromy of marbles glitters in the sunlight on clear days. If you want you can decide to devote time to works of art entering for a visit inside churches and museums.
They are indispensable for those who take things slow or reward themselves with one or more stops for a delicious tasting of local products by fatigue at the end of the route. A pedal trip in the heart of Siena that will fill your eyes with beauty and it will do you good not only for your legs and body, but especially for your soul.
A cycle route that starts from the surroundings of the Fortress and returns after nearly 17 kilometres out-of-town, mostly along the walls that surround and enclose the historic centre of Siena; a tour that completes and integrates the historic centre, covering all the gates. Getting out of the city from Porta Camollia, you arrive with a downhill leg beneath one of the hills on which Siena stands, and then go up to Porta San Marco through Via Massetana, a twisting, pine-lined road, towards the countryside that skims and creeps into the centre.
It will be worth stopping and lingering before entering through the gate to the only leg of the route that passes through the centre. Catch your breath and enjoy the panoramic view ranging from the deep green of the Montagnola to the sea, the Sienese Clays and the Val d’Orcia, with the small isolated cone of Radicofani and the profile of the Monte Amiata volcano reaching a distant horizon on the border with Lazio. That space still appears to be vast today, and once seemed to be infinite. For centuries, pilgrims, merchants and wayfarers travelled the Via Francigena, exchanging not only goods, but also languages and cultures, stories and experiences.
Between Porta San Marco to Porta Tufi, through which you return to the centre, there are only valleys with vegetable gardens and fields hiding secrets, such as the Fonte delle Monache (Fountain of the Nuns) with its entrance from Via delle Sperandie in the area that also comprises the botanical gardens, whose entrance to the path goes down towards Porta Tufi.
Going outside the walls once more, after a further descent between fields and farms, you return to the busiest roads under the city. Then, go uphill in the direction of Porta Romana, which can be admired from outside in all its grandeur, before turning towards Porta Pispini and following the course of the walls that run along the trail up to Porta Ovile, offering a magnificent view over some parts of the city: profiles of towers, bell towers, domes and battlements.
Ascending from Ovile you go back to the starting point, right in the centre, and you can choose to conclude your tour with a stopover at the Fortress, a visit to a museum, or indulging in local products to refresh and reward yourself after the tiring ride.
The southern most northern classic in Europe” is how cycling lovers from all over the world define the race that runs along these roads, loved both by the public and by the cyclists so much that it has already been awarded the title of sixth classic-Monument, a monument to epic cycling in modern times. The route, which crosses many townships, starts from the Fortezza Medicea of Siena, the city where it feels as if time stopped in the 13th century. It has been on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1995, owing to its well-preserved medieval structure. Lying at the southern slopes of the Montagnola Senese, Sovicille is the Tuscan town with the highest concentration of parish churches, abbeys, castles and villas. Murlo is a small, well-preserved medieval village found in the heart of an unspoiled territory, and it is best known for being home to a unique Etruscan settlement, Poggio Civitate, that occupied the surrounding hills. Montalcino is a magnificent medieval village known to wine enthusiasts worldwide for Brunello di Montalcino, an excellent red wine that improves with age Found near Monteroni d’Arbia is Lucignano d’Arbia with its parish church, standing since the year 913 A.D., and the famous Grancia di Cuna, a majestic, fortified farm built in 1314. Rising up from the heart of the Crete Senesi and surrounded by breathtaking landscapes, Asciano is an ancient village of Etruscan origin, and its old town centre is a treasure trove of art and history. The territory of Castelnuovo Berardenga is a musical tapestry of gentle slopes and uneven hills guarded by castles, churches and fortifications, following a prelude of ascending cypress-lined roads.
The Crete Senesi Life Park is a large extended park in constant evolution. It extends over the entire territory of the Municipality of Asciano, located in the center of Tuscany, with direct access from Siena through the village of Arbia. White roads and paths intertwine in a unique place in Italy. At the moment there are four routes, fully signposted, checked and easily accessible by public transport. On “Strade di Siena” we present the path called “Biancane”: this loop route will lead you to discover one of the most beautiful corners of the Crete Senesi. Here the nature gives the best of itself. The Biancane, changing every hour and season of the year, will give you an unforgettable landscape. These small and characteristic clay and sand domes, white and bright, are the most typical geological element of the Crete Senesi. Leaving the trail for a few meters, do not miss the show of the Site Transitoire: a blend of art and nature made by the sculptor Jean-Paul Philippe, a monumental sculpture in symbiosis with the clay, the sky, surrounded by a breath-taking and unforgettable lanscape.