Crete Senesi: private tour from Siena with typical products tasting

Duration: approx. 4 hours  Location: Siena
This tour was already booked by 8 people

per service
starting from
236.00
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Why choose this experience?

1 Enjoy the moon-like landscape of Crete Senesi, one of the most evocative and fascinating areas in all of Tuscany
2 Feel awestruck by the mystical atmosphere and the numerous works of art of the Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore
3 Discover the enchanting village of Asciano also thanks to a flavor-filled visit with tasting of delicious local products

Thanks to this tour you will explore some of the corners of one of the most fascinating areas in all of Tuscany: Crete Senesi and its exciting moon-like landscape. You will also visit the ancient Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore and the enchanting village of Asciano where you will be treated to a tantalizing tasting of typical produce. You will be accompanied throughout by a guide who will answer all your questions related to what you will visit. And if you require it, transport service is available on request. Why book this tour? Because it will be a multifaceted and fascinating experience, a unique opportunity to appreciate Tuscany and its treasures: captivating sceneries, the mysticism of an ancient monastery and flavorsome local products which you will taste in Asciano, a village where time has stopped.

You are really hooked, aren’t you? Do you want to learn as much as possible about this fantastic adventure in the heart of Tuscany? You will begin in Siena after which, once joining the Lauretana road, you will immediately find yourself immersed in all the charm of Crete Senesi and the incredible Senese clays images through the seasons. These are hills that are almost completely devoid of vegetation: you can only see the wheat, sunflowers and the iconic rows of cypress trees that act as windbreaks. These areas are mostly uninhabited, with the exception of the typical farmhouses you can spot on top of the hills. It is no coincidence that this area in the past was called the 'Accona desert'. But what is the origin of these particular characteristics? First of all, the clayey soil formed in the Pliocene (between 5.2 and 1.8 million years ago). Because of their geological conformation, the hills have been eroded by the water and have given rise to the so-called calanchi – gullies in the soil produced by erosion -  and to biancane - clayey outcrops completely devoid of vegetation. Travelling along the hairpin bends of the road you will really feel like you have magically landed on the moon. Tuscany has got it all, don’t you agree? We can grant your every wish, even if you are asking for the Moon! In which months is this area at its most beautiful? Crete of Siena is full of charm and magic at any time of the year. In every season they will enchant you with their nuances: the gray of the winter soil, the intense green of the wheat fields in spring which becomes gold in the summer. In short, no matter which month you decide to relish this unforgettable experience, the landscape will mesmerize you with truly unique emotions.

The first stop of our tour, after the de-rigueur photos along the way, will be the Monte Oliveto Abbey, a place where mysticism and art form a truly unmissable union. It was built in the 14th century and when visiting it you will find that here time really seems to have stopped. The Monastery of Monte Oliveto Maggiore, which rests on a hill and is surrounded by tall cypress trees, is still inhabited by monks who live according to the Rule of Saint Benedict and it is in fact the motherhouse of the Order of the Oliveto Benedictine Monks. During your visit you will admire the Gothic Church with its sumptuous baroque interior, the three cloisters, the library and the old pharmacy, where, as in any self-respecting monastery, excellent bittersweet liqueurs are still produced. As many as eight different types of liqueurs are produced by the monks of the Monte Oliveto Monastery! You are bound to find the one that is just right for you! From an artistic point of view, instead, the frescoes of the main cloister in Monte Oliveto Maggiore are among the most admired and photographed works. These are paintings by Antonio Signorelli and Antonio Bazzi known as Sodoma that represent the main moments in the life of Saint Benedict. Each of these marvelous works is housed in one of the 35 niches of the cloister. If you love photographs and your Crete Senesi images left you hungry for more, remember that here, and also in the cloister, you will have the opportunity to indulge again in your passion.

Once your visit to Monte Oliveto Maggiore Abbey is over, you will continue to Asciano, Italy, one of the most characteristic areas of the Senese clay in Tuscany. There is also a legend concerning its foundation that your guide will not fail to tell you about! For now, it suffices to mention that it revolves around Romolo and Remo... you will discover the rest of the story only by booking the tour! Meanwhile we can anticipate that the hamlet of Asciano has Etruscan origins and that after fending off the Longobards and the Franks, it inevitably followed the vicissitudes the Republic of Siena to which it was annexed. History aside, once in Asciano what is there to see together with the guide that will accompany you? Certainly, the churches that give the village its charming mystical atmosphere. Worth a visit are surely the Collegiata di Sant'Agata, rich in works of art and characterized by an intriguing mix of styles, the Church of San Francesco and the Church of Sant'Agostino dating back to the 1200s. Besides its churches, what else can you visit in Asciano? Surely, Palazzo Corboli inside which there is an interesting museum with works from the 13th to the 18th century, Torre Civica, Palazzo del Podestà and Piazza del Grano with its beautiful travertine fountain by Paolo Ghini. In addition to its artistic gems, Asciano, Siena, houses other equally noteworthy treasures. We will give you a clue: it is one of the ‘bio cities' and also an 'olive oil city'. Yes, we are not talking about gold or precious stones but ... of truly Tuscan delicacies. In fact, after having delighted your eyes, nourished your mysticism with the visit to the Monte Oliveto Abbey, you will be able to satisfy your palate. You will stop at a traditional shop along the main street of Asciano hamlet to taste some of Asciano typical products. You already licking your lips at the thought, aren’t you? And I also bet that you are curious to know which Asciano typical products you will taste. There will certainly be olive oil, cheeses and excellent cured meats.

So, what do you think: isn’t this the tour of your dreams? What's better than admiring Crete Senesi and the desert of Tuscany, followed by a visit to the Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore and a visit to Asciano accompanied throughout by your guide? How could you end your afternoon in the best way without tasting the delicious typical products of the area accompanied by a glass of good wine? In short, we have offered you the Moon, now it's up to you... don’t let it slip!

 

© Insidecom Tour Operator
(authorization no. 62027 dated 09/07/12 with determination no. 2052/2012)

Important info

Availability:

All year

Departure point:

Siena, place to be agreed

Departure time

daily

2.00 pm

Languages available

Italian

English

Prices

Up to 3 people: starting from €236.00 per service

From 4 to 7 people: starting from €295.00 per service

Prices are per service, therefore the price per person may vary according to the number of participants in the tour.

Duration
approx. 4 hours
Inclusions
  • Driver
  • Transfer by car or minivan
  • Guided tours (Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore and Asciano)
  • Tasting of typical products of Siena
Exclusions
  • Quanto non specificato in "Il tour include"
Additional information:

There will be no refund in case of NO-SHOW (non-attendance at the start of the tour at the allocated time and at the meeting point indicated on the voucher) and/or rejection of the service on the day; if customers wander off during the tour; or if they decide to leave the tour before the end of the service. 

To take part in the tour, you must be at the meeting point at least 15 minutes before the departure time specified, and present either a paper or an electronic voucher. 

Bookings can be made up to 72 working hours before the service. 

Please advise us in advance about any food intolerances or allergies.

In case of any problems on site, please ring the emergency number on the voucher.

In exceptional cases and/or reasons of force majeure that may prevent the tour already purchased to run regularly (i.e. acts of nature, strikes, exceptional closures, serious unexpected events or health problems experienced by the person in charge with the service after which it is really impossible to find a substitute), the tour might be cancelled. The customer will be notified of this as soon as possible and will be asked to choose between postponing the tour on the first date available or receiving a prompt refund of the price paid for the tour, if the cancellation policy of the service itself allows a refund.

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