From an Italian kitchen
By Lorna Heatley
6 November 2018
Italy. It’s one of the best countries to go to in the whole world for food.Read more
The striking walled town of San Gimignano took its name in the 10th century, from the bishop St Geminianus, who had defended the first settlement here from Attila's Hun forces. San Gimignano's position amongst an array of fertile hills ensured that the town became rich primarily as a farming community. The thriving town was able to govern itself independently, and in this time many competitive Tuscan families built tall towers here - each a little bit taller than the last one.
The arrival of the Black Death in 1348 put paid to San Gimignano's independence. Having lost much of its population, the town was compelled to look to Florence for protection and governance. As a result, the town developed very little through the next few centuries - meaning that much of its historic core has been preserved to the present day. One of the most famous features about this rural town is that an incredible thirteen of its towers from the Middle Ages have survived, and they now all stand proudly overlooking the hillside as an iconic symbol of the town.
Discover the true colours of this acclaimed region on a tour of the highlights of Tuscany. Ochre and terracotta hill towns linked by winding white roads, interspersed with fields of poppies and sunflowers contrast with the magnificent architecture of the great Renaissance cities.… see more
10 days from £1,895 ppView tour details >