The glorious cities of Siena, Florence, Cortona, San Gimignano, Montalcino; the sun, the hills, the vineyards, the wine and the food are some of the elements that create the unique magic of Tuscany. Tuscany is a fascinating land, rich in history and beauty, where old stone farmhouses stand surrounded by sunbaked vineyards and olive trees and where green hills stretch to the horizon and the century-old cypresses, majestic and benevolent, dominate the landscape. Many towns and villages are little changed from the medieval times, they not only look the way they did centuries ago, but they also still live their lives to the slow rhythm of seasons and saints' feast days. Political rivalries that led to bloody battles in previous centuries have given way to soccer rivalries.
Walking on village paths steeped in history, far from the madding crowd, you feel a magic sense of discovery of simple things and of quiet pleasure. This storybook landscape is home to medieval hill towns, fabled wines and, as crucible of the Renaissance, an unrivaled collection of artistic masterpieces. Walk a little further on and you'll experience how history, art, excellent wines, marvelous food and stunning landscapes fuse into an everyday cultural frame. The beauty of the landscape provides a perfect background for the abundance of exquisite art and architecture. That same landscape also produces some of Italy's finest wines and olive oils, which make Tuscany something beyond special.