Gaiole in Chianti is a small town in the heart of Tuscany. At 50 miles squared, Chianti is best known for its production of Chianti wines and its beautiful castles with rich history’s and well known families. We had the pleasure of staying here for part of our honeymoon and it’s the perfect spot for honeymooners, wine lovers, couples looking for something romantic, families and anyone interested in history!
WHERE TO STAY:
Now, we only stayed in one place while in Gaiole, so we’re very biased. Castello di Spaltenna Exclusive Resort & Spa is a 5 star castle with multiple restaurants, bar, swimming pool, tennis courts, luxurious spa and vineyards all around. As it stands upon a hill, you’re not only in a beautiful castle, but you also get an amazing view of Chianti! The staff is extremely hospitable this place is seriously an Italian dream!
WHERE TO DINE:
We mentioned the Castello has a few restaurants- one is a 2017 Michelin Star rated restaurant, Il Pievano, led by Chef Vincenzo Guarino. Every dish here is a delicious as it is a piece of art. Remember, you’re in a small town so there are a handful places to eat! Fret not, you’re in Europe so generally places stay open later than in the states.
Check out Lo Sfizio di’ Bianchi or I Galleto Briaco Trattoria Pizzeria. Both options have great patios, amazing Italian food and great service!
WHAT TO DO:
The number one thing to do in Chianti is pretty obvious- wine tours! There are so many choices to pick from, but we based our stay in wine country around 1 winery, Barone Ricasoli. If you like Chianti, you owe your gratitude to Mr. Baron Bettino Ricasoli, founder of The formula that brought us Chianti in 1872. The Castello di Brolio has been in the Ricasoli family for 32 generations and there is still a part of it that remains original to the day it was built, almost 1,000 years ago. This vineyard and castle has so much history, art and stories to tell- it is very much worth the trip!
HOW TO GET HERE:
Gaiole in Chianti is about a 1 hour drive from Florence. If you have the option to rent a car- do it. As long as you have a valid US license, you’re good to go. You drive on the same side on the road (misconception by many Americans) and once you’re out of the city, the drive is easy and beautiful! Plus, having a car has its benefits! You can go wherever (such as Siena!) and do things on your own time.
You can also take public transportation. Unfortunately, there’s no direct train to these small towns, so if you opt for public transport, you’ll need to make a few stop and changes.
Another option is a taxi or private driver, but it will cost you more and renting a car will get you more for your buck!
If you’re looking for that special Tuscan experience away from the big city (Ps. Florence is part of Tuscany), Gaiole in Chianti is the perfect spot to get away and enjoy the beautiful Tuscan sun set over the vineyards!