A route to immerse oneself in nature, not far from Florence, on the trail of places rich in popular history: this is the Calcinaia Ring, an itinerary that involves the valleys along the Terzona River, a tributary of the Pesa and Greve rivers, in the municipality of San Casciano Val di Pesa.
The ring route requires a minimum of physical fitness and can be hiked year-round. It takes about 4 hours to complete.
Starting and finishing point is the town of Calcinaia on the road from San Casciano Val di Pesa to Mercatale, near the junction of Via Castelbonsi.
The first stop is the church of San Lorenzo in Castelbonsi. Dating from around the 13th century and completely rebuilt in the 1700s, it stands right next to the ruins of the castle of Castelbonsi. From here there is a splendid view of the Greve and the plain of Florence.
Just before the church, take the path to the right to reach the Mulino di Battaglio, formerly Casa Doccia, where you cross the Fosso di Battaglio to continue and enter a dense forest to reach the Fonte dei Pollai, owned by the Corsini family.
The spring and wash houses were of considerable importance to the farming families who celebrated Easter Monday and other festivities together here.
Continuing along the path you come across a small altar: this is the spot where a shelter for civilians stood during World War II. In the summer of 1944, the population of the area had in fact found shelter here during the advance of the Allies and the bombing of population centers.
The last part of the trail goes through woods and vineyards, following dirt roads that join the Terzona Trail (No. 451) to Calcinaia.
The Calcinaia Ring is part of the Chianti Classico Hiking Network, which brings together routes and itineraries of the Chianti municipalities.