As the name itself suggests, the Chiantigiana is a fun asphalted road that intersects the hills of the Chianti, uniting Florence and Siena, cutting through Greve in Chianti, where the Museum of Wine is located. It is a tract of land that honors food and wine culture and reflects the wisdom of a distant time: a great glass of wine helps circulation!
Departure/arrival: from Bagno a Ripoli to Siena
Time: 1 day
Type of terrain: varied, hilly
Main cities: Florence, Siena
Areas traversed: Badia a Ripoli, Grassina, Greve in Chianti, Castellina in Chianti, Siena
To escape the hustle and bustle of Florence, take the SR222, also known as the Chiantigiana. Begin your journey in Badia a Ripoli, cross Ponte a Ema and keep going until you reach Grassina, where two wide curves allow you to wave goodbye to the city and welcome you into the open countryside. You can choose what turns to make and what sites to see: a few of them being Impruneta and San Polo in Chianti.
Driving along the fields of Ugolino you can enjoy the panorama of the Tuscan countryside, thus reaching the Strada in Chianti and the Cintoia. Take a break and quench your thirst. Water is good, but wine is better. Let’s continue our journey.
The vineyards accompany you between Chiocchio and Spedaluzzo, and the SR222 offers authentic postcard views and a tasty bottle opener. Near Le Bolle a fork in the road invites you to take the Passo dei Pecorai, but don’t be fooled, it’s a fun and relaxing journey. Waiting for you at the end of the way are two enchanting castles (Verrazzano and Montefioralle).
Welcome to Greve in Chianti, small town in the heart of the Chianti valley. In the past it was the market place for the castle of Montelfioralle, and every Saturday morning it replicates this custom, inviting everyone into its enchanting piazza.
At the apex of the town is the rectory of Santa Croce and surrounding it are local food shops located under porticoes. A top shop to visit is the Antica Macelleria (butcher) Falorni, established in 1729. Close by you will find the Museum of Wine: an inebriating journey through old photographs, documents and tools of the trade, not to mention the curious collection of over 180 different bottle openers!
If you were able to stay sober, a venture on the SP16 heading towards Dudda will put your tires in motion yet again. The climb towards Panzano in Chianti will reveal twisting curves and windy roads.
At the crossroads head towards Radda in Chianti and Volpaia (a splendid little hamlet), a mass of curves and bends lead you to Pietrafitta. The beautiful Castellina in Chianti is also a diabolical crossroads: this is a last chance to leave the SR222. He who remains faithful to the Chiantigiana will be rewarded with: ample bends with views of woods and cypress trees, an Etruscan necropolis (of the Poggino), and the hamlet of Fonterutoli (castle and winery), ending at Querciagrossa. Approaching is Siena: to describe this city in a few words is impossible: let yourself be transported and give yourself ample time, and you will be left thunderstruck.