The Siena territory: a kaleidoscope of varying, sublime landscapes, enclosed in a fold of land around a city recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. To the north, the Chiantihills, known throughout the world for their endless strings of vineyards and villages, at their most beautiful in the autumn when they turn green, yellow, red and brown. To the south-east, the Crete Senesi, themselves a UNESCO World Heritage Site, a realm of badlands and clay that was known in the Middle Ages as the 'Desert of Accona,' thanks to its yellow aspect in summer, its lunar-like appearance in winter.
The Montagnolaarea to the north-west is less famous, but no less impressive for it. At the gates of the capital city, hiding under its chalky soil, are more than eighty karst caves. On the surface, meanwhile, you find woods of holly oak, where the precious yellow marblethat was used to build the Florence Cathedraland that of Orvieto is mined. Turning to Montemaggio, the highest point of the Sienese Montagnola, we find the beautiful town of Monteriggioniwith its walls which, as Dante noted in the Divine Comedy, encircle it completely.
The Grande Anello (Great Circle) of Siena includes these three areas, full of charm and variety: a journey of seventy kilometres to divide into four stages, along back roads and little dirt paths. You will see places famous for their awe-inspiring positions and hidden corners, rural religious buildings, parish churches and charterhouses, ghost villages, cypress-lined boulevards and small towns where you can restore yourself over a nice glass of something. Sienese Chianti, obviously!