Wine and excellent food continue as the main protagonists in events this weekend as they move from Florence, where Wine Town 2013 just took place, to Chianti with two wine and food manifestations.
La Mostra del Chianti
Centered in the small town of Montespertoli, the 56th edition of the “Mostra del Chianti” will start this Saturday May 26 and continue for over a week until June 2. The wine event includes conferences, wine tastings and shows that are just the side dish to the main course: Chianti wine produced in this area.
The most important wine producers in the area will be present in the main square of Montespertoli, Piazza Machiavelli, in stands to present their labels to the public.
The program for the 9 days of the Mostra del Chianti is full of various types of entertainment and events, concentrated overall on the last two days of the manifestation while the stands will be open every day but with different times each day. Keep reading »
Saturday, May 18 is the Night at the Museum, an initiative taking place across all of Europe – and which means free entrance into many, many museums and special events!
What’s Happening in Florence
In Florence, Palazzo Vecchio will be open for free visits from 6pm to midnight, including the walk around the patrol paths on the ramparts overlooking Piazza della Signoria (but you need to reserve). The tower will close at normal hours at 6pm.
Additional free activities offered with reservations (for all, 8 years and older) at Palazzo Vecchio:
7pm – Invitation into Cosimo’s Kingdom
9pm – Visit to the Palace
9:30pm – At Court with Isabella
Info and bookings at 055 2768224.
We usually think of Florence as a city of art, but in the next few days it is going to turn into the city of wine!
On Friday, May 17 and Saturday, May 18, from 3 to 11pm, Florence will be hosting the 4th edition of WineTown, a manifestation focused on excellent, high quality wines and great food, along with cultural and musical events taking place over the historical center in piazzas and historical palazzos.
WineTown has become one of the most awaited food and wine events in Florence, one that wine aficionados and lovers of great food cannot miss.
Taking part of the event are important historical brands such as Antinori, the Consortium of Chianti Classico and Chianti Ruffino but also small producers of high quality labels. Keep reading more »
Between May 7 and 12, Florence is host to the European Festival with over 100 cultural events, shows and more to celebrate Europe.
Among the events you should not miss out on: the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino performs Verdi’s Don Carlo on May 12 at 3:30pm while on May 11 at 8:30pm there will be a concert conducted by the great Zubin Metha.
The Festival closes with a Blue Night that lasts 72 hours all across Florence, starting the morning of Saturday, May 11.
The events are numerous so the difficulty is just in deciding what to see, where to go! The majority are within the historical center so that will make it easier to participate in several of them, even if they take place at around the same times.
Whether you love classical, jazz, raggae or latin music, you will find something for all tastes. Piazza della Repubblica will be the center for musical events taking place over the weekend, although not the only one. Read the full article on the Blue Night >>
Whether you’re a cyclist aficionado or not, prepare yourselves for an exciting Sunday as the Giro d’Italia passes through Tuscany and Florence this weekend!
Sunday, May 12 marks Day 9 of the cycling race across Italy. The day will start in Sansepolcro in southeastern Tuscany, about 40km to the east of Arezzo, and pass through Anghiari.
It then heads north to Bibbiena and through the Casentino valley. Then the route takes cyclists on up through the Pratomagno mountains passing by Castel San Niccolò, Montemignaio and breaking through at the Passo della Consuma. The route heads down to Pelago before heading up to Vallombrosa, then back down toward Pontassieve before making its way north to Vetta Le Croci, Fiesole and finally Florence. Keep reading »
Home to the Piccolomini family and to Pope Pius II, the palazzo conserves the history of the noble family that shaped the town of Pienza into what it is today.
Aside from the palace and its permanent exposition, a temporary exhibit “Count Silvio, the Last Piccolomini in the City of Pius II” is going on right now on the last of the Piccolomini family, Count Silvio, who left the palazzo and all of its contents to the Società di Pie Disposizioni upon his death 50 years ago.
Would you like to spend a special evening listening to some of the most famous operas in the world, without the need to go to a full opera?
The Odeon theater hall just off Piazza Strozzi and the Ensemble San Felice present a new initiative for lovers of classical music. A “Night at the Opera” offers a series of evenings of concerts and famous Italian operas in a reduced scenic stage (singers with accompanying piano) but with full screen video projections within the splendid art decò Odeon theater that offers exceptional acoustics.
Try it out – starting tonight. wotj Gioseppe Verdi’s Traviata! Here’s the program:
May, Thursday 2: 8.45 pm
Giuseppe Verdi: LA TRAVIATA (Semi-staged Highlights from the Opera)
One of the most popular operas about the tormented and overwhelming love affair between the courtesan Violetta and the young Alfredo Germont. His father, Giorgio Germont, is against their marriage. Will they be able to be together?
Wednesday is May 1 and International Labor Day so most everything is closed as everyone takes a well deserved rest off… but if you’re visiting Florence and Tuscany, you’re likely wondering what you can do. The Uffizi and Accademia galleries will be closed but don’t despair, there is still plenty of other places you can visit.
Actually, this is the perfect occasion to visit some of those spots that are less well known even if not less fascinating, such as the Medici villas just outside of Florence (such as the one in the photo above, the Villa La Petraia).
Those that prefer to remain within the city’s boundaries can head to Piazza della Signoria around 3.30pm to watch the Trofeo Marzocco, where groups of flag-throwers from all over Italy will be competing against each other for the Marzocco trophy. The fascinating competition should end around 5.30pm with the declaration of the winning team.
Last day of the traditional Flower Exhibition in the Giardino dell’Orticoltura, here you can also visit the ancient Tepidarium just restored.
If you wish to visit a museum, these are the ones that are open on May 1*:
Last Supper of S. Salvi (8.15-13.50)
Archeological Museum (8.30-19)
Palazzo Davanzati Museum(8.15-13.50)
Bargello Museum – (8.15-16.50, reservations required)
Boboli Gardens (8.15-18.30)
Opificio delle Pietre Dure (8.15-19.30)
S. Maria Novella Museum (9-17.30)
Palazzo Vecchio (9-24) and the Arnolfo tower (9-21)
Museo dei Ragazzi of Palazzo Vecchio (9-17)
Casa Buonarroti (10-17)
Casa di Dante (10-18)
Opera del Duomo Museum (9-19.30)
Palazzo Strozzi, with its exhibition “The Spring of the Renaissance” (9-20)
Galileo Museum (9.30-18)
The Galileo Museum offers also guided visits (in italian) to the collections at 10, 12pm and 330pm. Reservation needed by calling the number 055 265311. Keep reading »
For several years Florence has been offering residents and visitors alike a special night called Notte Bianca (white night) which can be spent outdoors in the main city piazzas and in the city museums open for the occasion past midnight. The Notte Bianca takes place tomorrow evening, April 30th.
The program for the night is very rich and varied in order to offer something for everyone. There are installations in several piazzas and in the museums, as well as clown shows for children, artistic plays and music performances of all tastes.
Inspiration for this year’s event is Jonathan Livingston’s famous novella “The Seagull” and the theme of flight (“The higher the seagull flies, the farther he can see”), that shows up in various performances scheduled for the Notte Bianca.
Is this the new way to travel? We ran across this video of a 90 year old grandma trying out the new Oculus Rift virtual reality headpiece and she was “traveling” to Tuscany! So we then had to look that video up and it seems a pretty nice rendition of the Tuscan house and outdoor views – but can it replace the real thing? Tell us what you think!