April 4, 2014, 04:26 PM
Agriturismo in Chianti Region in August. Air conditioning??
We have a trip booked for mid-August to celebrate a banner birthday. I know September is a better option for weather but we do not have that option with children in school. We have booked our stay in an agriturismo in the Chianti region of Tuscany. It sits atop a hill overlooking the Chianti region. There is no air conditioning and I'm starting to panic. Are we going to be miserable? The owner said because of how it's situated on top of a hill it gets nice breezes. It that going to be enough?? Eeks.
April 4, 2014, 05:30 PM
Yes, trust the agriturismo owner! If they haven't needed A/C up to now, there is a reason. Many of the farm houses are built right on the crest of hills so they get really nice breezes AND many have really thick walls, great for keeping the indoors cool even on hot summer days.
Cities tend to be hotter in August while the countryside is generally very enjoyable (except if there is no breeze and you're out at the hottest hour but that's anywhere). That's when you have a long lunch generally - to be in the shade and enjoy the breezes and stay out of the sun at that time ;-)
April 4, 2014, 09:42 PM
Thank you Lourdes! You've put my mind at ease.
We are trying to get a loose idea of an itinerary...at least narrow down our list of towns to visit. Can you recommend some quaint towns where we can experience traditional Italian life? We are smack dab in the middle of Florence, Pisa and Siena. Bear in mind that we do have young children so we don't want to overdue it and make them miserable. We plan to relax at the agriturismo a few days and just let the kids enjoy the pool and take cooking lessons with the chef. But we do want to do some sightseeing as well.
Some towns we have on our radar are Lucca, Siena, Pienza, Volterra, Montepulciano, or the closest seaside town?? Open to others not listed here.
April 10, 2014, 10:08 AM
With 3 kids, you definitely want to take it easy and remain flexible as far as what gets done. Also keep in mind you're coming mid-August - high season as far as the beach goes and many things are quiet/closed down on August 15 as it is a national holiday. If you're here then, plan to spend that day at the agriturismo.
Definitely spend time in the local area. In Chianti, you can see and enjoy gelatos and walking around the main square/sitting at a cafe while the kids run around and use up some energy (the main square is closed to traffic). Are you closest to Greve? There is a market there on Saturdays. All of the towns have playgrounds, not right in the main piazza but somewhere nearby.
You should also see Radda and Castellina in Chianti, as well as Panzano. Depending on the ages of your kids and their tolerance for a long day out, you could do a day in the Val d'Orcia (this is where Montepulciano and Pienza are located).
Another day in Volterra.
A day in Siena.
A half day in San Gimignano, the rest at the agriturismo.
A day in Pisa and Lucca (half a day in each).
Of course, you could also plan a day in Florence.
But whether you will be able to accomplish all this will only be seen once you're here. I don't think you will be able to do it all, because I highly recommend doing less to enjoy everything more. Don't pack too many things in one day and consider the driving times there and back. Pisa/Lucca are not far but putting them together in an all-day outing could be too much for them, so you really just want to have a general idea of the possibilities but see as you go what you end up doing each day.
Definitely do spend time at the agriturismo and relax by the pool - do the cooking lesson there (you can have these two lady chefs come out to you) and wine tastings in the area.
I'd avoid the seaside just because it is over an hour drive to the coast and you need to get there by 8am if you don't want it to be too crowded. You can do it, but that means one day less of sightseeing elsewhere ;-).
Orvieto is too far, it isn't in Tuscany anymore so I'd leave that completely out (I deleted the new thread you started to keep your questions together - I had already answered yesterday over here too, did you see it?)