For seven nights we stay at
the 3 star Albergo di Murlo. The hotel is located in the village of
Vescovado di Murlo about 20km south of Siena. It is an
excellent base in the heart of Tuscany’s best
walking country. The location is quiet yet not far from bustling
Siena. In Vescovado di
Murlo there are small cafes and shops, a bank and a pharmacy. The historic
old walled village of Murlo with its Etruscan museum is nearby with
its palazzone (big palace) which was once the summer residence of
the Bishop of Siena. Today it houses an archaeological museum
displaying fascinating Etruscan artefacts found in local archaeological digs.
Albergo di Murlo is owned and run by the
hospitable Rubegni family and three generations all take great pride in
their hotel. The restaurant
serves excellent Tuscan food all carefully supervised by Mama.
There is a large swimming pool
(probably not warm enough in May), and an outdoor terrace where it is
pleasant to sip a cold drink.
modern and comfortable with twin or queen beds, TV with satellite
channels, free Wifi, private bathroom with shower and hairdryer.
Eating and Drinking:
Food is important in Italy. Breakfast includes fresh-baked brioches with
home-made jam, coffee,
juice, yoghurt and cereal. Lunches are either picnics or
sometimes we are in a village where it is possible to sample local
food at a cafe or pizzeria. Dinners are taken family style and are an Italian event. Some nights we dine at the Albergo di Murlo
where the chef prides herself
in cooking with only fresh local produce. For variety, some nights we have dinner in nearby restaurants. House
wine is included but if anyone wants to sample some of the great
Tuscan wines like Brunello there is always a bottle available in the
wine cellar (not included);
One can eat, drink and enjoy... after walking you deserve
it and in Italy it is expected.
The restaurants can provide vegetarian options.
During our walks there are occasional opportunities to stop for a
gelato ice-cream. Be sure to try blood orange or lemon-basil
flavours. The bakeries and pastry shops are tempting as well.
Most Tuscan towns have opportunities for
wine-tasting. Many of the local vine-yards have their products displayed in