10 things not to miss between Amiata and Val d’Orcia - small tourist guide

Val d’Orcia, Amiata and Maremma .. green lines that stretch to infinity, the roar of the thermal waterfalls and the avenues bordered by cypresses that touch medieval villages and Renaissance treasures. Recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, the Val d’Orcia is ready to allow itself to be visited among the silent frames of an ancient historic residence: the charming Borgo Tepolini bed and breakfast. We are in the green heart of the provinces between Grosseto and Siena, at the foot of Mount Amiata in the hills of the Val d’Orcia with ancient olive groves and farmhouses that enchant you as you pass. Starting from Borgo Tepolini B&B it is easy to reach the main towns of the Val d’Orcia Grossetana and Senese and on the western side of Monte Amiata such as Arcidosso, Santa Fiora, San Quirico d’Orcia, Radicofani and Bagno Vignoni, a renowned spa in Tuscany. The cities of art such as Siena, Montepulciano and Pienza are also nearby. And here are the 10 fundamental steps to be able to appreciate the beauty of the places !! A few days to spend between the cities of art and the natural beauty of the Val d’Orcia...Let’s go!

Surroundings Castles and fortresses between Val d’Orcia and Amiata Spiritual paths between Amiata and Maremma



Village famous all over the world for Brunello, Montalcino dominates the valleys of the Asso, Ombrone and Arbia from the top of a hill. Famous above all as the home of this precious wine, Montalcino is however a town with an intact medieval village, pleasant to walk around, where you can make beautiful walks waiting for the time to enter a restaurant to enjoy the local specialties and, of course, a good glass of Brunello.


Abbey of Sant’Antimo

It is located only 9 km from the town of Montalcino. According to legend, it was born on the remains of a chapel built by Charlemagne in 781 AD. The abbey is a magnificent example of Lombard-French Romanesque art. Built in alabaster and onyx, it has an extraordinary apse formed by radial chapels and also capitals decorated with geometric, floral and animal figures. You can attend the services sung in Gregorian. Magnificent view of the Val d’Orcia.


Bagno Vignoni and Bagni San Filippo

The Amiata seen from the pool of Bagno Vignoni, against the backdrop of the Val d’Orcia, is one of the most beautiful panoramas in the province of Siena. The hot water that flows here is another of the many gifts of the ancient mountain. Bagno Vignoni is a medieval village, although the origin of the thermal baths, like that of Bagni San Filippo, is in all probability Etruscan; A few kilometers away are the Baths of Bagni di San Filippo. From the center of the village along the dirt road on the left you will arrive at the "Fosso Bianco", a stream immersed in the woods, where several hot springs flow into a succession of "pools" in the manner of natural pools. Along the way, to be crossed on foot, it is possible to admire the particular limestone formations that for the suggestive shapes have inspired different names such as the white whale or the glacier.


San Quirico d'Orcia

In the heart of the Val d’Orcia, there is the ancient village of probable Etruscan origin of San Quirico d’Orcia, located at 424 meters above sea level, immersed in a landscape made of hills, olive groves, vineyards and oak woods . The historic center is characteristic for its cobbled streets and stone fountains. In the Middle Ages, the town was on the route of the Via Francigena, testified by the presence of the Scala Hospital, a place where pilgrims were offered hospitality.



For the beauty of its Renaissance historic center, in 1996 Pienza became part of the UNESCO natural, artistic and cultural heritages, followed in 2004 by the same valley area where it stands: the Val d’Orcia. Much of the significant historical and artistic heritage of Pienza is concentrated in the suggestive square dedicated to Pope Pius II, a personality who has given so much to the town: the Renaissance Cathedral is immediately isolated and clearly visible, in front of the Town Hall and next to Palazzo Borgia and Palazzo Piccolomini. The hermitage is made up of rooms excavated in the sandstone by hermit monks, and is located near Pienza in the Val d’Orcia.



Legend has it that Montepulciano was an Etruscan settlement built by order of King Lars Porsenna. Historically, the city appears for the first time in 715 with the name of Castel Poliziano, always disputed between Florence and Siena because of its economic and strategic importance. The central core of Montepulciano is the main square: Piazza Grande. The complex of the square includes the Cathedral, the Town Hall, the Palazzo del Capitano del Popolo, and the Palazzi Nobili-Tarugi and Contucci. The Duomo stands on the site of the ancient Romanesque parish church of Santa Maria. Opposite the smaller side of the Palazzo Nobili-Tarugi we find the exceptional beauty of the Pozzo dei Grifi and dei Leoni, built in 1520 by Antonio da Sangallo the Younger.


Garden of Daniel Spoerri

Daniel Spoerri’s garden is located near Borgo Tepolini about 2 km away. away, in the municipality of Seggiano, in the Val d’Orcia from Grosseto. It is a large sculpture park that started in 1991, and is still developing today. The sculptural path develops on an estate of more than 16 hectares composed of various landscape profiles, within which the works integrate or contrast, now they hide there, now they stand there, however in dialogue with the space.


Castel del Piano

Castel del Piano has ancient origins, also proven by numerous finds (from the Paleolithic and Neolithic ages) found in the excavations of fossil flour widely present in the area. The municipality was named for the first time by sources with the ancient name of "Casale Plana" within some documents of the abbey of Monte Amiata dated 890. In the years from 1175 to 1331 it was a possession of the Aldobrandeschi counts of Santa Fiora. After the fall of the Republic of Siena, it became part of Cosimo de ’Medici’s possessions. The municipal area develops between the Val d’Orcia and the slopes of the Amiata


Santa Fiora

The hegemony of the Aldobrandeschi on the territories of Monte Amiata especially on the territory of Abbadia San Salvatore, will make Santa Fiora one of the most important centers of lower Tuscany, with the role of capital of the homonymous county since the tenth century. Santa Fiora deserves special mention for the popular traditions and for the environmental characteristics that it still preserves. The sources of the Fiora river fed, before they were destined for a network of aqueducts directed to the whole of southern Tuscany, a fishpond inserted in a highly suggestive wooded park, which completed the vast master garden of the Sforza-Cesarini, lords of Santa Fiora all the day after the fall of the Aldobrandeschi. Today the so-called Peschiera is still in existence and is used not only for trout and carp breeding but also as a tourist itinerary.


Abbadia San Salvatore

History has reserved to this location phases of temporal prestige in which the Monastery, first Benedictine then Cistercian, has exercised a prominent power in large territories located on the eastern and western sides of the Amiata. The abbey had mixed fortunes, also due to frequent clashes both with the powerful Aldobrandeschi family, with the Orsini and in general with the allies of the emperors, especially when they maintained conflicting relations with the Papacy of Rome; it was finally suppressed in 1782.