My home is in Umbria, Italy. Just barely.
A couple of kilometers away – to the northwest – lies Umbria’s border with Tuscany, and a few kilometers further away – to the southwest – lies its border with Lazio.
One of my favorite drives in all of Italy is along the Tuscany/Umbria border – in particular between my home and the medieval town of Sarteano, on roads labeled SP21, SP321 and SP308.
It doesn’t matter which road you choose first, as all can be reached from different points just west of the A1 Autostrada. The route is elevated, and winds its way between Mount Cetona to the west and the Val di Chiana to the east.
And it’s like driving through a postcard. Vast vineyards, olive groves and wheat fields sweep across the landscape, and views of distant Lago Trasimeno and so many medieval hill towns – Città della Pieve, Chiusi and Ficulle, to name a few – are breathtaking.
It’s an ideal route to meander in the evening, at the close of a slow, summer day, because the setting sun spreads a layer of gold across the fields, and illuminates the hill top villages and mountains in the distance.
The real treat of taking this route is that it’s tucked away in the southeastern reaches of Tuscany – a part of the region that few venture into, with lots of hamlets and villages that will likely never make it into a guide book. Isn’t that wonderful?!
This spectacular part of Tuscany is truly – thankfully – off the beaten strada.