OLIVE FARM IN TUSCANY. The beautifully restored traditional stone farmbuildings are set within ten acres of our certified organic olive grove, a five minute walk away from the small village of Seggiano and a great restaurant. With stunning views of rolling countryside and small hilltop villages, The CASETTA is a beautiful and comfortable independent one bedroom honeymoon cottage which can sleep three. The STUDIO is the ultimate studio apartment in the farmhouse building with independent entrance and a gorgeous terrace.
Situated on the shoulder of Monte Amiata, sacred mountain of the Etruscans, famous for its hot mineral water springs, our farm is a wonderful place to relax in between seeing the famous sights and discovering the secrets of this lesser known area of Tuscany. The area is unspoilt and still a habitat for wild flowers, birds and animals such as boar, porcupine, hare and deer. For more pictures see the holidays page on our site www.seggiano.co.uk.
What to expect from the area: In a really wonderful undiscovered corner of southern Tuscany, the medieval hilltop village of Seggiano lies at a height of 550m on the slopes of Monte Amiata, an extinct volcano and sacred mountain of the Etruscans. The summit is good for walks through the cool beech forests and mushroom hunting in the appropriate season. In April and early May wildflowers abound; the countryside and views are breathtaking.
There's a strong local culture of traditional food and wine production and we make sure that our guests know where to find the best places to eat and interesting places to visit. Stefania's restaurant offers an excellent meal, an aperitivo or a capuccino just a short walk from the farm.
Despite being 'off the beaten track' the famous centres of Italian Renaissance culture are within easy reach by car; Siena is sixty km and Florence, Arezzo and Assisi are about one and a half hours away. To the south of the mountain, towards the coast (75km) one can find Roman and Etruscan sights
In terms of the immediate vicinity the surrounding villages have shops for all non-specialist supplies, good fresh (often locally grown) food, a cinema, gym and a choice of restaurants. Grosseto is the nearest large commercial centre with national and international rail connections. The only period in which the area gets crowded is August when mostly Italian tourists escape the heat in the cities for the refreshing mountain walks and air of Amiata.
In general the countryside in southern Tuscany is wilder and far less manicured than in the north of the region. There are really brilliant walking itineraries (not for mid summer) and the natural surroundings, birdsong, wildflowers and wild herbs are truly sublime in springtime.
There are many decent restaurants in the area and some really excellent ones. We can supply you with details and suggested itineraries for day trips.
For more info see the 'holidays in Tuscany' link on our website, please contact us for web site address.
Swimming: The thermal hot pools, which can be found around the mountain due its volcanic history, are fantastic in cooler weather. The nearest, Bagno Vignone (20 minutes) is a calcium spa swimming pool, whilst Bagno San Felippo, Saturnia and Petriolo have more sulphurous water. A good way to de-stress is to have a soak under the cascade at one of the 'terme', letting the water massage back and shoulders. There is a choice of 'funky' natural pools to visit, or entrance fee-paying swimming pools.
For summer bathing there is a nice privately run pool in the next village, Castel del Piano, (about 10 minutes by car), dips in local streams or a trips to the seaside or Lake Bolsena.
Yes, we make olive oil!
We, Peri and David (who is the one pictured), met by chance in Ciampino airport. We had independently decided to miss the free meal offered to passengers when the flight was delayed and, after spending a few hours with our respective friends in Rome, returned to a deserted airport. We were the only two civilians at Ciampino, as the flight had been transferred to the other airport. So, call it destiny or chance, but we shared a taxi and discovered that we went to North London primary schools in the same road and that we shared a mutual love for southern Tuscany.
We have been farming olives there, just outside the village of Seggiano, since the 80's, where I had bought a smallholding after visiting the area for teachings from a very unusual Tibetan teacher.
Still learning as we go along, we have the help of farming friends and neighbours. Our hobby turned into a serious business venture when David was suddenly made redundant. You can check out www.seggiano.com to see where we have got to so far with our efforts.
By now we are well known by, and integrated with the local community by now, largely because we work with a lot of producers. Our house was never a holiday villa, but always a working farm.
The property has been slowly improved and renovated over the years, and it's been our aim to incorporate green technology wherever possible. Our land is certified organic and we are also dedicated mulchers and composters!
We still travel too much and hop between Seggiano and London, where our distribution base is. And we are still in love with Southern Tuscany.