Places to visit
Scansano is just 20 minutes drive away inland. Here you can find more local amenities such as banks, supermarket, bakery, bars and restaurants. The old town is under an archway and is well worth a walk around.
Magliano in Toscana is just 10 minutes drive away and is a lovely little town inside castle walls. You can walk around the top of the walls and admire the view. Here you can find shops, wine tasting shops, restaurants and a delicious ice-cream parlour.
Talamone is a romantic town on Tuscany's Etruscan Riviera. It is also the most historic places on this stretch of coast and definitely worthwhile of a visit. Surrounded by Torquoise water on either side, dominated by its castle with magnificent stretches of coastline. There is no question why directors of "Quantum of Solace" the latest epic in the James Bond saga, used Talmone as the background to one of the films most beautiful scenes when James Bond goes to his friend Mathis' villa to find him drinking white wine with his beautiful Itailan girlfriend on the terrace looking North to Talamone. From Albinia head north on the Aurelia ss1 and follow the signs for Talamone.
Porto Santo Stefano is a picturesque harbour town with lots of shops, bars and restaurants. it has lots going on in the summer months such as wine tasting festivals, open air concerts etc. You can catch a ferry to Giglio island or Giannutri from here. You can also hire a boat for the day or go scuba diving.
Giglio island Is one of my favourite places. Park your car in the car park as soon as you get down into Porto Santo Stefano and then catch the ferry. Once in Giglio you go to the icecream parlour up the little road opposite where you get off the ferry and buy 3 bus tickets each. Use onr to go up to the ‘Castello’ first: The old village built inside castle walls. then use the 2nd to catch the bus to the beach ‘Campese’ then the 3rd ticket to catch the bus back to the Port. Once at campese there are a few shops and a bakery where you can buy some food for a picnic on the beach (but they close at 1pm). It is an absolutely lovely day out.
Siena is a very pretty town is rich in medieval architecture, and the city has the reputation of being the best-preserved medieval town in Italy, with its many cobblestone alleys and ancient piazzas. The historical part of the city is not large, and can easily be explored by foot. Be sure to visit the Duomo of Siena, one of the most magnificent cathedrals in all of Italy. The cathedral has a very attractive black and white marble facade and an inlaid marbled floor depicting various biblical events, as well as carvings by Michelangelo. Siena also has numerous museums, and there are frequent concerts featuring international musicians. During the summer there is the famous “il Palio”, a bareback horse race around the central piazza. The town is also known for its delicious sweet desserts
Saturnia is a lovely little village up on the hill. The hotel/health spa on the approach to the village has outdoor swimming pools filled with the natural water from the hot sulphur springs. You can have a cheaper day out though at the hot water falls which is on the left before the road starts to climb up to Saturnia. Here you can soak away in the natural warm jacuzzi’s which have formed on the hillside.
Sorano is an ancient Etruscan town that stands on a high summit that has weathered to resemble a natural cliff and is surrounded by impressive walls to make it one of the most secure defensive systems in the county of Pitigliano. The lovely fortress commands from a high, one of the most esteemed examples of military architecture of the Italian Renaissance period. The Orsini Palace and the large Etruscan necropolis are also recommended visiting.
Sovana was an important centre from Etruscan times and up to the 12th century. From the 1960s, improvement and restoration projects have restored its particular evocative atmosphere. A real architectural jewel is the cathedral, built in the 9th century and modified between the 11th and 12th
Pitigliano Is a characteristic village that is situated on a rock called “Tufo”. The name comes from the special mineral of the rock. Here You will find old houses inside the rock with a myriad of designs and formations.
Montepulciano is a splendid town known as "The Pearl of the 16th century" because of its artistic and architectural vestiges has conserved its beauty intact. As the visitor walks up its steep streets they discover the beautiful buildings and churches where the best Renaissance architects impressed their incomparable artistic talent. One shouldn't miss the magnificent Piazza Grande, the Cathedral with its incomplete façade, the Town Hall and the Renaissance buildings all around the square. In the valley below, set in an unforgettable landscape, is the elegant Temple of San Biagio.
San Gimignano Overlooks a typical landscape of olive groves and vineyards the town is on three different levels. The Rocca occupies the highest part of San Gimignano. Just below it is the old pre-thirteenth century part of town which is surrounded by walls and further down the fourteenth century part which is in turn surrounded by walls. During the period when it was a free municipality several buildings emerged around the Cathedral square: the "Palazzo del Podestà" (with its large arch and high Rognosa Tower); the "Palazzo del Popolo" which houses important frescoes of the time and the "Torre Grossa" (big tower) next to it. In the gallery of San Gimignano (in the Town Hall) the "Madonna in Gloria tra i Santi Gregorio e Benedetto" by Pinturicchio is of particular interest.
Pisa isn’t one of my favourite places to visit but its worth popping to see the Leaning tower of Pisa!
Florence and Rome are wonderful cities that have so much to offer they are definitely worth a visit or a few days holiday there.
If you are feeling adventurous and want to go to see Rome or Florence, check out the train times from Albinia (usually 7.30am first one). Much easier to jump on the train, especially for Rome (parking can be a nightmare in Rome) There is a car park in Albinia just after the level crossing on your left, then walk back to the station. (buy your ticket from the machine but remember to stamp it in the little box on the wall before you travel. Florence is quite easy to drive to but may take a few hours.
Obviously there are loads of places to visit but these are just some of the places I would go and see on your first visit to Pereta and the area. Definately enough for a busy week (or two) of exploring!