September 7, 2003 |
In the Hollywood version of Frances Mayes' 1996 bestselling memoir "Under the Tuscan Sun," there are no car chases. No murders or ghosts, either, though some of the filmmakers who vied for the project suggested them to spice up the tale of an American academic renovating a dilapidated villa in the Italian countryside. There is, however, a dashing Italian lover -- something missing from the story as Mayes actually lived it.
March 15, 2009 |
The grapevines of southern Tuscany rest in winter. You see them in soldierly rows around the hill towns of Montepulciano and Montalcino, tethered to stakes like crucifixes, brown, gnarled and seemingly dead. Not so. This dormant time in the life cycle of the grape is the beginning of rich and fruitful life to come, which even winter travelers can appreciate by touring wineries in the hill country about 50 miles southeast of Siena.
September 22, 1996 |
Fall comes swiftly to Tuscany, and you'll know it's arrived when the trees atop this city's ancient wall and along the streets begin shedding their leaves. In a matter of days, the trees will be barren and their branches will look like flimsy, grubby gossamer.
January 10, 1999 |
Arctic birds, Japanese snow monkeys and a solar eclipse--this could be an interesting year for you, if you take the right tour. For the sixth year, we've asked Ann Waigand, editor of the Educated Traveler newsletter, for a list of the 10 "thinking tours" that she finds most intriguing, of which many are sponsored by museums. Waigand's top 10 for 1999 follow, in calendar order. Note that prices are per person, based on double occupancy. Travelers should be sure they understand which meals and excursions are included (and excluded)
April 5, 1998 |
My husband Mischa and I zipped through the undulating Tuscan countryside in our rented apple green Opel. Suddenly in the luminous dusk, the red stone abbey of Monte Olivetto Maggiore soared out of the groves of pine, oaks and olives. After parking the car, we walked up to the monastery, one of Tuscany's most beautifully situated, eager to hear the Benedictine monks' Gregorian vespers, which wafted through the abbey's portal.
July 28, 2002 |
The guidebook had let us down badly in the choice of a hotel at Lake Garda, and now we were heading south to Pistoia in Tuscany and certain doom. The next hotel on our itinerary had come from the same wretched book. "This place we're going to is so bad," I joked to my wife, Jennifer, "that the Italian government has tried to house refugees in it and they refuse to go." The decision to visit this less traveled part of Tuscany had been a gamble in more ways than one.