Skip to main content


Another one!? I know. From October to December Southern Tuscany is all about Olive Oil festivals. But remember, we are not talking about yet another old and greasy oil; we are talking about Tuscany's prime and freshly pressed Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO).

So even if you have already run into Gerard Depardieu tasting EVOO in the Crete Senese or you are still hanging in the trees, busy with your own olive picking - it's time for a break. Grab your car keys and get down to San Quirico d'Orcia.
For starters beautiful San Qurico is surrounded by the stunning Orcia Valley (with Bagno Vignoni and Pienza just round the corner). So even if there was no festival you'd want to stop by anyway. And if you have already been, you know that every excuse will do to come back to this part of the world.

San Quirico is beaming with a 4-days program that includes EVOO tastings and a multitude of events for children and adults alike. Bring your swim suit, in case you plan to stop over at the hot springs in nearby Bagno Vignoni or San Filippo. But remember to do so before hitting San Quirico. All those bruschettas soaked in EVOO don't go too well with hanging out in hot water.

The gourmet stands are open from Thursday 8 December to Sunday 11 December from 10 am until late at night. Below just a few of the fun things to do in San Quirico during the 4 days of the Festa dell'Olio:
Today: from 3.30pm the fun Fantomatik Orchestra is hitting the streets of the town. 
Friday 9 December 3.30pm the 'old-fashioned' Moto Folk duo tours San Qurico, singing a selection of Italian folk songs.
Saturday 10 at 3.00pm and on Sunday 11 December at 10.45am Trekking dell'Olio leading through San Quirico's cultural and historic heritage, accompanied - obviously - by EVOO tasting and a final glass of wine (or two). 

Check the website of San Quirico d'Orcia's tourist office for the full program of the Festa dell'Olio 2011. 

Popular posts from this blog


A quick round up of my favorite wild hot springs and historic bath towns in Tuscany (more detailed information on spas and rock pool bathing can be found in the single articles the links will lead you to).  WILDERNESS POOLS   PETRIOLO  half an hour to the south of Siena. With its steaming hot water in the upper row of pools a favorite of mine on icy cold winter mornings. The Farma river passes right next to the hot springs. So be courageous and have a splash to try the benefits of kneipping.   SATURNIA  the biggest, most southern and also Italy's best known (and loved!) wilderness pools. The closest option for a soak if you arrive from Rome. To be avoided on weekends.  FOSSO BIANCO  in the Val d'Orcia is a spectacular sight hidden away in the woods below Bagni San Filippo. The shady surroundings make of these natural springs a nice location in the summer.  BAGNO VIGNONI  has a lovely pool below the small waterfall. However, the water arrives from the medieval t


In the wine world the Tuscan coast equals Bolgheri and Sassicaia. No other wine has done as much to turn the lay-back beach side paradise south of Livorno into a famous wine growing region as the prestigious Sassicaia from Tenuta San Guido. But whilst the rise of Supertuscans blended from French grape varieties may resemble a fairy tale story, it shouldn't keep you fro m drinking Sangiovese wines in the smaller and lesser known wineries along the Tuscan shore. 


The Fosso Bianco hot springs and natural pools in Bagni San Filippo If there's one thing I didn't expect when moving to Tuscany, it's the multitude of freely accessible natural hot springs. Day spas and thermal baths can be found all over the world. But when talking hot baths in the wilderness my first guess would always have been a geyser in Iceland.  The generous natural pools near Saturnia  and the hot springs in Petriolo taught me differently. Both places are well known in Italy, a fact that can make them packed on weekends and public holidays. If you like to take your bath a bit more privately, move on towards Val d'Orcia and explore the Fosso Bianco hot springs   near Bagni San Filippo. The waters are as hot as they should be for some comfortable soaking and high in sulfur and calcium (which explains the formation of the white rock and the name of the place).