Montalcino Travel Guide

  • Montalcino
    by tomorino
  • Montalcino
    by angiebabe
  • Things to Do
    by GracesTrips

Montalcino Highlights

  • Pro
    JetlagCity profile photo

    JetlagCity says…

     beautiful rolling hills, vineyards, olive groves 

  • Con
    painterdave profile photo

    painterdave says…

     difficult to get to if you are not in a car 

  • In a nutshell
    sgny profile photo

    sgny says…

     Great day trip if you are touring Florence 

Montalcino Things to Do

  • Enoteca Pierangioli

    There are sooo many enotecas in Montalcino that it is probably difficult to visit all of them in just a few days. We went into the small, cozy looking ones to check them out. Some of them have beautiful cave like rooms that make you wish you had one in your house!

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  • Visit Poggio Rubino

    We visited this winery after we visited Altesino. You should probably visit Altesino last. The Poggio's Brunello was very good but Altesino's was better. You will have to pay for your wine tasting at Poggio but it's worth it. The tour is free. Again, you need to make an appointment to visit the winery and have a tasting. Also, when you are doing...

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  • Visit Altesino Vineyards!

    Altesino Winery & Estate is one of the premier wine makers of Brunello and Rossi di Montalcino. You must make an appointment for your visit which includes a tour and tasting. The process (tour & tasting) insures you have a good understanding why the wine is processed and released under strict regulations. It doesn't cost anything for the tour. And,...

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  • Grotta del Brunello Enoteca

    This was a great little wine bar with a little bit wine tasting available. There was a small fee for wine tasting or you can buy wine by the glass. We actually tasted some wonderful wines. They also sell other food items that made you wish you can buy it and take it home. Unfortunately, customs won't allow you to bring meat back. Worth the "look...

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  • Visit Castello Banfi

    One of the largest producing wineries in Montalcino is Banfi. You do not need an appointment to do some wine tasting at Banfi but you may need to make an appointment if you want to take the tour. There are two restaurants along with rooms/suites you can stay at. The wine is solidly good but I think the wine we tasted at Altesino and Poggio was even...

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  • Check out the Fortress!

    There is a very cool looking fortress at the top of the hill in Montalcino. Even though it's basically walls, you can see and imagine how it was used. The fortress was built in 1361. Located within the fortress is a wine bar that has a modern (evacuated machine hook-up) wine tasting facility. We took a glimpse inside but thought the wine tasting...

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  • Winery Tour at Biondi Santi

    Montalcino is surrounded by vineyards, and some of the wineries offer tours and tastings. Before we left London, I arranged for us to visit the famous Biondi Santi winery. The Biondi Santi family have been making wine in Montalcino for 150 years, and they are the ones that first produced Brunello di Montalcino. Their wines are renowned as being...

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  • Montalcino - around town

    Visiting Montalcino, you’ll spend much of your time on the main pedestrian stretch. This runs from Piazza Cavour at the north end of town with a small, hard to find parking area at the extreme north end here. Heading south you stroll down Via Mazzini, eventually running into Piazza del Popolo. This small very pleasant square is the heart of...

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  • Take a walk around the town

    Montalcino is a quaint little town that is perfect to explore on foot. Of course, you will have to do some hill climbing, but that's part of exploring, right? At the highest part of town you'll find the fortezza, start there and weave your way through the narrow streets and you'll find shops, restaurants, piazzas and lots of nice people.When you...

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Montalcino Hotels

Montalcino Restaurants

  • Friendly with delicious food

    The food was all done to perfection. We put Osteria al Giardino down as one of our “finds” and we’ll come back. The chef came out and chatted and as we left, he introduced his wife and newborn baby. All in all . . . a great Tuscan experience!Their speciality is local food with local ingredients . . . delicious and very reasonable in...

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  • Tipping

    In Italy, you do not really leave a tip. If you choose to do so, it's a matter of rounding up a euro or two at the most. Most restaurants basically collect a "tip" in their cover charge which could be a "using table" charge or by charging you for the bread they bring to the table. Some restaurants flat out have a convenience charge of €5.00.

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  • A Pastry & Cappuccino for Breakfast

    This was a small cafe where we stopped in to have coffee and a pastry for breakfast. They must also cater to the lunch crowd having snacks and gelato, as well.

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  • Dine at a Winery!

    OMG! This is what heaven must be like! What a beautiful restaurant and I would have been quite satisfied with the breads and olive oil. Poggio makes their own olive oil and it is fantastic! If you make an appointment for wine tour and tasting, you will have an opportunity to also buy the olive oil. I certainly did!Returning to the restaurant, we...

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  • Fantastic Food and Wine!

    Most of the Italian restaurants we ate at, the pasta has been cooked perfectly al dente! This restaurant was no exception. Great food, great wine - Rosso di Montalcino.

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  • Ristorante - Enoteca

    We had just parked the car upon our arrival to Montalcino. We did not have reservations to stay the night but before we worked on that, we wanted to get a bite to eat. This was the first place we happened upon and it looked quaint. We walked in and we were the only customers at about 2pm or so. We noticed some of the appetizers were priced with a...

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Montalcino Nightlife

  • sue_stone's Profile Photo
    Wine tasting at Enoteca La Fortezza 4 more images

    by sue_stone Written Oct 5, 2006

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    When you visit Montalcino's fortress, you will see the tempting wine bar located in the castle grounds. After an energetic climb up to the castle's towers and a wander along the walls you will surely have earned yourself a refreshing glass of Brunello ; )

    Take a seat at a table inside, or if the weather permits, grab a table on the terrace, located in the castle's courtyard.

    The Enoteca La Fortezza stocks countless varieties of Brunello di Montalcino, plus other varieties of Italian wines. It is a fabulous place to enjoy a glass or two and perhaps snack on some pecorino cheese or salami as well.

    You can also do wine tastings - order 3, 5 or 7 tastings and they will bring you just a little of each wine of your choice, or they will chose a selection for you. It is a great way to try a few different Brunellos without shelling out 10 euro per glass.

    For the more adventurous, Enoteca La Fortezza also offer Olive Oil tasting - think I'll stick to the wine.

    Dress Code: Rug up - it can cool as the sunsets

    Related to:
    • Food and Dining
    • Wine Tasting

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Montalcino Transportation

  • You'll definitely want a car.

    While it is possible to get to Montalcino by bus, the best way to get to see the beautiful surrounding area is to drive. Whether it be driving up the winding hill roads or visiting sites or other close by towns, you have much more flexibility with a car.You don't want a big car though. The roads are narrow and winding, so a smaller car is a lot...

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  • Getting to Montalcino and parking

    Italy has a reputation for crazy drivers, particularly in places like Rome and Naples. As we were not visiting any big cities we decided to brave driving in Italy, and I am pleased to say it all went without a hitch. Though, I must admit that driving in the teaming rain on the truck-infested autostrada wasn't my idea of fun…..however being able to...

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  • Montalcino Hotels

    17 Hotels in Montalcino

    154 Reviews and Opinions

Montalcino Shopping

  • Wanna by some wines?

    Walking around the streets of Montalcino, we found enotecas everywhere. From small shops around every corner to the large one in the Fortezza. You can stop in and taste a multitude of wines, purchase a bottle or ship some home.Each enoteca has their own special way of doing things. Some will have some snacks to go with the wines, others will be...

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  • Shipping home wines

    If you are planning to buy wine while traveling around Montalcino, be prepared for a shock when it comes to shipping charges. To ship a case of wine back to the states, the shipping charges are about 150 Euro or $225.Make sure you are either getting wines you can not buy back home or the price is too low to pass up. If you are going to buy a case...

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  • Enotecas - beverage, bit & shopping

    A good number of the shops in town are Enoteca’s. Wine is the major business of Montalcino, and these establishments cater to that. Sampling the local vintages at any of the Enoteca’s in town is a great/ inexpensive way to have a drink, and grab a bite (Most serving a variety of antipasto and other small tapas like plates). Of course you’ll have...

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Montalcino Local Customs

  • Mozart in the Vineyard

    We passed this sign nearly every day for two weeks, thinking that there must be occasional concerts at this specific winery. It turns out that Paradiso is doing an experiment with Bose. They have placed Bose speakers throughout the vineyards. Apparently they think that if they blast Mozart music out over the vines while the grapes are ripening it...

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  • Wine

    Montalcino is known for being the place that one of Italy's finest (and most expensive) wines is produced - Brunello di Montalcino. Brunello must not be released until at least 5 years after harvest, and is aged in both barrel and bottle.Also produced is Rosso di Montalcino, which is made from grapes that are not good enough to be used for...

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  • Civetta Super Bike

    Once a year there is a mountainbike competition in Montalcino. It's on a Sunday during September. (2005: 4 September). The interesting thing about it for a tourist is that you can have free lunch in the fortress. Chairs and tables are put on the courtyard of the castle and there are stands where you can get free wine, pasta, salade and cakes. It...

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Montalcino Warnings and Dangers

  • Herkbert's Profile Photo
    View down to the next street in Montalcino

    by Herkbert Written Jun 2, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Montalcino like many of the other hill towns in Tuscany has streets that can be pretty steep. The main streets are fairly flat, but the intersecting streets can be steep, not to mention a little slick if it rains.

    Not exactly easy for women in sandals or people who need to use a cane or walking stick.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Road Trip

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Montalcino Off The Beaten Path

  • Visit the beautiful Abbey of San Antimo

    As you leave Montalcino, you see a beautiful church down the hill. Resist the temptation to drive by and head down the little road to the church. It is the Abbey of San Antimo and is beautiful and peaceful, set in fields of poppies and olives. There are hiking trails and plenty of parking.The Abbey is open to visitors and some of the services are...

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  • Making Pasta

    The Hotel Il Giglio Montalcino is a family run hotel that specialises in caring attention to its guests. I was lucky enough to be able to photograph Anna and her mother making Pici for the hotel's restaurant. Pici is a hand made thick spaghetti. It took an hour to make enough pasta for an entree for 8 guests so it is pretty labour intensive....

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  • Castelnuovo del'Abate

    This is the small town right next to/above the Abbey of San Antimo. The photo is taken from just outside the doors of the abbey.In the town you have the chance to vist a nice, midieval Italian town, not inundated with tourists. It is small, but has a few nice looking restaurants. Just be prepared that as it is not a major tourist center, some...

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Montalcino Favorites

  • Amazing Tuscan countryside and views

    There is no denying that in general, the Tuscan landscape is very picturesque. We thought the most beautiful area of all was the Orcia valley, surrounding Montalcino. The valley is filled with rolling hills and dales, fruit laden vineyards, farming land and plenty of those lovely tall cypress trees which line driveways and circle homesteads. The...

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  • Narrow alleys

    We enjoyed walking in the small town of Montalcino where you will find narrow steep alleys towards the Duomo.

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  • Town of the famous Brunello

    Montalcino is a small town with a fortress, and lies on a hill surrounded by vineyards. These vineyards produce the most expensive wine of Italy "Brunello".

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