Roughly twenty miles south of Florence, the Chianti region is thought by many to be the most beautiful area in all of Italy, though one could argue that their judgment might be impaired by the emenso amount of vino one can drink here.
Famous for its eponymous red wine, the region contains numerous vineyards – roughly 18,000 acres of them, to be exact – both world-famous and new-to-the-scene, where visitors can take tours and sample different varietals, pop into gorgeous little towns that appear stuck in time, or just stare out across the lush countryside from the side of the road.
In addition to the vineyards, Chianti is also home to many wine shops (enotecas) which allow guests to sample the grapey goodness from several different vineyards at once – or, preferably, one at a time.
Transportation is necessary, so visitors should determine in advance if they want to go by scooter, car, a guided tour, or even by bike. Depending on how much sampling is on the docket, however, designated drivers are a wise consideration, especially for those going during the festival of Cantine Aperte on the last Sunday in May, when most wineries offer free tastings.