TUSCANY - songs of springtime

19th - 25th April 2021

with Doug and Valda

"Happiness?  The color of it must be spring green, impossible to describe until I see a just-hatched lizard sunning on a stone.  That color, the glowing green lizard skin, repeats in every new leaf.   ...  The regenerative power of nature explodes in every weed, stalk, branch.  Working in the mild sun, I feel the green fuse of my body, too. Surges of energy, kaleidoscopic sunlight through the leaves, the soft breeze that makes me want to say the word "zephyr" - this mindless simplicity can be called happiness."
-  Frances, Mayes, Bella Tuscany: The Sweet Life in Italy, 1999 


April is the month when there Italians come out of hibernation and celebrate the arrival of the longer days and warmer weather. Flower festivals take place in April and the rolling hills burst into bloom with a riot of joyful exuberance. By mid-April the poppies should be flourishing between the vines and the Marguerite daisies starting to appear.

Val d’Orica and Chianti are of course very well known and visited by the masses. And rightly so. Cliches are cliches for a reason - they offer great beauty and everything we fondly associate with Tuscany. We intend to  travel a  little further afield, trying to tease out the lesser-known nooks and crannies of this most beguiling of landscapes. There will still be plenty of opportunity to photograph the gently sculpted hills and lone trees for which the area is so famous.

Of course, we will still be surrounded by breathtaking Tuscan hills, olive groves and vineyards. And we will spend much time ambling around the  winding cobbled alleyways of rustic hilltop villages with their red tiled roofs and golden ochre stone, bleached so beautifully by the sun.  However, in doing so, we will be searching for a personal view of this wonderful place - trying to capture its idyllic charm with our own fresh eyes.


We certainly won’t be hard-pressed to find inspiration, but if creative juices do run  dry,  then perhaps a taste of one of the Super Tuscans will restore our equilibrium. We will visit an internationally acclaimed winery   offering us a tour of the ancient cellars and Medieval castle.

We are very excited to be returning to this area and to have the opportunity to engage on a very personal level with the people living and working here. We very much hope you can join us.



Social media, Valda

Social media, Bailey Chinnery

Social media, Doug