Is there anything better than jumping on a car on a Friday morning and driving across Italy in order to reach one of the most beautiful gems of Tuscany?
Cortona is a small village located in the Arezzo area, just a few kilometers away from the border with Umbria. Thanks to its position – which is slightly above the sea level – Cortona is located in a strategic position in order to reach other artistic and cultural towns nearby. Its origins date back to BC as it was inhabited by the Etruscan.
Cortona is a very fascinating town thanks to its architectural, historical, and cultural heritage. It offers many cultural points of interest, including the Etruscan Academy Museum. Moreover, it is a very lively city characterized by a number of cultural events and festivals; the perfect destination for a long weekend away. Food and wine represent one of the most important features of the village offering a number of delicious local products.
As soon as we arrive to Cortona we check-in at Hotel Italia; located right in the heart of Cortona, this 15th-century mansion has been recently renovated with modern conveniences. Its interior is characterized by vaulted ceilings, timber beams, and medieval stone walls. It features 24 elegant, spacious, and luminous rooms. Hotel Italia – open all year long – represents the best accommodation if you want to spend a weekend away exploring the magnificence of the natural landscapes around, and if you wish to treat yourself to a delicious food and wine experience. We start our journey with some dinner at Bottega Baracchi.
Marinated fish with spices and citrus fruit, seasonal salad and passion fruit dressing
Salmon with Tuscan “teriyaky” sauce and crispy vegetables
“Tuscan susci” with spelt and cereals, local meat, vegetables and pecorino cheese
Grilled chianina beef with pan seared green tomatoes flavored with aromatic herbs
On the next day we decide to undertake the path that leads to the Sanctuary of the Madonna del Bagno. Once you arrive to the top, you can reach the Girifalco Medici Fort, which was built in 1561 by Gabrio Serbelloni at the behest of Cosimo I Medici.
Serbelloni followed the militar architectural style imposed by the Sangallo family. One can enter the fort through its main iron gate. On the sides of the Fort one can observe its two casamates (gun ports), while on the first level one can see its four bastions and its internal yard. On the second level of the fort, visitors can observe the guard walkway and the majestic surrounding landscape that goes from the Chiana Valley to the Amiata and Cetona mountains, including a hint of Lake Trasimeno.
After walking all morning, we decide to grab some lunch at Fufluns restaurant, a very nice place that mixes international and traditional ingredients.
Toasted bread with pecorino cheese cream and fresh truffle
Ham, salami, pecorino cheeses with jam and bruschette
Handmade pasta with bacon, tomato, chilli, garlic, rosemary and cream
We spend the afternoon walking around the city and shopping some local artisanal crafts. We dinner at Locanda al Pozzo Antico with Paola – who owns the restaurant – and who seduced us with a very traditional and delicious menu.
Selection of Assorted Cheeses with Homemade Mustards or Marmelades
Risotto with Truffle
Beans with Tomato sauce and Sage
Fillet of Beef with Chianti wine sauce
We grab some lunch at Beerbone Art Burger, treating ourselves to a yummy cinta senese burger with spicy mayo. In the afternoon we decide to go to Castiglione del Lago to enjoy a nice walk along Lake Trasimeno.
We end the weekend enjoying our dinner at Osteria del Teatro, a historical restaurant that combines tradition with a very suggestive atmosphere.
Where to Sleep in Cortona
Where to eat in Cortona