Lecchi in Chianti
In the heart of Tuscany's Chianti zone, the less-known hamlet of Lecchi in Chianti sits amidst hills and woods near Gaiole in Chianti. The village is, in fact, a frazione of Gaiole, just four kilometers away. This is an area rich in natural beauty and man-made splendor in the form of castles. In close proximity are many historic castles - Castello di Brolio, famous for its Chianti wines, Ama Castle with its contemporary art installations, and Meleto and Monteluco castles, to name a few. There are fascinating buildings for those enthralled by Old World architecture!
The town grew up around the Monteluco castle, which was donated by the Marquis Ugo to the Badia San Michele Maruri in 998. It was among the properties that Siena ceded to Florence in 1176, when the two city-states were constantly feuding. It passed to Ranieri Ricasoli (the Ricasoli family also still hold the Brolio Castle) and the village of Lecchi was built to serve the court of Monteluco. It has always been a small country hamlet: in 1883 there were 317 residents; today there are about 100. That doesn't diminish its charm - its location and rural character draws those who want to see a part of less-known Tuscany but be in reach of the region's famous sights. Closeby, the Pozze di Lecchi are natural pools and falls on the Mulinaccio stream, in the midst of oak woods. There are trails for hikers and bikers to enjoy, and horse rides, too.
The town is just four kilometers from Gaiole in Chianti, and only ten kilometers from Radda in Chianti. Siena is an easy 20 kilometers distance. San Gimignano, Monteriggioni, Montalcino, Florence, and Arezzo are worthy daytrips.
Photo Credit: By LigaDue - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=56312185
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