You'll be enchanted by the charming atmosphere and friendliness of Pergine Valdarno. Hugging a hilltop, the well-preserved town has a warren of character-filled stone streets and is the kind of place where locals call out a cheery buongiorno when you pass them. It's cradled in the midst of the "golden triangle" between Siena, Florence and Arezzo, an area of historic strategic importance that was hotly contested through the centuries. Today, it's ideally situated to give great access to those three important art and cultural capitals of Tuscany while retaining its small-town appeal.
Despite its small size, Pergine Valdarno is served by all the things needed for daily life: a supermarket, butcher, fruit and veg store, bakery and coffee bar. There are a handful of good restaurants in town, and more scattered around the nearby countryside. There is an archeology museum for history buffs, and the pretty church of San Michele for art buffs, with its frescoed barrel vault ceiling. The castle on the town's summit that dates back to 1103 still lends a beautiful backdrop to the scene.
The views from town are breathtaking and quintessentially Tuscan with golden-lit hills covered in olive groves and vineyards as well as woods. Castles are dotted around the area as reminders of the area's long history.
The Renaissance master Masaccio was from nearby San Giovanni Valdarno and some of his works can be seen there. There are important geological fossil finds at Figline Valdarno. And of course the most beautiful part of Tuscany is close at hand - the Chianti hills, the Florentine hills, and the cities of Siena and Arezzo. Captivating Cortona and Lake Trasimeno aren't far away, either.
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