Tuscan Mountain Cottage
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Cottage | 1 bedrooms | sleeps 2
The house is part of a historic built farmhouse, set on a mountainside (840m) in an area full of natural parks, forest and walking trails ("sentieri"). Although it is in a wonderfully quiet position, the house is in fact only 5 minutes from the E45 motorway, 500 yds from a weekend Pizzeria, 4km from a shop and 8 minutes from a town with all facilities.
The house is at the top of a short mountain road and consists of: sala/lounge with log burner and stove, double door and window onto views, large kitchen/dining room with small wood burner stove/oven and separate gas cooker, bathroom with shower (from hot water tank), wooden stairs to two upstairs bedrooms (one is currently used as an extra sitting room and has a sofa bed), whilst the other has a wonderfully comfortable double bed. With the peace and quiet at night, the mountain air, and the bedroom shutters closed it's impossible not to sleep very well indeed!
New for 2015: new attic room with Velux and sofabed. We list the house as one bedroom but there are also two sofa beds which we use for our children.
Whenever we go we tend to mix travelling around the local area and tourist trails with walking and mountain biking. We have two Cannondale mountain bikes available for hire (£30/week each) if you would like to use them.
|Size||Sleeps up to 2, 1 bedrooms|
|Nearest beach||Rimini or Ravenna 90 km|
|Will consider||House swap, Long term lets (over 1 month), Short breaks (1-4 days)|
|Nearest Amenities||4 km|
|Nearest travel links||Nearest airport: Bologna Forli 80 km, Nearest railway: Sansepolcro 15 km|
|Family friendly||Suitable for children over 5|
|Notes||No pets allowed, No smoking at this property|
Features and Facilities
|Utilities||Cooker, Fridge, Freezer|
|Rooms||1 bedroom, 1 bathrooms of which 1 Family bathrooms|
|Furniture||2 Sofa beds, Double beds (1), Dining seats for 6, Lounge seats for 4|
|Other||Linen provided, Towels provided|
|Outdoors||Shared garden, Bicycles available|
|Further details indoors|
The cottage is rustic and simple in style, with cotto tiled floors downstairs, wooden (chestnut) floors upstairs and beautiful exposed wood beams throughout. There are wood-burning stoves in the living room and kitchen and an ample supply of logs for the cooler months.
There is a good sized double bedroom with a breathtaking view of the mountain and national park - the perfect sight when opening the shutters in the morning. Upstairs there is also a second bedroom, again a good size and with the same wonderful view. We use this room as a second lounge or occasional bedroom as the stairs open out to it. Hence the house is ideal for one couple and this is how we have listed it, but could also be suitable for a group of up to four friends. There may be a small additional supplement for extra bedding if using the house for more than two people.
|Further details outdoors|
The house looks on to the Monte Nero national park and has stunning views over and down the valley. There is a small private space immediately in front of the house for a table for two, but the land to the side of the house is shared and we use it for parking and to place our table to eat and sit outside. The house is in a tiny, friendly viillage where there are other (Italian) holiday homes. From (approx) Easter to November there is a weekend pizzeria 5 minutes walk away in the village. Otherwise, the nearest restaurant is 5 minutes drive away at the bottom of the valley (near the motorway junction).
Cannondale mountain bikes available for hire - £30/week each.
House is a classic Tuscan mountain cottage and therefore simple and rustic in style. This simplicity is exactly the house's appeal and is also reflected in the rental price.
The Tuscany region
The Valtiberina (high Tiber valley) area of Tuscany is quieter and more unspoilt than the westerly parts and yet has some fantastic attractions of its own, including the Piero della Francesa trail (Sansepolcro is 15mins from house, Monterchi 25mins), Anghiari, Caprese Michelangelo (Michelangelo's birthplace), La Verna (where St Francis received his stigmata). It is however within easy day trip reach of Florence (1 1/2 hrs or a stunning 2 hour drive through the rolling hills), Lucca and Pisa (2 hours), Siena (1 1/2 hours), Chianti (1 hr) and the beautiful Arno valley (45 mins). The area also has the advantage of being close to the Adriatic Riviera (1 hour), San Marino, Umbertide, Perugia (45 mins), and Assisi. The E45 motorway which runs 5km from the house connects with the Bologna/Ravenna area to the north and Rome to the south (Rome is 2 1/4 hours away).
Whenever we go we tend to mix travelling around the local area and tourist trails with walking and mountain biking. We have two Cannondale mountain bikes available for hire (£15/week) if you would like to use them.
Highlights for us include Sansepolcro and its buildings, churches and Piero della Francesca paintings, Monterchi (a wonderful hilltop Tuscan town with the Madonna del Parto on display), La Verna and its monastery, stunning Anghiari, Arezzo and its antiques market (and scenes from Life is Beautiful), and the fantastic fruit and vegetables at the local market in Pieve Santo Stefano (and the fresh pasta shop there too!).
We send a guide to local markets and restaurants to guests. The quality of the food in the valtiberina area is tremendous and, even better, the prices are low as the area is not as "touristy" as the rest of Tuscany. There are a number of great restaurants within an easy drive of the cottage. At weekends, there is also a local, rural pizzeria run by a local family which does fantastic pizzas (we recommend the calzone in particular) at great prices - 2 calzoni, bruschette, wine & water for €14!.
We have a pile of maps and guides to the area available for use at the house and would definitely recommend the Sansepolcro tourist office if you need more information. One of our favourite books has a number of waymarked walking and mountain biking trails (including to La Verna) which start or can be joined from the house and wind their way through the forest trails, plains and natural parks. www.valtibike.com is also useful for these.
If you are a keen cyclist you will particularly love the area, whether it is for mountain biking or road. As with many places in Italy, you'll see lots of club cyclists out on the weekends taking advantage of the good weather, clean mountain air and quiet, stunning roads. We're keen to develop the house for cycle holidays as it's a passion of ours.
The house is also a real haven for walkers and lovers of wildlife. The area is criss-crossed by many way-marked trails, often passing through the local forest and into the Casentino national park which borders the village. At Gualanciole (slightly further up the valley) a new visitor centre is being built which will focus on Tuscan flora and fauna. Gualanciole is also an important junction for many of the way-marked trails e.g. the St Francis trail and the route to nearby La Verna.
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30 Aug 2013
"lovely stone cottage in a wonderful setting!"
Very much enjoyed this cottage up in the mountains. Great for walking. The cottage itself is lovely and very comfortable. It's basic but complete. It ticked all the boxes for us.… More
1 Nov 2012
"Rustic and gorgeous"
This place is quite unique. Imagine the smallest cutest most rustic cottage high up in the mountains with fabulous walks and views all around and this is it. We wanted something away from it all, and we got it. It's important to know that you may need to know about chopping up logs for this place as you need logs for the water heater, kitchen range and log burning stove. There are alternatives but we didn't really bother with them, much better to get into the mood and start chopping wood!! We had a cow and his owner looking in the kitchen window the first morning, and had a fabulous pizzeria experience in the local pizzeria. It's a small place and tall people have to bend down to get into rooms/up stairs - But lovely atmosphere, well equipped kitchen and very good instructions from the owners.
Thank you for the lovely review, you've captured exactly what we love about the house. We have invested in a wood store and our friend on the mountain, Bruno, fills it regularly with wood that's cut to the right size. So you shouldn't now need to chop wood (unless you want to, of course!)
The Pizzeria is a wonderful part of the experience. It is staffed by the friendly locals and does great Pizzas and our favourite Calzone anywhere!
18 Jun 2012
only accessible, by car this cottage is as described, rustic, and is perfect for a getting away from it all break. The setting is beautiful and serene, the only sound is the echoes of cuckoos across … More
10 Oct 2011
We stayed here at the end of August and had a wonderful time.Its tucked away up in the mountains at the 'end of the road' .The weather was fantastic and there is no light pollution here so every night the sky was full of crystal clear stars across 180*.
Being high up in the hills you'll need a car of course but its no big deal to get to Florence, Rimini, Arrezo and Perugia, Assisi on day trips.There are so many beautiful villages to see it's impossible to recommend any..just look at the guide books and plunge in!..that's half the fun.Everyone was friendly and the supermarkets nearby are well stocked and plenty of markets to mooch around.I cant remember the names of all the smaller nearby villages but there is plenty of information at the cottage and do your research before you go.And take a good map for exploring off the main roads.
I say this kindly:The cottage is traditional and rustic so don't expect a funky completely modernised swish pad up in the mountains...But that's the beauty of this cottage...its full of character and everything you need is here...all you want is hot water,somewhere comfortable to sleep and to sit outside every evening under the stars with good food after a hard days rambling around stunning villages.If you want five star hotel accommodation go to Rome and pay for it.We would take this place every time instead... and will go back!!!
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