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  Cornell University

Cornell in Rome

College of Architecture, Art and Planning

The Tuscan Air

We had our first weekend trip outside of Rome this weekend! A group of 8 friends and I travelled to the Tuscan hill town of Montepulciano for a day trip on Saturday.

Art and Architecture Students in Montepulciano - Tuscay

The hill country of Tuscany was beautiful. Rolling hills and plains ran on for miles. Montepulciano was situated at the top of the highest hill in the vicinity. We circled around and around on the way up to the city until we reached the very top. One of my friends on the trip commented on the wonderful and clean “Tuscan Air” and I have to agree with her. Being that far out in the country, the air was extremely refreshing and the views were breathtaking.

View from Montepulciano

After spending the majority of the day walking along the winding streets of Montepulciano shopping and siteseeing, we decided to go wine tasting, something Tuscany is famous for. Every winery we went to was very proud of their wine cellars. We were almost always obligated to tour the cellars before we could taste any wine. Not that we minded! It was amazing to see the vast cellars that wineries use to store and mature their wines. Rows and rows of barrels lined the stone cellar walls as we descended. The temperature grew cooler as we progressed farther down and the cool air was a wonderful break from the warm summer sun outside.

Students Wine Tasting in Tuscany

After a bit of tasting the delicious Vino Nobile that is native to Montepulciano, we continued our tour of the city, slowly making our way down the hill. Our final stop of the day was at San Biagio, a beautiful church designed by Sangallo located on the outskirts of town. After the long and laborious walk through the steep streets it was a wonderful break to get to lounge in the grass in the shade of the church. The interior of this quite large and powerful structure was very serene and visually stunning, with incredibly high ceilings. It was a wonderful day exploring Tuscany, and the bottles of wine we brought home as souvenirs will be a delightfully tasty reminder of our trip in the coming weeks!

St. Maria of Ascencio



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