To prepare for this trip, learn how to say beautiful in Italian. So you'll know what to say when you admire Cinque Terre's spectacular views or Tuscany's gorgeous landscape. It's the simplest way to describe a journey with your fill of just-off-the-boat fresh seafood, delectable wines, friendly people, warm sunlight, the azure sea, cypress trees and hill towns. Repeat after us: bellissimo.
1-2 Hike across a dramatic landscape to Portovenere, taking in panoramic vistas of the Golfo della Spezia | Feast on fresh seafood on Palmaria Island | Get to know the Cinque Terre’s spectacular coastline, a World Heritage site, on foot and by train | Walk along coastal trails past terraced vineyards and olive groves | Well-groomed paths lined with ancient stone walls lead from stunning Riomaggiore through cliffside Manarola, quiet Corniglia and colorful Vernazza to inviting Monterosso al Mare.
3-4 Pass elegant villas en route to posh Portofino | A walk along Portofino’s postcard-perfect waterfront is a must before heading inland to Chianti | Stroll through quintessential Tuscan villages, vineyards and cypress-flanked lanes | Walk from historical Badia a Passignano Abbey to Greve in Chianti, where you can shop for local delicacies | Jaw-dropping vistas of the medieval hamlet of Montefioralle spread out before you | Sip regional wines at a fun and informative tasting.
5-6 Taste bold balsamic vinegars in ancient ridgetop Radda, the epicenter of Chianti Classico | Visit Volpaia, a quaint medieval hilltop village and a great stop to sample local wine | Soak up grand pastoral panoramas from the strada bianca (white road), surrounded by vineyards and olive groves | Discover the hilltop town of Panzano in the heart of the Tuscan countryside | End the trip in Florence, birthplace of the Italian Renaissance.