About 40 minutes south of Siena and a bit over an hour from the Tuscan coast, Val d'Orcia lies to the east of the Maremma and to the west of Montepulciano and Umbria.

The UNESCO world heritage site is made up by the territories of Montalcino, San Quirico d'Orcia (with historic spa town Bagno Vignoni) , Pienza, Castiglione d'Orcia and Radicofani. The Orcia river crosses two more municipalities (Castel del Piano and my hometown Cinigiano), where it divides the province of Siena from the province of Grosseto (Tuscany's two southernmost areas) before flowing into the Ombrone river.   

View VAL D'ORCIA MAP in a larger map

A good paper map is of use if you decide to explore Val d'Orcia off-the-beaten-path. Your GPS will find itself in a muddle once you get on the valley's white roads. I always have the Italian Touring Club's Toscana/Tuscany map (1:200.000) in my car. 

Map lovers who stay for longer and like to explore the territory by foot or bicycle should also invest a few Euro into a copy of the province of Siena's Val d'Orcia map (1/25.000). The hiking map can be found in newspaper stores or at times also at the tourist office in Pienza or Montalcino.

However, the signed out walks are easier to find on the map than in reality. Signs are at times hard to see because they're overgrown or awkwardly placed. So be prepared to ask for directions, change itinerary or turn around. And remember to bring enough water!


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