Guided tours in the Valdarno valley

The Valdarno Valley

The ”Balze” of Valdarno

From San Giovanni Valdarno to Loro Ciuffenna along the Setteponti Road

Our accredited tour guides are ready to set out with you for the Valdarno. This valley is crossed by river Arno and is characterised by spectacular towers, parish churches, old villages and the ocher yellow color of its renowned Balze, some unique natural formations that sometimes appear as pinnacles or rocky spires. This extraordinary landscape impressed and inspired great artist Leonardo da Vinci, who decided to represent it on the background of some of his most famous paintings.

In the Middle Ages the government of Florence decided to build some “new lands” in this valley, i.e. three new fortified villages: San Giovanni Valdarno, Terranuova Bracciolini and Castelfranco di Sopra in order to make it one of the most developed areas in terms of economy and production of the whole territory.

The Valdarno valley is also crossed by a famous ancient road called Setteponti, which was already in use in Etruscan and Roman times: it is strewn with Romanesque parish churches, castles and ancient villages and ends near Arezzo at Ponte Buriano, an evocative medieval bridge also known as “Mona Lisa's Bridge”.

During this amazing guided tours of Valdarno with Cortona Tourist Guide you might also taste some local DOP products like zolfini beans and chicken. A traditional dish that must be tried is the Stufato alla Sangiovannese, a beef stew cooked in red wine with a spice mix called “drogo”, which is the recipe's secret ingredient that made it world-renowned.