Travel DestinationsTravel Packages & ToursTransportationPacking & PreparationLodging

Agriturismo Review: Le Caggiole in Montepulciano, Tuscany

Updated on October 11, 2017
bdegiulio profile image

Traveling has always been one of my passions. It exposes us to new cultures, experiences, and makes the world a better, more tolerant place.

Agriturismo Le Caggiole
Agriturismo Le Caggiole | Source

If your visit to Italy is taking you to the southern region of Tuscany, there are a number of wonderful Agriturismi available in this area. An Agriturismo offers travelers a very unique and authentic alternative to the standard hotel or bed and breakfast. Come along as we take an in-depth look at one of my favorites, Agriturismo Le Caggiole, located just outside of the beautiful medieval Tuscan community of Montepulciano.

Montepulciano
Montepulciano | Source

Before we start I would like to give you the definition and a little history of the term Agriturismo. Wikipedia defines the word Agriturismo as an agriculturally-based operation or activity that brings visitors to a ranch or farm. The term combines the words agriculture and tourism, obviously. While the term is used worldwide now, it appears to have originated in Italy in the mid-1980s when the term was defined by Italian law.

Agriturismo Le Caggiole
Agriturismo Le Caggiole | Source

What led to this new industry was a gradual decline of the small farm throughout Italy. By the mid-to-late 1970s small farms were disappearing across Italy and those that remained were finding it increasingly difficult to remain profitable. The new law allowed small farms to supplement their income by taking in visitors who would stay on the farms and hopefully get a more authentic look at rural Italian life.

Agriturismo Le Cagiole
Agriturismo Le Cagiole | Source

Jump ahead thirty years, and the result has been a resounding success for both the small farmer and the tourist. Many of the abandoned small farms across Italy and much of Europe have been renovated and given a new lease on life, and the concept has been thoroughly embraced by tourists. The whole idea of staying on a small farm in a beautiful rural setting, perhaps in the midst of an olive grove or among a field of grape vines has really appealed to the traveler who wants a true local experience. To say the concept has been a win-win for the small farmer and the tourist would be an understatement.

Breakfast - Dining Area
Breakfast - Dining Area | Source

Agriturismo Le Caggiole is located just outside of Montepulciano in southern Tuscany. It's approximately an hour and a half south of Florence, and about two hours north of Rome. Its location makes for a great base for exploring the towns and villages of the Val d’Orcia including Siena to the north, Montalcino to the west, and the nearby communities of Pienza and Monticchiello. Certainly one can venture further from Le Caggiole, and we did make a visit to San Gimignano in one day, so you really can get to most of the towns that tourists want to see from here.

Le Caggiole is run by the Martinelli family and son Giacomo is a wonderful resource for suggestions and directions. He will gladly pull out his maps to help guide you in your travels throughout he area. Having a local give you tips on which towns to visit, travel times, directions, and restaurant tips is a valuable resource.

Vineyard
Vineyard | Source

We found the accommodations at Le Caggiole to be quite comfortable and among the largest rooms and bathrooms that we have experienced in Italy. The rooms are impeccably clean and nicely decorated.

The Martinelli family, including Giacomo and his parents Mario and Ornella provide everything you could possibly need or want for a very comfortable stay.

Source

The restored farmhouse has three double rooms and two apartments, which can accommodate small family groups. All of the rooms are designed in a typical Tuscan style with exposed beams, wood floors, large comfortable beds, and antique furniture pieces.

The breakfast/dining area of the Agriturismo is in the restored barn area of the building, and is beautifully decorated. It is a wonderful area to relax over breakfast, and if you inquire you may be able to arrange to have dinner here one evening during your stay. Usually if the hosts can get enough of the guests to want to dine here they will select an evening that is mutually agreeable to everyone and host a dinner for a reasonable fee. This is a great way to meet other guests and to converse with your hosts, which is always interesting and educational, and a great way to learn about the history of the place. The home cooked meal we had, which was prepared by Ornella, still ranks as one of the best meals we have ever had in our travels across Italy.

Home made pasta
Home made pasta | Source
Making some new friends at dinner at Le Caggiole
Making some new friends at dinner at Le Caggiole | Source

The splendor of Le Caggiole is not limited to just the restored buildings. You can walk the grounds of the property to see the olive groves and the vineyards, which are extensive and beautiful.

The property contains about 1,200 olive trees and the Martinelli’s produce their own extra virgin olive oil, which can be purchased. There are also over one hundred other fruit trees on the property including plum, cherry, fig, and peach. The vineyard is about four acres in size and provides the grapes for the Martinelli’s Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, which I might add is wonderful.

The setting here is truly what one might expect in Tuscany, and in this respect Le Caggiole does not disappoint. The rolling hills in this region of Tuscany provide for some stunning views of the vineyards, fields, and of nearby Montepulciano.

Vineyards and olive trees with Montepulciano in the distance.
Vineyards and olive trees with Montepulciano in the distance. | Source

Le Caggiole also offers other activities for their guests including a Cooking School taught by Ornella herself, a Spa Wellness Center, guided tours of the farm by Giacomo, and a chance to sample and purchase many of the products produced by the farm including wine, olive oil, fruit jams, and honey from their eighteen beehives.

Figs
Figs | Source

If you are looking for a great base location to tour southern Tuscany consider a visit to Agriturismo Le Caggiole. Agriturimi are becoming quite numerous throughout Tuscany, Italy, and all of Europe. Their growing popularity is a testament to their ability to offer comfortable accommodations in a unique and beautiful setting for a very reasonable price. If you have never stayed in an Agriturismo I think you will be pleasantly surprised.

As with any accommodations in Italy the price will vary depending on the season. Agriturismo Le Caggiole prices vary from 70 to 100 euro for the double rooms while the apartments will run from 90 to 130 euro with the lowest prices in the off-season. Breakfast is included, which is usually extensive and includes a number of homemade dishes by Ornella. You will not leave the breakfast table hungry.

Breakfast
Breakfast | Source

Agriturismo Le Caggiole offers visitors a unique look at a side of Italy that most visitors never see. Tourists come to Italy from all over the world for the wonderful food, wine, and olive oil yet most leave without ever seeing where these wonderful local products come from or how they are produced. This is your chance to experience firsthand where and how it’s all done. Enjoy your visit to Le Caggiole and southern Tuscany, it truly is one of the most beautiful regions of Italy.

Ciao for now.

Hosts Giacomo and Ornella Martinelli
Hosts Giacomo and Ornella Martinelli | Source
A markerLe Caggiole, Montepulciano, Italy -
Le Caggiole, 53045 Montepulciano, Province of Siena, Italy
get directions

show route and directions
A markerMontepulciano, Tuscany -
Montepulciano, Province of Siena, Italy
get directions

B markerFlorence, Italy -
Florence, Italy
get directions

C markerRome, Italy -
Rome, Italy
get directions

D markerSiena, Italy -
53100 Siena Province of Siena, Italy
get directions

© 2013 Bill De Giulio

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Thank you Glimmer Twin. I appreciate the very kind words. Perhaps a project for retirement when I have more time. It's seems like there is never enough time to do all that I want to do, darn those day jobs that get in the way of fun stuff :)

      That is what Tuscany is all about, drinking wine and eating in the garden. It really is the good life. Have a wonderful week.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Shared around. Seriously Bill, why haven't you put out a travel book on Italy. It would sell millions and this place looks splendid. I can picture myself sitting in the garden drinking wine and eating figs. Ahhh, the good life and a great hub!

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Suzie. Thank you. We had a wonderful stay here and really love the whole concept of an Agriturismo. We stayed in a Masseria in Sicily and you are right, they are very similar.

      Thank you for the share, pin, etc. Have a great weekend.

    • Suzie HQ profile image

      Suzanne Ridgeway 4 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      Hi Bill,

      What a great review! Your photos are truly stunning and compliment your fabulous words perfectly. Loved the building this Agriturismo is in with the arches inside. Your description of the area and facilities are just exactly the right combination of detail for the traveller looking for accommodation in this region. I would stay here in a heartbeat and know Mick would love it too. In the Puglia region the Masseria is very popular and very similar to the Agritourismo, being family run and often a working farm.Votes, Shares and Pinned, awesome always!!!

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Joe. The Italian government does issue grants to help with the renovation. The thinking is that a lump sum grant will eliminate the need for continuing subsidies to keep the small farms afloat. It seems to have worked quite well.

      While the cost of staying in an Agriturismo will vary we have found them to be much less expensive than a hotel or resort and about on par with a bed & breakfast. A few that we have stayed in have been very competitively priced. The big perk to me is the atmosphere and setting that they provide, often in rural areas surrounded by beautiful fields, etc..

      Always a pleasure Joe. Many thanks for the vote, share, etc. Have a great week.

    • hawaiianodysseus profile image

      Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

      Bill, I love reading your work! Like that delicious breakfast set abundantly on that table in one of the photos above, your hub sprawls invitingly among the complementary visual delights, calling out to the aspiring tourist in each of us. Your work is getting more and more polished as time goes by...all that wonderful time spent in Italy is rubbing off on you as your writing, like the world renown wines of that picturesque country, sublimely ages with rustic dignity.

      Bill, do you happen to know whether or not the Italian government subsidizes the agricultural hosts? The costs of renovation, restoration, and antiques galore must be tremendous, so either there's a good relationship with the political entities, or these people are doing extremely well with their farms.

      Last question: How do the rates of staying at these places compare with the cost of hotel in the cities?

      Your excellent hub has me dreaming as I vote it up and then some; socially spread the word; and share it!

      Aloha, and have a great Tuesday, my friend!

      Joe

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Pam. Thank you for stopping by. It was the perfect place in a perfect setting. Thanks so much, glad you enjoyed it.

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Thank you Elisha. Glad you enjoyed the tour. Put Italy on your bucket list, you won't regret it. It's actually quite addicting.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 4 years ago from United States

      What a gorgeous place to visit. It seems to be the perfect place for a vacation. I enjoyed your descriptions and the beautiful pictures.

    • Elisha Jachetti profile image

      Elisha Jachetti 4 years ago

      Wow. What gorgeous pictures!! Thanks for sharing. I hope I get to visit there some day.

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Elias. Thank you for stopping by. It is a wonderful concept and one that is being embraced by visitors across Italy and Europe. Have a great day.

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Rebecca. Thank You. Glad you enjoyed the trip. The whole Agriturismo concept really is a great idea. Thank you for the vote, share, etc. Have a great day.

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Mitch. Thank you for the visit. We did have a great time touring in Tuscany. It really is a beautiful country, can't wait to return. Many thanks for the share.

    • Elias Zanetti profile image

      Elias Zanetti 4 years ago from Athens, Greece

      Wonderful hub and a great presentation, Bill. Agriturismo seems as a very interesting way of accommodation. Thanks for the detailed info!

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 4 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      This is an awesome photo story of your trip to Italy. The concept of the farm accommodations is really interesting. Voted awesome and shared.

    • Jared Miles profile image

      Jared Miles 4 years ago from Australia

      Italy is a beautiful country, and you've made a beautiful Hub Bill. I hope you had good fun, I'm a little envious :p definitely shared

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Thank you Linda. It is a little different type of accommodation but we found that it really adds to the experience when staying on a farm. Ornella was quite the cook.

      Thank you for stopping by, and thank you for sharing the hub. Have a great week.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This sounds like a wonderful type of holiday, Bill. I love the description of the farm. I wish I could sample some of Omella's food right now! I enjoy traditional Italian food. Thank you for another very interesting hub, which has lovely photos, as usual. I'll share this hub.

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Carol. There is plenty yet to see in Italy :) I will say that we do try to make the most of our visits. My approach is that I may never get back there again so see and do as much as possible. I never take these trips for granted.

      Have a great day Carol, hope all is well.

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Joelle, you hit the nail on the head. It's not just what you see but also what you eat, drink, the people you meet, etc. This is exactly why we love to travel.

      Was that breakfast good? You bet. Thanks again.

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 4 years ago from Arizona

      is there anywhere you have not been in Italy...Beautiful as always and so enlightening..GOing to pin in my travel section..Thanks for sharing all the beauty.

    • kidscrafts profile image

      kidscrafts 4 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

      It's why it is so interesting to travel; it's not only what you see but also what you eat and what you feel. It's the whole experience.

      Originally, I am from Belgium (but lived 7 years in Africa as a kid). The breakfast in Belgium is quite similar to France. But in Holland and Germany, they would have more meat for breakfast and also eggs. In Holland they are quite strong on milk products also (cheese and yogurt). Breakfast in Ireland is more similar to England. We even had fish as part of the breakfast one time in Ireland.

      But I bet that your breakfast in Italy was quite delicious even if some part of it is different than the states :-) Those cakes and pies just look scrumptious!

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Joelle. Thank you. The old stone buildings and architecture really are a wonderful part of the Italy experience. We definitely enjoy the opportunity to stay in these old farmhouses. Keep in mind that many of them have been renovated but you may be correct in that the weather in Ireland is certainly harsher on the old buildings.

      Breakfast in Italy is much different than here in the US but we do enjoy it. Thanks so much for the visit, have a great day.

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Thank you Mary. I may need another trip someday for more material but I'm sure I can come up with a few more Italy topics for the time being. Hopefully some day you have the opportunity to experience it? Never say never.

      Thank you for the vote, pin, etc.. Stay cool.

    • kidscrafts profile image

      kidscrafts 4 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

      What a great article! I can feel the sun in every picture even the one you took inside buildings. I love the old stones and the arches at Le Caggiole!

      I just came back from Ireland and a lot of the old buildings and castle are in ruins. May be it's the effect of the weather with a lot of rain and the wind that makes it harder on the buildings compare to Italy.

      What I find interesting as well, is the breakfast table; from one country to the next it's so different.

      Thank you for sharing this article and your wonderful pictures!

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 4 years ago from New York

      Agriturismo - what a brilliant idea! I loved this hub and I have to say the picture of breakfast was really inviting ;) You truly are a travel guru and I hope you have more of Italy to show us. I know I'll never get to see it but I am so enthralled with your hubs.

      Voted up, useful, awesome, interesting and pinned.

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Rose. Thank you. When we discovered agriturismi a few years ago I knew we were onto something. Now, whenever we are planning a trip to Italy we seek them out and we have not been disappointed. Watching Ornella perform her magic in the kitchen was great and the dinner she cooked for us made for a very special evening. I'm glad this brought back some happy memories of your mom and relatives in Italy Thanks so much for the share and vote. Have a great day. Ciao!

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Thanks Bill. I started thinking that we have stayed in many wonderful places in our travels so why not review a few of them. Enjoy your Sunday.

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi FlourishAnyway. Thank you. Staying at Le Caggiole really made our visit to Tuscany special. So glad you enjoyed to review. Many thanks for the vote, share, etc. Have a wonderful day.

    • bdegiulio profile image
      Author

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Kathryn. Thank you. We really enjoyed our stay at Le Caggiole. It really was a beautiful place in a beautiful setting. Hopefully someday you have the opportunity to visit Italy.

      Thanks so much for the visit, enjoy the weekend.

    • rose-the planner profile image

      rose-the planner 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario-Canada

      A superb travel article and an excellent look at agriturismo! The concept started several years ago and is really picking up momentum now. It is an awesome way for families throughout Italy and other parts of Europe to make some revenue and a great way for tourists to experience something completely different. This article was very insightful and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Your images are absolutely amazing especially Ornella making pasta, she reminds me of some of my relatives from Italy. Seeing the pasta looks exactly the way my mom makes it. A brilliant article! Thank you for sharing. (Voted Up) -Rose

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Very clever idea and a great review. This is the kind of stuff travelers need to read about, and you are just the man to deliver the goods. Great traveler's guide, Bill!

      Have a wonderful Sunday!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 4 years ago from USA

      What a spectacular hub! This makes me really want to go to Italy. I appreciated not only the definitions and history but also your vivid descriptions of the visit. The photos really add personality. Voted up, awesome, beautiful and more. Sharing too.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      I really enjoyed this review! I currently have no plans to visit Italy, although I would jump at the opportunity. You make this place sound spectacular, and very homey. I know if I visited that area, I would love to stay at a place like that, and experience the rural setting. The family seems very warm, and the photos you have provided are beautiful.

      I love that you have written so many other articles on Italy, and have links on the different places and subjects. If I get the chance to go to Italy someday, you will certainly be a resource!

      Have a wonderful weekend, and thanks for sharing this with us.

      ~ Kathryn