Pieve di Chianni

Val d'Elsa

The valley of the river Elsa (Val d'Elsa), as the curious and attentive traveller is bound to discover, is a synthesis of Tuscan authenticity, having been inhabited by successive generations of people, from Etruscans to Romans, through the Middle Ages and Renaissance to the present day.

This land and its people are both welcoming and have a real love for life, which explains why so many who just came to visit have decided to live out their days here.

The widespread genuine local lifestyle harks back to the Renaissance (rather than the Middle Ages), when the Val d'Elsa emerged as we know it today, and is inspired by the philosophy "chi vuol esser lieto sia perché del diman non v'è certezza..." ("be happy today if you will, for tomorrow may never come...")

The Val d'Elsa has always been a crossroads of people, ideas and feelings, thanks to the ancient Francigena Route (Via Francigena) leading to the capital of Christianity and built by the Longobards to connect their realm in Pavia to the South of Italy passing through Rome.

So then the Francigena Route became an artery for all the Europeans travelling to Rome and the Middle East.

Cultural, commercial and human exchanges have developed ever since, making this valley truly unique.