Adventure vacations in Italy

Toscana Cucina Ride


A perfect combination of horseback riding in Siena, cooking classes with the Chef and sightseeing to destinations of cultural and historical interest define this ride. Return to the convivial atmosphere of the Castello’s spacious dining room and Tuscan kitchen for a memorable finale to the days’ activities.

Situated in a tranquil region southwest of Siena, the circular stone walls of the Castello di Tocchi serve as a hospitable central base for either full and half-day rides into the surrounding countryside. From the lovingly restored suites of this medieval hamlet, which was built on the foundations of a 12th century castle, riders have an opportunity to experience the enduring magic of Tuscany.

Castello di Tocchi is a partially restored medieval hamlet built inside the fortified walls of a XII century village. The setting is extremely peaceful; isolated by miles of flourishing woods and cultivated fields from any busy commercial centers. The rooms have been tastefully restored and furnished with antiques.

Delicious and generous typical Italian meals are served throughout. The meals are one of the greatest pleasures of this ride, and allow you to prepare, sample and enjoy regional and seasonal Tuscan cuisine.

  • Overview:
    Most of the horses are Maremanna cross and Lipizzaners, with some other mixed Italian-bred horses. They are well cared for and responsive.
  • Horse Breeds:
    Maremanna, Lipizzaners
  • Trip Pace:
  • Tack:
    English and limited western
  • Weight limit:
    230 lbs

Cooking classes and sightseeing activities as described in the itinerary. While riders are on horseback, there are no separate activities planned for non-riders, who can enjoy the accommodations and region independently.

Siena train station.

Trip Itinerary

Day 1

Meet your guide at Siena’s train station at 6:30pm. Transfer to Castello di Tocchi, about 40 minutes outside Siena, and relax with a welcome drink and dinner.

Day 2

Ride to explore the beautiful valley surrounding Castello di Belagaio. Climb up an ancient stone road to visit a horse farm which specializes in breeding Maremmano, the horses historically used by Tuscan farmers for working cattle. Indulge in a picnic lunch “Italian style” before returning to the stables by a different route. Assist the Chef in preparing dinner at the Castello with recipes from La Cucina Del Castello cooking school.

Day 3

No riding today. In the morning learn to prepare a traditional Tuscan recipe with a locally accredited chef. After lunch, visit the towns of Buonconvento and Montalcino and enjoy tasting the famous Brunello di Montalcino wine at the fortress of this medieval town, then on to dinner at a restaurant favored by the locals.

Day 4

Mount up and ride past medieval villages to the hamlet of Orgia for an elaborate picnic lunch. In the afternoon ride for about two hours with trots and canters along the crest of the hills with beautiful views of the southern province of Siena, returning to the Castello for a cooking lesson with a renowned Chef, and dinner and conversation.

Day 5

This is a non-riding day. Lunch at the Castello following a cooking class with the chef. Then on to visit the best preserved and most famous medieval town in Tuscany: San Gimignano. You will taste Vernaccia de S. Gimignano, the famous white wine produced there and mentioned by Dante in his Divine Comedy. If there is time and the desire you may also visit the local tack store. Have dinner at a traditional local restaurant before returning to the Castello.

Day 6

There will be some long trots and canters through huge pine forests and along a river today. The destination is San Galgano Abbey, an inspiring structure that has been partially restored but remains open to the sky, where you will see the famous ‘sword in the rock’. The abbey, associated chapel and beautiful surrounding valley will invoke images of the times of wandering knights and cavaliers. There will be plenty of time to learn about the area and hear intriguing tales over an Italian-style lunch. Return to Castello di Tocchi for a memorable last dinner and overnight.

Day 7

After breakfast transfer to the Siena train station.

Itinerary Addendum


Trip Map

Trip Dates & Pricing

Trips can be set upon demand for groups of 2 or more, Sunday through Saturday, April to November. Winter dates in from the end of January through March 19 are also available upon request, based out of Villa Ferraia and offering additional activities when riding is not possible due to weather.
Additional Pricing Information:
Prices are based on the dollar/euro exchange and are subject to change. Ride price is set, guaranteed, and final at the time deposit is paid.

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Preferred Trip Dates

Toscana Cucina Ride
May 21, 2024
January 1, 1970
January 1, 1970

Group Information

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Your host and her staff in Italy are the definition of "hospitality".... We feel as if we left behind a special family - and it was our privilege to have been a part of their lives if only for a week.

Linda Giannino