For Carol’s significant birthday this year, based upon a desire for something different combined with what might be available over the appropriate dates in the middle of September, we settled on a trip to Italy. Actually, wanting two weeks, we settled upon two separate Explore! walking trips in Tuscany that could be run back-to-back. Other than an initial glitch smashing the flights into something appropriate, all went well.
Our first week was a reasonably serious walking week in a little known corner of Tuscany called the Garfagnana [pronounced garfanyana]. Upon arrival, our first impression was that the Garfagnana looked nothing like the Tuscany we expected. This was not rolling, pastoral hills but serious mountain country with craggy peeks topping 2000m/6500ft, not that we were disappointed. Our accommodation, an agriturismo, was great and the hosts, Amadeo and Rosa, were out of this world.