Located in the enviable Chianti region of Tuscany, just 15 miles south of Florence, is the city of Tavarnelle Val di Pesa. Named after the ancient Roman taverns that lined the road from Florence to Siena, its origins are historical, but the addition of Pesa is more recent, paying homage to the valley in which it is located. Tavarnelle Val di Pesa’s main attraction is the impressive Badia di Passignano, a monastery dating back to 395. It is still inhabited by monks today and hosts wine tasting and cookery classes. In Tavarnelle itself there are many more sights to see: the gothic church of Santa Lucia al Borghetto, the church of Madonna della Neve with 14th and 15th-century frescoes, and the Romanesque church from 990 – Pieve of San Pietro in Bossolo, which is home to a Museum of Religious Art, to name but a few. And of course, being located in the Chianti district, there are ample opportunities to explore the rich landscapes scattered with ancient vineyards and olive groves by foot, bike or car – one of life’s simple pleasures.