Day 22…

…has been up and down, with a big up at the end, but another great day cycling. It seems I have finally got an idea of how to plan a route I can cope with. Volterra is just over half way to Siena, where I am heading, and I thought it would be about the right distance for today.

I think I had the best night’s sleep I have had yet, not waking at all till this morning. So I got up and packed up a bit earlier than usual. I was sad to leave the campsite because it was great, the best yet I think! Great pool, great shop with single portions of everything, really helpful staff. The morning ride was straight forward apart from a puncture, which was sorted quickly. I am glad I checked the tyre this time because there was a huge chunk of metal sticking through. The weather was very sunny, and starting to get hot.

I stopped for lunch a bit earlier than I have been, so as not to repeat last week’s mistake. I am glad I did, because about 5km after lunch the climb started! So far I had been weaving round the hills quite well, following a dry river bed. But this one was not moving, so up I began. Once again the weather was ideal because as I started the climb it clouded over and cooled. It did then rain a bit, but if anything it was quite pleasant!  I was worried at one point that I would get a big downhill and then have to climb again as I saw the town I was heading for a fair way ahead! Thankfully the hills lead nicely into each other and the impressive town of Volterra got closer and closer.

The Tuscan landscape is now very dry. I imagine it is much more beautiful when there are plants! However the views from the town are very impressive. Volterra was used as a film set for the ‘New Moon’ vampire film, as the base of the bad vampires! I went on a walking tour, that turned out to be just me, so I know a bit about it now. It has four main ages. The Etrusian city dating from 6BC with walls from then! Then a smaller Roman city, then Medieval, then Renaissance. It is truly unique and impressive with varied styles of towers and buildings, a Roman amphitheatre, the oldest remaining arch (possibly in the world), all on top of a hill at about 590m. I am sorry that it starts to get dark at 830 because I would have like to look around a bit more.Volterra.jpg

I am sure standards of campsites is a very subjective thing. I have come to expect a pool, whereas in France a sit down toilet was a luxury (cycling legs don’t crouch easily.) To have a pool, though, and not open it because it rained this morning, puts this one right at the bottom of the list. (I’ll add a photo when I get wifi)

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2 Responses to Day 22…

  1. Fordies says:

    we’ve been to Volterra- beautiful! bonne continuation, as they say here!

  2. Kath Evans says:

    You are becoming a seasoned travel writer as well as a tourist on a bike!! So much for Judith Chalmers…..all sounds wonderful. Loved hearing that you went to a lively Phillipino church service, recall being in Hong Kong where thousands of Philipinos meet on the island on Sunday morning, set up their picnics and sound like millions of birds chatting, all very lively and enjoying each others company, no wonder they looked after you. Safe cycling,
    Kath & Pete

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