A unique opportunity that I also wanted to take advantage of was to climb aboard a steam train or a train pulled by an old vintage locomotive and peacefully enjoy the hilly landscape of the Crete Senesi, the Val d'Orcia and Amiata, between puffing, whistling and billowing black smoke. A real blast from the past, from the times when speed was something else. There are many different itineraries; there are stretches where roads disappear and the only transport is the train, crossing fields and woods in peace and quiet.
This year’s programme includes sixteen itineraries, with a summer break. These old chuffers use coal and the journey becomes difficult in the heat!
Stop-offs follow the calendar of village festivals and country fairs: from the feast of the truffle to the feast of the mushroom, from the feast of oil to the feast of wine. A discovery of the territory that also includes the flavours and culinary excellence of Tuscany.
On May 19 the Nature Train stops at Torrenieri, a village along the Via Francigena, and on May 26, the last leg of the spring calendar, it stops at Mount Amiata for cherry and wine-tasting.
The trips will resume on October 13 to Vivo d'Orcia through the Park of the Val d'Orcia, the Brunello di Montalcino areas and the Crete Senesi. On October 20, it is the Abbey of San Salvatore and the autumn festival in the mountains. On November 3 there is Piancastagnaio with its chestnut festival, on November 10 it is the turn of white truffles in San Giovanni d'Asso, up to a stop-off in Siena, the city of the Palio, on December 15.
Seats are obviously limited, so I recommend booking!. The Nature Train usually leaves from the station of Siena but there are chances that it will leave from Florence.