Southern Tuscany’s highest, noblest hill-town (at 664m/2,178 ft.) is a magnet for lovers of fine wine and Tuscan cooking. It has, over the centuries, drawn those in search of the good life — from Florence and much farther afield. Streets lined with sublime Renaissance architecture and a longstanding local tradition of craftsmanship are just a couple of their legacies.
All our villas near Montepulciano have air-conditioned bedrooms It can be very warm on summer nights in southern Tuscany. You will be thankful for this modern comfort, even inside luxurious rustic farmhouses like Poggiobuono and Podere Casalfava.
Every one of our villas near Montepulciano also has a private swimming pool and free use of our concierge service. Your concierge can arrange a private chef, daily maid service, or shopping in the fridge in time for your arrival. Our concierges and ground staff are available on the phone or WhatsApp while you are in Italy. We can also arrange unforgettable experiences from your Montepulciano villa, like a Tuscan cookery class in your holiday rental kitchen.
At Tuscany Now & More we take pride in our service. For 30 years we have been matching every guest to their ideal villa in Italy. Someone from our small team visits or stays in every Montepulciano villa we list. We know the area intimately. This is why we keep our portfolio small — and probably why the world’s leading luxury travel magazine says we’re Tuscany’s best villa company.
To also read what real travellers think of our service, and the experience of staying in a Tuscany Now & More luxury villa, check out our unfiltered, verified Feefo reviews.
Montepulciano snakes along a ridge overlooking vineyards and the fertile farmlands of the Valdichiana. With its perch above a sea of Sangiovese grape vines — among the most prized in Italy — nature has been the town’s best friend. Food and wine are a major highlight when you spend a week in a villa near Montepulciano.
But not all local attractions are down to Mother Nature. Montepulciano is a handsome town in its own right. During the Renaissance, this was a fashionable place to build a palace-cum-country retreat. Although Montepulciano was once a rival to Florence, Florentines grew to love the place.
Reminders of this illustrious past line its most prestigious streets and main square, Piazza Grande. Palazzo architects working here during the 1400s and 1500s are a “who’s who” of Tuscan Renaissance architecture: Michelozzo, Sangallo and many others. Most of their buildings — many built from honey-coloured, Instagram-friendly travertine limestone — are still standing. The old centre makes a genteel place for a morning or evening stroll.
The Sangiovese grape really put Montepulciano on the map. Vino Nobile di Montepulciano is one of Tuscany’s great red wines. Grapes for Vino Nobile grow mainly east and north-east of the town.
In Montepulciano itself, Gattavecchi sells a range of wines from everyday drinking reds to small-batch, concentrated Vino Nobile labels. The tasting room is next to the church of Santa Maria dei Servi.
The surrounding countryside is dotted with boutique wine cantinas that are happy to see visitors and offer tours and tastings. Our dedicated travel concierges can help you plan a wine-tasting experience to remember.
Also nearby is Montalcino, another of Tuscany’s great wine towns. No top-end wine list is complete without a Brunello di Montalcino. Also pressed only from Sangiovese grapes, this wine is dry, powerful, bursting with fruit, yet restrained by acidity and structure. Every vintage is awarded a star rating by local assessors; recent 5-star years include 2016, 2015, 2012 and 2010.
If you like to eat — especially if you have a passion for great ingredients served simply, rather than elaborate “cuisine” — then this part of Tuscany is for you. The Valdichiana, just east of Montepulciano, is sometimes called “Tuscany’s breadbasket”.
Meat is the main event on most menus, typically beef. At all the best places to eat in and around Montepulciano, the real magic is the produce: locally sourced, seasonal, and prepared fresh every morning.
One regional speciality pasta is pici (thick, short, uneven, hand-rolled spaghetti), often tossed in Tuscan ragù sauces made with duck, hare or wild boar. Mains are big on meat, too (not just flamegrilled beef but also guinea fowl and rabbit). Truffles and porcini mushrooms hit menus everywhere in season.
Nearby Pienza has a rep for its hard sheep-milk cheese, pecorino di Pienza. You can buy it in various stages of maturity: fresco (fresh, young), semi-stagionato (partly aged), and stagionato (aged). It’s the perfect picnic cheese, and a wedge tastes divine in a roll with salami or with a sliced pear and a slather of Montalcino honey.
Many visitors enter Montepulciano through the Porta al Prato and stroll uphill along the length of the town’s Corso (main street). You pass several Renaissance palaces en route, including Vignola’s Palazzo Avignonesi in High Renaissance symmetry. Right opposite is a column topped with the Marzocco, symbol of Florence. Andrea Pozzo and Michelozzo also built along Montepulciano’s main drag. It is a treat for architecture fans.
At Montepulciano’s highest point is Piazza Grande, another harmonious ensemble of buildings. On its west side, the Palazzo Comunale was built in the late 1300s then revamped in 1424 by one of the Medici’s favourite architects, Michelozzo, in homage to Florence’s Palazzo Vecchio. (This square actually stands in for Piazza della Signoria in Netflix’s Medici: Masters of Florence.)
The Palazzo Comunale roof terrace is usually open to visitors, the best perch for seeing the lie of the land around Montepulciano. Directly opposite, the Palazzo Contucci is still occupied by one of Tuscany’s best-known wine-making families.
On the south side is the never-finished façade of the Cattedrale di Santa Maria Assunta, Montepulciano’s 16th-century cathedral. The dark is illuminated by a golden “Assumption of the Virgin” in classic Sienese style.
Just outside the town gates is one of the most photographed churches in Tuscany. Fronted entirely in travertine, San Biagio was designed by Antonio da Sangallo the Elder on a perfect Greek cross pattern. The Florentine architect settled here for the last 15 years of his life, designing several buildings and palaces before his death in 1534. If you approach Montepulciano from Pienza, there’s a memorable view of the church as you round the final bend before town.
When you stay in one of our villas near Montepulciano, another of Italy’s great drives is right on the doorstep. With rolling hills punctuated by stone farmhouses, crumbling castles, and cypress-studded ridges, the Val d’Orcia is one of Tuscany’s most scenic landscapes, shaped by centuries of interaction between farmers and the fertile terrain. (For this unique cultural history, the valley is protected by UNESCO.) Looming over it all is Monte Amiata, a 1,738m/5,702-ft. mountain formed from a long-extinct lava dome.
The Val d’Orcia is a photographer’s dream, in almost any season, with vast emerald-green expanses in spring cooked to straw by the summer sun; chestnut groves and trellised vines wearing their autumnal colours; lonely chapels framed by cypress stands dusted in snow during a winter cold snap.
For more on what to see and do in Montepulciano, you can read our Montepulciano travel guide.
Southern Tuscany is much quieter — you could even say more relaxed — than the equally sublime hills around Florence and the Chianti. Skies are bigger, spaces are emptier and most of the southern Tuscan hill-towns are free from tourism most days of the year.
Of course, if you turn up in time for Montepulciano’s Bravio delle Botti, or a wine festival in Montalcino, you will experience these towns in full party mode.
If you can drag fellow travellers away from your private swimming pool, you will never run out of day-trips from our Montepulciano villas. Just 9 miles to the west — the journey is a stunner — lies the tiny town of Pienza. It is such a perfect miniature of Renaissance architecture that the entire pedestrian centre is recognized by UNESCO, for the “new vision of urban space” it represented in the mid-1400s.
Pope Pius II’s madcap (and unfinished) plan to build a Città Ideale (“Ideal City”) here put Pienza on the tourist trail. It’s a favourite with photographers, and stands in for Florence in several scenes from Netflix’s Medici series — appropriately, because the Palazzo Piccolomini is the masterpiece of a renowned Florentine architect, Bernardo Rossellino.
Chianciano Terme, south of Montepulciano, is known for its thermal waters, said to be beneficial for the liver. (“Spas” in Chianciano are medicinal, rather than for pampering.) The town is also linked with Nobel Laureate Luigi Pirandello, who set two novellas here.
The sights of Siena are around 50 minutes away by car, including the Campo, Palazzo Pubblico and Duomo. Siena is a Gothic-period town almost unchanged in appearance since medieval times. Dante could still find his way around without Google Maps.
For travellers interested in archaeology, especially the Etruscans, you have a unique opportunity to explore one of the most important painted tombs in Etruria. It lies just outside Sarteano, 13 miles from Montepulciano. Only discovered in 2003, the Tomba della Quadriga Infernale is 19m/62 ft. long and has walls still covered in paintings from the 4th century BC. The preservation of its vivid “Demon Charioteer” image is extraordinary.
Detailed guides to the best daytrips from our Montepulciano villas include:
Spring temperatures are pleasant over much of Tuscany, including the countryside around our Montepulciano villas. Pack for an average daytime high of 23℃ (73℉) and lows of 11℃ (51℉) overnight (by late Spring).
In May, Italy’s country-wide Cantine Aperte (Open Cellars) wine event is a big deal around wine towns like Montepulciano. For oenophiles, May is the perfect time to stay.
Summer in Montepulciano is almost always warm and sunny. The daytime temperature often rises beyond 30℃ (86℉), with 17℃ (62℉) overnight typical. This is the season for relaxing by your private pool, especially in the heat of the early afternoon. Stroll through the town in the morning or late afternoon — it’s deserted in the heat of the day.
Montepulciano’s big annual festival happens in August, on the last Sunday of the month. Montepulciano’s eight contrade (neighbourhoods) face off in the Bravio delle Botti. Rival contestants push heavy botti (wine barrels) up the centre’s historic Corso (Main St.) to win the Bravio — a cloth depicting Montepulciano’s patron saint.
Despite cooler temperatures, autumn and winter are still lots of fun around Montepulciano. The sun shines most days, with an average daytime high of 13℃ (55℉) and overnight lows of 4℃ (39℉). But watch the forecasts: it’s not unknown for the entire Val d’Orcia to wake up to a covering of midwinter snow.
For a month-by-month guide to travelling in Tuscany, see: When is the Best Time to Visit Tuscany.
If you are interested in learning more about what makes us different, you can read the Tuscany Now & More story.
Everyone renting a villa near Montepulciano with Tuscany Now & More gets free use of our award-winning concierge service. To order shopping stocked in your fridge on arrival, or book a private chef to cook for a special occasion, you should contact our concierges directly. They can help. Making your holiday lettings extra-special is all part of our service.
While you are in Italy, our dedicated, experienced ground staff are available by phone or WhatsApp.
Checking in & out
You should check in at your Montepulciano holiday rental between 4pm and 7pm. We can accommodate different arrival times, if you communicate this in advance to our office staff.
Montepulciano is approximately equidistant from the two major airports serving central Italy. Allow just over 2 hours to drive from Pisa Airport to Montepulciano. Rome’s main international airport is approximately 2 hours, 20 minutes away by car.
If you are not in a hurry, the town is best approached via the SS2, exiting this road at San Quirico d’Orcia to join the eastbound SS146 via Pienza. Views from this road, south over the expanse of the Val d’Orcia, are unforgettable. You’ll find yourself pausing for a photo every mile or so.
Upon arrival, you will inspect the property alongside our villa owner or caretaker. They can also demonstrate appliances, equipment and utilities.
Check-out is 10am on the final day of your holiday rental. The villa owner or caretaker will arrive at 9am to settle outstanding payments, if you have any. If you wish to depart earlier, you can let us know in advance.
Both the luxury villa and your private swimming pool are cleaned prior to arrival. Some of our holiday villas around Montepulciano have additional cleaning or pool/garden maintenance scheduled during the week. Maid service included with Tuscany Now & More vacation rentals involves cleaning and tidying, but not making beds, kitchen cleaning, laundry or ironing. Extra services can be organised via our travel concierge team.
Bed linen & towels
Our Montepulciano holiday rentals include bed linens, bathroom and swimming pool towels for all guests. These are provided weekly. Extra services and/or changes can be organised through our concierges.