The region of Tuscany, for many people, conjures up picture postcard images of rolling hills covered with either olive groves or vineyards, picturesque lanes and driveways lined with tall cypress trees and stunning views across a colourful, unspoiled countryside. These are the typical characteristics of the area of Tuscany known as Chianti, right at the heart of the region, between the historic cities of Florence and Siena. This area, famous for its incomparable, natural beauty and world class wine production is home to some of the most stunning places to get married in Italy.
The largest town in Chianti is Greve in Chianti, followed by Castellina in Chianti, Radda in Chianti, Panzano in Chianti and the smaller Gaiole in Chianti. Each town has its own unique character and it is worth taking the time to explore each one.
Getting married in Chianti is surely the best way to discover some of the most original treasures in Tuscany: Medieval Castles, Historic Town Palaces in the heart of tiny, walled, Medieval towns, Villas, Farmhouses, Hotels and Resorts. All of these types of properties are available to suit every style and budget, not only for an unforgettable Wedding Ceremony and Reception but also for an idyllic holiday or honeymoon.
The Chianti area offers the best selection of ancient Town Halls for a romantic Legal Civil Ceremony and beautiful country churches for a unique and intimate Catholic Ceremony. Exclusive Wedding Receptions can be held on the grounds of private independent Villas with pools or at ancient Farmhouses and vineyards, with possible activities such as wine tastings with your guests, discovering the many magnificent labels produced on-site at that same villa. Reception Venues like historic Villas or Medieval Castles can also be rented exclusively for your Wedding day and set up according to your vision and style.
Gaiole in Chianti is one of the key wine producing towns of the area and is also well known for its extra virgin olive oil. The land in Gaiole is home to more than 100 wineries which contribute to the charming mix of modern and Medieval architecture.
Gaiole in Chianti was recently named by Forbes Magazine the most idyllic place in Europe. Surrounded by picturesque scenery and fabulous food, you can't go wrong in Gaiole. The famous Sagra della Bruschetta (Bruschetta Festival) is held every year in mid September, where you can taste local specialties alongside the original Italian bruschetta with fresh olive oil! Most of the restaurants, bars and shops can be found in the main piazza where local artisans sell their wares - perfect gifts to bring home as a wedding memento!
Legal Civil Ceremonies in Gaiole are held at the Palazzo Comunale (town hall) facing the pretty central square, framed by wine and craft shops,. An elegant staircase leads to the tiny wedding hall on the first floor, with a wonderful wooden ceiling;perfect for intimate and romantic civil ceremonies. Imagine your closest family, friends and loved ones gathered in an ancient town hall to watch you say your vows!
Gaiole in Chianti is also a perfect place to celebrate Religious Ceremonies as one of the most interesting characteristics of Gaiole in Chianti is the presence of several Roman churches, among the most ancient in Tuscany. They have kept their original structures and preserved their ancient beauty within their stone walls. Several Chianti Castles and hamlets also have their own churches and private chapels on site, where it is possible to arrange Religious Blessings and Symbolic Ceremonies with no legal value.
Castellina in Chianti sits fully within the core Chianti wine territory, closer to Siena than to Florence. It’s history dates back to the Bronze Age with interesting archaeological finds reaching back even further such as the Etruscan tombs and Necropolis just outside the city. Castellina flourished in the Medieval period and many architectural reminders can be seen today in the many magnificent fortified farmhouses and tower houses dotted through the territory. The wonderful Medieval fortress “Rocca di Castellina” that dominates the city and is today the seat of the town hall, is a main site of interest with its spectacular atrium, council chamber, Sala del Capitano (Captain's Hall), courtyard and Medieval well.
Castellina is a vibrant place with a lively nightlife and regular town festivals, more so than other areas of Chianti. There are plenty of welcoming cafes and bars where you can enjoy a typical Italian "aperitivo" before dinner, a treasured time of day. One of the biggest events of the year in Castellina is the Pentecostal Wine Fair around Easter. You can buy your own wine glass and taste the local delights, moving from stand to stand in the vaulted gallery under the old town walls. Usually around 50 to 100 local vineyards exhibit and they only produce a few thousand bottles of wine per year.
Inside the tower of the fortress in the “Sala del Capitano”, its thick ancient walls, iron coat of arms, original furniture and huge fireplace create a fairytale magical atmosphere for Legal Civil Wedding Ceremonies. Outside the tower you can enjoy a magnificent view over the town and the surrounding countryside from the panoramic terrace. Walking down the cobbled streets and through the Via delle Volte (road of the Vaults), an impressive arched passage originally used for military purposes, you will find some beautiful sposts for photographs including some against some secret views of the Chianti hills.
Radda in Chianti, a small hamlet perched on a small hill, offers a true step back into the Middle Ages with its geometrical network of narrow streets and parts of the original walls and fortifications. There are hundreds of wineries in the surrounding area, covering the rolling hills with extensive vineyards, famous for producing much of the wine in the Chianti region. Even if you are not a wine enthusiast you cannot help but admire the natural beauty and the seasonal colours that stretch out before you across the beautiful countryside..
Of all the beautiful historic buildings in Radda, the ancient town hall ‘Palazzo Pretorio’ dominates the small town with its incomparable beauty. Legal Civil Ceremonies are held outdoors under the beautiful ‘loggia’ framed by the secular arches dating back to the fifteenth century, with its wonderful maiolica heraldic coats of arms, once symbols of the noble local families. Outside the loggia couples can capture some wonderful photographic moments in the beautiful square, filled with flowers, and around the gorgeous fountain, a wonderful piece of art.
Radda offers several Castles where we can arrange wonderful Religious Ceremonies and Wedding Receptions while enjoying one of the most spectacular views in Tuscany. There are also many charming Medieval churches, ancient abbeys and Roman style country chapels that are available for a Religious Catholic Ceremony both in Radda in Chianti and in the surrounding countryside.
Radda is completely surrounded by vineyards and driving around this area you will come across many signs saying "degustazione" (wine tasting). There are few better places to arrange a special wine tasting experience to share with your family and friends. Why not offer a bottle of the local red as a wedding favour for your guests?
Greve is the most prominent city in the Chianti area and one of the focal points of the Chianti wine trail, hosting the world famous wine festival every September. A beautiful winery either with a pool, a terrace, an incredible restaurant, amazing views, bedrooms, or all of the above, is never far away. This area has many wonderful venues and locations to consider for the quintessential wedding in Tuscany. Perfectly placed at the heart of Chianti, halfway between Florence and Siena, it is also an ideal base from where to explore the rest of Tuscany.
For couples planning a Religious Ceremony there are many beautiful Roman Churches to choose from, dotted across the scenic hills and surrounded by vineyards and olive groves. Get married in the centrally located Santa Croce Church with its neoclassical facade. Built on the site of a Medieval church, it still displays several masterpieces from churches in the local surroundings. One of the most important works is the 14th century fresco of the Virgin Mary with Child and a 15th century triptych by Lorenzo di Bicci. Getting married with a Legal Civil Ceremony at Greve town hall means strolling across the famous triangular square, framed by ancient buildings, porticos and loggias with picturesque wine cellars and local food shops. Today Greve is home to one of the the largest and most varied markets in Tuscany where you can buy genuine products, local crafts and antiques.
Greve in Chianti is a very fun and lively town hosting regular events all year round, including food and wine festivals with great music and fantastic markets. A visit to the Wine Museum is a must, offering an exciting selection of wines to taste. Every Saturday the main square transforms into a vivacious market with stalls selling fresh fruit and veg, cheeses, olives, household goods, flowers and of course, wine! Greve is surrounded by delightful villages with many castles and original, fortified hamlets. Many elegant residences and famous estates have been meticulously restored offering some stunning venues for your Wedding Celebration.