One of the great things about this trip was that some days I’d just fall out of bed, flip open a map and decide where to go on a whim. My visit to Poppi was inspired by this process with a little coaxing from a book called “Most Beautiful Villages in Tuscany.” Such a title might lead to high expectations and the suspicion of imminent disappointment, but Poppi did not let me down. It’s a very pretty, compact town with a castle, a church and a long, cobbled main street. Even the weather was on my side.


I parked just outside the city walls. Inside the tarmac road immediately changes to cobbles and the buildings get older and prettier. Of course, if we saw buildings with flaking paint like this back home we’d complain, but here it is quaint and attractive. Just inside the walls is a fountain in the middle of a round-about.

The first port of call really had to be the castle, which was to the left and up a hill. It was visible from some way out ((The distances on the road signs were so misleading that I thought that the town on the hill was an entirely different site.)) and was no less impressive close up.


It’s surrounded by a dry moat ((Only quite dry at this point. There had been a lot of rain in the last few days.)) and some amazing vistas of the local area. On one side I found green and undulating hills.


And on the other I could see back to the other side of Poppi itself, showing a church with the same type of rolling hills as a backdrop.


The church looked as thought it would be worth further investigation so I went back down the hill (via a small cafe). Compared with the bigger towns, the church was less elaborate but this one is actually used.

At home people often seem to lose the wonder of the place that they live in, taking for granted all the great things that their local town and country had. It’s nice to see that not all of the residents of Poppi are unappreciative.


It’s finds like Poppi that remind me while I love travelling. While eating breakfast I had barely heard of the place but by the afternoon I was wandering around and soaking in the atmosphere.

With no plan for the next day will there be a pleasant surprise again?