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25 Secret European Villages

Bolgheri, Italy

David Cicconi

Italy: Bolgheri

The Viale dei Cipressi, a three-mile road flanked by 2,540 cypress trees (the only vegetation local buffalo don’t eat), leads straight into Bolgheri, which is set amid the vineyards of southern Tuscany’s Maremma. There’s more to this village than just the dramatic arrival, however. Stop in at Caffé della Posta, on the main square, to try one of Bolgheri’s reds: first produced in the 1980’s, these wines now rival French Bordeaux. In nearby Bibbona, five miles southeast, you’ll find the Relais Sant’Elena, a 15-room estate with canopy beds, stone fireplaces, and pasta-making classes.

Population: 1,000

How to Get There: Bolgheri is a 40-mile drive south from Pisa.

Where to Stay: Relais Sant’Elena (doubles from $291).

Where to Eat: Chefs Omar Barsacchi and Gionata d’Alessi serve Tuscan-Maremman cuisine (ravioli stuffed with pappa al pomodoro) at Osteria Magona (dinner for two $160). For wine, try Caffé della Posta (drinks for two $14).

Local Take: The town’s mayor, Fabio Tinti, loves the area’s Casentino wool overcoats, found at Arte e Moda.

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