The Heart of Humanity

July 9th, 2016
Piazza Pio II, Pienza (Siena)






Where to sleep and where to eat

Food and lodging suggested by Aurora Festival: Eat Sleep

Pienza and the val d’Orcia are filled with b&b, hotels, and farmhouses that fill up quickly during the summer. Here is a complete lodging list to download. If you want to find a convenient place to stay, we advise you to book now!

How to get there

Pienza and Monticchiello, where the festival is going to take place, are 10 km apart from each other, and other than taxis there is no public transport in the area. Therefore, if you want to be independent, we would advise renting a car. If you want to get a ride to the festival, please click on the car sharing link. If you are coming from abroad, you can rent a car at the airport (Rome, Florence, Pisa, Perugia airports are all within 2 hours drive). If you came by train, you can rent a car in Chiusi.
And if you don’t drive at all, you can take a taxi from the station to your hotel ( (tel. +39 336 700056, 50€ for a car, 60€ for a van for 8 people). With 15 days advance notice the festival can organize a shuttle service for you between the events in Pienza and Monticchiello at a reasonable cost.

– By train
The nearest train station is Chiusi-Chianciano, 40 minutes drive from where the festival. To get to Chiusi-Chianciano, which is on the Milan-Bologna-Florence-Rome line, you can take a direct train from most major Italian cities. Nearest main stations are Rome (2 hours) and Florence (1,5 hours). There are several trains a day (link to the web site of Trenitalia).

– By plane
Rome airport is the largest in Italy and therefore the most convenient. From there you could rent a car or take the shuttle to the main railway station called Roma Termini, to take the train to Chiusi.
Other airports in the area are Pisa (Easy Jet), where it is better to rent a car, because the train connections are less direct, Florence, where you should get a bus from the airport to the main station Santa Maria Novella, and Perugia (Ryanair) when you have to rent a car.

What to do in the area

There are so many things to do in the area that you could spend your entire summer here and you would only just begin to explore its diversity.
– One of our favorite past-times is going to spas, which have been around there since Roman times. There are at least three main spas within 40 km, Terme Chianciano, Terme Fonteverde in San Casciano ai Bagni,  Hotel Adler, Hotel Posta Marcucci, Hotel Le Terme in Bagno Vignoni.

Food and wine. Olive oil, cheese, honey and naturally wine are famous local products. You can organize a wine tasting in one of the wineries, and gain a lot of weight in a short time visiting all the delicious restaurants in the area. During the festival on Sunday 12th July, at 7 p.m there will be a wine tasting of local traditional and organic wines at podere Isabella. There you can buy wine, oil, cheese and honey to bring back home as a souvenir of the festival.

– Lunches & Dinners. On the Festival program (download here) you will find lunch on Thursday July 9th at Podere Il Casale, lunch on Friday July 10th at Podere Isabella, dinner on Friday July 10th at La Taverna di Bronzone in Monticchiello, light dinner on Saturday July 11th at Podere Isabella, a wine tasting & closing party at Podere Isabella on Sunday July 12th, also at Podere Isabella. Menus and prices will be online from June. Please book in advance, so we can shop and cook for you! All other meals are up to you.

Art. the area is full of churches and museums with renaissance art everywhere. Chiusi has a very good Etruscan museum which can begin to shed light on this ancient, mysterious and enlightened culture, pervasive in this area before Roman time.
Siena is just an hours drive, perfect for a day trip, and Arezzo is even closer, with the wonderful Beato Angelico frescoes. Other attractions are Monte Oliveto Maggiore and Saint Anna in Camprena, with great cycles of frescoes.

We recommend you in particular:
Spineto Abbey
“Ancient sounds and silences, the perfect companions for contemplation, work and study.” It is a vallombrosan abbey established in 1085 surrounded by a property of more than 800 hectares (2500 acres).
The non-profit organization, “Associazione culturale Abbazia di Spineto incontri e studi” was established on 22.04.1996. It promote and support the diffusion and development of; scientific research, professional qualification, in addition to a variety of cultural and artistic activities and projects of social value.

– Handcrafts. every town, even Monticchiello, has a shop with gorgeous Tuscan linen, where you can buy excellent quality table cloths and towels with medieval or renaissance designs, and hand crafted ceramics with historical or modern motifs.

– and, of course,… Aurora Festival!
The Full Festival Card includes the whole program of the festival, 3 dinners in Podere Isabella with the Speakers, friends and a different cooker each evening, and still a special gift: a 45′ session of Pranotherapy, Shiatsu or Ayurvedic Massage, or a 45′ minutes lecture of Tarots or of the Peruvian divination of Pallares with fantastic therpists and fortune tellers especially recommended by the Festival Director.

We are waiting for you!