In the first of two Conversations, long-term Tuscan resident, cultural historian, and travel writer Kate Bolton-Porciatti will explore some of the unspoiled glories of Tuscany - from the legendary desert island of Montecristo in the Tuscan archipelago (now a protected nature reserve) to rural abbeys, castles, and sleepy villages that have escaped the effects of mass tourism.
Partly filmed on location, today’s Conversation traces the history and explores the flora and fauna of the ruggedly beautiful sea-girt isle of Montecristo, a place made famous by Alexandre Dumas’ novel The Count of Montecristo. Now uninhabited, it’s a wildly beautiful nature reserve allowing only 1000 visitors a year. Journeying inland, we follow in the footsteps of the medieval knight-turned-hermit Saint Galgano, visiting Montesiepi to see his legendary sword plunged into a stone and the poetic ruins of the Abbey of San Galgano – one of the most hauntingly beautiful Gothic monuments in all Italy.
This seminar has been thoughtfully designed to be enjoyed in connection to Hidden Tuscany: Following the Etruscans' Footsteps with Kate Bolton-Porciatti.And, if you are ready to travel with us in person across Tuscany, please click here to explore our Context Journeys and Private Tours.
About Your Expert
Kate Bolton-Porciatti is a professor of Italian cultural history and music at the Istituto Lorenzo de'Medici in Florence, where she teaches BA and MA courses in the humanities. She also lectures at the British Institute, Florence, and at the Chigiana Music Academy in Siena. Kate has published extensively as an academic and a journalist; she is a music critic for BBC Music and a travel writer for The Daily Telegraph, UK. Before moving to Italy permanently in 2005, she was a senior producer and broadcaster for BBC Arts & Classical Music in London and has won prestigious Jerusalem and Sony Awards for her programs. She did her M.Phil. thesis in Italy, exploring the musical culture of early Renaissance Florence.
This conversation is suitable for all ages.
90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.
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Another superb and mouthwatering tour around lesser known parts of Tuscany. Kate has the skill and expertise to take us gently around the countryside, giving us fascinating and unexpected insights and glimpses into the lives, loves, and artistic creations of the people who once inhabited this stunningly beautiful region.
Superb, in-depth tour of tiny, obscure towns in Tuscany.
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I love how Kate Bolton-Porciatti helps us see the big and famous AND the smaller and less known of Tuscany. This was a perfect example of how to get off the main tourist track and see Tuscany in its beauty.