Cortona is an ancient hilltop town in the province of Arezzo, in Tuscany, Italy. It sits on the border with Umbria and there have been many battles over the eons to lay claim to this highly valued town. It is iconic as the setting for the celebrated book “Under the Tuscan Sun.” Many travelers have been inspired by the beauty of the setting in the subsequent movie and seek that uniquely Italian experience.

The elevation varies from a height of 1,600 to 2,000 feet, with narrow steep streets surrounded by medieval architecture making for dramatic cityscapes. Dating back as far as the 7th Century B.C. there are many influences represented in the artistic and architectural features. Inside the Palazzo Casali is the Museo dell’Accademia Etrusca, items from Etruscan, Roman, and Egyptian civilizations are on display, as well as art and artifacts from the Medieval and Renaissance eras.

A walk out of town along the Roman road provides a shaded route to drink in the sprawling vistas of the valley floor stretching away to the west.