San Gimignano, on the edge of Tuscany’s Chianti area, may be the one that attracts the hordes of tourists. But there are those in the know who will tell you Volterra, 12 miles away, is the more alluring hilltown.Volterra sits 550 metres above the Cecina Valley and boasts views as far as the Tyrrhenian Sea. Probably the oldest sites to see here are the remaining stretches of its Etruscan walls, built in the fourth century when the town’s population was double its present 11,300.
Back then it was known as Velathri, one of the most important of the 12 cities in the Etrurian federation and a major exporter of minerals, iron products alabaster to countries all around the Mediterranean Sea. The practice of working alabaster still thrives in the town to this day and Volterra’s streets are lined with shops that make it one of the best places in all Italy in which to buy alabaster goods. However, Volterra is rightly best known for its walls, most of which are nearly 800 years old but some sections of which remain from the Etruscan era 2,400 years ago. The ancient defensive structure completely surrounds the town and includes moats and watchtowers. Its southern stretch takes in Volterra’s famous Porta all’Arco gateway to the town. Part of the gate dates back to the original 2,400-year-old Etruscan structure while the upper section was rebuilt by the Romans some 400 years later.
It is quite interesting to visit this place while you are in Tuscany. You can hire a car from Tuscany to visit this place and many more interesting sites around. It is a good idea to check out car hire options online so that you can strike an economical deal. car-rental-italy provides cars on hire to go around exploring the picturesque place of Italy and offers special economical packages especially for the tourists who prefer to independently explore the place. Due to the growing number of tourists every year, car rental Italy has come up to facilitate all the tourists to provide them an easy, less pricy option to enjoy the vacation.