Thursday, January 18, 2018

2017 Tuscany Vacation Diary

Back in October/November, we spent 10 days in the Val d'Orcia region of Tuscany.  If you've been reading here for a while, you know that this region holds such a special in my heart (view previous Toscana posts here, here, here, here, and our wedding here).  While in 2016 we chose to travel sans baby, this year I really went back and forth about bringing Isla with us versus leaving her at home.  I really wanted solo adult time with my husband, but I also wanted to share the beauty of Italy with my daughter.  Ultimately, we ended up bringing Isla + her nanny along for the trip, and it ended up being the best of both worlds!  I've said it before, and I'll say it again, I'm a much better wife and a better mother because I have help.  By bringing our nanny along with us to help with Isla, my husband and I were able to sneak out for dinner dates and wine tastings, yet we were also able to experience everything we love about Italy through the eyes of a two year was absolutely perfect and we made so many amazing memories as a family that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.  

We split our time between 7 days in Tuscany, and 3 days in Rome because we had direct flights from Miami to Rome.  I plan on dedicating a whole post in the future about my experience flying 12 hours with a toddler and what I did to prep for that so stay tuned!  In contrast, I wish I would have dedicated those few extra days to staying in Tuscany.  Rome was too busy, too crowded, and too overwhelming for Isla.  Try forcing a 2 year old to visit a museum....yea, never happening.  Don't get me wrong, Adam and I love Rome.  It's one of our favorite cities and we've been several times, however being out in the beautiful countryside, surrounded by animals and nature was a much better set up for Isla.

We made the decision to return to Rosewood Castiglion del Bosco this year because we are extremely familiar with the area since we've traveled in this region so many times in the past, and because you simply receive a different level of service at Rosewood properties that is difficult to find elsewhere.  You really feel like family when you stay with them.  Rosewood also has a fantastic kids club, and we really try to base our hotel choices around properties that offer a kids club (Four Seasons resorts also have great kids clubs!).  Every day after her nap, Isla and her nanny would head down to the kids club for a few hours until dinner, and she would literally be in tears on her way back home for dinner - she had so much fun she didn't want to leave!

I realize that I'm extremely delayed in sharing these photos, but it's always better late than never and I just love how this space has evolved into a great photo diary of our travels.  Make sure that you scroll all the way to the bottom of this post as I'm also including a fabulous video that we shot with Origami Videography (who also filmed our wedding video).  I just received the video a couple weeks ago, and instantly fell in love with it.  I'm a big fan of taking family photos with a photographer while we holiday, but this video turned out better than I ever could have imagined.  It was the absolute perfect way to document some of our favorite days in Italy.

^^ Checking in to our villa for the week!  Wearing: Franco Ferrari poncho {here} //  long sleeve tee {my favorite that I own in multiple colors here} //  AG jeans - old //  Gucci velvet slippers //  Gucci sunglasses {super flattering, here}.   On Isla: J.Crew little boys wool sweater {no longer available online} //  Old Navy leggings {here} //  Old Soles shoes {under $25 here}

^^ This was our first time traveling here so late into the fall season, and we were blessed with fantastic weather.  It was also our first time witnessing the changing of the leaves in this region, and these views did not disappoint.

^^ Showing Isla our olive tree that we purchased after our wedding in 2013.  She was seriously jet lagged in this photo, and was an absolute terror beforehand as we attempted to visit with friends and do a wine tasting, but at least we got a cute photo!  I'm wearing: Veronica Beard turtleneck {on sale here} //  Joie skirt - old //  On Isla: Our favorite Ugg boots! We also have them in black patent {get them on sale here}

^^ Cheesin!  Tee // Leggings //  Sneakers

^^ There's a bit of interesting history about the villa we rented.  It's nearly 1,000 years old, and was originally a small village police station!  They did such a gorgeous job at renovating the home, updating it in a classic way that only Italians can do while still being respectful of it's original structure.  

^^ The most stunning sunsets over looking the Val d'Orcia valley.  This might sound completely silly to you, but every time that we're here, my soul feels so peaceful, full of love, and like it just belongs here.  I fully realize how insane that sounds, but I've always had the strongest pull towards this area.

^^ How cute is this little guy? He was just hanging out with Adam & I one evening while we were drinking wine on the terrace.  Adam was feeding him potato chips - pretty hilarious!

^^ Little Miss eating gelato in Pienza.  Her cute handmade shoes can be found here.

^^ "Rosso all day" :)  Rosso di Montalcino is one of my favorite wines.  I also love a good Brunello, but Rosso's are just a little lighter, easy drinking and not so full bodied.

^^ Cheese tasting at Podere il Casale.  We did a farm tour (as featured in our family video), and finished the afternoon with a tasting of various cheeses that they make right there on the farm.  Highly recommend this spot if you're planning a trip to the Pienza area!

^^ Since Isla would go to the kids club daily from 3-6:30ish, Adam & I would sit out on the terrace every evening, glass of vino in hand, and watch the most spectacular sunsets.  

^^ I always feel my best when I'm wearing "fall style" clothing.  It just seems so much easier to feel classy and put together in sweaters, leggings, boots, cashmere...all those fall staples.  Wearing: J.Crew sweater {sold out} //  BCBG leggings {a staple in my closet, get them here} //  Rag & Bone fedora {found here}

^^ Displaying the pumpkin she painted in the kids club on our front step!  We were there during the week of Halloween, and even though the holiday isn't celebrated in Italy, they tailored the activity to her and incorporated a Halloween party into the afternoon.  We felt pretty special :)

Straight from the tree.  These cozy cashmere cardigans are quickly becoming a favorite in my wardrobe.  They are almost always on sale, and the quality is great.  {Info found here}

Showing off the small rosemary bush she planted in the garden (another kids club activity).  They seriously had the cutest activities arranged for her!

The prettiest ivy covered stone wall + cobblestone street deserves a photo.  Wearing: Intermix sweater {on sale! here} //  AG jeans - old //  Chanel loafers //  Fedora - old

After our week in Tuscany, we drove back to Rome and stayed there for two nights.  We always stay at Portrait Roma as the hotel is super luxe + we love the location (a block away from the Spanish Steps), the neighborhood restaurants, and the shopping).

Making a wish with coins at the Trevi Fountain.  I wished for another baby, Adam wished for Isla to sleep through the night (she slept pretty terrible this whole trip), and Isla wished for pasta haha! Girls got the right idea ;)

The Adler Family :: A Vacation in Tuscany from Origami Videography on Vimeo.

^^  And here is our family video!  As I said earlier, we normally opt for family photos at least once a year (usually in South Carolina) during our travels as a family, however this time I really wanted to document Isla's age in a more intimate way.  We met with Gianpiero & Stefania and shot this video over the course of 2 days in Montalcino, and in Pienza.  I couldn't have asked for a better video; it perfectly captures the innocence, playfulness, and curious nature of a two year old, and it will be something that we'll be able to watch and relive those beautiful memories for years to come!

I really hoped you enjoyed this photo overload of our vacation in Tuscany!  Please let me know if you have any questions about the area as I have a vacation guide to this specific region that I can send your way.  Thanks so much for your readership and following along on our travels! xx


  1. Beautiful pictures and video! Isla is so so precious...My daughter just turned two a couple weeks ago and it’s amazing to see the world through their eyes!

    1. Thanks so much, Lindsay! This is such a fun age. Although I feel that I say that about every stage so far haha :)

  2. Beautiful photos and video Andy! Tuscany has always been on my bucket list!

    1. Thank you so much! It's always been my favorite region in Italy because it's just so beautiful.

  3. Beautiful photos. And can we talk about how cute Isla is in ALL of them!! Her facial expressions with the animals was too precious. Thanks for sharing!!

    1. Thanks, Megan. Isla is pretty obsessed with all animals so she was basically in heaven! :)



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