1. PODERE BELVEDERE
It’s located around 500 meters before arriving to San Quirico d’Orcia, and you can spot it if you look to your left (coming from Pienza) in between the olive trees. It’s not easy to spot, but if you stop in the area you should be able to find it quite easily. Oh, be sure to be there for sunrise if you want to get the best possible light!
Generally, I like to position the house on the lower part to the frame, give space to the hills in the background and finally a little bit of sky too on the upper third. But that’s not the only composition, you can also go wider (trying to keep out not-interesting things as much as possible) or zoom in more and exclude the sky, like in the photo down here. A 70-200mm is the lens to take here, without any doubt!
Best time to visit would be in spring or autumn, in the hope to catch some low fog hanging around the hills at sunrise. In spring you might find some colorful flowers too!
2. THE CYPRESSES OF SAN QUIRICO D'ORCIA
Don’t limit yourself though: the entire place is what I like to call a “playground for photographers”, as there are so many great compositions and pictures to take: a telephoto zoom would be recommended too as there are some lonely trees in the distance to shot too.
3. THE MADONNA DI VITALETA CHAPEL
There’s also another way to see the chapel though: a couple of kilometers before the main spot, closer to Pienza, you’ll notice there’s a gravel road leading into the hills. Take that road, and after another 3km ca. park your car: from there you’ll find a short trail (5 minutes) that will lead you right in front of the Madonna di Vitaleta chapel. To frame it, since you’ll be quite close to it, you might need a wide angle lens!
4. PODERE BACCOLENO
In spring, depending on the year you are visiting, you may find flowers all over the place!
5. POGGIO COVILI
My recommendation is to be there at sunrise, with the sun rising right in the middle of the line of trees if you stand on the left of it. In spring you may found wheat growing in the field around the house, while in autumn it’s not difficult to find foggy conditions like the one you are seeing in the picture here. A wide angle is the lens to-go here.
6. I CIPRESSINI
7. THE GLADIATOR HOUSE (PODERE TERRAPILLE)
Both sunrise and sunset are great here, since the light will make all the difference. In the morning there are higher chances to catch some low fog (specially in autumn), but at sunset you get some sweet side-light like in the picture. A standard lens will be great here, but remember that you can also shoot it from the Pienza balcony with a telephoto lens.