This is the Italian wine country you’ve dreamed about, and as clichd as Chianti tends to be these days, it never ceases to please. In an ideal world, you would be visiting the Tuscan countryside by bicycle, with its challenging hills and leisurely freewheeling through the grape leaves, but there are any number of reasons why that might not be possible; limited time is the greatest culprit. The key to visiting Chianti is to find a nice place to have a lingering lunch and sip the local products. Unless you have great expectations and an even larger bank account, real-estate shopping here can be done from the car window with a heavy dose of imagination. In Siena, bring your camera”especially if you’re here for one of the two runnings of the Palio in summer”and your appetite. There are some great trattorie here at which to sample the fruits of the Tuscan countryside. Fortunate American students often find themselves at programs here, and if they ever feel the urge to leave, it’s only because the area can be very quiet after dark. Siena, with the Tuscan wine country in the background.