Many people have heard of the Slow Food movement -- the global organization founded in Italy to counter fast food and the "fast life."
Its adherents favor gastronomic tradition and the calm, contemplative enjoyment of cuisine and life in general.
Now another idea is taking hold in the wake of Slow Food -- the quest for a quiet Italy.
It's embodied in the establishment of a new Academy of Silence (Italian site only), in Tuscany, which seeks to gather a list of the quietest hotels, towns and other places in Italy.
We've collected 10 idyllic spots -- among the calmest, quietest and most powerfully relaxing in all Italy -- to suggest to the Academy as prime candidates for inclusion.
1. Eremito Hotelito del Alma (Parrano, Umbria)
No TV, no phone, no mini-bar, no air-con.
Go to bed when it's dark, wake up at dawn.
Candlelight only after sunset.
Phones to be used outside only.
This is also the first hotel in Italy with only single rooms -- so not the place for romance.
It still feels like the monastery it once was -- the monk's cells have been converted into rooms -- except now there's a spa, and great Umbrian food instead of bread and water.
There are even Gregorian chants -- listening to them makes lying in the heated rock pool all the more relaxing.
During the day, there's little to do except explore the surrounding 3,000 hectares of national reserve.
Or practice doing nothing.
Eremito Hotelito del Alma, Localitá Tarina, 2; +39 (0)76 389 1010; rooms from $208
2. Stargazing from the Rocca D'Orcia Tower (Siena, Tuscany)
A single, stone medieval tower sits atop a wooded hill, overhanging a precipice.
From this superb lookout, you'd once have been able to spot enemies approaching from miles around across the Val d'Orcia valley.
Now it's open to the public -- a noble family fell on hard times and sold it to the state.
Surrounding it are just a few stone houses and cobbled streets.
Maybe the odd cat.
On clear nights, standing atop the tower, thick star clusters illuminate hills, vineyards and Renaissance-era dwellings.
If Tuscany has anywhere more quiet and calm, someone's keeping silent about it.
La Rocchetta (Via della Chiesa, 8; +39 (0)55 228 0413; rooms from $40) is a B&B in the middle of the hamlet, right under the tower.