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The Big Six: Italian country inns

Il Cannito, Campania

The wooded slopes of the Cilento form the breathtaking backdrop for this old-meets-new inn. Set across two lovingly restored houses dating from the 13th century, the exposed stone exterior belies little of the minimal modernism inside. Dinner, using produce from the adjoining farm, is served on the terrace with its stunning views towards the island of Capri. Guests also have use of the owner's beach near the ancient site of Paestum.

Il Cannito, via Cannito, Capaccio, Paestum, Campania (00 39 0828 912 277; ilcannito.com). Doubles start at €220, including breakfast.

Locanda Al Colle, Tuscany

This country hideaway is tucked into the foothills of the Apuan Alps. As the name suggests, the old stone house is set in woodland but it also enjoys panoramic views down to the coast towards the resort of Versilia. There are nine bedrooms, each decorated in a thoughtful mix of contemporary and vintage with mid-century pieces and restful tones. Dinner is served on the terrace twice a week and there's also a heated pool.

Locanda Al Colle, via della, Stretta, 102 Localita Capezzano Pianore, Camaiore, Tuscany (00 39 0584 915 195; locandaalcolle.com). B&B starts at €130.

Borgo San Marco, Puglia

Set just back from the coast near the town of Fasano, Borgo San Marco occupies a traditional masseria (fortified farmhouse). Inside, a pretty courtyard gives on to simply decorated vaulted rooms with cool flagstone floors, leading in turn to its 14 stylishly decorated bedrooms. Each one is decorated in a blend of warm sun-bleached tones redolent of the surrounding countryside. Pugliese dishes are served in the restaurant, there's a pool, a small spa and plenty of beaches to explore.

Borgo San Marco, Contrada Sant'Angelo 33, Fasano, Puglia (00 39 080 439 5757; borgosanmarco.it). B&B starts at €180.

Pension Briol, South Tyrol

Most guests arrive at this idyllic spot via an hour's ramble through the wild flower dotted Alpine landscape of the Isarco valley. The 13-bedroom Bauhaus-style bolthole was built in 1928 by a forward-thinking mother of 15, one of whose descendants still runs the inn. A stay here is all about the peaceful surroundings and delicious home cooking.

Pension Briol, Barbian-Dreikirchen, Barbiano Tre Chiese, Bolzano, South Tyrol (00 39 047 165 0125; broil.it). B&B starts at €82.50.

Antica Locanda San Verolo, Veneto

This charming 13-bedroom property is set on the edge of the small hamlet from which it takes its name, 6km from Lake Garda's eastern shore. Tranquillity abounds throughout the 18th-century country house and its broad terrace. Rooms are country-chic with beamed ceilings, terracotta floors and luxurious bathrooms. Guests also benefit from the facilities at its sister property, the picturesque Punta San Vigilio, which occupies an enviable spot on the lake with its own beach club, marina, taverna and tree-shaded pool.

Locanda San Verolo, Costermano, Verona, Veneto (00 39 045 720 0930; sanverolo.it). Doubles start at €195, including breakfast.

Cascina Barac, Piedmont

Guests staying in one of Cascina Barac's 10 bedrooms wake up to views of undulating hills blanketed with a patchwork of fields and vineyards, surrounding the historic town of Alba. Rustic charm is what is on offer here and top billing is given to enjoying the simple pleasures of the Piedmontese cuisine and wines. In season, the inn also offers guest the chance to hunt for Alba's white gold – its celebrated truffles.

Cascina Barac, Frazione San Rocco Seno d'Elvi, Alba, Cuneo, Piedmont (00 39 0173 366 418; cascinabarac.com). Doubles start at €98, including breakfast.