Tuscany travel guide

More about ‘Tuscany travel guide

Minibus tours in Tuscany with Giovanni Sirabella

Giovanni Sirabella minibus tours in Tuscany

Giovanni is an English-speaking driver-guide who leads tours by minibus and car all over Tuscany, including wine tours and specialising in shore excursions from the cruise ship port of Livorno, and in tours of the Cinque Terre and Portofino.

Hiking in Tuscany

Strada Bianca

Tuscany is without doubt a hiker’s paradise. Strolling, walking, hiking, trekking – even mountain climbing – are all catered for by Tuscany’s wonderful variety of terrain, splendid climate and innumerable sights. Every corner of Tuscany offers the most picturesque opportunities.

Sant’Emiliano a Borgonuovo near Cortona

blank

The parish church (pieve) of San Mamiliano a Cignano, now known as the church of Sant’Emiliano in Borgonuovo, is located on the Arretine hillside of the Val di Chiana, a short distance from the famous Abbey of Farneta, and was probably built along an important road in the area.

Pontremoli

Pontremoli

Pontremoli is situated in the Province of Massa and Carrara very near the border with Emilia Romagna, making it the northernmost town in Tuscany. It is located at north-western end of the Lunigiana region in the high valley of the Magra river, at the confluence with the Verde stream and the Valle del Verde.

Church of Santi Apostoli

Church of Santi Apostoli Florence

The Church of Santi Apostoli (Holy Apostles) is located in Piazza del Limbo in Florence and dates from the 11 C. It is one of the oldest and historically rich of the churches in Florence. The church of Santi Apostoli is where some of the oldest legends of Florence have their roots and it is central to popular festivals such as the explosion of the cart, earning it the popular nickname of “Old Cathedral of Florence”, despite never having been the Florence’s cathedral.

Santa Fiora, Grosseto

Santa Fiora in the Maremma area of Tuscany

The charming little town of Santa Fiora is located in the eastern extreme of the Maremma on the slopes of Monte Amiata and, along with Arcidosso, is well worth a visit by anyone visiting this area. Santa Fiora is located about 40 km east of the provincial capital Grosseto and about 110 south of Florence, on the river Fiora and in close proximity to Monte Calvo, to Monte Labbro in the west and to Monte Amiata in the north.

Church of San Giovanni Maggiore at Borgo San Lorenzo, Tuscany

Church of San Giovanni Maggiore at Borgo San Lorenzo, Tuscany

The Church of San Giovanni Maggiore is located about 3 km away from Borgo San Lorenzo. It can be reached on foot along a cypress-lined pathway. The facade of the church is embellished by a loggia renovated in the 20 C. The bell tower, known as the “Campanile Alberto”, is quite famous.

Montebenichi and the Castelletto di Montebenichi

Castelletto di Montebenichi

Montebenichi is located in the municipality of Bucine in the Province of Arezzo of Tuscany. The village is situated on a hilltop between the Chianti Aretino and the Chianti Senesi, dominating the Valdambra, right on the border with the municipalities of Gaiole in Chianti and Castelnuovo Berardenga. The views from the village are truly splendid, sweeping across the Crete Senesi to Monte Amiata in the south, Cortona in the east and Sienna and beyond in the west.

Museo Horne, Florence

Museo Horne, Florence

The Horne Museum (Museo Horne) is located in Florence at Via dei Benci, 6, a short distance away from the Arno and the Ponte alle Grazie, within an easy walk of the major sights around the Palazzo Vecchio. A visit to the gem is highly recommended to anyone bringing to Florence an interest in early Renaissance life and art.

Pieve di San Giovanni Battista a Sillano

Pieve di San Giovanni Battista a Sillano

Along the road that leads from the small village of San Dalmazio to the Rocca Sillana, not far from Radicondoli and Pomarance, are the remains of the ancient Pieve di San Giovanni Battista di Sillano (Parish Church of St. John the Baptist at Sillana). The church was a large building, which has been abandoned for centuries and is now reduced to a state of ruin.

Stay at a winery in the Chianti Classico wine zone of Tuscany

Agriturismo

One of the great pleasures of visiting the beautiful Chianti Classico wine zone of Tuscany is the opportunity to stay at a working winery. Agriturismo “Le Cetinelle”, located in the cool Chianti hills above Greve in Chianti, is just such a property. “Le Cetinelle” produces Chianti Classico wine and extavirgin olive oil, and offers comfortable accommodation for visitors holidaying in the region.

The Rocca (Fortress) of Ceserana in the Garfagnana

Church of Sant'Andrea in the remians of the Rocca of Ceserana

The fortress of Ceserana is located in Garfagnana (Province of Lucca). It is located on a hill on the left bank of the Serchio river. Inside it is a Romanesque church dedicated to Sant’Andrea

Villa Gamberaia

Villa Gamberaia and its gardens

Villa Gamberaia and its italianate garden is one of the most famous of the classic Renaissance Tuscan villas and, indeed, is ranked among the most beautiful villas in Italy.

Villa Gamberaia is also one of the few truly spectacular Tuscan villas still in private hands. Villa Gamberaia is located in the beautiful hills of Settignano within easy reach of central Florence by car or bus. The gardens of the villa are open to the public for a small entry fee, and the gardens can be rented for events such as weddings and fashion shows. It is also possible to rent the villa itself.

Vicchiomaggio

The courtyard of Castello di Vicchiomaggio

The Castle of Vicchiomaggio is in fact a splendid Renaissance villa incorporating the remains of a very early, probably Lombard, castle. It is also a producer of some of the best Chianti Classico wines – indeed, some of the best wines in Italy.

Tuscan Saffron

Zafferano 7

Saffron is grown in small quantities but high quality in Italy where it is used in a number of regional dishes, most famously Risotto alla Milanese. The prized “Aquila” saffron (zafferano dell’Aquila) is characterised by elevated safranal and crocin content, shape, unusually pungent aroma and intense colour.

Fiesole

Fiesole

Fiesole is actually an older settlement than Florence but was long ago overtaken by its former rival in the Val d’Arno below. For centuries Fiesole has been the favoured retreat of Florentines during the hot summer months and it still provides cool summer air and magnificent views.

Castellina in Chianti

Castellina aerial

Castellina in Chianti is situated on a ridge along the Chiantigiana highway between Florence and Siena, at the turn-off for Poggibonsi. Castellina has an attractive old town centre marred by a grotesque formation of industrial silos and an abandoned warehouse

Luxury Tuscan villas and villa hotels

luxury hotel in Tuscany

The holiday of a lifetime – a couple of weeks relaxing in a luxury Tuscany villa! Throughout the province of Tuscany and especially near the art cities of Florence and Sienna, patrician villas are to be found in beautiful situations, usually vine-covered hillsides with spectacular panoramic views.

The “Agriturismo Experience”

Agriturismo in Tuscany

The term “agriturismo” has a legal meaning in Tuscany even though it is sometimes used loosely to refer to any rural holiday accommodation. An agritourism is a working farm – in Tuscany invariably a winery and/or producer of olive oil – that offers accommodation to tourists in the form of whole houses, apartments or rooms.

Panzano in Chianti

Panzano in Chianti

Panzano is located at the highest point and almost exactly midway along thescenic Via Chiantigiana road from Florence to Siena. Parts of the original castle remain, incorporated into the church and also as an independent tower.

Monteriggioni

Monteriggione

Monteriggioni is one of the most famous and attractive castles in all Tuscany. Its curtain wall and fourteen towers are virtually intact, and the interior is now occupied by a small and peaceful village.

Strade Bianche of Tuscany, Italy

Stradabiancha

“Strade Bianche” means “white roads” and in Tuscany this expression refers to the network of unpaved back roads that run among the vineyards and olive groves of the Tuscan countryside. The name comes from the colour of the dry earth and the limestone gravel and small stones of these roads during the Tuscan summer.

Chianciano Terme

Chianciano Terme hot pools

Chianciano Terme is a municipality famous for its hot springs, situated in the Province of Sienna, Tuscany, about 90 km southeast of Florence and about 50 km southeast of Sienna, between the Valdichiana and the Val d’Orcia.

Lari

Castello dei Vicari in Lari, Tuscany

Today the most significant sight within Lari is the Renaissance fortress (Castello dei Vicari), formerly the residence of the Florentine Vicars. This well-preserved complex is open to the public throughout the year. Visitors may view Etruscan, Roman and Renaissance objects (glazed terracottas of the Della Robbia), mediaeval and Renaissance frescoes, the “Hall of torments”, the prisons, and underground chambers known as “the hell”.

Badia a Coltibuono

Badia a coltibuono

Badia a Coltibuono was founded in 1051 by monks of the Benedictine Vallombrosan Order who also began planting the first vineyards in the Upper Chianti area. In 1810, when Tuscany was under Napoleonic rule, the monks were forced to leave Coltibuono and the monastery was deconsecrated and, after passing through a number of hands, was bought by the Stucchi-Prinetti family.

Rapolano Terme

Rapolano Terme thermal baths

Rapolano Terme is situated in one of the most fascinating parts of the Siennese countryside – the Crete Senesi. This spa was known to the Romans, as can be seen at the archaeological site of Campo Muri, and was still in use in the Middle Ages. Today, Rapolano Terme offers modern bathing and spa facilities based around its numerous hot springs.

Sienna

Siena

Sienna (Siena in Italian) is second only to Florence as a Tuscan “art” town, and, for many, its much smaller size and the absence of traffic in the historical centre make it more than the equal of Florence as a place to enjoy the treasures of Romanesque and Renaissance Italy, as well as the modern Italian lifestyle.

Greve in Chianti

Greve in chianti

Greve in Chianti is a small town situated in the valley of the Greve stream, half-way along the scenic Chiantigiana highway (SS 222) that runs from Florence to Sienna. Greve has an attractive, arcaded, triangular piazza with several ceramics and wine shops

Casciana Terme

Casciana Terme public thermal pool

At Casciana Terme the first thermal baths date from 1311 and were built by command of Federico da Montefeltro. In 1824, a new façade was added to the building by order of Ferdinand III of Lorraine. At the same time, the various baths were improved and heating stoves were installed for drying the towels and thus the place became known as “the pearl of Italian spas”.

Tuscan gardens

Villa Gamberaia Tuscan formal garden

Italy is famous for its formal gardens. This style of gardening, rediscovered in Tuscany during the Renaissance and based on classical Roman precepts, had great influence on garden design in England and especially in France. Early formal English gardens were influenced by the fountains, cascades and use of statuary that are essential elements of Italian Renaissance gardens.

Ponte della Pia

Ponte della Pia over the Rosia stream in Tuscany

Ponte della Pia is a bridge of Roman origin, rebuilt in mediaeval times, which is accessed in a heavily wooded area from the SS73 near the town of Rosia in the municipality of Sovicille, in Tuscany. It was the only bridge spared from the German demolition in the Padule di Stigliano in 1944, and was therefore used by the allied troops. The bridge consists of a single arch, the current structure of which dates back to the early 13 C.

Tuscan Wineries

Tuscanwineries

All of these Tuscan wineries in the Chianti Classico wine territory of Tuscany have their own wines and usually also their own olive oil on sale. You may ask to taste a wine before buying and at the larger wineries vertical tastings of Tuscan wines can be arranged, especially if you are staying at a vacation rental on the same property.

Accommodations in Chianti

accommodation in Tuscany

The Tuscany holiday accommodations listed here are located in both the countryside and the small towns and villages of the Chianti Classico wine territory. They are often near wineries but are not working vineyards themselves.

Pontassieve

266 pontassieve bridge

Pontassieve is a small town located about 14 km east of Florence at the point where the River Sieve joins the Arno. Pontassieve was severely bombed during WW II but the small historical centre has been well-restored

Pistoia

Aerial view of the historic centre of Pistoia in Tuscany, Italy

Pistoia is the capital of the Province of Pistoia in Tuscany and is located equidistant between Lucca and Florence. Despite its attractions, Pistoia seems to be unjustly neglected by visitors to this part of Tuscany.

Hermitage of San Salvatore (Holy Redeemer) of Lecceto

Monastery of the Holy Saviour Lecceto

The Monastery of the Holy Saviour at Lecceto in Tuscany, commonly known as the Eremo di Lecceto, was the principal House of the order of the Hermit Friars of Saint Augustine in 1256, when Pope Alexander IV constituted the Augustinian order internationally. It was dedicated to Saint Saviour.

Acquedotto del Nottolini, Lucca

Aqueduct of Nottolini Lucca

The Acquedotto del Nottolini is often mistaken for an ancient Roman aqueduct, but in fact construction began in 1823 according to the design of the architect Lorenzo Nottolini, under the rule of Maria Luisa of Spain, Duchess of Lucca, and continued until 1851.

San Giuliano Terme

San Giuliano Terme

San Giuliano Terme is a municipality and famous spa in the Province of Pisa, located about 5 km northeast of Pisa. Definitely worth a visit.

Pickpockets in Italy

Gypsies

Armed robbery (“mugging”) and violent theft are relatively rare in Italy, but Naples and Rome are right up there with Barcelona and Madrid as the pickpocket capitals of the world. Florence and other tourist cities are also plagued by pickpockets in Italy.

Thermal springs in Tuscany

Hot pools in Tuscany

Tuscany, world famous for its landscapes, its climate, its agricultural produce and its life-style is also a land rich in thermal pools, hot springs and wellness spas.

Bagni di Lucca

Bagni di Lucca

Bagni di Lucca has been famous for its thermal springs since the days of the Etruscans and the Romans. The place was noted for the first time in an official document of 983 AD as “Corsena”, with reference to a donation by the Bishop Teudogrimo of the territory of Bagni di Lucca to Fraolmo of Corvaresi.

Bed and Breakfast in Chianti

Bedandbreakfast in Chianti

One of the most convenient forms of accommodation in Chianti and Tuscany is a Bed and Breakfast (B&B) in Chianti. These can be located in both the countryside and the small towns and villages of the Chianti Classico wine territory and there are usually only two or three rooms offered, making for a more relaxed and friendly atmosphere.

Montepulciano

Montepulciano

Montepulciano is famous for not just one but two excellent wines, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano and Rosso di Montepulciano. However, it is often underestimated in terms of the interest of its art and architecture.

Transport in Tuscany

Transport in tuscany

The main Tuscan cities such as Florence, Pisa, Lucca and Sienna plus many of the smaller towns are connected by the railway network, but a great many towns and villages are served only by buses or by no public transport at all.

Timeshares and fractional ownership in Tuscany

Pergola

Fractional ownership of a vacation apartment is similar to a timesharebut with more flexibility and better equity. Borgo di Vagli fractional ownership club near Cortona on the Tuscan-Umbrian border provides access to luxury accommodation in a restored mediaeval village at a fraction of the price of owning and maintaining your own residence in Tuscany.

Tuscany Taxi and Transfers

Tuscany taxi and transfer

Our recommended minibus drivers for airport, railway station, cruise ship port transfers to and from your accommodation in Tuscany and to and from all points in Italy. Plus larger vehicles for wedding parties and groups.

Italian traffic tickets

traffic violations in Italy

Five facts you need to know about traffic violations, ticketing and fines in Italy:
1) Local authorities around the world generate a significant proportion of their revenue from fines levied for infractions of various non-penal laws, notably driving regulations.

Organic food in Tuscany

Pecorino

Organic food production and cooking is popular in Italy and, indeed, the home of the movements for Slow Food and Slow Cities is also the European leader in organic farming, with around 45,000 organic farms, 2,300 of them in Tuscany. Germany, where Bio-Produkte are enormously popular, comes in second.

Lamole

Lamole in Chianti

Lamole is a small village high up in the Chianti hills, accessed from a turnoff between Greve and Panzano. While Lamole is a charming little place in itself, the main reason for a visit is the beautiful drive up, passing by the famous renaissance Villa Vignamaggio and the Castello di Lamole along a road lined by cypresses and offering spectacular views.

Badia a Passignano

Badiaapassignano

Badia a Passignano. According to tradition, a monastery was founded at Passignano by Sichelmo in 890. An Abbey (Badia) was established 1049 as a consequence of the Vallombrosan monastic reforms, and took the form of a quadrangular fortified structure with corner towers.

Tuscany Travel Websites

Greve in chianti banner

www.greve-in-chianti.com Complete information for the Chianti zone centred on the market town ofGreve in Chianti. Chianti vacation rentals and farm house holiday homes, with maps, pictures, festival dates and things to see.

Wedding in Tuscany

wedding in Tuscany

Looking for a great place to celebrate your forthcoming marriage? Tuscany offers endless romantic wedding venues. A wedding in Tuscany can be a grand occasion located at a castle or an intimate occasion at an agriturismo in the country where family and friends can all be accommodated.

Bagni di San Filippo

Bagni di San Filippo calcium terraces

Bagni di San Filippo, in the province of Grosseto, is situated among the fascinating “crete” of the Val d’Orcia and the woods of Monte Amiata. This is one of Tuscany’s most spectacular spa resorts thanks to the presence of white limestone deposits which wind magically through the surrounding greenery.

Montecatini Terme

Montecatini art nouveau Tettuccio Spa

Montecatini Terme and its thermal resorts are located in the Valdinievole which is also the area of some small but attractive art towns such as Pescia and Monsummano Terme. The Valdinievole forms a small but significant part of the Province of Pistoia. The most important attractions of Montecatini are the thermal spa facilities themselves.

Terme di Saturnia

Saturnia hot springs

The Terme di Saturnia (Saturnia hot springs), in the province of Grosseto, date from Roman times. They were still so famous in the Middle Ages that the Pope, Clement III spoke of them.

Terme di Petriolo

Terme di Petriolo

The Terme di Petriolo (or Bagni di Petriolo) are a Tuscan thermal spring. The location is in the Ombrone Valley, along the Farma river, on the border between the municipalities of Monticiano and Civitella Paganico, in the province of Siena and Grosseto respectively.

Florence

The Ponte Vecchio in Florence

Florence, the art and architecture capital of Tuscany and one of the most important art cities in the world. Probably the best months to visit Florence are May, June, September and October. July is very pleasant in terms of weather but is already crowded with tourists. August can be very hot and humid because Florence is located in a valley that traps heat.

Italian Leather Goods

Gucci bag

Italy is one of the leading countries in the world market of leatherwear, shoes and other leather goods and Tuscany is famous for its artisanal crafts and products. The quality of the handmade leatherware is very high and, generally, based on a long, local tradition.

La Camera del Podestà Museo Civico, San Gimignano

La Camera del Podestà Museo Civico, San Gimignano bathing scene

The Palazzo Comunale (town hall) of San Gimignano, also known as the Palazzo del Popolo or the Palazzo nuovo del Podestà, contains within it, among many treasures, the Camera del Podestà (Chamber of the Podestà) which is frescoed with the positive and negative outcomes of the amorous initiation of a young man, a curious and fascinating work by Memmo di Filippuccio dating back to the early 14 C.

Ponte della Maddalena

Ponte della Maddalena Lucca

The beautiful and intriguing Ponte della Maddalena is a bridge crossing the Serchio river near the town of Borgo a Mozzano in the province of Lucca, located some 24 km north of Lucca and 5 km from Bagni di Lucca.

Volterra

Panorama2

Volterra is an archetypal Tuscan hill town. Its very high and isolated location have preserved much of its original character. Part of its walls, the acropolis and the Porta dell’Arco gate are Etruscan and the Guarnacci Etruscan Museum is one of the best in Italy.

Cortona

Cortona

Cortona has seen its fame increase over the past few years with the publication by Frances Mayes of “Under the Tuscan Sun” and other books about her life in this area. However, Cortona, Italy has always rightly been a popular Tuscan “hill town” destination – Tuscan “hillside town” would better evoke Cortona’s steep, narrow mediaeval streets.

Tuscany Cooking Lessons

4010 elisa making pasta

If you are visiting Tuscany, don’t miss out on a chance to increase your experience of Italian cookery by having a personalised Tuscan cooking class at your vacation villa or agriturismo in Tuscany.

Arezzo

Arezzo

Arezzo is an attractive town located high on a hill above the upper reaches of the River Arno in eastern Tuscany. The cathedral, the town hall, the Medici Fortress and numerous other architecturally interesting structures are in the ancient higher area of Arezzo.

Outlet Shopping Tuscany

Bag 3

Which fashion outlets are located in Tuscany?
There are three Outlets in Tuscany, all best accessed from Florence or nearby.
The Gucci outlet is in Leccio Reggello where you can buy last season’s Gucci items at more than 50% off. The Mall is located in Leccio and features Agnona,

Castello di Pierle

Castello di Pierle

The Castello di Pierle (sometimes known as the Rocca di Pierle) is strategically located near the town of Mercatale, in the municipality of Cortona, in the province of Arezzo, Tuscany, and in its prime was one of the most powerful fortresses in the region, since it dominated a unique route between the Val di Chiana, Lake Trasimeno and Valtiberina.

Guelphs and Ghibellines in Tuscany

Dante, a White Guelph

To undestand the precise significance of these terms, one must consider the local politics and the special conditions of each individual Tuscan province and town. Thus, in Florence, a family quarrel between the Buondelmonti and the Amidei, in 1215, led traditionally to the introduction of “Guelph” and “Ghibelline” to mark off the two parties that henceforth kept the city divided.

San Gimignano

San gimignano

San Gimignano is famous for its Tuscan tower houses. These were a common sight in Tuscan towns during the late middle ages but most city rulers ordered them to be torn down as a measure to reduce intramural discord.

Villa Corsini

Villa Corsini terracotta statues

Villa Corsini a Mezzomonte near Impruneta is one of three villas in Italy bearing the name Corsini. There is the former Villa Corsini “dei Quattro Venti” in Rome, destroyed during the Garibaldian uprising and now incorporated into the grounds of Villa Doria Pamphili.

Romanesque Parish Church S. Giorgio in Brancoli

Parish Church of San Giorgio at Bràncoli

The ancient Pieve at Brancoli is one of the most atmospheric mediaeval structures in a Region, Tuscany, that contains a great many of them, and is well worth a visit if you are exploring the environs of Lucca. The Brancoleria, where the church is situated, stretches between the valley and the slopes of Mount Pizzorne, upstream on the Serchio river, approximately 10 km from Lucca.

Bagno Vignoni

Bagno Vignoni Tuscany

Bagno Vignoni (sometimes Bagni Vignoni) is famous for its thermal baths. It was popular with the Romans (and probably the Etruscans) and rose to prominence again during the middle ages because of the proximity of the Via Francigena, the north-south pilgrimage route through the Italian peninsula.

The Longobards in Tuscany

Longobard

During the mediaeval period, there existed two or three very dynamic tribes whose historical imprint far exceeds what might have been expected from their numbers. They were characterised by mobility and assimilation into the populations that they conquered.

Lodgings near Florence

Lodgings near Florence

Since Renaissance times, the inhabitants of Florence have sought tranquility and cool breezes during summer by staying in Tuscan villas and on farms in the surrounding Tuscan hills. This is still an excellent strategy, not just for Florentines but also for summer visitors to this beautiful city.

Corte di Valle

Agriturismo Corte di Valle pool

Agriturismo Corte di Valle vacation accommodations. Stay in a genuine Tuscan villa on the Chianti wine-producing property within easy reach of Florence.

Poggibonsi – guide for visitors to Poggibonsi in Tuscany

La Fortezza Medicea Poggio Imperiale at Poggibonsi

The environs of town of Poggibonsi are well worth a visit by anyone travelling from Florence to Sienna via Colle di Val d’Elsa and Monteriggioni. The modern business centre of Poggibonsi is not especially picturesque but there are numerous interesting and important historical sights in the neighbourhood.

Things to see in Tuscany

Things to see in tuscany

As one would expect from a region with a rich three thousand year history, Tuscany is packed with interesting sights and each visitor should decide ahead of time on which attractions to concentrate. The “art cities” of Florence, Lucca, Sienna and Pisa are packed with artistic and architectural attractions to which only a good guide book (or two or three) can do justice. Do your homework before you leave.

Biblioteca Capitolare (Chapter Library) of Pescia

Biblioteca Capitolare di Pescia

One of the finest sights in the Province of Pistoia outside of Pistoia itself is a baroque library, the Biblioteca Capitolare di Pescia, located in the little town of Pescia.The Biblioteca Capitolare di Pescia was designated a canonical library in July 1666 by Pope Alexander VII (Chigi) and traces its origins to the bequest of the Canon Romualdo Cecchi, a famous treasurer of the Prepositura nullius of Santa Maria at the pieve (parish church) of Santa Maria.

Chianti Agriturismi

Agriturismiinchianti

The vacation rentals listed here are all genuine agriturismi, meaning that you will be staying on an authentic Tuscan farm, usually but not always a winery. Almost all are producers of Tuscan olive oil. One or two agriturismi produce only organic olive oil or organic fruit and vegetables. Click the links for pictures, details and prices. Your enquiries and reservations will go directly to the owner of the property.

Province of Pistoia

Giostra dell’Orso in Pistoia

Pistoia, the city from which the province takes its name, is probably the principal not-to-be-missed sight in the province and yet it is unjustly neglected by visitors to Tuscany. Pistoia is just 40 km from Florence and from Lucca. More about Pistoia.

Ponte Colandi at Fabbriche di Vallico, Province of Lucca

Il Ponte Colandi at Fabbriche di Vallico, Province of Lucca

Ponte Colandi is considered to be among the most beautiful bridges in the Turrite Secca valley. Colandi Bridge is located in Fabbriche di Vallico (now Fabbriche di Vergemoli), and is also called the Ponte della Dogana because it was indeed once a customs post.

Tuscany wine tours

Tuscanwinetours

A very enjoyable part of your vacation in Tuscany can be to taste a range of Tuscan wines at the wineries that actually produce them. How to visit more than one winery, “taste” more than one wine, and still be able to get safely from one winery to the next? You could designate one of your group to not have any wine, but a great alternative is to hire a car with a driver-guide for a whole day.

Radicondoli

Radicondoli

Radicondoli is a tranquil Tuscan hill town that lies well off the beaten tourist track in the northern part of the “Metalliferous Hills” on the borders of the Alta Maremma, between the Val d’Elsa and the Val de Cecina.

Four Star Villa Hotel in Chianti

Villa Le Barone villa hotel

Hotel Villa Le Barone is a four star villa hotel located in the Chianti countryside above Panzano in Chianti, halfway between Florence and Sienna, in one of the most beautiful landscapes in Tuscany. Villa Le Barone offers air-conditioned, luxury rooms and suites, a swimming pool, a tennis court, a restaurant with indoor and outdoor terrace dining as well as very extensive beautiful grounds and gardens.

Uzzano

Castello di Uzzano at Greve in Chianti

Uzzano Castle is a fine Renaissance villa located on the outskirts of Greve in Chianti. Traces of the ancient castle may be discerned in the remains of a watch tower but the predominant form of the structure is now a large 17 C villa with an excellent italianate garden restored in the 18 C.

Villa La Foce

Villa La Foce garden

The classic Tuscan villa known as Villa La Foce is situated among the hills that overlook the Val d’Orcia, a beautiful valley in Southern Tuscany. The villa was built in the late 15 C as a hospice for pilgrims and merchants travelling from Rome along the Via Francigena to points north. In 1924, it was occupied by Count Antonio Origo and his English wife, the famous author Iris Origo, and the villa became a prosperous farming centre despite the difficulties of working the clay soil of the Crete Senesi.

Val d’Orcia

Valdorcia

The Val d’Orcia is one of the most diverse and yet distinctive areas in Tuscany, Italy, and the landscape of the Val d’Orcia has been designated a UNESCO world heritage centre. The Valdorcia is more than just the valley of the river Orcia.

Populonia

Populonia

Populonia is the location of some of the best-preserved Etruscan tomb structures and other remains in Tuscany, plus a small Etruscan museum. It was an important metalworking city for the Etruscans and one of the few of their cities built right on the coast.

Castello di Verrazzano

Verrazzano 0394

The Castle of Verrazzano retains the designation “castello” (castle) but is in fact a Renaissance villa built around a mediaeval tower. The castle is famous as the seat of the family of Giovanni da Verrazzano, the navigator who discovered New York harbour.

Vinci, birthplace of Leonardo da Vinci

Leonardo da Vinci

Vinci is located in northern of Tuscany near Florence, on the slopes of Montalbano, an area of classic Tuscan hills carpeted in vineyards and olive groves on terraces supported by dry stone walls. Top view, suggests a boat with two masts (where the two trees would be the tower of the fortress of the Guidi and the bell tower of the church of Santa Croce). The historic center of the village of Leonardo is known, for this reason, as the “Castle of the ship.”

Vacation in a classic villa in Tuscany, Italy

Villa Vitigliano luxury villa in Tuscany

The holiday of a lifetime – a couple of weeks relaxing in a luxury Tuscany villa! Throughout the province of Tuscany and especially near the art cities of Florence and Siena, patrician villas are to be found in beautiful situations, usually vine-covered hillsides with spectacular panoramic views.

Films shot in Tuscany

aroomwithaview

Tuscany had already begun to appear in films at the beginning of the 1900s. Among the better known movies featuring or filmed in Tuscany are: Romola (Henry King, 1924), a silent movie based on the novel by George Elliot and set in Florence in the 1500s, starring Lillian and Dorothy Gish.

The Maremma of Tuscany, Italy

Maremma map

The Maremma is a geographical area covering part of western Tuscany, notably the Province of Grosseto, and a small part of northern Latium (Lazio). It can be divided into the Alta Maremma (upper or northern Maremma) which borders on the Provinces of Sienna and Pisa, and Bassa Maremma (lower or southern Maremma) south of Grosseto and around the Costa d’Argento.

Vignamaggio

Vignamaggio

Villa Vignamaggio is located on the road to Lamole from Greve andPanzano. As it stands today, it is a splendid Renaissance villa rebuilt during the 15 C and the 16 C by the Gherardi family and showing a clear influence of the architecture of Brunelleschi.

Brolio Castle

Broliocastle

Brolio Castle is a nineteenth century Gothic revival structure built on the foundations of an important fort originating in the 10 C. During Medici times, Brolio Castle was greatly modified with the addition of some of the first anti-cannon bastions constructed in Italy.

Types of vacation accommodations in Tuscany

accommodation in Tuscany

One of the pleasures of a vacation in Tuscany is the wide selection of comfortable accommodations that are available. Holiday lodgings range from Tuscan villas, through farmhouses (case coloniche), vacation apartments to B&B rooms.

Pescia

Pescia

The town of Pescia is a charming place that is well worth a brief visit if you are in the area. Pescia is situated in the Province of Pistoia, very near the ancient border separating the Republics of Florence and Lucca, on the banks of the Pescia river.

Pisa

Pisa

Pisa is a city of unique and to some extent under-rated beauty. Pisa is of course one of the most famous towns in the Region of Tuscany. Many tourists arrive at Pisa airport en route for Florence and neglect to visit anything except the Leaning Tower. In fact, Pisa is well worth a stay of a few days and even makes a good base for a vacation in NW Tuscany. Pisa is only 20 minutes from the coast and has excellent transport links to Florence, Livorno and La Spezia.

Accommodations in Tuscany

Map of tuscany

To browse our selection of accommodations in Tuscany, narrow your choice by clicking a tourism centre on the map,
or click here to use the location finder.

Tuscany Italy

Tuscany Italy

This is the site map for our Tuscany, Italy, website. To make the best use of our web site we advise returning to the home page or utilising the navigation menu to the left.

Volpaia

Volpaia Chianti Tuscany

Volpaia is a well-restored mediaeval village located in central Chianti. Part of the walls and two of the original six towers of Volpaia are preserved, the largest of the two housing the Castello di Volpaia wine shop and osteria. Volpaia was the hometown of a famous Florentine family of clock- and instrument-makers and is now an attractive tourist destination with three restaurants, a small grocery and some vacation rental apartments.

San Donato in Poggio

The main street of San Donato in Poggio, Chianti

San Donato in Poggio is a mediaeval village of great charm located near the Via Cassia, the highway that runs along the western boundary of the Chianti Classico wine zone from Florence to Sienna. In modern times, the Via Cassia has been superceded by the Florence-Sienna motorway

Houses for sale in Tuscany

Sieni gate 2005

Antonella Bonatti founded ITALHAUS Immobiliare in 1988. Our office is located in the heart of the Chianti Classico wine zone, in the historical main piazza of Greve in Chianti, halfway between Florence and Sienna. Whether you are searching for a holiday home, a permanent place to live, an investment property or the castle of your dreams, we are ready to help you find the best real estate in the most exclusive locations in Tuscany.

Colle di Val d’Elsa

Porta nuova colledivaldelsa

Colle di Val d’Elsa is located in the province of Sienna on a high hill overlooking the valley of the river Elsa, in central Tuscany. The town was probably founded during the Dark Age, sometime before the 10 C when it was first documented. During its early history,

San Miniato

San Miniato

San Miniato is an attractive town half-way between Florence and Pisa formerly known as San Miniato al Tedesco to distinguish it from San Miniato al Monte, the beautiful basilica just above Florence.

Montelupo Fiorentino

Montelupo fiorentino

Montelupo Fiorentino is historically and also today one of the most famous centres of painted majolica and ceramics production in Tuscany, and is within easy reach of Florence.

Urbino

Urbino panorama

Urbino boasted one of the most luminous courts in Europe during the 15 C.Duke Federico da Montefeltro gathered around him the greatest painters, poets and scholars of his day. The Ducal Palace of Urbino still houses many of the splendid works of art that were produced during this period and is an essential stop on any tour of Italy. At the Urbino court,

Learn Italian in Tuscany or via Skype

learn Italian in Tuscany

Lorella Federico offers Italian lessons at all levels for individuals and small groups visiting Chianti. Lorella, who is a professionally trained Italian language teacher, lives in Panzano in Chianti. You can attend lessons at her location or, if you are staying in the vicinity, she can provide your Italian lessons at your accommodation.

Tuscan Olive Oil

Extravirginoliveoil

Tuscan olive oil and Tuscan bread (saltless) have always formed the staff of life in Tuscany and continue to this day to be major and essential components of the Tuscan diet. Olive oil is used both “raw” as a condiment on bread, salads, tomatoes etc and extensively in cooking.

Tuscany Rental Agencies

vacation rental agency in Tuscany

Booking your holiday accommodation in Tuscany directly with the property owner via a web site is not for everyone. If you feel that inexperience with the internet, language limitations or a desire to work with someone who has first-hand knowledge of the accommodations precludes direct booking, then we have somereliable and highly experienced Tuscany rental agencies for you.

Luxury Hotels in Tuscany

Villa le barone

Italy is famous for its magnificent Tuscan villas, some of them dating back to the Renaissance. Many remain in private hands, others are now museums and institutes, and a few have been converted into hotels that preserve not only the structure but also some of the ambience of life in a great country house.

Travel Incentives in Tuscany

incentive venue in Tuscany

Travel incentives in Tuscany are extremely popular – no surprise! And one of the most prestigious villas in Tuscany, the famous Villa Gamberaia, located at Settignano, overlooking Florence, is available for retreats, team building and travel incentives.

Tuscany

Tuscany

“Tuscany“ is the name of one of the larger of the 20 Regions of Italy (similar to states in the USA and counties in the UK), and is located in northern peninsular Italy, bordering the Tyrrhenian sea to the west. In Italian, Tuscany is Toscana, and its capital is Florence (Firenze, in Italian). Tuscany is roughly triangular in shape with an area of about 23,000 sq km (8,878 sq mi) and is divided into ten Tuscan provinces.

Lucca

Lucca Tuscany

The city of Lucca is located in western Tuscany and should at the very least be included in any tour of Tuscany. Lucca also makes an excellent base for your stay in Tuscany. The city is flat, compact and relatively uncrowded making it a very pleasant place to stay.

Horse and wagon excursions in Tuscany

Excursions in Tuscany by horse and wagon

There are many experiences to be had in Tuscany that are extremely popular among children, and none is more exciting for them than to go for an excursion through the Tuscan countryside in a horse-drawn wagon!

Map of Tuscany, Italy

map of Tuscany Italy

Here’s an interactive map of Tuscany with links to the best websites for many of the most interesting cities, towns, villages and sights of Tuscany.