It is impossible to visit Tuscany without getting lost among the great cities of art, innumerable historic villages, hills and landscapes with a unique charm on which the characteristic vineyards and cultivated fields follow one another, giving rise to some of the most famous wines and gastronomic products Italy.
Tuscany is perhaps the most beautiful region of the peninsula and tourists come from all over the world to visit it.
Contents of the post:
- Best cities in Tuscany
- Tuscany Region: map of top attractions
- Tuscany Region: the weather
- How to get there from Rome
- Distance from Venice
- Distance from Milan
- Accomodation for an incredible experience: Volognano
Best cities in Tuscany
Every small village hides unique and unforgettable views; here are some suggestions with the top cities of Tuscany you cannot miss:
Needless to say, Florence is the first place to visit in Tuscany. The city symbol of Italian culture and language, home to poets and artists, the cradle of the Renaissance, contains some of the most famous museums and monuments throughout Italy. you can lose yourself among ancient buildings and churches while strolling through the streets of the historic center, an unforgettable experience!
Greve and Montefioralle: a journey through the Chianti hills
As soon as you come out of Florence you will come across the famous hills which, with their grapes, give rise to one of the most renowned Tuscan wines: Chianti. if you want to appreciate the unique flavor of this product the town of Greve, thanks to its many wineries, represents a must see place.
Don’t forget about Montefioralle, a picturesque, small and authentic medieval village, with a unique charm.
Chianti is a priceless treasure for all travelers interested in discovering the eno-gastronomic culture of Tuscany.
Another pearl of Chianti is the castle of Volognano, experience the exclusivity of a stay in a castle surrounded by the beauties of the territory and good wine and food!
Fans of history and archeology visiting Florence should not miss the nearby Fiesole, which is only 10 kilometers from the Tuscan capital. Fiesole offers the opportunity to admire the Etruscan and Roman remains of what was once a flourishing center, with its thermal baths , its amphitheater and its mighty walls.
Not far from Florence, Empoli has been a very important center for glass processing for centuries.
The historic center of Siena has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here you can breathe in all the charm of this medieval village
Not to be missed are the splendid Gothic buildings, and the numerous churches in the city. Siena is also surrounded by lush green landscapes, medieval castles, fortresses and charming farmhouses.
San Gimignano, with its historic center, a UNESCO heritage site, is one of the most beautiful towns in Tuscany. Things to see, in this country with a unique charm, do not lack, starting with the innumerable towers and suggestive streets and squares, which immerse the visitor in one of the most famous examples of fourteenth-century cities in Europe.
The Sienese hills and the town of Montalcino give rise to Brunello, one of the most famous (and renowned) wines of Tuscany. Alongside wineries and food and wine, Montalcino is also a fascinating medieval village, protected by ancient walls and dominated by its castle, the perfect place to appreciate not only a unique wine, but breathtaking landscapes.
Not far from Siena, on the road that leads to Pisa, Volterra is an ancient city founded by the Etruscans, famous since ancient times for the processing of alabaster. Numerous artisan shops can be found among the characteristic streets of its historic center, while the remains of Roman and medieval times give the village a very special charm.
The photo with the most famous among the hanging towers is a must, but Pisa is much more than this. For example, we find Campo dei Miracoli with the Baptistery and the Cathedral, and, obviously, the medieval historic center. The center is animated by numerous bars and restaurants set in a frame of Romanesque buildings, Gothic churches and Renaissance squares. Pisa is also a “river city”, it boasts numerous natural hot springs and an important thermal tradition, therefore, offers the possibility to spend a cultural holiday or to enjoy a wellness break.
Lucca can be defined as the only city in Italy where you can walk along a complete series of ancient city walls from the 1500s with towers in excellent condition, from which to enjoy a breathtaking view and take the best photographs of the city.
Exactly halfway between Lucca and Florence, Pistoia should not be forgotten if you really want to get to know every corner of Tuscany. The places to visit are many: the beautiful Piazza del Duomo, the Cathedral of San Zeno, the bell tower, the baptistery, the works of art of the Marino Marini Museum and the characteristic shops of Piazza della Sala.
Among the places to visit in Tuscany should not miss Arezzo, city rich in history and art. The most famous glimpse of this charming medieval center is certainly the Piazza Grande, which every year hosts an exceptional event: the Giostra del Saracino.
On the border with Umbria, Sansepolcro is one of the most beautiful cities of the Aretino area. Here was born Piero della Francesca, one of the greatest masters of the Renaissance, and his works, as well as those of his most contemporary, can be admired in the Civic Museum and in the beautiful churches of the area.
What to see in Tuscany if you love the sea? Livorno and its surroundings are a perfect destination. The city not only allows you to easily reach the beaches of the Tuscan coast, but it is also a lovely place to visit. Don’t miss the aquarium, the beautiful Piazza della Repubblica and the Terrazza Mascagni, a very elegant balcony overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea.
The third largest Italian island after Sicily and Sardinia. It is a very successful tourist destination thanks to the fine sand of its beaches, to a clear sea, as well as to the fascinating testimonies of its past that you can discover by visiting the Pisan towers and the Etruscan fortresses.
To reach the Island of Elba the most suitable port is that of Piombino, which with its characteristic historic center can become the occasion for a pleasant walk. Among the ancient fortifications that protected the city we reach Piazza Bovio, a belvedere with an incredible view of the sea and the nearby Elba Island.
Along the Livorno Sea, Cecina is one of the most famous seaside resorts in Tuscany, a favorite destination for families who can find both peaceful and well-equipped establishments and lots of fun, for example by visiting the large theme park “Acqua Village”.
Not far from Lucca, Viareggio is famous for its splendid sea and for its famous carnival. Actually Viareggio, one of the most important cities of Versilia, is also a surprising destination, with its charming Art Nouveau villas and elegant palaces.
Forte dei Marmi
Forte dei Marmi is one of the most known and appreciated among the seaside resorts of Versilia. The establishments offer a perfect service for those who love the beaches and the background of the Apuan Alps is truly unique. A stroll along the seafront in the evening offers truly unforgettable views.
Visiting Tuscany also means appreciating the landscape of the Maremma, wilder than the orderly Florentine and Sienese countryside, but equally fascinating. The most important center of the Maremma is Grosseto, an ancient city fortified by mighty walls of the sixteenth century. Don’t miss Piazza Dante Alighieri, with its historic buildings and the nearby Gothic-style cathedral.
Monte Argentario is an island connected to the mainland where you can find enchanting beaches and coves among breathtaking landscapes. It is the perfect place for those who love the sea but not the bustle of the beach establishments. Do not miss the towns of Porto Ercole and Porto Santo Stefano and the many Spanish fortresses that once defended the island.
Isola del Giglio
Facing Monte Argentario, the Isola del Giglio is one of the most beautiful in the Tuscan archipelago. The most lively village is that of Giglio Porto, right on the sea, while those wishing to venture further inland will discover the marvelous Giglio Castello, a charming and very charming center perched on the heights of the island.
Tuscany Region: map of top attractions
Considering the infinite variety of places of interest that characterize Tuscany, the main attractions will be divided by type:
- Costa degli Etruschi: White sand beaches characterize almost the whole area, to be interrupted only in some places, such as Baratti and Castiglioncello where granite cliffs predominate, with a typical red color. The characteristic of the Etruscan coast is the strong presence, near the sea, of pine forests and protected areas. The name that this stretch of coastline takes is not accidental. In the area, once inhabited by the Etruscans, numerous archaeological sites have been brought to light. Go visit the necropolis of Baratti, near the village of Populonia or the museums of Piombino, Rosignano and Cecina.
- Riviera Apuana: The area is dominated by architecture in liberty and deco style, witnesses of a tradition of seaside tourism that dates back more than a century. The coast offers a rich choice of hotels, campsites and equipped establishments.
- Tuscan archipelago: The Tuscan Archipelago, just a few kilometers from the Tyrrhenian coasts, is not only a group of islands ideal for relaxing family holidays or in contact with nature (Elba, the largest, is also the best known, but the others are equally beautiful, from the Island of Giglio to Capraia), but it is also the largest Marine Protected Park in Europe, also included among the International Sanctuaries of marine mammals.
- Chianti: The enchanting and solitary beauty of Chianti derives from a long history of human work, which over the centuries has shaped this land making it what it is today. Famous above all for the wine that is produced here, this area of Tuscany offers unique landscapes. If you come to Chianti you must stay in one of the many farmhouses scattered in the countryside. You will be able to breathe deeply the air of these places and savor the genuine flavors.
- National park of the Casentino forests: from the Valdarno, continuing along the path towards the sources of the river, an immense protected area, which Tuscany divides with Emilia Romagna, preserves the nature of landscapes dominated by the fresh scent of the woods. This is the National Park of the Casentino Forests, Monte Falterona and Campigna. Coming here means getting in touch with one of the most ancient forests in Europe. In these magical places, where the different shades of green are colored in autumn with a thousand colors, they inspire spirituality and have been chosen by ascetics and characters of faith to found hermitages and convents.
- The Lunigiana: historical region that, during the Roman domination, had as its center Luni, the Lunigiana extends along the course of the Magra river and its tributaries. Here are preserved ancient stone idols depicting warriors and prosperous women. A land of ancient history, Lunigiana is also appreciated for its quality products, including numerous DOC wines and Lunigiana PDO Chestnut Flour.
- The Apuan Alps: The mountains of the Apuan Alps rise up, protected by the establishment of a regional park. It is precisely here that the evocative landscape of the gentle mountain slopes appears, from which the marble emerges very white. Used today mainly in the industrial field, it brings to mind the sinuosity of ancient statues and the splendor of historic buildings.
Tuscany: Food and Wine
Italy is the home of good food, there is no doubt about it, and Tuscany certainly lives up to its reputation also with regard to food and wine. But even if the dish is universally known, the Florentine steak is a treat not to be missed, the real Tuscan cuisine is to be found far from the elegant restaurants of the center, in the trattorias, in the taverns and in the countryside, where an incredible variety is discovered.
Each city has its typical dishes, each country its own specialty; among the most famous dishes we can list the cacciucco alla livornese (fish soup served with crunchy bread), the cantucci (almond biscuits), the lampredotto (offal from the bovine digestive system).
Among the most famous wines are Brunello di Montalcino, Nobile di Montepulciano, Vernaccia di San Gimignano and of course Chianti.
A trip to Tuscany should be done with curiosity … and appetite! We’ll think about returning to the diet!
The Tuscan monuments are among the most famous in Italy, we have talked about most of the points of interest in describing the most important cities of Tuscany, so we will limit ourselves to mentioning only the most iconic attractions.
As regards Florence we point out the Ponte Vecchio, the Palazzo Vecchio and Piazza della Signoria, as well as the Duomo (santa maria del fiore), Santa Maria Novella, Santa Croce, San Miniato, Brunelleschi’s Dome and Giotto’s Bell Tower (for religious monuments).
In Pisa it is impossible not to visit the famous Leaning Tower and in Siena the square in the Palazzo Pubblico, the town hall of the city.
Tuscany is rich in museums. In Florence the Uffizi gallery is famous for being one of the most beautiful in the world. The collections that it houses are priceless! In Siena, the Civic Museum houses the greatest masterpieces of Sienese art and the Museo dell’Opera Metropolitana contains the Gothic elements that adorned the cathedral. In Pisa, finally, the National Museum of San Matteo presents works by the great Italian masters such as Fra Angelico, Donatello or Masaccio.
Tuscany Region: the weather
The climate of Tuscany varies depending on which area you decide to visit, therefore a different type of holiday is recommended for each season.
Tuscany in summer
During the summer season, temperatures in Tuscany reach over thirty degrees. In Tuscany this is the season with the highest number of visitors. If you plan to visit this region during the months of July and August, be prepared for the possibility of very high temperatures.
If, on the other hand, you choose seaside resorts, all you have to do is dive into the blue waters to find immediate refreshment.
Summer also means concerts and great events not to be missed: the Palio of Siena, the Giostra del Saracino, Lucca Summer Festival, Pistoia Blues, the Luminara in Pisa, Effetto Venezia in Livorno and much more!
Tuscany in autumn
Tuscany and autumn colors are a perfect combination for those who want to visit the hilly areas and the wine roads enjoying a mild climate. In October the days are still long and allow you to enjoy the city in short moments of tourist peace.
October is also an interesting month for visiting Lucca Comics: one of the most important and entertaining events in all of Tuscany or for relaxing stays at the Tuscan spa.
Tuscany in winter
Winter in Tuscany is cold and sometimes snowy. In general, the coldest months with the possibility of snowfall (rare events in the lowlands and on the coast) are January and February. Visiting this region in the period near Christmas, for example, allows you to get in touch with the tradition of every single village. The medieval villages take on a more severe and at the same time more fascinating and mysterious air.
In this period the famous Carnival of Viareggio takes place.
Tuscany in Spring
Spring in Tuscany is a time of absolute rebirth during which temperatures and the sun will warm you gently, leaving you to enjoy the first rays and the beginning of a new phase.
April and May are the moments of greatest splendor for cities and natural areas scattered throughout the territory. Don’t underestimate the excursions in the Natural Parks and in the trekking routes to the Island of Elba, where you will find a surprising flora.
How to get there from Rome
There are 8 ways to get from Rome to Florence by train, bus, night train, ride sharing, car or plane:
The train (from Roma Termini to Firenze Santa Maria Novella) is the most recommended option, journey times are around an hour and a half and prices are affordable,
Buses take more than 3 hours to get to Florence, low prices are the only factor that justifies this choice.
The night train has the same departure and arrival points as the day train, as well as the same travel times and prices.
The ride-sharing is the cheapest option (price estimated between 10 € -24 €) but it is also the slowest option (more than 3 hours) of travel with the bus one.
Going independently with your own car takes about 2 and a half hours, the price of the journey obviously depends on the type of car.
Air travel is the most expensive and least recommended option, the cost is very high both in terms of time and money
Distance from Venice
Florence is about 271 km from Venice:
The car journey takes about 3 hours.
The train journey from Venice to Florence takes about 2 hours and the average price of the train ticket is € 23. However, by booking in advance, you will find advantageous rates and save on average 42% on the ticket price, with prices starting from € 18.
The average price of a ticket for Venice Florence by bus is € 21. Thanks to the presence of low cost fares, there are also cheap buses starting at € 17. A bus trip in Italy can be the ideal solution if you want to opt for a convenient trip.
The average price for a Venice Florence flight is 286 €, but you can also find low cost flights starting from 286 €. To get from Venice to Florence by plane it takes about 3 hours on average; however it is also necessary to calculate the times to arrive at the airport and to carry out all the security checks.
Distance from Milan
Florence is about 305 km from Milan:
the journey from Milan to Florence by car takes about 3 hours and 50 minutes.
The train journey from Milan to Florence takes about 2 hours on average and the average train ticket price is € 26.
17 buses that connect Milan to Florence every day and arrive in the city with a journey lasting an average of about 4 hours. The average price of a ticket for Milan Florence by bus is € 19.
The average price of a Milan Florence flight is 724 €, but you can find low cost flights as well, with prices starting from 270 €. To get from Milan to Florence by plane it takes about 3 hours on average; however it is also necessary to calculate the times to arrive at the airport and to carry out all the security checks.
Accomodation for an incredible experience: Volognano
What differentiates Volognano from normal accommodation? Volognano is a medieval village surrounded by the green hills of Chianti, by vineyards, olive groves and breathtaking views.
Volognano offers you the chance to breathe this atmosphere by staying in an exclusive and luxurious medieval castle including all comforts.
What are you waiting for? Contact us now for more information!
This post is also available in: Italian