A holiday to Tuscany is simply exquisite, and the experience of food, art and wine are unforgettable. In fact, nothing about a holiday to Tuscany will disappoint, as the region is a world-class vacation spot.
A vast array of specialities from art to wine-producing come together in Tuscany; making it one of the most elegant regions in Italy. From the magical Siena Cathedral to meeting Michelangelo’s David in person, you will find that the region of Tuscany presents some of the most intriguing examples of architecture and art. World famous sculptures, paintings and buildings are commonplace throughout the towns and cities, although there’s plenty aside from the intriguing monuments, too.
Set amongst one of Italy's finest natural landscapes, Tuscany must be lived to be believed. A holiday to the central region of Italy will transport you back in time in its small villages and have you dreaming of spending your future in the Tuscany. Magical and majestic, Tuscany is a wonderland of beauty waiting to be seen.
At a glance
- Currency: Euro
- Language: Italian
- Time Zone: GMT +1
- Average flight time: 2h 5m
When to go
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Tuscany is famous for art and the region's museums will never disappoint culture vultures. Florence may be your best bet when it comes to paintings, sculptures and other artworks. Academia Gallery is where you’ll find Michelangelo’s David and a host of other sculptures and artistic pieces. The gallery is a must-see and is always very busy so ensure you check out tickets or book in advance to get in. The Bargello Museum is another intriguing stop off during a Tuscan escape. The structure based in Palazzo del Bargello is not as busy as some of the more popular museums. Regardless, there is plenty of great art on display.
Outside of the museums there is plenty to see and do. Go sunbathing on the beaches of the Tuscan coast for some fresh air and a golden Italian tan. Scuba dive from Porto Azzuro or ride horses through stunning scenes in Lucca. Whether you’d prefer to stay active with the range of outdoor activities on offer or would rather relax amid a huge array of museums and cathedrals, Italy will suit you with an all-round holiday experience.
Wine and Dine
Foodies will love Tuscany's indulgent Italian cuisine. Whether it is pasta, pastries or vino, Tuscany's restaurants and bars can provide the perfect food for an Italian holiday. Like the local dialect, Tuscany has its own voice when it comes to food, and you won't find some of its traditional eats in other Italian regions.
Start an evening meal with fettunta, the Tuscan take on bruschetta. Toasted bread coated in garlic, olive oil and salt, fettunta will begin any meal on the right foot. Follow up the appetizer with a soup. Tuscan's love their soups and fix them many different ways. From bread and tomato soups to bean and sausage stews, Tuscan soups will fill you up with their hearty ingredients.
Complete your meal with a glass or two of Chianti. Tuscany is Italy's largest wine producing region and bottles of red wine are the perfect accompaniment to any meal.
Families will find culture and history at their doorstep in Tuscany. Florence is ripe with great museums and children can learn all about the great artists of the world. A visit to Pisa offers the chance to see the famous leaning tower. A trip to Italy wouldn't be complete without taking the family to get authentic pizza. Everyone loves pizza and no one does it better than Italy. Whether a side street pizzeria or pizza restaurant on the town piazza, you will find delicious pizzas that will please the entire family. In fact, you may even get the chance to create your own. There are plenty of great one-day classes that will teach your entire family how to make an authentic Italian pizza. Finish off your family holiday with a trip to Siena to visit the Duomo. The city's gothic cathedral is full of treasures. Inside and out, you will marvel at the cathedral's size and beauty.
Action and Adventure
The hills and valleys of Tuscany are a hiker's paradise. The trails that cascade over the land make for great scenic views. Once you have worn out your legs with walking, retreat to a village café for a cappuccino, beer or refreshing white wine.
If you don't want to hike or just want to get somewhere a little quicker, cycling is a great way to see the region. Hop on a bicycle to tour around the rural roads as you wind through vineyards and farmland.
Tuscany's thermal baths can help you recover from all the aches and pains of hiking and cycling. Located in Saturnia, the hot waters come from several springs in the area. Relax like a local Tuscan as your muscles shake off any stress from back home.
Life's a Beach
There are 18 beaches along the Tuscan coast and you will have ample opportunities to sample their sands. From blue flag beaches to more secluded spots, Tuscany has a beach for everyone. The Versilia area is known as a posh stretch of beach. The summer nightlife around the beach is nonstop, and when autumn hits, many of the business shutdown until the warm weather returns. The posh section of the beach provides you with deckchairs, umbrellas and bars serving drinks and snacks. The beach here will cost you, but if you want a "free" spot to catch the sun, head down to Viareggio. Bring your own towels, chairs and snacks when stopping there.
The Marina di Pisa is a perfect beach for families. Short and narrow, the beach is backed by a wooded area. A large rock wall protects the beach from strong currents, giving children the chance to play in the sea without any problems.
Tuscany has a lot to offer visitors when it comes to nightlife. Start your night off with a traditional Italian pasta at a restaurant or cheap family trattoria. Once you have finished off your pasta and wine, you will have a healthy choice of places to visit.
Near the coast you may enjoy a stroll down the promenade before enjoying an espresso or glass of wine at a cafe. However, if you are looking to dance all night, Tuscany’s cities can provide you with a venue.
In Versilia, you will find the Riviera and plenty of well-to-do Italians heading out to the bars and nightclubs that dot the city. There is a chance you will rub elbows with an Italian celebrity here as you enjoy cocktails in one of the city’s bars. If Versilia is a bit too posh and pretentious for you, don’t worry, Florence has plenty of great wine bars, pubs and nightclubs that may be more your speed.
Romance is everywhere in Tuscany, you will never need to look for scenic views or dreamy photo spots. It is all right in front of you. The Renaissance town of Pienza is a perfect place for couples. Get lost in the narrow streets as you make your way through the town. Stop off at a nearby restaurant and enjoy a candlelight dinner.
Stay outside until the sun goes down and enjoy each other’s company as you walk the promenade. Or sit on the sands until it is late as you watch the waves crash onto the beach. If you want to move inside, the museums of Florence are filled with artworks from the greatest painters of all-time. The Piazzale Michelangelo offers panoramic views of Florence; perfect for any sightseer.
Italian culture is steeped in tradition. And why not? Italy is known the world over for its food, art and language, so in many places around the peninsula, tradition rules. Tuscany is a fantastic holiday spot for those seeking art and architecture, and both are prime reasons people travel to Tuscany. Culture bloomed and flourished in Tuscany during the Renaissance period, and the results can be seen everywhere in the city.
In Florence the arts and architecture hold the city by the heart. The Tower of Pisa, cathedrals and museums offer visitors the chance to see the country’s history up close and personal. But those are not the only items that are culturally significant. Opera and classical music venues are abundant, and you will have the chance to visit these buildings. There is always a concert taking place, and listening to a true Italian concerto is a cultural experience to enjoy while visiting the peninsula.