Travel to Tuscany Italy is in your mind? Researching the ideas of travel to Tuscany Italy? Great! A trip to Tuscany is one of the most spectacular trips in the world. And here’s the ultimate travel guide to Tuscany Italy!
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WHAT IS TUSCANY
Tuscany, or Toscana in Italian, is one of the most beautiful regions in Italy.
Stunning Tuscany is a world-renowned region in Italy, best known for the breathtaking landscapes and stunning cities of Florence, Siena, and Pisa.
Therefore, the region of Tuscany in Italy is one of the top vacation destinations in the world.
WHAT IS TUSCANY FAMOUS FOR
Tuscany is famous for its rich historical, artistic, and architectural heritage, spectacular landscapes (rolling hills, vast vineyards, olive groves, sunflower fields, cypress avenues), historical cities of Florence, Siena, and Pisa, charming medieval hilltop towns, and world-class wine (Chianti wine).
WHERE IS TUSCANY
Tuscany is in central Italy.
The capital of Tuscany is the magnificent city of Florence (or Firenze in Italian).
Tuscany is a neighboring region to the regions: Liguria, Emilia Romagna, Marche, Umbria, and Lazio.
For instance, Florence in Tuscany is easily reachable from Rome. It takes only 1 hour and a half by high-speed train from Rome to Florence. It also takes about 3 hours by car from Rome to Florence.
Pisa in Tuscany is about 2 hours and 10 min by direct high-speed train from Rome.
Stunning Tuscany is enjoyed the best by car. A road trip to Tuscany is a must-have in a lifetime.
Fly to Florence, hire a car in Florence and explore beautiful Tuscany on your own.
Find a flight to Florence: Skyscanner
Rent a car in Florence: DiscoverCarHire
Find a flight to Rome: Skyscanner
Rent a car in Rome: DiscoverCarHire at Rome Airport
WHERE TO GO IN TUSCANY ITALY
Best places to visit in Tuscany Italy
1. FLORENCE, THE CAPITAL OF TUSCANY
Florence is the capital of Tuscany.
The beautiful capital city of Tuscany is known as the cradle of the Italian Renaissance. The historic center of Florence is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Uffizi Gallery, Accademia Gallery, Ponte Vecchio, Arno river, and Boboli Gardens in Florence are must-sees in Tuscany.
Florence, Tuscany is one of the most beautiful cities in the world.
Marvelous Florence is an excellent place for a lavish vacation. Some of the most magnificent Tuscan villas for rent are in Florence.
Siena, Tuscany is one of the most beautiful medieval towns in Italy.
Siena is best known for Piazza del Campo and Il Palio horse race, museums, art, Siennese cuisine, and Siena Cathedral. The historic center of Siena is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The historical republic of Siena was a powerful medieval republic and a rival republic to the Republic of Florence and the republic of Pisa.
The art and architecture show the rich historical legacy of Siena.
Pisa is a lovely historic city in Tuscany, Italy.
Pisa is best known for the Leaning Tower, a landmark of Italy.
Pisa Square of the Miracles with the Leaning Tower, the cathedral, baptistery and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Pisa and the Square of the Miracles are must-sees in Tuscany.
The medieval Republic of Pisa was a powerful maritime republic and a rival to the republic of Florence and the Republic of Siena. The Square of the Miracles showcases the rich historical heritage of Pisa.
4. SAN GIMIGNANO
San Gimignano is one of the most picturesque medieval hilltop towns in Tuscany.
It is nicknamed ‘Manhattan of the Middle Ages. This beautiful Tuscan town is famous for the 14 medieval towers, great wines, and the best gelateria in Italy (the world champion in gelato making). San Gimignano is near Siena in Tuscany.
Lucca is one of the most charming towns in Tuscany and Italy overall.
The city of Lucca is a walled medieval Tuscan town.
The historic center of Lucca is on the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Italy.
Lucca is called ‘the City of Art’ (‘Città d’arte’ in Italian) in Italy. Lucca is one of the loveliest cities in Tuscany, Italy.
Cortona is one of the prettiest hilltop towns in Tuscany, Italy.
Beautiful Cortona was the filming location of the famous ‘Under Tuscan Sun’ movie. Cortona is a popular Tuscan destination well-worth visiting.
Pienza is one of the most beautiful small towns in Tuscany.
The town of Pienza lies in the picturesque Val d’Orcia valley in southern Tuscany. Gorgeous Pienza is a World Heritage Site in Italy. And, Val d’Orcia valley is one of the most idyllic places in Tuscany.
Pienza is near Siena in southern Tuscany, Italy.
Volterra is a scenic medieval hilltop town known for the Etruscan origins and fictional Volturi vampires from the Twilight series.
Volterra is one of the most popular stops on any Tuscan trip.
This lovely town is near Pisa in Tuscany.
Monteriggioni is an impressive medival hilltop village.
It is one of the oldest villages in all of Italy. The walls of Monteriggioni are some of the best preserved in Italy. Tiny Monteriggioni looks like a perfect medieval movie set.
Monteriggioni is near Siena, Tuscany.
10. COLLE VAL D’ELSA
Colle Val d’Elsa is a cliff-standing medieval town in Tuscany. This charming town stands on the hills of the Chianti Senesi. Colle Val d’Elsa is one of the most popular day trips from Siena.
The town of Cole Val D’Elsa is near Siena, and between San Gimignano and Monteriggioni.
Saturnia is a spa town in Tuscany famous for the spring waters.
Saturnia Hot Springs (Terme di Saturnia in Italian) is one of the most popular places in Tuscany. Saturnia thermal baths are free.
Saturnia is in southern Tuscany. It is about a 2-hour drive from Rome.
Pitigliano is one of the prettiest small towns in Italy.
The town spectacularly sits atop a red volcanic tufa ridge.
It is nicknamed ‘Little Jerusalem’ (La Piccola Gerusalemme in Italian). Jews escaped to Pitigliano from Rome after the decree of the Pope in 1555. This lovely small Tuscan town is halfway between Florence and Rome.
Arezzo is a beautiful historical town in Tuscany.
Arezzo was an Etruscan capital. It is a culturally-rich medieval town best known for the stunning Piero Della Francesca frescoes in a chapel of the Basilica of S. Francesco. Arezzo is near Florence in Tuscany.
Elba is a beautiful volcanic island in the Tyrrhenian Sea near Livorno in western Tuscany.
Elba is best known for Napoleon. Emperor Napoleon was expelled from France to Elba in 1814.
Elba has some of the most beautiful beaches in Tuscany.
Ferries to Elba run from the port of Piombino in the Livorno province.
Montepulciano is a medieval and Renaissance hilltop town with magnificent panoramas of Val d’Orcia near Siena in Tuscany.
The Montepulciano is famous for some of the finest wines in the world. Vino Nobile di Montepulciano si one of the most famous wines from Italy.
16. CHIANTI COUNTRYSIDE AND VINEYARDS
Chianti is a famous wine area in central Tuscany.
It is one of the most beautiful parts of Tuscany of postcard-perfect rolling hills, olive groves, and vineyards.
It is one of the most photographed areas of Tuscany and Italy overall. Chianti is a synonym for great wines.
17. LA VERNA SANCTUARY
St Francis is the patron saint of Italy. St Francis lived in La Verna in Mount Penna and got his stigmata in the Chapel of the Stigmata in La Verna sanctuary.
La Verna Sanctuary is one of the most famous pilgrimage sites in Italy.
La Verna Sanctuary is 4 km away from Chiusi Della Verna, a small town in the Arezzo province in Tuscany.
18. MONTECATINI TERME
Montecatini Terme is the largest spa town in Tuscany.
It is known as ‘the biggest spa town in Italy’. The thermal waters of Montecatini Terme are near Pistoia and between Florence and Lucca in the heart of Tuscany.
Viareggio is a famous seaside resort town in Tuscany with lovely examples of the Art Nouveau architecture in Italy.
Viareggio is near Lucca in western Tuscany.
Livorno is a seaport town with fabulous seafood-based local cuisine and great beaches.
It is on the Ligurian Sea near Lucca in western Tuscany.
Montaione is a serene viillage in the Chianti near Florence, Pisa and Siena.
It is in the middle of the Florence-Pisa-Siena triangle in Tuscany. Montaione is an excellent base for exploring Tuscany by car.
WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO VISIT TUSCANY
The best time to visit Tuscany is from May to October.
The peak of the tourist season is summer (and the summer months of July and August). But be aware, summer daily temperatures go above 30°C degrees in Tuscany.
The best months for visiting Tuscany are May and September to escape tourist crowds and enjoy sightseeing in Tuscany with pleasant temperatures.
HOW TO GET TO TUSCANY
Tuscany has two international airports: one in Florence and one in Pisa.
The two main international airports in Tuscany are Amerigo Vespucci Airport (FLR) in Florence and Galileo Galilei International Airport (PSA) in Pisa.
Tuscany is about 125 mi (200 km) away from Rome. It takes about 2 hours and 20 min from Rome to Tuscany by car.
Find your flight to Rome: Skyscanner
Find your flight to Florence: Skyscanner
Find your flight to Pisa: Skyscanner
THE BEST WAY TO TRAVEL TO TUSCANY ITALY
The best is to fly to one of the airports in Tuscany, hire a car at the airport and take a Tuscany road trip.
Since Tuscany is about 125 mi (200 km) away from Rome, you can also start your Tuscany road trip by hiring a car at Leonardo da Vinci – Fiumicino Airport.
READ MORE: Road trip to Tuscany
Hire a car at:
Florence Amerigo Vespucci Airport.
Leonardo da Vinci – Fiumicino Airport
So, if you are looking for some ideas for road trips, the ultimate Tuscany road trip is one of the top road trips everyone should take once in their lifetime.
YOU MIGHT ALSO ENJOY TO READ: Best Tuscan villas in Tuscany to rent
WHAT TO SEE IN TUSCANY
Best sites to see in Tuscany
Travel to Tuscany Italy is unimaginable without seeing the following sites in Tuscany:
- Uffizi Gallery in Florence – the gallery holds a superb collection of masterpiece paintings and sculptures from the Middle Ages to Modernism. Some of the most famous masterpiece works of art in Uffizi are the Birth of Venus by Botticelli, Venus of Urbino by Titian, Doni Tondo by Michelangelo, Madonna of the Goldfinch by Raphael, La Primavera by Botticelli, and the Ognissanti Madonna by Giotto.
Viator: Skip the Line: Florence Uffizi Gallery Tickets
GetYourGuide: Florence: Skip-the-Line Uffizi Gallery
- Ponte Vecchio in Florence – Ponte Vecchio literraly means the Old Bridge. Ponte Vecchio in Florence is a medieval stone bridge over the River Arno. It is one of the most famous bridges in the world.
Viator: Florence Full Day Tour with David, Duomo, Uffizi, Ponte Vecchio and More
GetYourGuide: Florence Ponte Vecchio Bridge and City Sights Rafting Cruise
- Palazzo Vecchio in Florence – is the most impressive medieval town hall in Tuscany. Today it is home to the Museo dei Ragazzi.
Viator: Palazzo Vecchio – Skip the Line Priority Ticket
GetYourGuide: Palazzo Vecchio Tour
- Accademia Gallery in Florence – the gallery is home to Michelangelo’s David which is most likely the most famous sculpture in the world. This former art school, but today’s gallery holds a large collection of extraordinary statues, paintings, religious prints, and icons.
Viator: Skip the Line: Florence Accademia Gallery Tickets
GetYourGuide: Florence: Timed Entrance Ticket To Michelangelo’s David
- Giotto’s bell tower in Florence – is a part of the Florence Cathedral complex. It is the finest example of wonderful Florentine Gothic architecture.
Viator: Florence “Duomo Complex” Guided Tour with Cathedral direct access – small group
GetYourGuide: Brunelleschi’s Dome: Tour
- Pitti Palace and Boboli Gardens in Florence – The Palace was the official residence of the Medici family (the Grand Duke and his family. Pitti family originally built it but sold it to the Medici. Today the lavish Palace is one of the most popular museums in Florence. Boboli gardens of the Pitti Palace are the largest green area in Florence.
Viator: Pitti Palace, Boboli and Bardini gardens tour
GetYourGuide: Pitti Palace, Boboli Gardens and Palatina Gallery Tour
- The Square of Miracles in Pisa – The Square of Miracles complex in Pisa includes the Cathedral, bell tower (Leaning Tower), baptistery, and cemetery. The complex is a must-see in Tuscany, Italy.
Viator: Pisa all inclusive: Baptistery, Cathedral and Leaning Tower guided tour
GetYourGuide: Reserved Entrance to Leaning Tower of Pisa & Cathedral
- Siena Cathedral – The Duomo in Siena is one of the prettiest churches in Italy. It holds the artwork of Pisano, Donatello, and Michelangelo, and frescoes by Pinturicchio.
Viator: Skip-the-Line Siena Cathedral Duomo Complex Entrance Ticket
GetYourGuide: Skip-the-Line Siena Cathedral Duomo Complex Entrance Ticket
- Piccolomini Library in Siena – The Library is one of the most impressive libraries in the world. It is a part of the Cathedral. The library is decorated with breathtakingly colorful Pinturicchio frescos.
- Piazza del Campo in Siena – is the main square in Siena. Il Campo square in Siena is one of the most famous squares in the world, known for its beauty and architectural unity. It hosts the famous Il Palio Horse Race in July and August every year.
Viator: Siena Historic City Walking Tour with Cathedral Option
GetYourGuide: Historic Siena: Guided Walking Tour
- The Walls of Lucca – The intact historic walls of Lucca are some of the best-preserved city walls in Europe. Lucca Walls are 2,8 mi (4 km) long and 6,3 mi (10 m) high.
Viator: Your Lucca Walking Tour
GetYourGuide: Lucca: Renaissance City Walls Walking Tour
- The Guining Tower in Lucca – The Torre Guinigi in Lucca is the finest example of Romanesque-Gothic architecture. The tower provides the best views of Lucca.
- The Towers in San Gimignano – San Gimignano is a UNESCO World Hertiage Site. The 14 preserved towers out of 72 medieval towers of San Gimignano make the most unique landscape in Tuscany. Towers were a symbol of power in the Middle Ages. Medieval noble families built them to show their wealth and influence.
- The historical center of Pienza – is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It represents an ideal Renaissance town.
- Montecatini Terme – Thermal Baths of Montecatini in Tuscany, Italy are known as the healthiest thermal baths in Europe.
Viator: Montecatini Terme cycle and wine tasting visit
GetYourGuide: Montecatini Terme: Thermal Pool Entrance Ticket
- Chinati vineyards – Castellina di Chianti, Panzano in Chianti, and Greve di Chianti are some of the best places in Chianti with the most impressive Chianti vineyards.
Viator: Greve in Chianti Wine Tasting and Winery Tour
WHAT TO DO IN TUSCANY
Best things to do in Tuscany
- Visit the Uffizi in Florence
- Climb the Leaning Tower in Pisa
- Tour Tuscan countryside by Vespa from Florence
- Truffle hunting in San Miniato
- Have a hot-air balloon ride over Tuscany
- Have the best gelato in the world at Gelateria Dondoli in San Gimignano
- Explore the filming locations of the ‘Under the Tuscan sun’ in Cortona
- Visit La Verna sanctuary (the hermitage where once St Frances lived)
- Have a spa time in Terme
- Have horseback ride in San Gimignano
- Have wine tasting in Chianti: sample Classico, Chianti Rufina, Chianti Colli Fiorentini
- Explore historical wine cellars in Montepulciano
- Tour the historical streets of Siena
FESTIVALS IN TUSCANY
- The Feast of Saint John`s Day in Florence on June 24: St John is the patron saint of Florence. A spectacular public celebration with processions and fireworks in Florence
- Festival of the Lanterns (Festa Della Rificolona) in Florence on September 7: a lantern parade, boat parade, and a fair.
- Luminara festival in Pisa on June 16 with Regatta San Ranieri on June 17: San Ranieri is the patron saint of Pisa. The entire Pisa gets illuminated by candles
- Saracen Tournament (Giostra del Saracino) in Arezzo on the third Saturday in June and the second on the first Sunday in September
- The Palio horse race in Siena on July 2 and on August 16
- The Pistoia Blues Festival in July
- Viarregio Carneval in February
- San Miniato Truffle Fair (La Sagra del Tartufo Bianco) in November
- White Truffles Festival (Tarufesta) in Montaione on the last weekend in October
- Puccini Festival in Lucca in July – August
- Lucca Summer Festival in June – July
WHAT TO EAT IN TUSCANY
Travel to Tuscany Italy is incomplete without sampling traditional Tuscan foods (traditional Tuscan dishes, traditional Tuscan cheese, and sausages, traditional Tuscan cakes …)
Best traditional Tuscan foods to try in Tuscany
- Bistecca alla Fiorentina
- Ribollita soup
- Crostini Toscani
- Pappardelle alla Lepre
- Trippa in Florence
- Finocchiona salami
- Pecorino Toscano cheese
- Panzanella salad
- Tuscan Ricciarelli almond cookies
- Biscotti di Prato cookies
- Tuscan Castagnaccio chesnat cake
RECOMMENDED FOOD TOURS IN TUSCANY
WHAT TO DRINK IN TUSCANY
Best wines in Tuscany to try
- Chianti wines
- Vino Nobile di Montepulciano
- Vernaccia di San Gimignano
- Vinsanto sweet dessert wine
RELATED: Most Popular Italian Drinks
TUSCANY ITALY MAP
Best places to see in Tuscany Italy