Some of my favourite Tuscany destinations include Siena, Florence and Pisa, but what about some of the lesser-known cities in Tuscany?
There are some truly spectacular towns and villages in Tuscany. From medieval hilltop villages to larger towns with beautiful old town centres. Or if you prefer something a little more upbeat, there are several big cities packed with culture and entertainment.
Each region in Tuscany has something unique to offer. Wander through the cobbled streets of quaint Italian towns and you will soon fall under the spell of Tuscany.
The main towns and cities in Tuscany include; Florence, Pisa, Siena, Grosseto, Arezzo. And with neighbouring towns of Bologna, Rome and Genoa not far away.
In addition to Florence, Siena, Pisa, Lucca and Arezzo are all worth at least a day, with smaller hilltowns like San Gimignano, Cortona and Volterra also vying for attention. But don’t let art distract you from the landscape: the vineyards of Chianti and Montalcino, the Carrara marble quarries north of Lucca, or the wild Maremma coastal strip are all must-sees.
So let’s go, shall we? Here are some of the best cities to visit in Tuscany….
Heading further north? I’d recommend spending some time in the city of Bologna. Here are the best things to do in Bologna…
The best cities to visit in Tuscany
The most well-known city to visit of the Tuscany destinations is Florence, rooted in its past informs the political and economic centre of Tuscany. Wealth to the city has come through workmanship and trade and nowadays throughout.
There is indeed nowhere else where you will find so much art in such a small area than in the city of Florence. This is also where the 14th century Renaissance heralded a new age of philosophy art and architecture.
During the day the city Florence is full of the sounds of artisans hammering away in their workshops but it is also alive during the night with bars and restaurants pulling out the tables for locals and tourists to explore the city. The most iconic building in Florence is the Dubai Mo the cathedral in the city centre.
The atmosphere around this area is to leave mystical in the building is magnificent offering tourists the most in stunning architecture they will have ever seen.
The splendid Byzantine mosaics on the ceiling of the hexagonally building or a must-see. I would also recommend lunch in one of the cities famous pizza as well you can drink wine and relax whilst watching people as they go about their everyday life.
In the wonderful film Eat Pray Love, Julia Roberts visit Tuscany. If you are inspired, check out these 50 best travel movies.
Another one of the most famous Tuscany destinations is Siena and the Chianti region most well known for their red wine saffron and tobacco. There is certainly a golden dry aroma to the south-east of Tuscany where the fields are dry and herbs a prominent.
It’s a landscape of vineyards in the ancient forest where the two provincial capitals are a treasure trove of art and history.
Siena is a beautiful city and the city very close to me and Theo’s hearts due to the fact it’s our closest city to our wedding venue. Siena is an Italian marble set in the glorious hills and protected by fortified walls it is managed to retain its mediaeval character right into the 21st-century.
Strict building regulations have ensured that nothing disturbs the harmony of this beautiful traditional Tuscan city and it’s been said that even cars and telephone aerials are banned.
It is also world-famous for its famous horse race the Palio. During the weekend of the event, the whole city is buzzing with excitement in anticipation for the mediaeval tradition.
The streets and passages are decorated in traditional colours of the 17 participating city boards and tourists come from all over the world to watch the horse race. The race happens on the 2nd of July and 16 August. Other things to see and Siena include the Santa Maria Della Scala, Santa Maria Cathedral and Palazzo Pubblico.
Arezzo is most famous for sleep in Piazza Grande you will realise the town is a little bit different but this is what makes it perfect for tourists who love their art. It is the perfect place for Artists, and collectors to find some exceptional pieces.
And it’s been said that up to 1 ton of gold passes through the city of local Goldsmiths every month in the city now that’s pretty impressive. It is also pretty famous for its pottery offering delicate designs which have been famous for millions of years.
Pisa isn’t my favourite part of Tuscany to visit, as it has been busy and over-crowded both times I have visited.
I visited Pisa last September at the end of a week-long Mediterranean Cruise around Europe, stopping at France, Italy and Spain. For our final day of the trip, we explored the Italian city of Pisa, iconic with tourists around the world for The Leaning Tower of Pisa.
This iconic building has been made famous all over the world, and in addition to the tower, the city offers many other interesting things to see worth at least a day. Check out my guide of things to do in Pisa for more inspiration!
When the building complex at Field of Miracles was built, the bell tower wasn’t intended to be the centrepiece of the square. Campo dei Miracoli was medieval Italy’s grandest building project and even today it is one of the main attraction of Tuscany and Italy.
Once you have admired the Tower of Pisa from all angles (including the classic picture in which you pretend to support it to keep as a memento), continue your visit to the other monuments in the Piazza: the Cathedral and the Baptistery.
Along the perimeter of the square, there is also the Cemetery, the Cathedral Museum and the Museum of the Synopses.
We did have a wonderful day as we explored the lesser-known areas of the city, visited a few markets, took our Instagram shots in front of the Leaning Tower of Pisa and the Piazza Dei Cavalieri and stopped for a bite to eat at a local Pizzeria restaurant.
But I would say if you are limited on time, that there are much better cities and towns to see on your Tuscany itinerary than visiting Pisa.
Who knew that Tuscany had a coast? Well, it certainly does and it’s beautiful if you had towards the south of the region this is where you can find the most beautiful coastal region of Italy.
The world will get landscape is full of surprises with cattle traditional sites music and culture as well as hot springs and a coastline with sandy beaches surrounded by forest. The nightlife on the beachside resort is more casual and relaxed than those further north.
Grosseto it’s a shopaholics paradise with Sadie arcade alleyway is a busy café is situated next to Sankey bars I’m well-known brands.
Here you can find another good shoe final records or comic books as well as luxury designer brands around every corner.
The most iconic things to see in this region piazza Dante And the Museum of archaeological history. The city also has a small style Duomo in the Piazza A replication of the one in Florence.
People also come here for the hot Silversprings the bubble out of the volcanic crater only 37 miles east of the city. Here there is a Roman spa located in a hotel with 140 rooms also welcomes paying day visitors. The flowing water cascades until waterfall flowing in stages into a natural stone basin that you can join its benefits.
For more adventures in Italy, add Umbria to your Italian bucket list and explore the towns of Perugia, Spello and Todi.
Where to stay in Tuscany
The Tuscan countryside is dotted with farmhouses and cottages converted into holiday homes, perfect for anyone who wants to combine the charm of country life with close proximity to the “art” cities. Just remember that having a car available, in this case, is crucial. Villas, castles and resorts, often quite luxurious and full of history, offer larger rooms to host events or simply enjoy a luxury getaway.
Hotel Torre Guelfa Palazzo Acciaiuoli Florence – £89 – BOOK NOW
Residenza Conte di Cavour & Rooftop Florence – £90 – BOOK NOW
Hotel Pitti Palace al Ponte Vecchio Florence – £83 – BOOK NOW
Mh Florence Hotel & Spa Florence – £65 – BOOK NOW
Grand Hotel Duomo Pisa – £61 – BOOK NOW
AwesHome Hanging Gardens Pisa – £50 – BOOK NOW
Hotel Bologna Pisa – £65 – BOOK NOW
Hotel Relais Dell’Orologio Pisa – £47 – BOOK NOW
Hotel Athena Siena – £51 per night – BOOK NOW
Grand Hotel Continental Siena – Starhotels Collezione Siena – £150 per night – BOOK NOW
Hotel Palazzo di Valli Siena – £60 per night – BOOK NOW
Hotel Garden Siena – £40 per night – BOOK NOW
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Thank you for reading and as always happy adventuring!
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