For a unique and memorable experience that will stick with you for years to come, look no further than a Tuscany tour. From medieval hilltop towns, fabulous Renaissance era villas and mouthwatering food and drink, Tuscany offers everything you could need for that special once in a lifetime trip. |
A Perfect Walk
Start the morning of your Tuscany tour with an energising and inspiring hike through one of the region’s ancient paths, traversing olive groves and scented cypress woods. En route make a stop off at a renowned Renaissance villa and see if you can recognise any of the well known films that have been set in the house and its surrounds, while taking in its extravagant gardens and vineyards.
A Perfect Town
Less than 10km from Florence sits the beautiful and untouched hilltop town of Fiesole. As yet still largely undiscovered by the mainstream tourist trails, this charming and well preserved settlement is rich in history, having been first established as an Etruscan stronghold during the 8th century BC.
The Romans eventually came to assume control and brought with them all the hallmarks of their civilisation, many of the remains of which are still visible around the town including the baths and the amphitheatre (which is still in use today). Make a visit to the Civic Museum where you’ll be able to catch a glimpse of many of the best artefacts that have stood the test of time from both the Roman and Etruscan periods.
Weathering the decline of the Roman Empire, for many years into the early medieval era Fiesole stood as a prosperous and powerful adversary to nearby Florence, before eventually being subdued by its neighbour after a series of wars in 1125. From the 14th century it became a popular getaway for the Florentine rich and famous, and to this day remains a fashionable outpost for the city’s upper classes.
Make sure you leave yourself plenty of time to explore this enchanting town’s many museums, churches, villas and parks, and be sure to ask a local to point you in the direction of the hilltop where Leonardo da Vinci famously made his forays into testing the idea of flight.
A Perfect Lunch
With a hike and the inspirations of Fiesole under your belt, round off your morning in style with a traditional Tuscan lunch complete with a fine local wine. Choose a Tuscany tour that will take you somewhere a little off the beaten track to indulge in some of the best delicacies that the region has to offer.
Start off with ribollita, a traditional Tuscan vegetable and bread soup, or pappa al pomodoro, simply made with bread, tomatoes and olive oil. While the ingredients of such dishes are basic they pack enough flavour to make them memorable. For your main course look out for the famous cut of steak originating from Valdarno and Mugello, known locally as bistecca alla fiorentina. Enjoy this dish, served very rare alongside roasted potatoes and beans, with a full bodied wine from the Chianti region.
If you’re looking for an idyllic morning in Tuscany speak to us about a tour that will introduce you to all the elements that make up Tuscan perfection.
Rose Magers is an Australian-born Italophile and the founder of ArtViva. With an international reputation for excellence and creativity, ArtViva are at the forefront of escorted day tours in Italy. Rose has indulged her own passion for history and the arts by designing an innovative range of exceptional small group Tuscany tour experiences, from hiking and biking through the Tuscan countryside to unforgettable villa visits.
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