LIFE STYLE IN TUSCANY

TUSCANY
It overflows with beauty, art, history, culture

It boasts extraordinary cities such as Florence, Siena, Pisa, Lucca, Arezzo, Pistoia, as well as countless towns and villages, one more fascinating than the other. Possesses an export lifestyle, achieves excellence in food and wine.

While Tuscany is one, it can nevertheless be divided into areas, each with its own characteristics, history, and traditions.

The Maremma, for example, by extension a quarter of the entire region, home of the slow-life, is an uninterrupted succession of coastlines, beaches, natural oases, lagoons, headlands, Etruscan and Roman remains, enchanted villages and hills of extraordinary beauty. The Tuscan Archipelago, entirely a national park, has 7 pearl islands, of which Elba is the largest.

The Val d’Orcia – a UNESCO heritage site – is the Tuscany of postcards (and of films that have won many Oscar awards), the Tuscany of rows of cypress trees, ripples of ripe wheat, and historic villages.

Chianti is the Tuscany of great wine, great EVO oil, and great traditions. And then there is the Versilia of beaches, the green, hilly Val d’Elsa, the Mugello and Casentino of wooded silences, the fairy-tale Garfagnana, and much more.

Because even though we are Tuscan, we never finish seeing it. And to admire it.

TUSCANY

It overflows with beauty, art, history, culture

It boasts extraordinary cities such as Florence, Siena, Pisa, Lucca, Arezzo, Pistoia, as well as countless towns and villages, one more fascinating than the other. Possesses an export lifestyle, achieves excellence in food and wine.

While Tuscany is one, it can nevertheless be divided into areas, each with its own characteristics, history, and traditions.

The Maremma, for example, by extension a quarter of the entire region, home of the slow-life, is an uninterrupted succession of coastlines, beaches, natural oases, lagoons, headlands, Etruscan and Roman remains, enchanted villages and hills of extraordinary beauty. The Tuscan Archipelago, entirely a national park, has 7 pearl islands, of which Elba is the largest.

The Val d’Orcia – a UNESCO heritage site – is the Tuscany of postcards (and of films that have won many Oscar awards), the Tuscany of rows of cypress trees, ripples of ripe wheat, and historic villages.

Chianti is the Tuscany of great wine, great EVO oil, and great traditions. And then there is the Versilia of beaches, the green, hilly Val d’Elsa, the Mugello and Casentino of wooded silences, the fairy-tale Garfagnana, and much more.

Because even though we are Tuscan, we never finish seeing it. And to admire it.

BIODIVERSITY

As you can well imagine, biodiversity is not evenly distributed on the Planet. Italy, thanks to its special geographical location, is the custodian of one of the world’s greatest heritages of biodiversity. Yes, you read that right: world heritage!

Italy: a biodiversity hotspot

Much of the credit is due to the winds blowing from our seas to the earth (and vice versa), but more importantly, from the privileged concentration of solar radiation. Italy although concentrated in a small area, think of it occupying roughly 0.2 percent of the earth’s surface, stores a great deal of energy. The aforementioned geographical areas with high concentrations of solar radiation are called hotspots, hot zones, precisely. And where better to find biodiversity hotspots than in the beautiful country?

The Tuscan Biodiversity

Although we are not biologists the natural beauty, variety and richness of Tuscany’s biodiversity is public knowledge.

Several times we have talked about the panoramic extraordinariness, which Tuscany offers to the eyes of the visitor. We are confident that once the emergency is over, our region will once again be a popular destination for tourists from all over the world.

CLOSE YOUR EYES
and imagine...

While we cannot move from our homes, no one forbids us to close our eyes, and fantasize about being among the Tuscan hills. They evoke pure poetry. Imagine the cultivated fields, which at a glance look like a painter’s palette, and the mesmerizing rows of vines. 

Continue to the bewitching valleys that extend to the coast and flow into the calm, crystal-clear waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea. No, we have not forgotten the enchanted mountains. We can continue for hours!

Tuscany’s biodiversity allows numerous plant and animal species to survive and remain unaltered; without it, they would never have made it to the present day. The sum of these factors also contributes to generating excellence in f ood sector: typical Tuscan products.

CLOSE YOUR EYES

and imagine...

While we cannot move from our homes, no one forbids us to close our eyes, and fantasize about being among the Tuscan hills. They evoke pure poetry. Imagine the cultivated fields, which at a glance look like a painter’s palette, and the mesmerizing rows of vines. Continue to the bewitching valleys that extend to the coast and flow into the calm, crystal-clear waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea. No, we have not forgotten the enchanted mountains. We can continue for hours!

Tuscany’s biodiversity allows numerous plant and animal species to survive and remain unaltered; without it, they would never have made it to the present day. The sum of these factors also helps to generate an excellence in the food sector: typical Tuscan products.

ARTS

It is hard to find a territory in the world that contains more art than this region. The Uffizi Gallery alone, in Florence, along with the Vasari Corridor, contain an immense amount of masterpieces: from Raphael to Botticelli, passing through the core nuclei of works by Giotto, Titian, Pontormo, Bronzino, Andrea del Sarto, to such masters as Caravaggio, Dürer, Rubens, and many others.

In the Galleria dell’Accademia, also in Florence, is Michelangelo’s David-early 1500s, over 5 meters tall-arguably the most important and famous marble statue of all time.

Pictorial works from the 16th and Baroque periods (from Giorgione to Titian, Ribera to Van Dyck), as well as from the 19th and 20th centuries in Italy, are concentrated in the Palazzo Pitti.

And so the Duomo, the Baptistery, Giotto’s Bell Tower, the Palazzo Vecchio, the Bargello, the basilicas of Santa Maria Novella, Santa Croce, Santo Spirito, the Convent of San Marco, and the Abbey of San Miniato al Monte, themselves art in its purest state, contain many masterpieces by the greatest masters of all time.

And if Florence is all art, Siena, Pisa, Lucca, Arezzo, Grosseto, just to name the most important Tuscan cities, also represent marvelous architectural art (in some cases miraculous, if you think of the Leaning Tower) and are in turn caskets of immense, unparalleled art.

Then there is the art scattered everywhere, that of the many villages, towns, hamlets, the art of fabulous, mystical buildings, such as the Abbey of San Galgano, the Certosa, of Calci, that of Florence, or the Abbey of Sant’Antimo, in Val d’Orcia. Stay with us, don’t miss our endless journey into the great beauty of Tuscany.

WINE AND FOOD

Let's keep the usual very low profile and say that Tuscany in wine&food would actually have something to say.

Together with Piedmont, it is the most important Italian region for wine with territories of choice such as Chianti, Montalcino,Bolgheri and Montepulciano (but Maremma is also climbing fast positions), and with exceptional wines such as Antinori’s Tignanello or Solaia (Chianti), like Masseto or Sassicaia (Bolgheri)-the first produced by the Frescobaldi family’s Tenuta Ornellaia, the second by the Marquises Incisa della Roccheta at the famous San Guido estate, the first Italian wine from a single winery to have a specially reserved DOC, as happens in France for a very few celebrated labels-, or like the Brunello di Montalcino Riserva from Biondi Santi’s Tenuta Greppo, or the Brunello di Montalcino Riserva from Gianfranco Soldera’s Case Basse.

But wine in Tuscany is not just the preserve of large, world-famous estates. There are hundreds, thousands, of companies that every day with their sacrifice and important expertise keep the level of production in our region high. And then there is food, both as a raw material-Tuscany is one of the most appreciated in Italy for its agri-food offerings with no less than 16 DOP and 15 IGP-, as production-one name for all: the Caseificio Il Fiorino, in Roccalbegna, one of the number one producers in the world-, and as catering: 1 three-star Michelin restaurant, Enoteca Pinchiorri in Florence; 4 two-star: Bracali and Da Caino in the province of Grosseto, in Ghirlanda and Montemerano respectively, Piccolo Principe in Viareggio and Arnolfo in Colle val d’Elsa; 35 with one star.

But there are many excellent restaurants in Tuscany. Some advices? Ask us!

WINE AND FOOD

Let's keep the usual very low profile and say that Tuscany in wine&food would actually have something to say.

Together with Piedmont, it is the most important Italian region for wine with territories of choice such as Chianti, Montalcino,Bolgheri and Montepulciano (but Maremma is also climbing fast positions), and with exceptional wines such as Antinori’s Tignanello or Solaia (Chianti), like Masseto or Sassicaia (Bolgheri)-the first produced by the Frescobaldi family’s Tenuta Ornellaia, the second by the Marquises Incisa della Roccheta at the famous San Guido estate, the first Italian wine from a single winery to have a specially reserved DOC, as happens in France for a very few celebrated labels-, or like the Brunello di Montalcino Riserva from Biondi Santi’s Tenuta Greppo, or the Brunello di Montalcino Riserva from Gianfranco Soldera’s Case Basse.

But wine in Tuscany is not just the preserve of large, world-famous estates. There are hundreds, thousands, of companies that every day with their sacrifice and important expertise keep the level of production in our region high. And then there is food, both as a raw material-Tuscany is one of the most appreciated in Italy for its agri-food offerings with no less than 16 DOP and 15 IGP-, as production-one name for all: the Caseificio Il Fiorino, in Roccalbegna, one of the number one producers in the world-, and as catering: 1 three-star Michelin restaurant, Enoteca Pinchiorri in Florence; 4 two-star: Bracali and Da Caino in the province of Grosseto, in Ghirlanda and Montemerano respectively, Piccolo Principe in Viareggio and Arnolfo in Colle val d’Elsa; 35 with one star.

But there are many excellent restaurants in Tuscany. Some advices? Ask us!

LUXURY SHOPPING IN TUSCANY

an amazing experience

When Mother Nature was distributing the charm, she must have accumulated the goodies when she arrived in Tuscany, halfway down the Italian peninsula. Known for its fine wine, Renaissance art and gourmet cuisine, Tuscany also prides itself on being a top luxury shopping destination in Italy.

Milan may be an internationally renowned fashion and design capital, but, for many, the true home of Italian style is Florence, a beautiful historic city full of art, with medieval streets lined with artisan shoemakers, bespoke clothing stores and historic leather markets.

The city’s most famous and elegant street, Via de ‘Tornabuoni, is home to Salvatore Ferragamo’s first property, as well as showrooms of top designers, including Prada, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Armani, Emilio Pucci and Roberto Cavalli. Strolling down Via del Corso you will find an array of innovative boutiques and modern everyday stores, cherappresenting national and local brands. Via dei Calzaiuoli is a popular street in

Florence, full of women’s shopping boutiques and fashionable stores.

At La Rinascente, Italy’s answer to Macy’s, you can find everything from men’s and women’s fashion to home goods and beauty supplies.

The Florence store has a rooftop terrace that offers an extraordinary view of the city

LUXURY SHOPPING IN TUSCANY

South of Florence lies a bargain hunter's paradise.

More than a few major outlet cities are located in Tuscany, where you have the exclusive opportunity to buy luxury designer items at bargain prices.

The most popular store in Tuscany is The Mall, in Reggello, a thirty-minute drive south of Florence. There are regular shuttle buses that run from the SITA bus station in Florence, opposite the Santa Maria Novella train station, to The Mall Outlet.

The Mall has a number of luxury brands in one place, including Salvatore Ferragamo, Bottega Veneta, Prada, Giorgio Armani, Tod’s, Gucci, Alexander McQueen, Sergio Rossi, Valentino, and Yves Saint Laurent, to name a few. The Fendi Outlet is near The Mall and sells last season’s products at 50 percent off. The Roberto Cavalli outlet is located in the Florentine industrial area and offers last season’s clothing, bags and accessories.

In Incisa in Val D’arno, near Florence, you’ll find the Dolce & Gabbana outlet, with a wide assortment of clothing, footwear, handbags, sunglasses, watches and jewelry from the past season.

A special mention goes to the Barberino Designer Outlet, located in a beautiful setting in the Sieve Valley, north of Florence, and designed to look like a Renaissance town. There are more than 100 stores for all tastes here, ranging from iconic fashion brands such as Michael Kors, Calvin Klein, and Polo Ralph Lauren to sports labels such as Adidas, Puma, and Sergio Tacchini. Non-EU citizens can shop tax-free-the paradise for a Tuscan shopping experience.

LUXURY SHOPPING IN TUSCANY

South of Florence lies a bargain hunter's paradise.

More than a few major outlet cities are located in Tuscany, where you have the exclusive opportunity to buy luxury designer items at bargain prices.

The most popular store in Tuscany is The Mall, in Reggello, a thirty-minute drive south of Florence. There are regular shuttle buses that run from the SITA bus station in Florence, opposite the Santa Maria Novella train station, to The Mall Outlet.

The Mall has a number of luxury brands in one place, including Salvatore Ferragamo, Bottega Veneta, Prada, Giorgio Armani, Tod’s, Gucci, Alexander McQueen, Sergio Rossi, Valentino, and Yves Saint Laurent, to name a few. The Fendi Outlet is near The Mall and sells last season’s products at 50 percent off. The Roberto Cavalli outlet is located in the Florentine industrial area and offers last season’s clothing, bags and accessories.

In Incisa in Val D’arno, near Florence, you’ll find the Dolce & Gabbana outlet, with a wide assortment of clothing, footwear, handbags, sunglasses, watches and jewelry from the past season.

A special mention goes to the Barberino Designer Outlet, located in a beautiful setting in the Sieve Valley, north of Florence, and designed to look like a Renaissance town. There are more than 100 stores for all tastes here, ranging from iconic fashion brands such as Michael Kors, Calvin Klein, and Polo Ralph Lauren to sports labels such as Adidas, Puma, and Sergio Tacchini. Non-EU citizens can shop tax-free-the paradise for a Tuscan shopping experience.

VISITING TUSCANY

what is the best period?

The climate in Tuscany is generally very mild, although there may be more or less substantial differences depending on the different geographical areas. The coast and flat areas tend to have hotter summers than hilly and mountainous areas, although the coast in particular can enjoy the influence of the sea, which makes temperatures somewhat cooler and more acceptable.

Taking time as the first consideration, the best months to visit Tuscany (which are also the busiest and most expensive months) are April, May, June, September and October. These months offer the convenience of the high season with very enjoyable weather. The days are mostly sunny, although there are also a few rainy days.

The most difficult part of traveling through Tuscany during the summer is the scorching heat of July and August. During these months, temperatures can reach around 30 degrees or above. Despite this, there may be exceptions and long periods of drought that cause particularly hot periods.

Even in winter, sunshine brightens the days in Tuscany, and temperatures are quite mild, although they drop sharply at night, especially in the hillside areas. The advice is to dress in layers so that you are prepared for the temperature changes between day and evening.

The coldest months are January and February (the former a little more than the latter)! Temperatures approach 7 degrees Celsius along the coast and 3.5 to 5.5 degrees Celsius inland. Not to mention the mountains, where temperatures are nothing short of freezing, and where the snow that often blankets the slopes attracts skiers from all over, who choose Tuscany to spend a winter sports vacation! Interested in skiing or other winter activities? Read our tips on where and what to do!

On average, November is the month with the most rainfall, as are October, December, March, and April, months that are not classified as among the “wettest” anyway! But each year is different from the others – which is why we can only talk about predictions, and not certainties! – so the information we are giving you is just to give you a general idea of what you can expect.

It is important to keep in mind that the tourist season in Tuscany runs from mid-April to the end of September, with July and August being the peak season months. The best times to visit Tuscany, therefore, are the quieter months, that is, April through June and September through October, when the weather is generally good, prices are somewhat lower and, most importantly, there are fewer tourists crowding the major tourist sites. This means fewer lines at major museums, which as a result will also be less crowded inside, and shorter wait times to eat at popular restaurants (where it is always best to make reservations in advance, however).

This is precisely why many have recently discovered–to appreciate–the advantages of traveling in the “off season” (winter and early spring), when prices are lower and the number of tourists much smaller. Read about all the advantages of visiting Tuscany in the off-season!

Other peak season periods are those near Easter and Christmas, when Italians can take advantage of a few days off (as is also the case in August). Thus, higher prices are to be expected, as well as throughout July and August, both for accommodations and for many of the services offered.

Is it important to have air conditioning in bedroom?

Many accommodations may not offer air conditioning, because they actually never need it-many farmhouses and historic villas are strategically located on hilltops, surrounded by trees and forests that provide natural coolness, making your stay truly enjoyable. Many structures also feature very thick stone walls, which help keep rooms cool in summer and warm in winter.

Average monthly temperature

Maximum

Minimum

January 52 °F (11 °C) 37 °F (3 °C)
February55 °F (13 °C) 37 °F (3 °C)
March61 °F (16 °C) 43 °F (6 °C)
April66 °F (19 °C) 46 °F (8 °C)
May73 °F (23 °C) 54 °F (12 °C)
June81 °F (27 °C) 59 °F (15 °C)
July86 °F (30 °C) 64 °F (18 °C)
August86 °F (30 °C) 63 °F (17 °C)
September81 °F (27 °C) 59 °F (15 °C)
October72 °F (22 °C) 52 °F (11 °C)
November61 °F (16 °C) 45 °F (7 °C)

December

54 °F (12 °C) 40 °F (4 °C)