Guide to Tuscany: Monuments, attractions and places of interest

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Hearing about Tuscany makes us think about a long road planted on the sides with soaring cypresses leading to a stone-built residence situated at a top of a hill and surrounded by several other luxuriantly green hills.

That’s how each of us imagines Tuscany. This region is, in a way, one of the most important tourist regions of Italy. Add to the image the vineyards stretching towards the horizon, expressive architecture, picturesque towns located in the hills, excellent cuisine that leaves the flavors of Tuscany in memories for many years and historical monuments.

This is Tuscany, and below you will find our tourist guide on it. Get ready!

A guide to Tuscany / Visit Tuscany knowingly choosing the most important and best attractions and sights!
A guide to Tuscany / Visit Tuscany knowingly choosing the most important and best attractions and sights!

Map of Tuscany

Tuscany is located in the central part of the Apennine Peninsula. It borders with other regions, including Umbria, Marche, Lazio, Emilia Romagna and Liguria.

The area includes a part of the Apennine chain (the Tuscan Apennines) and the Arno and Ombrone rivers and two seas – Ligurian and Tyrrhenian. The region is therefore diversified – mostly mountainous and upland, but has access to the sea and beautiful beaches, which guarantees variety during the Tuscan holidays.

One day we can wander among the rural villages and sunbathe on one of the picturesque beaches the next day.

Below you will find the current map of Tuscany thanks to which you will locate monuments, attractions, cities and everything you want to visit and see already on the spot. You can also plan an access route with your own car to Tuscany:

Tourist guide to Tuscany

Tuscany is considered one of the most beautiful places in the world, which is why it is visited by tourists from around the world. Places such as Florence, the leaning tower of Pisa and the island of Elba are compulsory places to visit. Regional cuisine and local wine products are also delicious.

Accommodation base is developed with a special character of agrotourism. The world-famous museums and monuments mean that every visitor leaves satisfied and excited.

So let’s start exploring Tuscany from our guide to interesting places, monuments and tourist attractions:

Florence – Capital of Tuscany

We will start sightseeing as usual from the capital of the region, Florence. To the cradle of the Renaissance, where Michelangelo, Dante or Botticelli used to create their masterpieces.

Florence is the capital of Tuscany and one of the most beautiful tourist cities in the region.
Florence is the capital of Tuscany and one of the most beautiful tourist cities in the region.

In Florence the most important must see building is Duomo Cathedral (Santa Maria del Fiore). Not only the interior itself is worth seeing, climb up to the dome and the bell tower, and visit the baptisery (a single ticket covers all three places).

Another noteworthy place is the well-known Ponte Vecchio bridge. It is distinguished by the fact that it is the most completely built-up, with small shops later turned into workshops for goldsmiths and jewelers. The part named Vasari’s corridor links the Palazzo Vecchio with Palazzo Pitti.

Florence as the capital of Tuscany offers many  interesting places and sights to visit:

Among the many museums and galleries, Galleria degli Uffizi deserves attention – one of the oldest museums in Europe, where we can admire the works of Giotto, Leonardo da Vinci, Rafael and Titian. Another similar place is also worth seeing in the Galleria dell’Accademia with its most famous work of Michelangelo – the statue of David.

Pisa

Another place that is worth visiting is definitely Pisa, associated primarily with the leaning tower. This tower, however, is only a part of the historic complex – Piazza del Duomo, which also consists of a cathedral, baptistery and cemetery.

Pisa and the leaning tower is another landmark of the picturesque monuments of Tuscany.
Pisa and the leaning tower is another landmark of the picturesque monuments of Tuscany.

Also impressive is the Camposanto cemetery itself, which is surrounded by cloisters, in which there are sarcophagi and chapels decorated with frescoes. You can admire there, among others, the beautiful fresco of the Death Triumphing (in the northern part of the cemetery).

It is also worth going to the charming streets along the Arno River. While strolling you will be able to see wonderful churches, palaces and medieval buildings. A visit to the Orto Botanico botanical garden will surely be a great chance to relax.

And here, the leaning tower of Pisa through camera lenses:

Going further along the path of interesting places to see while spending holidays and holidays in Tuscany is Siena:

Siena

Siena is a medieval town to be visited on foot, as it is closed to traffic. The biggest monument here is undoubtedly the Gothic cathedral in Siena, with a black and white marble floor and a pulpit made by Nicola Pisano.

Siena / See interesting places to visit while spending holidays in Siena.
Siena / See interesting places to visit while spending holidays in Siena.

Also noteworthy is the market square / Plazza del Campo, where the famous Palio horse races take place every year. It has a rather unusual shape of the shell and there is the Palazzo Pubblico palace next to it, where the museum of the city is now located.

It is also near Torre del Mangia – more than 100-meter high tower and belfry, which you can enter to admire the panorama of the city. The whole historic center of Sienna was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List on 1995.

Other interesting and worth seeing places in Siena can be seen in the video below:

Island of Elba

It is worth taking a short trip to the island of Elba. This place is closely associated with Napoleon Bonaparte, who was sent here in 1814 together with some of his units.

Picturesque Elba / You can get there by ferry and spend unforgettable holidays!
Picturesque Elba / You can get there by ferry and spend unforgettable holidays!

There is a residence here – Palazzina dei Mulini, where you can see his office with a desk, as well as a canopy bed and a famous field bed. In addition, in the island it is worth seeing forts in Portoferraio, the Sanctuary of Madonna delle Grazie and the Monastery of Santa Catering along with the botanical garden. You can go to one of the beautiful beaches offered by this island or take a gondola lift to the highest peak – Monte Cappane (1017 m.n.p.m) called the roof of Tuscany.

San Gimignano

The name “medieval Manhattan” is applied to the small town of San Gimignano. The reason for this is the number of towers that dominate the city here. Currently, there are thirteen of them, but in their glorious years, there were supposedly seventy of them.

San Gimignano, the town of towers
San Gimignano, the town of towers

San Gimignano is called one of the most beautiful towns in Tuscany. It is famous not only for its towers, but also for the production of excellent white wine and the cultivation of saffron.

Here you can see the ruins of the Rocca citadel, or climb one of the towers. In the central point of Piazza della Cisterna, there is a noteworthy 13th-century tank (a type of water tank). In the town you can also see the collegiate church of Santa Maria Assunta with frescos and two palaces: the Palazzo del Popolo (town hall in which there is a painting museum) and the Palazzo del Podesta (former Palace of the Administrator).

Worth mentioning is also the church from the thirteenth century, Saint Augustine, with interiors decorated with painted scenes from the life of the saint. The town itself was featured in the popular Assassins Creed game.

It’s not everything. Our guide to Tuscany has some more interesting places for you to discover!

Cortona

Cortona is another medieval town, built on a hill, strongly associated with the literary work “Under the Sun of Tuscany” by Francis Mayes. Something for fans of the novel, but not only.

This is an atmospheric place where you can get lost among the old tenement houses and narrow streets.

It is worth going to the top of the hill, where the basilica of Saint Margaret is located (with the holy mummy inside!). And where, by the way, there is a picturesque view of the whole area.

Montepulciano

Montepulciano is a town located, like many others in Tuscany, on a hill. It is called the pearl of the sixteenth century, due to its renaissance buildings.

Montepulciano San Biagio
Montepulciano San Biagio

It was this atmospheric place that served as a film set for one of the parts of the vampire saga – Twilight: New Moon. You can see here, among others, the church of San Biagio with two belfries, the Gothic town hall of the Palazzo Comunale and the Palazzo Tarugi, next to which stands the well of griffins and lions.

Pienza

Pienza is another charming town whose historic center has been placed on the UNESCO World Heritage List. However, the most interesting point may be the location exactly between Pienza and the Terrapille farm, where Russel Crowe’s Gladiator was filmed. It is here that the famous frame was filmed, when the titular gladiator goes through the field, with his hands touching the grain.

For all moviegoers it is a real treat.

We have completed a list of must see exciting places in Tuscany, now it’s time for accommodation.

Accommodation base in Tuscany

The accommodation base in Tuscany, as one of the most visited places in Italy and probably in the world is very extensive. You can find here any configuration, when it comes to hotels – from such truly luxurious places that no stars exist to properly describe them, to relatively cheap hostels, camping and the previously mentioned agrotourism.

As in the whole Italy, you can find here really many campsites and holiday homes and apartments for rent. If you are looking for peace and relaxation, you can choose from many spas, where there are thermal springs: Bagno Vignoni, Terme di Saturnia, Bagni San Filippo, or Bagni di Petriolo, where you can use their benefits for free.

Agrotourism in Tuscany/ Check prices of accommodation in Tuscany / Camps, houses for rent and rural agrotourism popular in this region!
Agrotourism in Tuscany/ Check prices of accommodation in Tuscany / Camps, houses for rent and rural agrotourism popular in this region!

Agrotourism in Tuscany

Noteworthy are also agrotourism farms, which are often located in the mountainous part of Tuscany. Very often they offer their guests swimming pools in addition to local products, or are located among private vineyards.

If you want to see for yourself what agrotourism in Tuscany looks like, watch this video until the end!

Prices in Tuscany

It is not cheap and it probably will not be. It’s the most popular region in Italy and maybe even the whole world. Prices in smaller towns are of course slightly lower than in larger cities.

The price of eating in restaurants is not cheap.

Pizza or pasta dishes cost about 5 to 14-15 euro, depending on the additions.

Lunch with meat, fish or seafood is even more expensive, and its price starts from 10-15 euro and up.

The cheapest option of ready-made food is sandwiches sold in street booths for 3-4 euro.

The same applies to the prices of sweets or alcohol in Tuscany:

For a portion of delicious Italian ice cream you need to count over 2 euro.

Beer in a bottle will cost 3-4 euro in a bar, but can cost as much as 10 euro.

You have to spend an average of 15 euro on drinks.

You will pay 2 euro for a glass of water,

Coffee is better than espresso, it costs 4-6 euro;

What’s interesting tea is sometimes more expensive and can cost even 8 euro!

The prices of food, drink and other items in the stores are as follows:

bread rolls 2-3 euro per kg,

6 eggs 1.5-2 euro,

milk (1l) 1 euro,

cheese (100 -200gr) 1 – 2 euro,

water (1.5l) 0.35 euro,

juice (1l) 1 euro,

pasta (500gr) 0.50 euro,

soda (1.5l) 1, 50 euro.

You will spend some money on urban transport in Tuscany.

For example: 24-hour ticket costs 5 euro (Florence), a 70-minute ticket costs 1.20 euro in Pisa, but bought from the driver costs 2 euro.

Traveling by train, especially regional lines, is slightly cheaper and so a ticket from Florence to Pisa costs 8.40 euro. You just have to validate it BEFORE entering the train, still at the station.

Accommodation prices in Tuscany

Accommodation prices depend on the contents of your wallet. You will find a room for 10-15 euro, away from the city center and a hotel with no luxurious conditions for 60-70 euro per night closer to the center.

And what about the prices of tickets, monuments and tourist attractions in Tuscany?

You will also pay a little for entry to major Tuscan attractions.

For example, the entrance to the Uffizi Gallery (Florence) costs 8-12.50 euro.

The leaning tower in Pisa costs 18 euro.

The Vecchio palace with the entrance to the tower in Florence costs 14 euro.

In turn, the Piazza del Duomo in Pisa including the baptistery, the Camposanto cemetery and the Museo delle Sinopie museum cost 8 euro.

Torre del Mangia in Siena is a cost of 10 euro.

Oh dear!

That’s all when it comes to our tourist guide around Tuscany. For more, visit the official website of Tuscany to plan your trip, accommodation and tours of the whole region. It is also worth visiting the official website of the Ministry of Tourism of Italy.

We invite you to add your opinions, reports and comments on interesting places that are worth seeing, current prices, agrotourism or accommodation in Tuscany in general. The more information we collect, the easier it will be for us to spend our dream holidays there!

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