Tuscany has long been a favourite destination for anyone looking for an authentic Italian experience.
Where is it?
Tuscany is a large area in central Italy that stretches to the Mediterranean coast. It is divided into ten provinces, which include some of Italy’s most beautiful towns and cities; Florence, Siena and Pisa.
Where can I stay?
Many people choose to stay in villas when they visit Tuscany, preferring the independence of self-catering to the routine of a hotel. The next time you consider visiting Tuscany, take a look at the benefits of a boutique hotel. Giving you the comfort and service of a regular hotel, but with a home-from-home atmosphere and service that anticipates your every need, you can come and go as you please without having to worry about making beds or shopping for food. In fact, when you stay at a boutique hotel, all you have to think about is where your next luxury is coming from.
Try the JK Palace in Florence for a taste of city boutique. With only 20 rooms, it’s like having your own home in the Piazza Santa Maria Novella and it’s the perfect place to return to after a hard day sightseeing. “Boutique” doesn’t always mean tiny – for a hotel that’s a magnificent rural retreat, the Villa Mangiacane is set in 300 hectares of olive groves, vineyard and forest and the view from the pool means that you’ll be hard-pressed to leave the villa at all.
What can I see?
Take a tour to the vineyards and sample classic Tuscan wines such as Chianti and Montepulciano, or visit olive groves and buy pressed olive oil to take home. Tuscany, its towns and cities are full of beautiful Renaissance architecture and the art here rivals that of Venice and Rome. If you’re not staying in Florence, then you should certainly take the time to visit the city during your stay. A busy, chic city, full of amazing architecture, priceless art, great shopping and fantastic dining, Florence is captivating and many visitors return here for short breaks or special events. Tuscany is full of contrasts and you could holiday here for several years in a row without visiting the same place twice.
How do I get around?
How you choose to travel in Tuscany largely depends on where you’re staying. If you’ve chosen a city location, then it will be easier for you to use public transport or just walk to get around, as hiring a car may be expensive and the roads too busy for stress-free driving. On the other hand, if you’ve chosen a boutique hotel in a rural location, you should think about hiring a car so that you can travel round the countryside or take a day-trip to one of the cities. The Italian public transport system is well-used by locals, and you can travel between cities and towns on the train or on buses, which give you the opportunity to gaze at the glorious countryside.