Information about hill towns, wineries, airports, transportation in Tuscany, plus photographs, guidebooks, books and movies
Tuscany Photographs, Museums, Hill Towns, Wineries
is a charmed land, equally blessed by the genius of man and nature, and often by the combined efforts of both. Think of the vineyards: rows of baby green vines that manage somehow to march in arrow-straight formation up the gently rolling hillsides, bounded by single files of darker green cypress trees, snaking sandy roads leading to rust-colored farmhouses and moss-coated castles, symmetrically rounded hilltops surmounted by towns so homogeneous as to seem one single building. Every inch of land has been sculpted, first by the elements and then by generations of inhabitants whose goals were always twofold: make the land produce as much as possible, make the land as beautiful as possible. Tuscany enchants us today because it holds together as a region, from the tiniest hamlet to Florence the Magnificent. For the living proof, take a short walk one day along the sides of the Belvedere in Florence: you will leave behind the traffic and suddenly find yourself strolling down quiet lanes bounded by tall stone walls, cypress trees and creamy-colored villas. You could be anywhere in Tuscany, and we dare you not to fantasize about living here.
visit to Tuscany will help you navigate through its many world-famed attractions, but it will also introduce you to some of its lesser-known jewels. Italy's most skilled cowboys, for instance. Or a host of colorful outdoor food markets. Spectacular natural parks. A mystery church, an ancient Etruscan mineral spa, a dozen Last Suppers in Florence...... One place you WON'T discover with us is a mythical city called Sienna. We feel impelled -- obliged, actually! -- to point out that "Sienna" is a color or a vehicle. In Tuscany there is a magical town called Siena, and no one who has ever lived there felt the name needed an extra "n"!
So come with us now to this very special place, where a thousand narrow farm roads wait patiently for you to make the wrong turn and find your own secret treasure, basking happily in the Tuscan sun.
- From Florence the Magnificent to tiny Montepulciano, there are dozens of Tuscan towns you'll want to visit. Come with us on a drive through a land few travelers ever forget.
- In Tuscany, every farmhouse has been sheltering families for centuries. Their memories linger in every stone and rafter.
- Pisa has more to offer than just its tower. You can also visit some totally unique Roman ruins while you're there.
- Saturnia is one of the most popular spa retreats in Europe, but it wasn't always that way.
- The first Tuscans were the Etruscans, who left us some very unique roads to explore.
- Here are some of our favorite places to eat in Florence and Tuscany.
- Want a day off from culture? Visit one of Tuscany's many natural parks.
- Michael Brouse spent years looking for a mystery church, one of the most significant structures of the Renaissance.
- The Alinari Brothers took exquisite black-and-white photographs of Tuscan life in the late 19th century. Click here for our album of their Chianti images.
- If you have an extra day to spend in Tuscany, think about dedicating it to the charming town of Lucca.
- What's it like to spend an evening in a real Tuscan farmhouse? Come along, and find out how to make panzanella while you're at it.
- On the outskirts of Florence, right on the road to the Chianti, is the Florence American Cemetery and Memorial dedicated to Americans who died in the battle to liberate northern Italy from the Nazis. It is a beautiful and moving site.
- Siena and San Gimignano: A Tuscan Photo Safari by Sims Brannon.
- When Wild Bill Hickok needed the best cowboys in Europe to compete against his own performers, he took the whole troupe off to Maremma, Tuscany's Wild, Wild West.
- When the Manetti brothers bought their 22,000-acre estate, most Chianti wine was being served in straw-covered bottles. Now Fontodi Vigne is a prestigious wine known all the world over.
- Find the location, zip code, area code, province or region of a specific town.
- Find a flag of Tuscany / Toscana, along with hundreds of other flags from Italy and around the world.
- Useful WWW links.
- A year-round calendar of the colorful festivals and pageants held throughout the region of Tuscany.
- Ceramics, kitchen utensils, hand-made linens, antique
bric-a-brac: what better place to find souvenirs for your friends and yourself
than a flea market, set in the shadow of a 16th-century cathedral, perchance?
Keep this calendar of outdoor markets in Tuscany for
- The basic facts about Tuscany.
[Regions of Italy]