Seven Tuscan World Heritage Sites
“The Creator made Italy from designs by Michaelangelo” ~ Mark Twain
Tuscany covers nearly 9000 square miles, and is a diverse natural landscape, stretching from the rugged Apennine mountains, stunning landscapes such as the Chianti Valley, to the island of Elba’s beaches on the Tyrrhenian sea. This scenery merges the beauty of the natural landscape, with artistic heritage and the millenary work of man. Visit medieval villages, historical hill-towns, castles and country churches (the so-called pievi),beautiful abbeys like Sant’Antimo, and the landscapes of the Crete Senesi, Orcia Valley, Garfagnana, Maremma and Chianti.
The magnificent city of Florence is home to the world’s most recognisable Renaissance art and architecture including Michelangelo’s “David” and Botticelli’s famous “The Birth of Venus” in the Uffizi Gallery. This impressive gallery is filled with historical relics and artistic masterpieces by the creative geniuses who made an indelible mark on the world’s architecture and art. In the Uffizi you will see artists such as Giotto, Brunelleschi, Vasari, Michelozzo and Leon Battista Alberti, to mention just a few.
The historic centre of Florence (1982); the Cathedral square of Pisa (1987); the historical centre of San Gimignano (1990) – “della Belle Torri” – famed for its amazing skyline dominated by fifteen medieval towers; the historical centre of Siena (1995); the historical centre of Pienza (1996); the Val d’Orcia (2004), and the Medici Villas and Gardens (2013).
Tuscany has over 120 protected nature reserves, making Tuscany and its capital, Florence popular tourist destinations that attract 10 million visitors every year. The main tourist destinations by number of tourists are Florence, Pisa, Montecatini Terme, Castiglione della Pescaia and Grosseto. The village of Castiglione della Pescaia is also the most visited seaside destination in the region, with seaside tourism accounting for approximately 40% of tourist arrivals in Tuscany.
Some of Italy’s finest vintages are produced between Florence and Siena. Famous Chianti Classico, Brunello di Montalcino, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, pecorino cheeses and cured meats such as Cinta Senese, Salame Toscano or those made from local cinghiale (wild boar).
Born in Tuscany, the official Italian language spoken today is based on the Tuscan dialect dating back to the Renaissance period. Also born in Florence, Tuscany in 1826 was the story of the little marionette who just wanted to be a “real boy”, written by Carlo Collodi. The story of Pinocchio, meaning “Pine Eyes” in Italian, was made into the Disney animated film in 1940.
Traces of the Renaissance era, warm Tuscan tradition and grand art are still visible wherever you go here. The thermal springs, rolling hills, rows of cypresses, vineyards, and olive groves have been seducing visitors since the Roman times, and continue to do so to this day.
The beautiful landscapes, amazing culinary delicacies, fashion, art and history, culture, and La Dolce Vita…