Where to Stay in Tuscany
A trip through vineyards, beaches and sweeping hills
About as diverse as it gets in Europe, Tuscany is an amalgamation of spectacular scenery. One day, you’ll be traipsing up the Monti dell'Uccellina by the coast and relaxing on the beaches, and on the next, you’ll be rummaging through some of the world’s finest art galleries in Pisa and Florence. Historic vestiges bring us back thousands of years in these wonderful cities, where you can practice your stance for the ‘holding up the Leaning Tower of Pisa’ pose, and marvel at the architecture of the Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral. One of the main draws to the region is Chianti, which is jam-packed with vineyards growing acclaimed grape varieties. Feeling a little worse for wear? You can recover in one of the spas across the region, or better yet, one of our luxury homes. Of course our homes need to be taken into consideration when deciding where to stay in Tuscany, because here at Plum Guide, we pride ourselves on offering only the very best accommodation, ensuring that your trip is a memorable one for all the right reasons.
Let’s get this one out the way nice and early. Go and get your photo taken with the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Pretend you’re trying to hold it up - you’ll have some right laughs. The tower actually lies in the Campo dei Miracoli, a complex featuring a range of impressive buildings jealous that they get less attention than their leaning sibling. Take a look around the Pisa Cathedral and study the Romanesque architectural features that make it a true wonder. Continue exploring the town centre, with its spectacular Camposanto - an old cemetery full of eerie tombs and frescoes - a highlight on the Piazza del Duomo.
Tuscany’s stretch of mountains along the coast are as surprising as they are beautiful. That’s because the image we have in our minds of Tuscany comprises a rural inland flurry of vineyards (we’ll get there, don’t worry). The mountains of Monti dell'Uccellina spread out to the coast, featuring marshes and coastal plains: enough space and nature fo you to hike for hours and complain of aching limbs. Snap photos of the vistas of the sea, and enjoy a picnic in the forest. Look up to the skies for a wide variety of birdlife.
Even its name is beautiful. That just about sums up Florence, a city paved with gold (well, not really gold - but, lovely things). It has the world’s largest and richest collection of Italian Renaissance art, so if you like that stuff, head on down to the Uffizi and gaze at Botticelli’s iconic The Birth of Venus (other works of art are also there). Of course, just down the road is the Galleria dell’Accademia, with its own array of stunning pieces. See the Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral, and climb to the viewpoint of the Piazzale Michelangelo.
Just make sure to pronounce that ‘ch’ like a ‘k’, or you’ll look silly in this stunning region that perhaps best characterises the Tuscany you see in the postcards and movies. As you can imagine, the area is known for its Chianti wines. Voyage past castles and over bridges in this fairytale region in the centre of Tuscany, stopping in at such illustrious wineries as the Castello di Verrazzano, the Montefioralle Winery and the Enoteca Falorni. Forget all your troubles with a refined tasting at each one. Why stop there? Buy a few bottles to enjoy back at your Plum Guide home.
Right by the sea
When considering where to stay in Tuscany, look no further than our Plum Guide homes by the Tuscan Coast. Here, you can take boat trips out to the islands of Giglio and Elba. The former is smaller and a little less known, with its own rustic citadel and quaint villages. Relax on the beaches and try the water sports. Fun fact: Elba is known as the location of Napoleon’s exile, so enjoy the beaches like only an emperor would (lots of sunbathing) and head to the Elban Minerals Museum to…well, to learn a thing or two.
Finally, rounding off our list of where to stay in Tuscany, we have Siena. Take a step back in time to medieval Tuscany here, and admire the gothic design of the Palazzo Pubblico just off the main square (the Piazzo del Campo). See the 14th-century Torre del Mangia and climb to its summit for impressive views of the town. After days of sightseeing, rest your limbs in the Terme Sensoriali spa.