A few weeks ago we wrote a post about Italy being our favourite country in the world. It explained why we love and simply cannot get enough of it. We mentioned how it holds a very special place in our heart’s. It is where our love first blossomed and subsequently where we got engaged 8 years ago.
Even though we love the country as a whole, there’s a certain region that, in our opinion, outshines the rest. That is Tuscany. There are so many reasons for that. Read on to find out why we love dreamy Tuscany and why we NEED to go back as soon as possible.
Art & Culture
The art scene in Tuscany is second to none with art galleries and museums galore. Some of the world’s most famous paintings and sculptures are available to admire in the cities of Pisa, Siena and Lucca. And no visit to the region is complete without seeing Michaelangelo’s masterpiece, David in all his glory at Galleria dell’Accademia in Florence.
There are also a number of outdoor art installations (“en plein air”) to see in the region. From environmental art at Fattoria di Celle farm located near Pistoria to the Selva di Sogno (Dream Woods) in Chiusdino near Siena. Tuscany, the birthplace of Renaissance, is an art lover’s Mecca with something to appeal to everyone.
History & Architecture
Simply put, the architecture in Tuscany is phenomenal. It really does have to be seen to be believed. From the breathtaking Duomo in Florence to the world-famous Leaning Tower of Pisa in, of course, Pisa. Having visited both of them we are eager to revisit Tuscany to explore further afield and feast on some more of the architectural delights the region has to offer. Home to 7 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Tuscany is bursting with beautiful places to visit and enjoy.
With a rich and diverse history, Tuscany is a history lover’s delight. At the top of our list would be to take a guided tour of The Castello di Porciano in Casentino. Together with a walk along the Linea Gotica to see the fortifications. We’d love to immerse ourselves in the historic scenery and sites. Also, we’d like to see and learn what the region has gone through to make it the fascinating place it is today.
The landscape in Tuscany is extremely diverse. Not only is it home to bustling cosmopolitan cities jam-packed with hotels, restaurants, bars, museums, shops and famous landmarks but also beautiful countryside. Having only visited the cities previously, the dream is to spend some time exploring the smaller towns and wandering through and admiring the rolling hills.
Therefore, we would love to rent a car and a villa which we can use as a base to explore the region from. Also, by having a villa means we would have somewhere comfortable and private to spend some time together and relax and unwind with a glass of wine or two after a long day of sightseeing. Watching the sunset whilst chatting about the memories we have made sounds just perfect to me.
Tuscany Food & Wine
Talking of wine, there is no way we could visit Tuscany without sampling a few of the locally produced ones. There are a number of wine regions within Tuscany, one of the most famous and our favourite is Chianti. Yes, Chaiti as in ‘I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti’. Made famous by Anthony Hopkins in the 1991 film Silence of the Lambs. Florence was then used as the backdrop for a number of scenes in one of its sequels, Hannibal.
Therefore Tuscany is home to lots of vineyards and as we love wine tasting and have done it all over the world from the Hunter Valley in Australia to Napa and Sonoma in California to the Alsace Region in France, we would love to tick Tuscany off our list too. And let’s not forget the amazing food available in Tuscany from the Lampredotto sandwich to the delicious Panzanella, yum.
Festivals and Fun Times
Tuscany is home to a number of festivals throughout the year. Therefore, we would love to time our return to tie in with at least one of them. Many of the festivals and events held in Tuscany have long historical traditions. The busiest season is Summer where the streets of Tuscany come alive between the months of June and September.
From the Battle of the Bridge, a medieval “tug of war” contest, held in Pisa in June to medieval jousting in Arezzo on the first Sunday in September. There really is something for everyone. However, for us, the Lucca Summer Festival, which is held annually, would really be the event we would love to take part in. It is the biggest music festival in Tuscany and showcases the best national and international artists.
Fingers crossed we get to make a return trip very soon!
*This post is my entry into the To Tuscany Tuscan Culture Blogger Competition 2018