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Regarded as the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance, many famous artists including Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci, have called Tuscany home throughout the centuries. The area is not only rich in art and culture but is also world renowned for its medieval hill towns, lush vineyards, olive groves and the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa.
On this 7-night holiday you will visit the beautiful city of Florence with its famous Piazza della Signoria and travel to Lucca, a walled city that was the birthplace of Puccini. You will also visit Siena, a city famous for its art, cuisine, museums and medieval landscape and the small medieval town of San Gimignano. A highlight for many is the trip to Pisa, which is home not only to the tower, but also to some magnificent cathedrals and baroque buildings. Join us on this Italian adventure that has the perfect mix of culture, relaxation and history.
Prices are inclusive of all airline taxes and charges
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After breakfast, begin your holiday with a walking tour around Florence accompanied by your expert local guide. You will visit the Duomo (cathedral), which was completed structurally in 1436 and has an elaborate green and pink façade in the 19th century gothic-revival style. From there you will move on to the Piazza della Signoria, which was the centre of the Florentine Republic and remains the political hub of the city. You will also see the Ponte Vecchio (Old Bridge) which has shops built along the length of it as was once common for Italian bridges.
In the afternoon you will be free to explore the city. Why not try a Florentine steak or head to the Uffizi Gallery, which holds some of the most impressive Renaissance art in the world. (Please note that the Uffizi Gallery should be booked in advance. See www.uffizi.com for details).
Today you can enjoy a chance to discover Tuscany at your own pace. Take a stroll around Montecatini and treat yourself to a coffee in one of the many cafes or take the cable car to the older town, which sits atop a nearby hill. We also suggest you “take the waters” at the Terme Tettuccio which is one of the most eye-catching art-nouveau structures in the town.
After breakfast you will travel to Pisa where you will visit the Piazza dei Miracoli, home to perhaps the most iconic building in Italy - the Leaning Tower. The famous lean was caused by a poor foundation, which could not support the structure’s weight. The tilt continued to increase before the structure was completed and has since been partially corrected in the 20th and 21st centuries.
On this excursion you will also see the Pisa Cathedral and the many baroque buildings, which make up the Piazza dei Miracoli (the Square of Miracles).
Later, visit Lucca, the birthplace of Puccini, and the only town in Italy entirely surrounded by walls. Considered to be among the wealthiest and most conservative cities in Tuscany, Lucca’s prosperity was gained largely through silk and high-quality olive oil. The city is crammed with beautiful Romanesque churches - an architecture enthusiast’s dream.
Begin your day with a guided tour of Siena, a city famous for its art, cuisine, museums and medieval landscape. Here, you will visit the Piazza del Campo, home of the famous Palio horse race held twice a year.
In the afternoon you will move on to San Gimignano. The town is known as the “Town of Fine Towers” and it sits on a hilltop. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is encircled in walls and is famous for its medieval architecture and impressive skyline. We recommend you try the local white wine, Vernaccia di San Gimignano, made from grapes grown on the sandstone hillsides of the area.
Please note that the order of excursions on this itinerary may vary slightly. Your day to day itinerary will be advised with your travel documents.
An overview of the stunning region of Tuscany, including highlights of our 7 night ‘Classic Tuscany’ holiday based in the spa town of Montecatini. See customers enjoy an optional excursion to a local winery in the Chianti region of Tuscany and view two of our gorgeous hotels; the Grand Hotel Plaza and the Hotel Settentrionale.
Currency: Euro (€)
Time: Ireland/UK Time +1 hour
Flight: The flight to Bologna is approx. 2.5 hours.
Climate: The inland valleys of Tuscany enjoy warm summers and cool winters and tend to assume a continental character the further inland you travel.
Passport: A valid passport is required for this holiday. EU citizens do not need a visa. Non-EU citizens should check requirements.
Food & Drink: Tuscany is known for earthy, robust dishes, made from the finest of local ingredients. Try ‘Bistecca alla Fiorentina’, a thick T bone steak (served rare), or for a lighter option, panzanella, a salad made of stale bread soaked in cold water and vinegar, mixed with diced tomatoes, onions, and basil, all sprinkled with the exquisite olive oil for which the region is famous. Wine lovers will be spoilt for choice, from the fruity white Vernaccia di San Gimignano to the mouthwatering red, Rosso di Montalcino, and many more besides.
Average Prices for Region:
Glass of wine: €3.50
Main course: €17.50
Soft Drink: €1.50
Bottled Water: €1.00
We advise you to bring:
Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes
The Savage Garden by Mark Mills
Innocence by Penelope Fitzgerald
A Room with a View (film, 1985) dir. James Ivory
Tel: + 39 06 697 9121
Tel: + 39 06 4220 0001
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4 **** hotel accommodation in the Grand Hotel Plaza & Locanda Maggiore, Montecatini. Hotel Website
Location: In the centre of Montecatini Terme, near the thermal resorts and the main attractions.
Hotel facilities: Bar, Restaurant , Lift, Outdoor swimming pool, Internet, Free Wi-Fi, Garden & Table tennis.
Room facilities: Air conditioning, Telephone, Hairdryer, Mini bar, Safe, TV & private bathroom.
4 **** hotel accommodation in the Hotel Settentrionale Esplanade, Montecatini. Hotel website
Location: Montecatini Terme centre, close to all amenities including Thermal Spa establishments.
Hotel facilities: Outdoor swimming pool, WiFi, Bar, Lounge, Restaurant & Lift.
Room facilities: Air conditioning TV, Telephone, Hairdryer, Mini bar, Safe & Bathroom with bath or shower. Accommodation is in two buildings.
4 **** hotel accommodation in the Hotel Ariston in Montecatini. Hotel Website
Location: Situated near to town centre, Spas, Stores & a Park.
Hotel facilities: American Bar, Solarium Terraces, Air-Conditon & International Restaurant.
Room facilities: Minibar, Air-Condition, Private Service, TV & Telephone.
Please note, some hotel facilities may be seasonal and not available at the time of your travel. Additionally, room amenities may vary depending on room type.