With beautiful rolling hills and a rich history of renaissance art and sculpture, as well as the famous Italian food and drink, Tuscany is on the must visit list of every traveller.
From famous sites that you simply have to see, to hidden gems to escape the other tourists, we detail the five must-see sights in the region of Tuscany.
THE PANORAMIC SCENERY IN PIENZA
A tiny village sat atop a hill in the valley of Val d’Orcia, Pienza is known as the “ideal city of the Renaissance”. Created by a man name Piccolomini, who later became Pope Pius II, he turned his humble birthplace into a manifestation of renaissance city planning ideals.
Now an UNESCO world heritage site, the city is full of picturesque streets rich with history without tons of tourists. Head to the city wall behind the church for stunning scenes of the landscape.
DAVID IN FLORENCE
One of the biggest must see sights in Tuscany is of course, David. A magnificent marble statue, Michelangelo’s most famous sculpture is four metres tall and is one of the most popular sights in the Accademia Gallery.
There are lots of other incredible sculpture and art in the museum too, including Giambologna’s Rape of the Sabines and Botticelli’s Madonna and Child and Madonna of the Sea.
A FESTIVAL IN SAN GIMIGNANO
Known as the city of beautiful towers, San Gimignano has gone from 72 towers to 14. While there’s plenty to keep you entertained at any time of the year, the Ferie delle Messi, or the Medieval Harvest Festival, is well worth attending if you can.
Every year, the residents and visitors of San Gimignano honour the traditional fertility festival that dates back to 1255. The four “Contrades”, or neighbourhoods, of the city compete against each other in traditional games as well as singing and dancing in medieval dress.
DUOMO IN SIENA
A great Gothic building, the Duomo in Sienna is impressive inside and out. Built between 1215 and 1263 in the form of a Latin cross with a done and a bell tower, it is decorated inside and out with white and a greenish/black marble. The floor is etched and inlaid with marble panels, designed by 40 of Siena’s leading artists between 1369 and 1547.
THE SCULPTURE AT THE TAROT GARDEN
Built in the late 20th century by artist Niki de Saint de Phalle, the Tarot Garden contains sculpture depicting the 22 Major Arcana of the Tarot cards. Her idea was to create an “eden” so inspired by Gaudi’s Park Guell she created her own just outside Capalbio. A gorgeous garden well worth a visit.
Featured image via CC Flickr by Chris Yunker
Have you explored some of Tuscany’s must see sights?