Unique Places in Tuscany

  • Wall of Pinocchio masks
    Wall of Pinocchio masks
    by GrumpyDiver
  • the pool
    the pool
    by croisbeauty
  • Abbey of San Antimo near Montalcino
    Abbey of San Antimo near Montalcino
    by Beausoleil

Most Viewed Off The Beaten Path in Tuscany

  • alza's Profile Photo
    1 more image

    Devil's Bridge draws Gothic revelries

    by alza Updated Jul 14, 2013

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Main photo: Ristorante Il Gecko, across the Devil's Bridge, Borgo a Mozzano
    Photo 2: Devil's Bridge, Borgo a Mozzano

    I didn't know this while I was ON that bridge, although the bats and strange animals painted on the Restaurant across the river seemed a bit strange... but once back home, when I looked up Borgo a Mozzano, I happened on a huge website of Gothics, Halloweeners, stories of sorcerers, witches, wolfmen, ads for all-night drinking and dancing, pyrotechnics, etc. -- all there, on and around the Devil's Bridge.

    Seems like a yearly event at Halloween. Surprising for Italy, but the website makes sure to point out that there were wild pagan feasts 'round that date in October well before Christian times.

    The place had appeared very calm to me but on second thought, there was a bit of creepiness to it. It must be something to come here, not on a quiet Thursday morning but on Halloween night, in the middle of explosions of fireworks and witches' dances!

    I took a picture of the restaurant Il Gecko so I could let everyone know that there's a place to have a bite, by the bridge. Someone told me I shouldn't put up this "tip" since I never ate there... well, I'm not recommending it, not even putting it into Restaurants in fact. Just showing the place as it appears... To me, the fact that the place has a bar makes it worth a mention.
    Have fun!

    Related to:
    • Photography
    • Road Trip
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • croisbeauty's Profile Photo
    1 more image

    Colle di Val d'Elsa

    by croisbeauty Updated Jul 4, 2012

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Colle di Val d'Elsa is situated on a half way in between Siena and San Gimignano, just a few kilometres after Monteriggioni. I was rushing to San Gimignano and Volterra since it was early afternoon, planning to go back from there and stay one more night in Siena. Monteriggioni and Val d'Elsa were supppose to be visited the next morning.
    Sometimes we do change plans unexpectedly as I did it, instead of going back to Siena I wen to Pisa and my plan collapsed.

    Was this review helpful?

  • croisbeauty's Profile Photo
    2 more images

    Villages of Toscana

    by croisbeauty Updated Jul 4, 2012

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Is it possible to remember the names of all villages we have been passing by or taking pictures of them from the distance, of course it's not. Toscana is full of beautiful landscapes, enchanting scenes and charming small settlements. In some other occasion of visiting I might be attracted with something else, even if repeating the roads I did before. Picture is moment in time and it depend of our present state of mind.

    Was this review helpful?

  • magor65's Profile Photo
    4 more images

    Panzano

    by magor65 Written Sep 9, 2011

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Panzano is a charming little town situated in the heart of Chianti region. We had chosen it for our temporary home during our summer stay in Tuscany. Being located halfway between Florence and Siena, it was an excellent starting point for different trips in the region, and at the same time it offered peace and quiet far away from crowds.
    The historic part of the town preserved its medieval character of a borgo (a village built around a castle). The castle is still there, but now it's a private property, so you can only look at it from outside.
    There is one main street that leads from the town square up to the church of Santa Maria. The church looks picturesque and old, but actually it was completely renovated a hundred years ago.
    One of the attractions of Panzano is a local butcher's shop. Its owner, Dario Cecchini, is far from being a typical butcher. I would rather call him a propagator of Panzano and the Chianti region. There are always some tourists in the shop, and apart from buying local sausages and meat, they talk to Dario, listen to his stories, drink wine and taste bread with lard.
    Panzano has also several nice restaurants, an enoteca and on Sunday morning an open air market where you can buy fresh fruit, vegetables, local cheese and bread.

    Was this review helpful?

  • alza's Profile Photo
    2 more images

    Ponte del diavolo (Lucca area)

    by alza Written Jul 17, 2010

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Ponte del diavolo is at Borgo a Mozzano, a few minutes drive from Lucca.

    Recently, I happened to be in Lucca at the same time as my VT Friend Maurizio and we decided to make a day trip to Barga, in the mountainous region called La Garfagnana, north of Lucca. The Devil's Bridge is historic and popular so it was our first stop.

    This medieval bridge was mentioned in a novel by Giovanni Sercambi (14th cent.) It used to be called Ponte della Maddalena in the 15th cent., when a statue of Saint Magdalen was found at the foot of the bridge.

    I enjoyed the time spent there, the bridge was lovely and the surroundings were deserted, very quiet. Cross the River Serchio on that great work of engineering and you'll find a café and a place to buy postcards and the like.

    Was this review helpful?

  • globetrott's Profile Photo

    PONTEDERA - the VESPA museum

    by globetrott Updated Feb 24, 2010

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Pontedera is a small town on your way from Pisa to Siena.

    The most interesting sight for the tourists is a lovely small museum of the Piaggio-company, producing mainly small cars and Vespa-motorscooters.
    In former times they also built airplanes, trains and even a "flying motorscooter"

    For more infos and lots of pics, please have a look on my Potedera-page - simply click on the link below !!

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • longsanborn's Profile Photo
    2 more images

    Must see famous wine town of Montalcino

    by longsanborn Written Apr 20, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Montalcino is a small town in Siena province, situated on a hill covered with olive groves and the famous Brunello vineyards dominating the Asso, Ombrone and Arbia valley.

    Brunello di Montalcino is a red wine produced in the vineyards surrounding the town of Montalcino. Brunello is a local name for Sangiovese in Italian, and is one of the best-known (and expensive) wines of Italy.

    Montalcino is 42 km from Siena, 110 km from Florence 110 Km, 150km from Pisa 150 Km and 85 km from Arezzo.

    You should not miss visiting Montalcino town. Not only will you get to see a pretty town on hill, you get to taste and buy the excellent wines at reasonable prices.

    Related to:
    • Road Trip
    • Food and Dining
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons

    Was this review helpful?

  • longsanborn's Profile Photo
    2 more images

    Must see Montepulciano town

    by longsanborn Written Apr 20, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Montepulciano is one of the most attractive hills towns in Tuscany. It is built on a ridge of Monte Poliziano in the province of Sienna in Tuscany. It is the ancient Etruscan city of Nocera Alfaterna. In the Middle Ages, it was under the control of Florence, but was conquered by Sienna in 1260.

    The main street of Montepulciano stretches for 11.5 kilometers from the Porta al Prato to the Piazza Grande at the top of the hill. The beautiful church of the Madonna di San Biagio was planned by Antonio da Sangallo (1518-37).

    Montepulciano is a major producer of food and drink. Wine connoisseurs consider its Vino Nobile among Italy's best. Montepulciano is famous for 2 excellent wines (2 of my favorite red wines) i.e. Vino Nobile di Montepulciano and Rosso di Montepulciano.

    You must not miss visiting Montepulciano. Not only you get to see the fantastic view of Tuscany from its high ridge, you get to taste and buy its excellent wines at very reasonable prices.

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel
    • Road Trip
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons

    Was this review helpful?

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    3 more images

    Corsignano is Way Off the Beaten Path!

    by deecat Updated Apr 19, 2007

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I had made reservations in a Bed and Breakfast called "Casa del Chianti" in Corsignano, and Allan and I had a most difficult time finding the place.

    We finally had to ask some locals for directions. The woman said, "Forget that and stay in our rental; I will take you there just follow me". So, being the adventurpus people that we are, we followed. It was a huge home with four bedrooms, dining room, living room, three bathrooms, and a sunroom as well as a huge balcony and a gigantic patio. It was way out in the country. She was renting it to us for the equivalent of $100.00 per night!! We had to say no because it was too isolated for this late in the afternoon on a Sunday, and we had no food. Plus we already had a reservation.

    We finally found "Casa del Chianti Bed and Breakfast". We were so glad we had waited because it was just lovely. That evening we had a divine dinner next door. But, best of all, we met Lorenzo and Olga and Bob and Dee from San Diego, California. We talked for about two hours and discovered that they were staying in the same place we were. Lorenzo and Olga were professional photographers, and Bob and Dee were in the banking business. It was sad to say good-bye to such interesting people.

    However, one day in Lucca when Allan and I were visiting the church next to our Hotel, who did we run into but Lorenzo and Olga & Bob and Dee. Now that is real Serendipity!

    Related to:
    • Food and Dining

    Was this review helpful?

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    2 more images

    The Boboli Gardens in Florence

    by deecat Updated Apr 19, 2007

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Photos:
    1. Top: gate in Boboli Gardens
    Bottom: Typical flowers in Boboli Gardens

    2. Left: Dee beside gigantic sculpture in Boboli Gardens
    Right: Statue of wrestlers in Boboli Gardens

    3. Top: Pegasus and a gigantic tub with lion face in Boboli Gardens
    Bottom: Sculpture of Father and Son with Large Barrel in Boboli Gardens

    After touring the Palazzo Pitti (Pitti Palace), we needed a break. We saw signs that pointed to The Boboli Gardens. Since I simply adore gardens, Allan was a "good sport" and agreed to go.

    The Boboli Gardens are located behind Palazzo Pitti, between the Belvedere fortress and Porta Romana.

    I was really pleased that we decided to visit these magnificent Italian gardens.

    Now these gardens have been around for a long, long time; since the middle of the 16th Century. Besides the trees, shrubs, flowers, and water, there is a delightful artificial grotto that is composed of many frescoed rooms.

    In addition, there are numerous fountains and statues throughout the gardens. One of the most famous is the first to be seen on the left side as we entered. It's called Fontana del Bacchino (Fountain of the Small Bacchus). Supposedly, it represents Piero Barbino riding a rortoise. Barbino was a dwarf at the court of Cosimo I de' Medici.

    I especially enjoyed Vivaio di Nettuno (Neptune's Pond which is an enormous basin with a statue of the Neptune himself (God of the Sea).

    Piazzale del'Isolotto is a small lake in the gardens with an isle in its center. Rising from the Isle is an extraordinary fountain called Fontana del' Oceano (Ocean Fountain).

    I also liked a gigantic statue of two Greek wrestlers, an elevated Pan with his pipes, and, best of all, I love the huge cracked antique face in the photograph on this page. I don't know what it is called. You can see how big it is. I am standing beside it, and I look like a dwarf!

    Take time in your busy schedule to visit these wonderful Boboli Gardens.

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

  • deecat's Profile Photo

    Monteriggioni: A Tiny Medieval Village

    by deecat Updated Apr 19, 2007

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    On a bright, sunny day, Allan and I drove to the tiny Medieval village called Monteriggioni. This village was built by the Senese at the beginning of the 13th century as a defense against the attacks of the Florentines.

    Today, it is still completely surrounded by 14 towers and intact strong walls.

    We parked our car, along with many others, in a field outside the walls. Then we walked up the hill to the walled city.

    This is, indeed, a tiny village. It has some lovely shops, great bars and restaurants, a pretty Parish in Romanesque-Gothic style, and very friendly residents. We visited several antique shops, and Allan purchased a beautiful pewter candle holder with an attached snuffer.

    We went into a small winery and tasted the local wines, and we bought a dessert made with nuts, chocolate, and candy-like fruit cake which was special to this area. It was delicious.

    Allan took this photo of me outside a small inn.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Wine Tasting
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    4 more images

    Pienza, a Near-Perfect Tuscan Town

    by deecat Updated Apr 19, 2007

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Photos:
    1. Huge Wisteria Vine in Pienza
    2. Dee in front of flowering tree in Pienza
    3. Palazzo Del Comune in Pienza
    4. Countryside around Pienza taken from lookout promenade
    5. Small park in Pienza with mothers and children

    In 2001 we stayed in a lovely little town of Pienza, which sits atop a hill. From that position, the town dominates the Val d' Orcie and the Tresa stream.

    This is the town that Pope Pius II had built. The Duomo is flooded with light from the vast stained-glass windows that Pope Pias requested because he wanted "domus vitrea" (a house of glass) to symbolize the spirit of intellectual enlightment of the Humanist Age.

    It was this same pope who changed the town's name in 1462.

    Next to the Duomo is the Palazzo Piccolomini which was home to Pope Pius II's descendants until the late 1960's. Today, the public can view Pius II's bedroom, the library, an ornate courtyard, and the garden where you can view wooded slopes of the Monte Amiata.

    Allan and I loved this town. It was so orderly, and its urban system is really suitable for a much larger town, due to Pope Pius II again.

    The town has a darling small park where mothers bring their children to play. It's fun to sit and watch the interaction between the children. There is also a great bookstore in town that has quite a few English language novels.

    We experienced perfect weather, excellent food, and a great place to stay. I highly recommend visiting Pienza.

    Related to:
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    3 more images

    Church and Abbey of Sant'Antimo

    by deecat Updated Apr 19, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Photographs:

    1. Close-up of the outside entrance of the Abbey Church of Sant'Antimo

    2. Jesus on the Cross in the Abbey Church of Sant'Antimo

    3. Close-up of the backside of the cross in the Abbey

    5. Inside view of this somber Abbey Church of Sant'Antimo

    After seeing so many ornate, huge churches, it is refreshing to see the Augustinian monks and hear the Gregorian chants at the Abbey and Church of Sant'Antimo.

    It is near Montalcino, out in a tree-clad hillside. Now, this church is ancient, built in 1118. It's built of creamy travertine but without columns, marble, or gold gilding.

    Most people have seen renderings of this structure in art books. Because it is so plain, the pictures do not do it justice. The inside is really simple. It has biblical scenes, several wooden crosses, very tall ceiling, and is dimly lit.

    Related to:
    • Religious Travel
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • hivaoa1's Profile Photo
    2 more images

    Santa Luce

    by hivaoa1 Written Jan 20, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This is a beautiful little village where almost NO TOURISTS pass, close to Rosignano Marittimo and Vada, in the Livorno province.
    I hope it remains as unvisited as now
    The lake of the village is a natural reserve for birds and tickets to visit the reserve are available about 300 metre before the lake, where you park your car.
    tickets 2.60 euros for adults, 1.50 for kids

    Related to:
    • Road Trip
    • Food and Dining
    • Wine Tasting

    Was this review helpful?

  • hivaoa1's Profile Photo
    4 more images

    Santa Luce

    by hivaoa1 Written Jan 20, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This is a beautiful little village where almost NO TOURISTS pass, close to Rosignano Marittimo and Vada, in the Livorno province.
    I hope it remains as unvisited as now
    The lake of the village is a natural reserve for birds and tickets to visit the reserve are available about 300 metre before the lake, where you park your car.
    tickets 2.60 euros for adults, 1.50 for kids

    Related to:
    • Wine Tasting
    • Food and Dining
    • Road Trip

    Was this review helpful?

Tuscany Hotels

See all 2707 Hotels in Tuscany

Top Tuscany Hotels

Florence Hotels
5035 Reviews - 11002 Photos
Pisa Hotels
1419 Reviews - 3977 Photos
Montecatini Terme Hotels
44 Reviews - 96 Photos
Siena Hotels
897 Reviews - 2705 Photos
Marina di Pietrasanta Hotels
29 Reviews - 44 Photos
Lucca Hotels
566 Reviews - 1473 Photos
Forte dei Marmi Hotels
8 Reviews - 25 Photos
Fiesole Hotels
51 Reviews - 148 Photos
Arezzo Hotels
87 Reviews - 242 Photos
Castiglioncello Hotels
29 Reviews - 52 Photos
Montepulciano Hotels
90 Reviews - 264 Photos
Livorno Hotels
162 Reviews - 515 Photos
San Gimignano Hotels
405 Reviews - 1247 Photos
Chianciano Terme Hotels
5 Reviews
Volterra Hotels
192 Reviews - 473 Photos

Instant Answers: Tuscany

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

71 travelers online now

Comments (1)

  • Karinef's Profile Photo
    Oct 4, 2013 at 10:17 PM

    Hi! There's a links problem on this page. Anywhere you click go to the same place. Just want you to know.

    • Trekki's Profile Photo
      Oct 5, 2013 at 10:59 AM

      Yes. But I am already dark blue and not really willing to get darker blue from talking with walls :-)

    • leics's Profile Photo
      Oct 5, 2013 at 11:08 AM

      Me neither.

Tuscany Off The Beaten Path

Reviews and photos of Tuscany off the beaten path posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Tuscany sightseeing.
Map of Tuscany