To many people it may seem like a silly question, but to others it is perhaps something that has crossed their minds on more than one occasion when planning their next holiday or road trip: with so many other – and cheaper –places in the world boasting cultural and artistic riches, charming towns and beautiful countryside, why visit Tuscany?
For lovers of Western art, culture and history, the answer is straightforward: there’s simply no other region which boasts such significant and abundant Western cultural riches as Tuscany.But there’s more to it than that: villas for rent in Tuscany are available for those seeking a peaceful and relaxing break in warm and opulent surroundings, and many people are surprised to learn that plenty of options exist for individuals simply seeking to enjoy the pleasant climate, food and wine of the region on a budget.
Whatever your interests and whatever your particular preferences for your next trip, the vibrancy and diversity of the region and the huge range of options for leisure and recreation that are available mean that Tuscany is a perfect place to choose. Below are five of the very best reasons to consider choosing Tuscany to be the location of your next adventure.
Art and Culture
It makes sense to start with the obvious: Tuscany is a paradise for people who like to absorb the culture of a place. With world-famous art and iconic architecture to be found at almost every turn in the city centres of some of the region’s most historic settlements, Tuscany is a place where cultural experiences don’t have to be sought out – but rathercome as standard when you walk through the streets of its towns.
As a region that has been home to such towering artistic and cultural figures as Leonardo da Vinci, Dante Alighieri and Michelangelo, it stands to reason that Tuscany should be full of opportunities to experience the richness of Italian culture and history. Many people dream of visiting the region simply in order to take a personal pilgrimage, walking the streets that some of the brightest and most significant minds in Western history walked – and seeing the architecture and sights that formed part of the backdrop of their lives, and which many of them helped to design.
Food and Drink
The thought of Italy to many people conjures images of one thing: food. Each region has its own specialities, and the local Tuscan people are as proud of theirs as any people in Italy.
But, as is the case elsewhere in the country, all the internationally renowned Italian classics are readily available in ristorantes and pizzerias throughout the region. New visitors to Italy may be surprised to discover that some of their favourite Italian dishes are prepared quite differently in their country of origin from how they’re usually prepared elsewhere: be prepared for a rich, meaty Bolognese without fresh tomatoes or garlic, and carbonara without garlic or cream – but be prepared also to have your mind blown by the subtle contrasts of flavours and well balanced textures that make traditional Italian cuisine so delicious and indulgent!
Charming Towns and Villages
There are picturesque towns and villages across Italy, but there’s a reason for Tuscany’s reputation for particularly outstanding architecture and street life. From bustling piazzas and winding cobbled streets that teem with energy and life to sleepy rural villages surrounded by ancient farmlands and vineyards that stretch far into the rolling hills, Tuscany offers travellers a glimpse into the Italy of their imaginations: warm and laid-back, friendly and authentic, abounding in both natural and manmade beauty.
The many smaller towns and villages are the perfect place to experience the authentic Italian dolce vita, and to capture photographs of achingly beautiful buildings, streets and piazzas that are well and truly off the standard Italian tourist trail.
With so much attention given to Tuscany’s iconic towns and the world famous art and architecture that they are home to, it can be all too easy to forget the beautiful rolling hills that they’re nestled between. This ancient landscape isdotted with picturesque orchards and vineyards that wouldn’t look out of place on the front of a postcard, and hikers and casual walkers alike can enjoy the stunning views while traversing the historic roads that were used in ancient times by those travelling to and from Rome.
Needless to say, the climate in this part of the world is quite exceptional. Generally fair and mild all year round, Tuscany is a place that can be enjoyed in any month; but with warm, dry, Mediterranean summers, many people prefer to visit in this season.
For those looking to enjoy leisurely strolls in the countryside or through the winding cobbled alleys of the villages and towns, the summer is a great time to visit. Needless to say, it is also a great time for those who simply want to sit by the pool and relax.
For those with more hectic itineraries who are keen to experience as many of the cultural and artistic locations as possible, the spring and autumn seasons are slightly cooler and therefore may be preferable.