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Explore Tuscany: Day Trips from Florence
Jan 11 , 2011
Spend some time to get to know Tuscany. Plan day trips from Florence and add these beautiful views, delicious wines, and relaxing beaches to your itinerary.
Though it may seem that there’s no end to what can be done in Florence itself, no visit to Florence would be complete without exploring the surrounding area. Take a few day trips from Florence to explore more of Tuscany, which is well known for its countryside beauty, Tuscan wines, and beautiful historic cities. If you’re looking to get away from the Florence hotels and less idyllic Florence traffic, day trips from Florence are not hard to find and provide a perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of the city.
To start, visiting some of the nearby cities will provide some of the quintessential Italian experiences. Pisa, about an hour and a half’s drive from visitors’ Florence hotels, is a must-see. While visiting Pisa, of course make sure to visit the city’s famed campanile, or bell tower. Not just any bell tower, Pisa is better known by its signature lean. The Leaning Tower of Pisa is on the site of the no less-impressive, however more upright, Duomo of Pisa. Also in the Piazza del Duomo is the Baptistry of St. John, an impressive structure which took over 200 years to complete.
The fun in Tuscany hardly stops with architecture. The region is one of the most famous wine-making parts of the world and wine tasting day trips can easily be organized. With twenty-nine Denominazione di origine controllata and seven Denominazioni di Origine Controllata e Garantit, the designations of wine-growing regions in Italy, it can get a bit confusing to keep track of everywhere to go to try wines. However, the essential names are simply recognized. Chianti, Montepulciano, and Montalcino are all in Tuscany and accessible from Florence and more than worth the trip. Florence hotels will carry information on wine tasting day trips. Then, while enjoying the beauty of the countryside, sip on the legendary reds and lesser-known, but no less delicious, whites of Tuscan vineyards.
Wine and cities are great, but catching some sun on the beach is a must-do, too, and Tuscany has some of the most gorgeous beaches in Italy, offering the full load of Mediterranean seaside relaxation. You don’t want to miss out on these during your day trips from Florence. If you feel like you are spending too much time inside museums and Florence hotels, these beaches provide the perfect getaway. Spend a day on the wide beaches of Forte dei Marmi, the location used for the beach scenes in “The English Patient,” or Viareggio, once the winter home of the Czars. Many of the beach towns in Tuscany also offer a fine nightlife, lovely boutiques, and crafts unique to port cities. Looking to get out on the water? Travel to Baratti and you’ll find the perfect place to rent a boat and enjoy the calm waters of their pristine gulf. All of these towns and beaches are very family-oriented and a great place to bring children.
Tuscany offers a wide range of choices, experiences, sights, sounds, and tastes, all of which can’t be experienced in one trip. Many who visit once feel it necessary to go again and again to truly explore Florence and the surrounding area in depth. While it’ll be more than easy for you to spend your whole trip in Florence, make sure you schedule in a day trip from Florence to explore Tuscany.