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travel

THINGS TO DO

Never-ending renaissance along the Etruscan Coast

“It’s the place with the beaded curtain,” replied the local teenager, as he tucked into the elusive Livorno-style baguette we were trying to track down. Our appetite had been piqued ...

THINGS TO DO

A summer staycation in Florence

Your original summer plans may have been cast aside, but never fear; there’s a great summer stretching out in front of you. If you are lucky enough to be staycationing ...

THINGS TO DO

Finding Machiavelli in Sant’Andrea in Percussina

In Florence, city of pilgrimages, it can be hard to find Niccolò Machiavelli.   The house in via de’ Guicciardini, where he lived from his birth in 1469 to his ...

THINGS TO DO

Balena Baths in Viareggio

Locals have called it “la Passeggiata”, or the promenade, since 1902 when it was inaugurated in Viareggio, the seaside town called the “pearl of Versilia” in the province of Lucca. ...

THINGS TO DO

Forest bathing on Monte Amiata

“Our hotel’s opposite the ski lift, I’ll meet you there,” wrote hotelier and tour operator Franz, in a WhatsApp exchange. Off I set, two hours south of Florence, climbing up ...

FOOD + WINE

My modern Decameron at the Ruffino Agriresort

“Don’t make me leave,” she said. “I wouldn’t dream of it,” he replied, stretching out on the sun lounger at just the right angle to gaze over the greenest of ...

FOOD + WINE

Salvatore Ferragamo on wine

The Florentine‘s Helen Farrell speaks with Salvatore Ferragamo, CEO of Il Borro Relais & Chateaux and organic winery in Tuscany, and Vittoria Ferragamo, head of special projects at Il Borro, ...

THINGS TO DO

The spas of southern Tuscany

The sun was shining as I set off for southern Tuscany, destination Saturnia. It feels like an odyssey from Florence, pacing down towards Siena, continuing to Grosseto and slowing down ...

THINGS TO DO

Spa sublimity in the Siena countryside

It was a bitterly cold January day as we sought solace at the spas sprinkled throughout the Siena countryside. The clue’s in the name: look for a terme (Italian for ...

ART + CULTURE

Soul of the city: the Cassettai

They are in the city’s piazzas every day of the year, but you might have thought they were just ubiquitous tourist booths, selling the usual souvenirs. The Cassettai Storici Fiorentini ...

THINGS TO DO

Land and water in the Mugello

An absence of big cities and an abundance of green seems to generate a hush over the whole area of the Mugello, an area of Tuscany located northeast of Florence. ...

THINGS TO DO

Friends at Sea

  A sea of Italian beachgoers sunbathed along the Garagolo bay in late September. Beside them sat a group of five young surfers, longboards in hand, watching the lifeless water ...

THINGS TO DO

Harvest and more in Seggiano

September is a sublime month to visit Castello di Potentino, and unusually there’s a taste of Southern Spain in the offing.     Featuring thought-provoking photography by Roberto Benzi, Paolo ...

THINGS TO DO

Castello Del Nero reopens under new ownership

COMO Castello Del Nero, Tuscany, is an exceptional 740-acre, historic estate in Chianti, 30 minutes from Florence and Siena. A 12th-century castle stands at the heart of the property, which ...

THINGS TO DO

Residing at the castle: Artist residencies at Castello di Potentino

“I could write a book here,” was my hankering on walking up the worn medieval steps to the tapestry-lined Baron’s Room at Potentino Castle. Wall hangings aside, the view through ...

THINGS TO DO

Chianti: gravel paradise

In Chianti, cycling equals gravel because of the ubiquitous dirt tracks. L’Eroica, the best-known historic cycling event in the world, has made pedalling through verdant vineyards a must for bikers. ...

THINGS TO DO

Val di Cecina: silence, history and earthly phenomena

It’s a Saturday morning when we set off from our hotel in Volterra. As we wander through the city’s cobblestoned streets, we find ourselves in the beautiful piazza dei Priori ...

THINGS TO DO

Ticketing tussles over Saturnia springs

For decades, Maremma in southern Tuscany wasn’t on most tourists’ radars. Like so much of the countryside, it attracted a few in-the-know Italian tourists and some intrepid Germans looking for ...

THINGS TO DO

Activities in Amiata

Winemaker Charlotte Horton and her brother Alexander Greene invite locals and internationals to Castello di Potentino to exhibit and entertain guests in a medley of events and residential workshops.

THINGS TO DO

Coastal cycling from Bolgheri to Baratti

The sea breeze rustles the pink and white rhododendrons as we mount our e-bikes to explore the Etruscan Coast. Our point of departure is where the viale dei Cipressi meets ...

THINGS TO DO

Exploring Pratomagno and the Casentino

Silence and adrenaline: these two words aren’t often found in the same sentence, but this is exactly what awaits you in the wild woods of the Casentino and the steep ...

THINGS TO DO

Lunigiana: the land of a thousand castles

Explore an authentic land at leisure: this is the recommended approach to admire the abundant riches that the Lunigiana has to offer. The northernmost patch in Tuscany, the area borders with ...

THINGS TO DO

Adventure sports in the Pisa area

If you’re looking for a miniature Tuscany, the Pisa area is a find. Drawing an imaginary circle with a 50-kilometre radius (which translates to a half-hour drive) with Pisa at ...

THINGS TO DO

Diving into Doganaccia and Abetone

Tuscany is a veritable winter wonderland during the colder months. The Christmas lights, the nativity scenes dotting the region’s myriad medieval villages, the snow-capped mountains calling sports lovers to take ...

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