Day 1 - UK/Pisa
Depart on your scheduled flight to Pisa, transferring to your hotel in the peaceful spa town of Montecatini Terme, your base for the next seven nights.
Day 2 - Pisa
The Leaning Tower of Pisa took 176 years to complete and began to lean shortly after construction. View this famous structure on today’s included excursion. You’ll also see the Duomo, the Baptistry and the Monumental Cemetery, which sit alongside it in the Field of Miracles.
After free time for lunch your tour continues to Vinci, the birthplace of Leonardo da Vinci, whose most famous works, including ‘The Last Supper’ and ‘Mona Lisa’, have influenced artists for centuries and secured his place as a leading light of the Italian Renaissance. Explore the museum here in the company of a Local Guide.
Day 3 - San Gimignano and Monteriggioni
Enjoy a day at leisure or why not step back in time on our optional excursion, which starts in the charming medieval hilltop town of San Gimignano. One of the loveliest towns in Tuscany, it is also known as the ‘town of beautiful towers’ due to the vast numbers that were built here by feuding families as status symbols in medieval times.
In the afternoon you’ll visit the Abbey of Badia a Isola, built in the 11th century, then head to Monteriggioni, a town surrounded by an almost intact medieval wall. Soak up the atmosphere as you explore in the company of a Local Guide dressed in traditional medieval costume and visit the Museum of Medieval Armours and Weapons, where you can handle some of the weaponry and try on armour. Take a walk along the castle walls and finish your day in a restaurant where a four course medieval meal will be served.
Day 4 - Chianti
Today we include a tour of picturesque Greve in Chianti, gateway to the famous Chianti wine region. Explore the town’s main square, Piazza Matteotti, and admire the statue of Giovanni da Verrazzano. The explorer, who discovered Hudson Bay in New York, was born near here, and after free time for lunch, you’ll head to his former family home, Castello di Verrazzano. Now a winery, you’ll visit its ancient wine cellars and enjoy a tasting of chianti on the terrace overlooking the beautiful Tuscan countryside.
Day 5 - Florence
You may choose to join today’s full-day optional excursion to Florence - Italy’s ‘Art City’. In the company of a knowledgeable Local Guide you will explore on foot, taking a stroll across the Ponte Vecchio, which is lined with jewellery shops, before admiring the magnificent Duomo and the beautiful gothic Santa Croce church. As well as often being referred to as one of the most beautiful cities in the world and named a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it’s a great place to indulge in a spot of shopping.
To ensure your return to this delightful city, rub the nose of ‘Il Porcellino’, the bronze boar in Mercato Nuovo and throw a few coins into the grating at his feet.
Day 6 - Volterra
Join your Tour Manager on our included excursion to the walled medieval town of Volterra today. Here, you’ll visit the Etruscan Museum, which houses a large collection of historic artefacts, and see a craftsman at work hand-carving alabaster. This soft translucent stone has been found in this region for centuries. During free time you can also watch gold jewellery and bronze items being hand-crafted.
Day 7 - Tuscan hilltop villages
Today is free for you to spend at leisure, perhaps visit Terme di Montecatini and treat yourself to a spa treatment, or take the cable car up to the hilltop medieval village of Montecatini Alto for unmissable views.
Alternatively, join our optional excursion, which starts in Montalcino, a beautiful hilltop town which takes its name from a variety of oak tree that once covered the area. It is famous for the locally produced Brunello di Montalcino wine, made primarily from the Sangiovese grape variety and then aged for at least five years, two of which must take place in oak barrels.
You’ll continue to Siena, whose medieval town centre is one of the most perfectly preserved in Europe. You’ll also see the spectacular fan-shaped Piazza del Campo, which is the setting for the exciting and colourful Palio horse race. You’ll finish your tour in lovely Bagno Vignoni, a tiny village clustered around a Renaissance spa.
Day 8 - Pisa/UK
Today you’ll transfer to Pisa where you will take your flight back to the UK.
Please note - This holiday includes walking in areas of rough ground, gradients and steps.