Tuscany is the classic image of Italy, explore one of the world’s most beautiful regions, full of rolling hills dotted with cypresses, fields of olive trees, sprawling vineyards, medieval castles and a stunning coastline that spans almost 25 kms. Tuscany boasts an abundance of pleasures such as world-class food and premium wines, prized truffles, and majestic medieval cities that are waiting to be explored. Discover the treasures of Tuscany and experience the enchanting history of this unique land. Below we explore 10 of the best private experiences in Tuscany.
1. Sample some local Tuscan wines
The Chianti region is one of the most beautiful and famous areas in Tuscany; miles of vineyards alluringly dot the hills. Between Florence and Siena you will find many farms, wineries and wine cellars that proudly offer their products. Greve in the Chianti offers several excellent wine bars and shops where you can taste and purchase wines. A perfect day exploring the many wine regions of Tuscany with family and friends, and a private chauffeur and guide is one of the best ways to unwind and have fun day out. Opening the door to the best historic vineyards producing world-class wines with a blend of Sangiovese, Canaiolo, and other varieties of grapes by producers that respect Italian traditions and the environment.
The Chianti region is best known for Chianti Classico wine, one of the most renowned wines in the world, characterized by an unmistakable Black Rooster. This region produces world class wines with earthy tones and a smooth finish. Visit the ancient cellars and hear the stories behind many legendary labels such as Marchesi Antinori, 26 generations strong this family have been committed to winemaking for over six centuries.
Head further south in Tuscany and dedicate a day to the great wines of the Val d’Orcia and discover the wine that has been praised for centuries by popes and royalty alike due to its elegance and noble structure. Visit the best producers of Nobile di Montepulciano or treat your taste buds to Brunello di Montalcino, arguably one of the most appreciated wines in Italy.
Tuscany is a land of panoramic vistas, the Tuscan way is to dine on fresh produce from the land and sip on local great wines of the region. During your day out, treat yourself to local cuisine in a family trattoria, medieval castle, or step up a level to experience one of the finest Michelin Star restaurants in Italy, this is the true Tuscan way.
2. Truffle Hunting in the woods
Tuscany is a treasure trove for prized truffles. Walking deep into the forest accompanied by a legend of the land and his truffle-hunting dog is a once in a lifetime experience. The most intricate secrets of truffles will be revealed along with the biological cycles and learning how to train a dog to hunt for these delicacies.
The Truffle is an underground mushroom. Each season corresponds a unique type of truffle with different flavours, aromas and their own unique uses in the kitchen. In Tuscany they are proud producers of three different types of Truffles that can be found during the following months:
- Marzolino/Marzuolo: Found from January to April
- Scorzone/Black: Found from May to July
- The rarest of these delicacies is the White Truffle which can be found between September and December.
Discover these gourmet gifts of nature on your own private Truffle hunt followed by an exclusive cooking class and lunch, dining on the delightful meal with the truffles that you have just uncovered.
3. Bespoke Supercar Tours through the rolling hills
A world of high-adrenaline, power, grace and pure excitement, imagine travelling deep into the Tuscan countryside behind the wheel of the latest Ferrari or Lamborghini. Tuscany is certainly one of the most beautiful regions in the world and to explore it driving one of the latest supercars will transform your visit to this region into a once in a lifetime experience.
Starting from a single day of freedom with your GPS, to an all-inclusive private guided tenday luxury journey, custom designed especially for you. Visit ancient family castles, majestic gardens, old Tuscan vineyards, cellars, olive groves and medieval villages. Almost any supercar can be made available on request; this is for those who want to experience an impeccable and extraordinary adventure.
4. Enchanting Medieval Towns Siena and San Gimignano
It’s impossible to visit Tuscany without a visit to the UNESCO listed historical town of Siena with its magnificent Duomo and Piazza del Campo, where every year the famous Palio horse race takes place on July 2nd and a second time on August 16th. The Palio is an opportunity for the Sienese “contrade” which are the areas in which the city is divided, go head to head with each other in a spirited horse race in the heart of the city in Piazza del Campo.
Siena is a maze of captivating cobblestone alleyways, explore the city both on and off the beaten track and feel the history come alive through the stories by your experienced guide. Discover the tower in Siena, Torre del Mangia for an eerie glimpse of life as a medieval bell ringer and climb up to experience breathtaking scenes of Tuscany.
The Duomo in Siena is a grand Gothic building dedicated to the Assumption of Mary and filled with masterpieces by Michelangelo, Donatello and original frescoes by Pinturicchio. The mosaics in the Piccolomini Library of the Cathedral of Siena are spectacular. After a delicious Tuscan lunch at a local trattoria or somewhere more elegant, take the scenic road to San Gimignano, this small hilltop medieval village is encircled by 13th-century walls. This old town centers on Piazza della Cisterna, a triangular square lined with medieval houses.
Recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1990, San Gimignano offers visitors the chance to step back in time while enjoying its many local products. Take a leisurely walk through the small streets browsing the shops and indulging on a gelato. The must see sights are the Palazzo Comunale, Pinacoteca and Torre Grossa, the tallest tower in the city that offers 360 degree views.
5. Classic Day Trips to Lucca and Pisa
Embrace the history and traditions of two ancient Tuscan cities that are close in proximity, yet very different in personality. A charming Tuscan landscape will be the frame to your day, spent relaxingly with family and friends in the comfort of your air-conditioned Mercedes vehicle. Heading North through the countryside you will reach the charming medieval walled town of Lucca, one of the most adored towns in Tuscany.
The city’s greatest monuments clearly show its ancient history, the top of the city wall that surrounds this old town has become a pedestrian promenade where you can enjoy the views on foot or hire a bicycle. Stroll the streets with a gelato in hand, visit San Paolino Street, Puccini’s birthplace, the dazzling church of San Michele with its wedding-cake façade and the imposing Piazza Napoleone.
Nearby you can find Piazza del Giglio where sits the Romanesque cathedral housing the famous Volto Santo, and a wooden crucifix supposedly made on the night Jesus died. Walk along the most affluent shopping street in town flanked by stunning medieval buildings and towers and complete your visit in Piazza dell’ Anfiteatro, nowadays one the most picturesque squares in Tuscany. Following a typical lunch in local trattoria proceed towards Pisa to discover important squares and monuments and visit Piazza dei Miracoli to climb its Leaning Tower, a worldwide symbol.
6. Learn the Art of Traditional Tuscan Cooking
Live an authentic hand-on experience and learn how to cook during a rustic cooking lesson in a professional kitchen, or visit an ancient historic Tuscan villa to explore old traditions. Start your day with a visit to a local fresh food market with your chef, sample smooth Italian wines, delicious bruschetta, organic food from the land and some of Italy’s best cold pressed olive oils among the picturesque vineyards in Tuscany.
A ‘hands-on’ experience teaches us to celebrate the distinctive flavours as they arrive fresh from the fields. Learn the secrets behind a real Tuscan meal, enjoy the aroma of Italian bread baking in traditional stone ovens, and meals enjoyed in the true traditional way. This is a very fun activity for couples, families with kids, or for professionals wanting to encourage corporate team building.
7. Discover Florence and the Chianti by Bike
Enjoy a change of pace and scenery and see the real Tuscany by bike. Feel a cool breeze in your hair, breathe in the fresh air, and relax as you cycle around the peaceful countryside with a licensed private guide. Ride through charming vineyards, visit villas and olive groves on two wheels and take in the scenery before sitting down to a delicious lunch and lavish tasting of Chianti Classico wines and extra virgin Olive Oil. If your preference is a fun tour peddling through Florence on vintage bikes, the hidden gems of the Renaissance will be explored; cruise along the Arno River before turning offer to uncover Palazzo Pitti, the Ponte Vecchio, the Uffizi Galleries, Piazza della Signoria, the medieval district, Santa Maria Novella, the Duomo and many other fascinating sites. Taste a refreshing gelato along way, this is an experience ideal for all ages.
8. The Italian Job
Drive a Classic Fiat 500 through the Tuscan countryside Enchanted by the rolling hills framed by cypress trees and enriched by vineyards and olive groves, drive a completely and meticulously restored Fiat 500 from the 70’s. Stop to take pictures, buy souvenirs and taste Tuscan delicacies along the way. Visit charming medieval villages and enjoy the spectacular views of the gentle rolling countryside. Receive an orientation on the basic Italian street rules and how to perfectly drive your classic FIAT 500 car with its manual gearshift. This is a drive across the roads and villages of the most beautiful hidden corners of Tuscany.
9. Gourmet Tuscany by Helicopter
View Tuscany from a new perspective, board your private helicopter and fly over breathtaking landscapes, an extraordinary way to see Tuscany, in complete comfort and style. An experience many only dream of, bespoke gourmet tours made up of evocative views, visits to the best wineries, tastings of fine wines, explore ancient cellars and dine on typical regional delights. Have the chance to walk the streets of many towns, far and wide through the hills, visit the Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino, Montepulciano, San Gimignano and many more ancient villages.
10. The Jewel of Tuscany
Renaissance Florence is the capital of Tuscany and home to the Medici dynasty; the historic centre of this world famous city was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1982. The greatest art patrons of their time and creators of the Renaissance have made this city what it is today. Step inside one of the oldest and most famous art museums in the world, the Uffizi gallery to explore works by genius artists such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Brunelleschi, Donatello, Dante and Galileo.
Visit the Medici Chapels and the Accademia gallery to view Michelangelo’s famous symbol of the Renaissance, The David, stroll along the Arno River or hop on board a vintage Barchetto, the Florence gondola-style traditional boat for a mini cruise along the river. Learn about the magnificence of the Florence cathedral and see the rooftops of the city from an incredible point of view with an exclusive tour on the Duomo terraces.
Florence offers world-class shopping, the most important and internationally known “Made in Italy” luxury labels such as Gucci, Versace, Fendi, Giorgio Armani, Prada and many more can be found in Florence along with wonderful local artisans that can be explored in depth with a qualified personal stylist. With an intimate look at the palaces, churches, gardens, galleries and a walk through the narrow cobblestone streets of this open-air museum, you will fall in love with Florence.