Tuscany, with its rolling hills, iconic cypress trees, and sun-kissed vineyards, is an emblem of Italy. While many travelers rush to its well-known cities like Florence, Pisa, and Siena, there’s so much more waiting to be discovered. If you’re the kind of adventurer who loves to tread where few have been before, this guide is for you. Dive deep into Tuscany’s lesser-known wonders and let’s uncover its seven hidden gems.
Nestled in the heart of Maremma, Montemerano is a picturesque medieval hamlet that seems untouched by time. Its cobblestone streets and charming squares provide a serene backdrop. The Church of San Giorgio houses some of the region’s most remarkable frescoes. With its tranquil ambiance and captivating beauty, Montemerano is a haven for those seeking a genuine Tuscan experience.
Bagni di Lucca
Once a favored destination for European nobility, Bagni di Lucca is renowned for its thermal spas. Located amid the Apennine mountains, the town offers an enchanting mix of natural beauty and historical charm. Soak in its thermal waters and let your worries melt away. Don’t forget to visit the ornate casino – it’s one of Europe’s oldest!
A veritable Etruscan treasure, Sovana will transport you back millennia. Explore its mysterious Vie Cave – ancient pathways carved into the tufa rock. The town’s cathedral, with its unique architecture, stands as a testament to Sovana’s rich history. Discover the nearby Etruscan tombs and immerse yourself in a past that’s still very much alive.
Away from bustling towns, in the heart of the Orcia Valley, sits the Sant’Antimo Abbey. This Romanesque structure, built from alabaster and travertine, emanates an ethereal beauty. Time your visit with the Gregorian chants of the monks for an otherworldly experience.
Often dubbed as ‘Little Athens’, Capalbio is a jewel of the Maremma coast. Its well-preserved walls offer panoramic views of the Tyrrhenian Sea. After exploring its historic core, head to the enchanting Tarot Garden. Here, sculptures inspired by tarot cards rise amidst the lush greenery, creating a surreal landscape.
Overlooking the Casentino Valley, Poppi and its majestic castle promise tales of knights and medieval splendor. The town boasts of one of Tuscany’s best-preserved castles. Inside, you’ll find a rare manuscript library and captivating frescoes. The vistas from the castle walls are nothing short of breathtaking.
Tuscany is a land rich in history, culture, and beauty. While its celebrated cities will always draw crowds, its lesser-known spots offer a unique and enriching experience. By exploring these hidden gems, you’re not just witnessing history; you’re becoming a part of it.
As you embark on this journey, remember that the beauty of Tuscany doesn’t just lie in its landmarks. It’s in the smiles of the locals, the taste of its wines, the scent of its olive groves, and the sound of its stories whispered by the wind. Dive deep, venture beyond, and let Tuscany reveal its heart to you.