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The rolling hills of Tuscany are a popular Italian destination. With its historic hill-top towns, olive groves and Cyprus tree-lined fields full of sunflowers it’s not hard to see why! The spa town of Montecatini, surrounded by gorgeous Tuscan countryside, is an elegant and ideally located base from which to explore this fascinating region. Include a trip to the south of Tuscany to experience the magical, medieval UNESCO World Heritage Site of San Gimignano.
Inghams Italy recommends:
Where to stay? The Grand Hotel Francia & Quirinale, 4* Plus
One of the grand hotels of Montecatini, the elegant Francia & Quirinale has been run by the same family for four generations. The sophisticated surroundings are complimented by attentive service and excellent cuisine.
What to do?
The grand avenues of Montecatini are lined with pavement cafés, shops and restaurants. Wandering these sophisticated streets on your arrival is an excellent way to experience this refined and cultured city.
Once you have your bearings in the city, head out of town on the funicular to the hill-top village of Montecatini Alto for stunning views across the Tuscan plains. With excellent rail links, Montecatini is an ideal base for exploring the rich cultural centres of Pisa, Florence and Lucca.
Spending time in the luxurious thermal baths is a must for any visitor to Montecatini. The health benefits of Montecatini’s waters has been recognised for 600 years, and the 18th Century Tettuccio spa is a luxurious setting in which to relax and recuperate.
San Gimignano, 4-nights
Where to stay? The Hotel Relais Santa Chiara, 4*
This stylish hotel, a short distance from the town walls of San Gimignano has a stunning outlook onto the rolling Tuscan countryside. In good weather you can take your breakfast on the hotel terrace – also an excellent place to enjoy a glass of wine!
What to do?
You can admire San Gimignano from a distance. The tall tower houses built by the wealthy in mediaeval times impress today as much as they must have in the past. Up close the mediaeval architecture and beautiful piazzas are even more incredible. The UNESCO World Heritage status is more than justified.
The town is also renowned for its white wine, Vernaccia di San Gimignano, which is produced in the surrounding vineyards. Taking the time to explore the glorious countryside is a rewarding experience – especially when combined with a spot of wine tasting!
Nearby Siena is easily accessed from San Gimignano. This ancient town is abundant with history and tradition, most notably the Palio horse race which takes place twice a year in the mediaeval centre. Contestants are resplendent in traditional costume and colourful flags. It’s a magnificent spectacle.
How to get around?
We strongly recommend hiring a car and travelling across Tuscany at your own pace. You’ll have the freedom, not only to discover your own scenic route between your two hotels, but can also explore the wider Tuscan countryside at your leisure.
We tailor our Inghams Italy multi-centre itineraries to suit you. If what you’ve seen here appeals to you but you want to try something a bit different please call one of our personal Travel Consultants on 01483 345 707.
We can create an Italian holiday that is personal to you.