The Best Honeymoon Spots in Tuscany
In the realm of romantic destinations, Italy tops the list. Think of gondola rides in Venice, outdoor dinners in Rome, and sunset cruises in Capri. But if there is one place in the country that outshines them all, it’s Tuscany.
Located in west-central Italy, Tuscany lies along the Tyrrhenian and Ligurian seas and spans 8,900 square miles. The region has all the makings of a perfect honeymoon destination – from its alluring landscapes to its artistic legacy and awe-inspiring landmarks.
A honeymoon in Tuscany is truly a magical experience, as honeymoons should be. Here, your options are varied and limitless. There are hot-air balloon rides over the gorgeous countryside for adventurous newlyweds or horseback riding through lush vineyards for outdoorsy couples.
History and art lovers can get their fix of world-renowned masterpieces and impressive architecture in the cultural cities of Florence, Pisa and Siena. But if you feel like escaping the bustling metropolitan, you can conveniently find solace in adorable, sleepy towns, most of which date back to Medieval times.
A Tuscany honeymoon is never complete without delectable food and excellent wine. If honeymoon ideas include splurging in gastronomical delights, you are in luck. The region is not only well-known for its world-class blends but also for its luxurious wine tours. The cuisine is superb, and any dining experience is extraordinary, whether you’re indulging in a romantic dinner or eating in a small, nondescript café in an old village.
With the region’s beautiful weather, you can have a romantic honeymoon in Tuscany almost any time of the year. Spring is best for hiking and cycling, summer for lounging on the beach, fall for truffle hunting, and winter for exploring indoor attractions.
If you want a private, more intimate getaway without the onslaught of tourists, try scheduling your holiday in April or October. But where to stay in Tuscany for a honeymoon? Read on to take a look at the most romantic destinations in this region.
Where to Stay on a Tuscany Honeymoon
Honeymoon or not, no one skips Florence on their Tuscan holiday. The vibrant capital city has everything you could ask for – striking architecture, spectacular art, storied history and sumptuous cuisine.
Known as the Cradle of the Renaissance, Florence is a hub of high culture. The city is located in the central part of Tuscany, making it an ideal base for your honeymoon or, if you prefer, the starting point for your romantic escapade.
Start your adventure with a city tour on a horse-drawn carriage. Head to Piazzale Michelangelo to take in the incredible view of the city skyline. Cruise along the Arno River aboard a traditional barchetto and watch the stunning scenery pass you by while you sip a glass of prosecco.
Have a relaxing walk through the manicured lawns of the Boboli Gardens, then drop by the majestic Pitti Palace for its art and architecture. Watch the sunset from the old stone bridge Ponte Santa Trinita, marvel at the beauty of Ponte Vecchio when it lights up at night. For a quiet but delightful dinner, go to the lovely neighbourhood of Santa Croce.
Alternatively, escape the crowd and head to Fiesole, a charming town three miles from the city. The affluent neighborhood sits on top of a hill overlooking Florence and is famous for its elegant villas, formal gardens, and ancient ruins.
An air of romanticism and mystery permeates the atmosphere of Volterra. So much so that it is has inspired literature and popular culture, from Rudyard Kipling’s ’Puck of Pook’s Hill’ to Stephanie Meyer’s ’Twilight Saga’.
Perched on top of a rugged hill southwest of Florence, Volterra is rich in Etruscan and medieval art and history. A key feature is the 7km wall that was built between the 4th and 3rd centuries BC and still surrounds the town.
Volterra’s most famous ruins include the Etruscan Acropolis and the Roman Theatre complex. The Guarnacci Etrurian Museum features a precious collection of Etruscan art, including hundreds of funeral urns. But nothing rivals the town’s central attraction; the Palazzo dei Priori with its medieval frescoes and soaring bell tower.
The best way to explore Volterra is on foot, so be sure to book a walking tour. Visit the elegant Palazzo Viti and admire its collection of vintage furniture, porcelains, and pieces of Italian, European, and Oriental artworks.
Next, marvel at the ornate architecture of the Duomo, with its gilded ceiling and Romanesque columns. Climb the clock tower of the Palazzo dei Priori, explore the Medici Fortress and its park, and sample fresh truffles at the Boutique del Tartufo.
Siena is located about 48 kilometers south of Florence. It is arguably Tuscany’s prettiest medieval city.
Inside the city’s 1000-year-old wall is a striking mishmash of structures that date back to the Middle Ages, including a cluster of old brick buildings, stunning palaces, a colossal tower, and a magnificent gothic cathedral. In the city centre is the shell-shaped Piazza del Campo. It is here that the famous horse race, Corsa del Palio, takes place twice a year.
Apart from its distinct medieval cityscape, Siena is also known for its art, museums, cuisine, and Chianti wines.
Start your tour of Siena from the Piazza del Campo, where you’ll find the immense Palazzo Pubblico and the beautiful Fountain of Gaia. If you dare, climb up the 102-metre Torre del Mangia for a breathtaking panorama of the city.
Head to the Siena Cathedral and marvel at its impressive façade before going inside to admire its mosaic flooring and works of art. Discover Sienese artworks at the Santa Maria della Scala, then explore Palazzo Salimbeni.
Be sure to sample a hearty dinner of pici pasta and grilled meat or fish in a traditional osteria before enjoying some drinks and jazz music at one of the intimate city bars.
Known as the city of a hundred churches, Lucca is one of Italy’s Città d’arte. True to its title, this breathtaking metropolitan boasts well-preserved Renaissance walls surrounding a historic city center teeming with medieval buildings, monuments, and 100 churches.
Lucca lies at the foot of the Apuan Alps, in the valley of the Serchio River. If you’ve had your fill of Italian hilltop towns and cities, Lucca offers a refreshing change.
Take a romantic stroll on the top of the massive 16th-century ramparts that encircle the city. Discover lovely flora at the Communal Botanical Gardens of Lucca, climb up the Torre delle Ore for a bird’s eye view of the city, relax at the rooftop garden of Torre Guinigi, ramble around Piazza Napoleone, and learn about the great composer Giacomo Puccini at Casa di Puccini.
At the end of the day, head to Piazza Dell Anfiteatro for an aperitivo or a pre-meal drink. About an hour north of Lucca is the Apuane Alpine Park, which is worth making a side trip to if you want to immerse yourself in nature.
There’s more to Pisa than its iconic tower. Not that this famous structure isn’t worth seeing; it is. But there are also other attractions worth visiting, especially if you want to capture an air of romance.
The mesmerising Piazza dei Miracoli alone, where you’ll find the Campanile (leaning bell tower), has some of the most famous landmarks in Tuscany, such as the Baptistry, the Monumental Cemetery, and the Pisa Cathedral. Then, there’s the beautiful Chiesa di San Michele degli Scalzi, the incredible Piazza Dei Cavalieri, the bizarre Museum of Human Anatomy, the remarkable Citadella Nuova, the colourful Tuttomondo, and the enchanting Palazzo Blu, with its elaborate aesthetics and even more elaborate antique furnishings.
Located in central Italy, Pisa enjoys a typical Mediterranean climate – cool, mild winters and long, hot summers almost devoid of rain – making it one of the best places for walking. Take a stroll along the River Arno, with its lovely landscape and lines of old buildings. Enjoy the sounds, smells, and sights of Borgo Stretto, with its impressive architecture, high-end boutiques, and quaint cafés.
After visiting all the cultural and historical sites in the city, grab your bike and cycle to the coast, where you’ll find stretches of lovely pebble beaches, such as Marina dei Pisa and Tirrenia. Because what good is a honeymoon without the classic romantic walk on the beach?
- San Gimignano
Forget the jam-packed tourist traps of big cities; escape to the quaint walled hill town of San Gimignano. Located in north-central Tuscany, San Gimignano is famous for its medieval architecture, terracotta roofs, and unforgettable skyline shaped by dozens of well-preserved tower houses.
Like most places in Italy, San Gimignano has its share of churches and cobblestone lanes, piazzas and palazzos. But its surrounding countryside of vast vineyards and olive groves gives it a charmingly rustic and dreamy ambience rarely found in other Tuscan destinations.
For a small town, San Gimignano has a lot to offer. Wander around Piazza del Duomo, where you will find most of the town’s historic attractions clustered together, including its seven remaining towers.
If you’re not afraid of heights, go up Torre Grossa, the tallest medieval skyscraper, for a mesmerising vista of the rolling Tuscan hills. Have a picnic at La Rocca di Montestaffoli, the remains of a 14th-century fortress overlooking the town.
Explore Palazzo Comunale for its historic artworks, the Cathedral of San Gimignano for its fascinating frescos, and Piazza Cisterna for its jumble of shops and world-famous gelaterias. And because you’re in Tuscany, try the local delicacy of wild boar. Better yet, don’t leave without sampling Vernaccia di San Gimignano, the beloved crisp white wine with fruity citrus flavors.
Many people may have first heard of Cortona from ’Under the Tuscan Sun’, the bestselling memoir of novelist Frances Mayes. But this walled hill town is one of the oldest in Italy, dating back to as early as the 6th-century BC. Located close to the eastern border of Tuscany, Cortona has everything you could ask for in a historic art town: Etruscan artworks, Roman fortifications, medieval piazzas, and Renaissance churches.
Wander around Piazza della Repubblica, where you will see the imposing Palazzo Comunale, the town’s most famous palazzo. Visit the Diocesan Museum for its impressive Renaissance masterpieces and explore the Museo dell’Accademia Etrusca for its extensive collection of ancient artefacts.
Head to tranquil Hermitage Le Celle, which briefly housed St Francis of Assisi, for peace and quiet. Don’t forget to walk along Cortona’s picturesque medieval streets, especially Via Iannelli, arguably the prettiest in town.
Perhaps the most romantic place in Cortona is Bramasole, the villa made famous for its inclusion in ‘Under the Tuscan Sun’. Because it is a residential house, visitors are not allowed inside, but you can see the building from the road and the trail going up to it is worth the trouble.
About 76 kilometers southeast of Florence is the city of Arezzo. Ancient and alluring, Arezzo is a great fit for art lovers, history buffs, and shopaholics.
Here you will find majestic monuments, architectural gems, verdant parks, medieval churches, and pretty piazzas. Surprisingly, it remains low-key and doesn’t always figure in most tourist trails in Italy, but that only means you can enjoy the city without the crowd.
Every tour of Arezzo should begin at the historic Piazza Grande, where some scenes of the Oscar-winning film ‘Life is Beautiful’ were shot. At the square, you will find Palazzo delle Logge, designed by Giorgio Vasari in 1572, now home to trendy bars, upscale cafés and posh shops.
Explore the Church of San Francesco and discover the splendid frescos, including Piero della Francesca’s, The Legend of the True Cross. Visit the Museum of Modern and Medieval Art, head to the Casa Vasari House Museum, and discover ancient treasures at the Archeological Museum.
Marvel at the raw beauty of the Santa Maria Church, the Palazzo Comunale, and the Arezzo Cathedral. Want to enjoy some greenery? Head to the Medici Fortress to follow the walking trails at Parco Passeggio del Prato, or soak up the beauty of nature at Parco Sandro Pertini.
There’s much to do and see in Tuscany – from hilltop towns to lush vineyards, delectable cuisine to excellent wine, and charming countryside to captivating cities. Go to Florence for Renaissance art, Lucca for culture, and Siena for everything medieval.
In between are the lovely metros of Arezzo and Pisa and the quiet towns of Volterra and San Gimignano. Whether you visit just one destination or all, you are sure to fall in love with Tuscany on your honeymoon.
If you’re planning a honeymoon in Tuscany and are looking for expert advice on where to stay, get in touch with us at Italy4Real to start planning a personalized vacation with your new spouse.