The days are getting longer, the climate starts to be milder, a shy sun begins to warm up, and the desire to stay outdoors makes the spring the perfect season for your holidays in Tuscany! We have prepared a list to help you in choosing the places you can’t miss from March to June around the region. One of our aims is to suggest the hidden corners of this beautiful region, so that the places mentioned here are off the beaten path. Of course, feel free to add your suggestions in the comments!
Valdichiana (Arezzo and Siena areas)
The Valdichiana (or Chiana Valley), which is a natural channel of communication between the provinces of Arezzo and Siena, takes its name from the river Chiana. The area is characterized by beautiful nature, thermal baths and delicious food, so spring is the perfect time to visit, maybe including a picnic! Apart from Arezzo itself, the aretine Valdichiana includes, among others, the towns of Cortona, Lucignano, Castiglion Fiorentino and Foiano della Chiana, while the Siena part of the valley boasts of the towns of Cetona, Montepulciano, Chiusi and Chianciano Terme.
Mugello area (north of Florence)
The Mugello area has a lot to offer in the spring. One idea could be to visit Sant’Agata in the municipality of Scarperia: a small, romantic village with a few shops and plenty of places to photograph. Other ideas would be to drive along the panoramic road that connects Barberino to Galliano or to explore the Mugello area by bike. This is also the area of Bilancino lake, so you could pay a visit to the WWF oasis of Gabbianello.
Uccellina Park (Grosseto area)
Also known as the Maremma Regional Park (Parco Regionale della Maremma), it covers the coastal area between Principina a Mare and Talamone, Magliano in Toscana and Orbetello and stretches as far as the mouth of the river Ombrone. The Maremma Regional Park is characterised by thick vegetation, great variety of animal life and archaeological sites dating back to the Etruscan era. The rich and diverse landscape varies from gentle hills, marshlands, farmlands and pastures, sandy and rocky beaches.
Elba Island (Livorno area)
Elba Island is one of the key attractions of the Tuscan Archipelago, and might be your perfect destination for outdoor activities: hiking, cycling, biking, sailing and more. Ok, it’s not summer yet, but we guess you’d be also interested in discovering the top ten beaches in Elba. Furthermore, thanks to its strategic location, the island is rich in history and art, have a look at this itinerary. Last but not least, if you want some advice on how to get to Elba island, here’s our guide.
Flower tours in Lucca and surroundings
Spring is the season of flowers in the province of Lucca. There are many events connected to nature and flowers in particular: from Verdemura, the market fair concerning gardening, local products and outdoor living that takes place in late March along the beautiful walls of Lucca, to the ancient camellia fair in Capannori and surroundings; from the biennial azalea exhibition in Borgo a Mozzano to the Feast Day of Santa Zita in Lucca on April 27.
National Park of the Tuscan-Emilian Apennines (Massa Carrara area)
The Tuscan-Emilian Apennine National Park in the province of Massa–Carrara stretches through the municipalities of Bagnone, Comano, Filattiera, Fivizzano and Licciana Nardi. There are two park gates: one is in Filattiera, in the centre near the parish church of Sorano, and the other is in Sassalbo, the only built-up area within the protected area, with its terraced chestnut wood. This is a paradise for nature lovers: high peaks, vast forests and wild animals are just some of the reasons you should give the park a visit.
Pisan hills by Vespa (Pisa area)
An original idea for this spring in the province of Pisa could be a visit through the Tuscan hills by Vespa! The iconic means of transportation made in Pontedera gives you the possibility to discover the rural side of Tuscany in complete freedom. You can easily reach the hills of the Valdera and hidden treasures packed with old traditions. Just choose your itinerary!
Swiss Pescia (Svizzera Pesciatina, Pistoia area)
The barely discovered area in the province of Pistoia known as “Svizzera Pesciatina” (Swiss Pescia) consists of ten medieval hamlets, known as “castella”, constructed in the local stone called pietra serena, which is still quarried in the area. The hamlets are Pietrabuona, Medicina, Fibbialla, Aramo, Sorana, San Quirico, Castelvecchio, Stiappa, Pontito and Vellano. The landscape is perfect for walking: across the valley you’ll see streams, chestnut woods, mills and ancient ruins.
Equestrian Trails and Medici Villas in the area of Prato
Spring is the perfect season to discover this part of Tuscany in a slow, bucolic way. In the province of Prato there are 170 kilometres of equestrian trails, divided into 6 main paths. Another idea could be the tour of the Medici Villas in the area (such as the Medici Villa of Poggio a Caiano and the Medici Villa “La Ferdinanda” in Artimino).
Nature Train in the Siena area
Like every year, the Siena area hosts a series of events that perfectly mix up art, nature and food specialties: it’s the Nature Train, which passes through these lands starting from the early spring season. From San Giovanni d’Asso to San Quirico d’Orcia, each itinerary gives you the possibility to discover the peculiarities of the various destinations (and taste local food!). The 2017 edition will be inaugurated on March 19, read more about the Nature train here.The original version of this article was written by Serena Puosi.