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Holidays along the Tuscany Coast take you beyond the beautiful gently undulating, tree spiked countryside that is characteristic of this enchanting part of Italy.
As well as the peaceful, artist inspired countryside, there’s a wonderful contrasting coastline to experience. The Tuscany Coast boasts many kilometres of enticing sandy beaches, perfect for those who just want to relax and enjoy the sun, as well as charming restaurants and bars for an early evening Tuscan Negroni aperitif.
Tuscany is renowned for its cuisine; from comforting winter soups made with different types of cabbage and beans, to Panzanella, a popular salad made with bread and lardo di colonnata, which is pork lard cured on local marble.
The Tuscan Coastline offers everything from sunbed and umbrella striped private beaches to free beaches with intimate coves boasting calm, clear blue water. Everything’s on offer here; the peace and tranquillity of beaches surrounded by pine forests and sand dunes or fishing harbours offering bars and restaurants to suit all tastes along. Adventurous travellers will love the water and wind sports which can be enjoyed off the coast.
With almost 90 years of expertise in providing holidays on Tuscany’s Coast, there are plenty of hidden treasures we can introduce you to. Tuscany’s sandy beaches stretch for many kilometres and for those who like some privacy, a top tip is to seek out single cars parked along the road. You’re likely to find a subsequent steep trail which leads down to a quiet stretch of beach.
The Versilia resorts along the northern coastline favour the archetypal Italian beach, with rows of sun loungers, umbrellas and coast guards on hand. Travelling further south there are pine woods and extensive sand dunes to enjoy in the Migliarino San Rossore nature reserve just east of Pisa. To add variety to your holiday, a trip to the multicultural sea port of Livorno offers the opportunity to hire a bike or a Segway and travel along the Terrazza Mascagni, the black and white chequered waterfront terrace favoured as a meeting place for locals. If you start your ride at the right time of day you can enjoy the panoramic sunset views.
Enjoying the stunning beaches and enchanting countryside is a big part of a Tuscany Coast holiday, but there’s lots of culture to appreciate too. Take a short trip to Pisa and enjoy the Piazza dei Miracoli, a UNESCO World Heritage site that’s home to the famous leaning tower and the marble striped cathedral, described by the famous Italian poet Gabriele D’Annunzio as architectural ‘miracles’.
An excursion to the Cinque Terre is a must. These five villages are characterised by their pastel coloured houses perched high on the clifftop and set into a dramatic coastline, overlooking the azure sea below. Cars were banned 10 years ago, so the best means of transport between the villages is the train line which cuts through the coast tunnels. You will have time to wander around the villages at your leisure. Seeing this UNESCO World Heritage site by boat is one of the best ways to appreciate the Tuscan Coast.
The majority of international flights arrive into Pisa airport (PSA). Direct flights to Pisa are available from Belfast, Bristol, East Midlands, Leeds Bradford, London Gatwick, London Heathrow, London Luton, Manchester and Newcastle and take approximately 2 hours.
Pappa al pomodoro is a classic but simple Tuscan soup made from stale bread, tomatoes, basil, garlic and the region’s much coveted olive oil. One of Tuscany’s most traditional recipes, it literally translates as mush or paste of tomato and is generally thicker in texture than traditional soups. Because this dish uses classic Italian ingredients which are in abundant supply, it is full of flavour, despite its peasant origins and the lack of salt in its bread; a throwback from history.
For an exceptional treat seek out the white truffle, known to be the rarest tuber in the world. This delightful speciality heralds from San Giovanni d’Asso and San Miniato. There’s even a museum dedicated to this delicacy in San Giovanni d’Asso where a journey involving the five sense can be taken in honour of the white truffle. November is the month of the ‘White Truffle Exhibit’ when visitors can admire these famous truffles. When it comes to dining, you can enjoy it shaved on risotto, pastas and soups in many Italian restaurants.
To round off the perfect Italian meal, savour some traditional cantucci, commonly known as biscotti (baked-twice) or cantuccini for the smaller, bite sized version. These twice baked, dry almond biscuits are perfect dipped in a glass of fortified wine such as a Tuscan produced Vin Santo, after a meal. However, they are also enjoyed dipped in coffee. Their humble origins began in the city of Prato and were first created in the 14th century to use up the abundant supply of almonds.
To pre-book one of our specially selected excursions, please call our Italy Experts on 01293 762410*.