Tuscany, located in the central-western part of Italy on the Tyrrhenian Sea, gets its name from an Etruscan tribe that settled the area about three thousand years ago. It has belonged to the Romans, the Lombards, and the Franks.
More than four hundred years ago, under the Medicis, Tuscany became a major European center. It is undoubtedly one of Italy’s top tourist destinations as well as an ideal place for your villa when you hit it big, huge.
Florence is the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance and the administrative center of Tuscany. It is one of Italy’s top tourist destinations, whose sites of interest are too numerous to list here.
Siena and Pisa are two other major tourist destinations.
Tuscany is a center of industrial production, in particular metallurgy, chemicals, and textiles. Given the region’s importance as an international art center for centuries, don’t be surprised that it is an excellent place to appreciate and purchase fashion, jewelry, leather goods, marble, and other items of beauty. Florence is the home of the house of Gucci.
Tuscany produces a wide variety of cereal, olives, vegetables, and fruit. But not only vegetarians eat well. It is home to cattle, horses, pigs, and poultry. One local specialty is wild boar. On the coast, seafood is abundant.
Tuscany devotes over one hundred fifty thousand acres to grapevines, and it ranks 4th among the 20 Italian regions. Its total annual wine production is about 58 million gallons, giving it the 8th place. About 70% of the wine production is red or rose’, leaving 30% for white. The region produces 44 DOC wines. DOC stands for Denominazione di Origine Controllata, which you can translate as Denomination of Controlled Origin, presumably a high-quality wine and 7 DOCG white wine. The G in DOCG stands for Garantita, but there is, in fact, no guarantee that such wines are truly superior. The region produces 9 DOCG wines. Tuscany also produces Super Tuscan wines, wines that may not have a prestigious classification but that are known to be outstanding.
This guide covers a visit to Florence and to Tuscany: the cities covered include Fiesole, Arezzo, Cortona, Chiusi, the Chianti region, Siena, Volterra, San Gimignano, Pisa, Carrara, Massa, the Versilia, Lucca, Pistoia, Montepulciano, Pienza, Grosseto, Massa Marittima, and Monte Argentario.
There are extensive descriptions and photos of the attractions.
The guide contains links to the web sites of train and air travel companies.
It has also listing of many reviews for the best-recommended restaurants that are within walking distance from the location where you you plan to have lunch or dinner.