Girls trip to Tuscany!

10th Sep 2020

My friends and I like to plan a trip to one of our dream destinations every year or so. This year, we visited a country known for its tantalising food, fantastic wine, rich history and passionate natives - Italy! We did plenty of sight-seeing in Milan, Verona and Venice, but the highlight of this trip was our time spent in Tuscany.

We arrived in Florence from Venice late on Thursday afternoon to sweltering September heat. This was quickly solved after a dip in the pool at the gorgeous Hotel Minerva! Here we spent the evening at The Three-Sixty rooftop bar, sipping Prosecco while watching the sun slip away and the city light up.

Photo of Florence, Italy by Julia Tarr
Photo of Piazza del Duomo, Piazza del Duomo, Florence, Metropolitan City of Florence, Italy by Julia Tarr
Photo of Boboli Gardens, Piazza de' Pitti, Florence, Metropolitan City of Florence, Italy by Julia Tarr
Photo of Leaning Tower of Pisa, Pisa, Province of Pisa, Italy by Julia Tarr
Photo of San Gimignano, Province of Siena, Italy by Julia Tarr

The next morning, we made our way to the Piazza del Duomo. Surrounding this plaza were the awe-inspiring Opera Duomo Museum and 15th century Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore. During our visit, we viewed Renaissance architecture and incredible artworks whose history spans several hundred years.

After an indulgent lunch filled with carbs, we spend the afternoon wandering through Palazzo Pitti and its exquisite Boboli Gardens. Again, we were mesmerised by the pure extravagance and intricate details found in the palace and garden.

Our second day in Tuscany was spent strolling around the city of Pisa. We spent most of the morning exploring the Piazza del Duomo, its baptistry and the nearby museum. We also spent time lounging on the lush Field of Miracles ( known as the Campo dei Miracoli in Italian), drinking coffee and watching the other sightseers. Of course, the main attraction was the renowned Leaning Tower of Pisa, a building that is even more impressive in real life, but fair warning - climbing to the top of a tower tilted four degrees off its axis is not for those afraid of heights! We made a mandatory stop for some moreish mango flavoured gelato at Gelateria De’ Coltelli before taking strolling along the banks of the River Arno.

On our third day, we travelled down to Monteriggioni, which is nestled in the Chianti Valley. To access the city we had to enter through one of the two gates that allow you to pass through the fortified wall encompassing the town. Once we stepped through, we felt as if we had been transported back to the medieval era. Walking along the wall, we were able to view the spectacular scenery. We then drove back up to the city of San Gimignano, a village peppered with 72 towers. A stroll around the historic centre and climb up the Bell Tower left us feeling particularly parched. So, we popped over to the Guardastelle Vineyard for a wine tour where we tasted some exquisite wines, my favourite being their Vernaccia di San Gimignano. For the rest of the afternoon, we sat on the terrace, enjoying the views of the surrounding countryside and drinking some of the best Italian wine.