Lo Stivale (the Boot) as Italians lovingly refer to the 116,347 square miles that make up their country, is home to 61 million people. The birthplace of everything from the Roman Empire to Sophia Loren, spaghetti and pizza to Michelangelo’s David and the Ferrari, Italy remains a centre of global cultural, political and military affairs.

Gorgeous landscape and extraordinary cities combine with standout culture and artistic heritage to make Tuscany a magnet. First and foremost among these is Florence. Built on the site of an Etruscan settlement, Florence, the symbol of the Renaissance, rose to economic and cultural pre-eminence under the Medici in the 15th and 16th centuries. Its 600 years of extraordinary artistic activity can be seen in its architecture and art. The works of great masters including Michelangelo, Bottichelli, Giotto and Brunelleschi are found here in buildings as famous as the works they contain.

A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1982, Florence attracts more than 1.8 million visitors a year. The city is known for its museums and galleries, its historical architecture and sites of interest.Extending out from Florence at the centre of the province are historical towns, art treasures and stunning landscapes. From the natural ampitheatre created by the hills surrounding Florence to the Chianti Valley to Valdarno, Tuscany is packed with suprises and cultural gems.

Fact File

Tuscany stretches from the Apennines to the Tyrrhenian Sea across central Italy. Here the climate is milder than in northern Italy, with a smaller difference in temperature between summer and winter and a shorter and less intense cold season than in the north; summers are longer, but the sultriness of the northern cities is mitigated by the sea. The province of Florence has a humid, subtropical climate – constantly moist, summers tend to the hot and muggy while winters are mild with plenty of rain.


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