9 Best Towns to Stay in Tuscany, Italy

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by Hope Brotherton


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The central Italian region of Tuscany is a bucket list destination for holidaymakers all over the globe. It’s the home of world-famous Renaissance art and architecture as well as moving landscapes, spine-tingling views and miles upon miles of stunning coastlines. Because there are an abundance of things to see and places to visit, you’ll be wondering which are the best towns to stay in Tuscany.

Trying to catch a glimpse of everything Tuscany has to offer can be extremely challenging. Dotted across the Tuscan countryside are numerous cities, towns and picturesque villages that are all clamouring for attention. If you’re unsure of where to set up base camp, read our handy guide for more information on where to base yourself in Tuscany.

Best Places to Stay in Tuscany

Tuscany is a diverse region packed with a range of activities to satisfy everyone’s hobbies, interests and holiday desires.

If you’re confined to Italy’s public transport network, then there’s no need to worry. The Italian transport network is extensive, which means there are plenty of towns to stay in Tuscany if you don’t have access to a car.

If you’re able to drive, then you will have more options available for your stay including towns and villages that are much more scenic.

Tuscan Landscape between Siena and Florence
Tuscan Landscape between Siena and Florence

Florence – Best for City Life

When trying to decide where to stay in Tuscany, Florence is the obvious choice. It’s one of the largest cities in the region and has a wealth of sights, restaurants and attractions to keep every member of the family entertained.

The Tuscan capital is home to the world-famous Uffizi Gallery, Michelangelo’s famous sculpture, the Davide, and the city’s famous cathedral, the Santa Maria del Fiore. The abundance of sights and museums to cram into a holiday is one of the reasons that Florence is the best for those looking to explore a city.

However, if you are holidaying in Florence for longer than a city break, the tourists and crowds may become too taxing for an extended period of time. Staying in Florence is ideal for a few days, but you may want to head to the countryside to get away from the city for a couple of days.

Another reason Florence is the perfect place to stay is because of its public transport links. The city is serviced by an airport, and from the airport, the city can be reached by train or bus.

Once you’ve reached your accommodation in Florence, the city is walkable too and attractions are only ever a stone’s throw away from one another. Arguably, Florence is the best place to stay without a car for the aforementioned reasons.

Uffizi Gallery
Uffizi Gallery

Where to Stay in Florence

Hotel Bellavista – This mid-range hotel is the perfect choice in Florence. Centrally located close to the central train station, it’s within easy reach of all the Tuscan capital has to offer. They have comfortable rooms available and breakfast is included each morning.

25-hour Hotel – Those after a bit of luxury in Florence are sure to love this plush hotel. They have a myriad of luxe rooms on offer, the perfect location for exploring the city, breakfast included each morning and an on-site great restaurant and bar.

Leonardo House – If you’re trying to stick to a tight budget in Florence or if you’re looking for a great social atmosphere, then this hostel is an excellent choice. They have both private rooms and dorm beds available along with good common areas and self-catering facilities.

Not quite what you’re looking for? Click here to browse other options in Florence

Siena – Best for Youthful Energy

The city of Siena is highly picturesque. The cobbled courtyards and scorched brown facades of the building are reminiscent of a rom-com film set.

By day, the city is brimming with day trippers from Florence and Pisa. Once these visitors have retreated back to their hotels, the city’s nightlife bubbles to the surface. Because of the city’s university and its abundance of Italian language schools, the city attracts younger holidaymakers in the evening.

This student population, and the city’s trendy bars, make Siena the perfect place for younger travellers who are looking to sip on an aperitivo or two in Piazza il Campo on a warm summer’s evening.

Just like Florence, Siena is accessible by car.  While Siena’s train station is a 20-minute walk from the city centre, the rest of the city’s attractions are within walking distance of each other. While there isn’t much to do in Siena, its surrounding areas are worth a visit.

Siena is near the Chianti region and Val D’Orcia, which are known for their sumptuous wines. Holidaymakers will most likely need a car to truly explore these areas, especially the scenic landscapes.

If you can’t hire a car, then book yourself onto a guided tour and enjoy a full-bodied chianti without having to worry about the drive.

Medieval town of Siena
Medieval town of Siena

Where to Stay in Siena

B&B La Coperta Ricamata – This cosy bed and breakfast is perfect for a getaway in Siena. They have a handful of comfortable rooms available – all equipped with air conditioning – and breakfast is available each morning.

Hotel Certosa Di Maggiano – For those looking for a luxury stay in Siena, this converted monastery is sure to be a hit. Located a bit outside the historic centre, they have lovely rooms to choose from, plenty of amenities for guests to enjoy and breakfast included each morning.

Porta Pispini Residence – If you’re after your own space in Siena, this aparthotel is a great choice. They have a range of flats on offer depending on your group size and a great location for exploring the city.

Not quite what you’re looking for? Click here to browse other options in Siena!

Pisa – Best for Iconic Landmarks

Arguably, the third most well-known city in the region of Tuscany is Pisa. Typically, holidaymakers visit Pisa for one reason and one reason only: to see the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

Arriving into Pisa is relatively simple. The city has its own airport, which means it is ideal for international and domestic arrivals. As well as the airport, Pisa is well-connected to other cities in Tuscany by both train and bus.

Pisa is less elegant compared to Florence and Siena, but the city still has its own quaint charm that goes beyond the square of miracles where the city’s main sights are situated. Just like Siena, Pisa is bustling and busy during the day with day trippers who’ve come to explore the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

Once the day tourists have left, the city becomes atmospheric. After the sun has gone down, stars and fairy lights sparkle across the city’s skyline.

Pisa is a great place for couples to spend a romantic evening or two. Because the city is relatively small, make sure to reserve tables in advance – especially if you have a particular restaurant in mind.

As well as the above, Pisa is close to the coast so it’s one of the best towns in Tuscany if you fancy a day or two at the beach along with seeing iconic landmarks.

Old Town in Pisa
Old Town in Pisa

Where to Stay in Pisa

Hotel Di Stefano – This three-star hotel in the centre of Pisa is perfect for mid-range travellers. Located super close to all this Tuscan city has to offer, they have lovely rooms available and also allow pets.

The Rif Boutique Hotel – This swish hotel is an excellent option for those after a bit of luxury during their stay in Pisa. They have beautiful rooms on offer, plenty of great amenities and the perfect location for exploring the city.

Hostel Pisa Tower – If you’re travelling solo or on a tight budget, this hostel is a great choice. They have self-catering facilities, good common areas and offer both dorm beds and private rooms.

Not quite what you’re looking for? Click here to browse other options in Pisa!

Lucca – Best for Families

For an authentic taste of Tuscan life, head to Lucca. Situated roughly 80 minutes away from Florence by train, Lucca is often overlooked by the majority of holidaymakers in the region. Because it’s off the beaten path, it’s relatively quiet (even in the high season).

The city’s centre is hidden behind imposing Renaissance walls, which only adds to the quiet of the city. Lucca is a city that is home to a rich and diverse array of historical and culturally significant buildings including Romanesque churches.

Because the city is largely unexplored by crowds of tourists, it’s one of the best places to stay in Tuscany with a family. While there aren’t many attractions to explore in Lucca compared to Florence and Siena, Lucca does have several sights worth visiting.

This picture-perfect Italian town will have the whole family falling in love with Tuscany and by extension, Italy too.

Lucca Duomo
Lucca Duomo

Where to Stay in Lucca

Antica Corte dei Principi – Situated in the centre of Lucca close to all of the top attractions of this beautiful Tuscan city, this medieval-designed hotel is perfect for mid-range visitors. They have a number of comfortable rooms available and breakfast is included daily.

Palazzo Dipinto – If you’re looking for a luxury option in Lucca, then this hotel is a fantastic choice. They have a range of wonderful rooms on offer, a great location for exploring the highlights of the cities and breakfast is available each morning.

Casa Paolina – For those looking for their own flat in Lucca, these apartments are a wonderful choice. They have a range of fully-furnished flats to choose from all in a great location for seeing the sites of the city.

Not quite what you’re looking for? Click here to browse other options in Lucca!

Arezzo – Best to Escape the Crowds

The Tuscan city of Arezzo is one hour away from Florence via train. The Etruscan city is rich in culture and history, like many other towns in Tuscany.

In recent years, the popularity of the Arezzo has sky-rocketed. That being said, this beautiful hilltop town is largely unearthed by many holidaymakers. Because this part of Tuscany isn’t overwhelmed by crowds of tourists, its lifestyle remains largely authentic.

It’s the perfect spot to grab a bite of local food, buy a handcrafted souvenir, and soak up the famous fresco paintings in the Church of San Francesco.

While Arezzo is largely undiscovered by many tourists who are flocking to Italy, that only adds to the town’s allure. Staying in Arezzo will provide tourists with the perfect respite away from crowds that are drawn into other villages in Tuscany. It’s also a great base to explore other nearby hill towns such as Cortona.

Arezzo
Arezzo

Where to Stay in Arezzo

Hotel Arezzo – This hotel is a great choice for mid-range travellers to Arezzo. Boasting a beautiful outdoor swimming pool and a hot tub, they also have clean and comfortable rooms on offer along with a great location.

Hotel Continentale – If you’re looking for a luxury stay, then this plush hotel is an excellent choice. They have a lovely rooms available, a great location for exploring the town and a rooftop terrace with unbeatable views of the city and the surrounding area.

Residence Peloni – For those visitors looking for a holiday home, this aparthotel is a great choice. There is a range of different fully-furnished flats on offer and the complex itself offers plenty of other great amenities.

Not quite what you’re looking for? Click here to browse other options in Arezzo!

San Gimignano – Best for a Quiet Getaway

The hill town of San Gimignano is a perfect scenic escape, and one of the best small towns in Tuscany to stay. Situated 50 kilometres Southwest of Florence, San Gimignano gives holidaymakers a taste of the Tuscan countryside.

The small, walled, village is a UNESCO world heritage site. The spiralling towers, the ancient villas, and the green gardens transport holidaymakers back In time. But even with its heritage status, there isn’t too much to do there.

In order to reach the quiet and seclusion of San Gimignano, you’ll need to hire a car. Once you’ve arrived, the Tuscan Countryside is very much your oyster. 

If you want to take day trips to other destinations in Tuscany, take a bus to Poggibonsi where you’ll be able to catch a connecting train to other areas in the region.

Because San Gimignano is further off the beaten path, the accommodation is more costly. If you’re travelling on a budget, you may want to avoid staying in San Gimignano.

San Gimignano
San Gimignano

Where to Stay in San Gimignano

Leon Bianco – A classically decorated hotel in the heart of San Gimignano, it offers both rooms suitable for couples and larger families. Breakfast is included and there is also a fitness centre and terrace for guests to enjoy on sunny days. 

Hotel La Cisterna – An elegant hotel that offers lovely rooms, some of which have beautiful views of the town or the valley. There is a restaurant on site and breakfast is available daily.

San Domenico Central Apt – This modern one-bedroom apartment is located on the edge of the historic centre. It offers a fully equipped kitchen — perfect if you want to save some money on meals!

Not quite what you’re looking for? Click here to browse other options in San Gimignano!

Montepulciano – Best for Wine Lovers

If you’re after a quiet Tuscan town with some big-screen glamour, then head to Montepulciano. Montepulciano is the famous filming location that featured in one of the Twilight films. Because of its movie glamour, Montepulciano is one of the best small towns in Tuscany to stay in, particularly for wine lovers.

While Montepulciano may not be as well-known as Florence, Pisa and Siena, it certainly has a lot of Tuscan charm. Beyond the pop culture, Montepulciano is a perfect stay for holidaymakers in Tuscany.

This small medieval town is perched atop a Tuscan hilltop and packed full of impressive Renaissance architecture. If you’re not a lover of Italian art, then take some time to enjoy the town’s red wines.

Like with many of Tuscany’s smaller towns, their public transport networks aren’t too reliable. In order to set up camp in Montepulciano, you’ll need to hire a car to reach this Tuscan hill town.

While hiring a car may not be possible for everyone, you can always look into booking transfers from arrival airports or train stations. However, this can be a costly transport option and eat into your holiday budget.

Montepulciano
Montepulciano

Where to Stay in Montepulciano

La Terrazza Di Montepulciano – A basic, yet comfortable hotel in Montepulciano that has single, double and family rooms available. It is managed directly by the owners and includes a great breakfast daily. 

Il Rondò Boutique Hotel – Located just a short walk from the centre of town, this classically decorated hotel has both basic double rooms and larger suites. Breakfast is included and there is a garden for guests to enjoy during their stay. 

Central Lovely House – A comfortable holiday home for couples looking for self-catering accommodation in Montepulciano. The home also has laundry facilities. 

Not quite what you’re looking for? Click here to browse other options in Montepulciano!

Grosseto – Best for Coastal Vibes

In the south of Tuscany near the border to Lazio lies Grosseto. This small town is once again overlooked by many holidaymakers, which means it’s the perfect haven to escape the crowds in the high season for a truly relaxing break away.

Grosseto is roughly a two-hour drive away from Florence, and you’ll need to hire a car to reach this small Italian town. While it may be a jaunt away from your arrival airport, it’ll provide a relaxing location once you’ve arrived.

As well as the Cathedral of San Lorenzo, the church of San Francesco, and the city walls, Grosseto is a short hop away from the beach.

If you plan on holidaying like a local, head to the beach early in the morning before the sun gets high in the sky, and head back to your accommodation to escape the lunchtime heat.

Duomo di Grosseto
Duomo di Grosseto

Where to Stay in Grosseto

Hotel Nuova Grosseto – Located in the centre of Grosseto, this stylish and modern hotel offers a large range of rooms including several types of double rooms and larger rooms suitable for families. Breakfast is included in the nightly rate.

The Nest – A one-bedroom apartment that can sleep up to 4 people located within the City Walls of Grosseto. The apartment has a fully equipped kitchen allowing guests to cook their own meals and breakfast is also included.

Not quite what you’re looking for? Click here to browse other options in Grosseto!

Elba – Best for an Island Escape

For a truly relaxing break in Tuscany, head to the Elba. This island is a haven away from the hustle and bustle of the mainland cities, and the best area to stay in Tuscany for those looking for a quiet escape. To arrive on the largest island in this archipelago, you’ll need to catch a ferry from the port town of Piombino.

Because the island is small, there is no airport. This means that you’ll need to add lengthy travel days to either side of your holiday because you’ll have to land in one of the Tuscan airports and drive down to the coast. This is one of the downsides of holidaying in Elba, the time it takes to arrive on the island.

That being said, once you’ve arrived on the island, there’s plenty to do. As well as relaxing by on a beach or by the side of the pool, there are plenty of water sports and other adrenaline-induing activities.

You can also visit several cultural attractions including Villa San Martino – Napoleon’s former summer residence. 

Porto Azzurro in Elba Island
Porto Azzurro in Elba Island

Where to Stay on Elba

Hotel Sardi – This mid-range hotel is a great choice in the town of Pomonte on the island of Elba. Situated only two minutes from the beach, they have comfortable rooms available an on-site restaurant to enjoy and breakfast included every morning.

Hotel Plaza – If it’s luxury you’re after on Elba, then this plush hotel in Porto Azzuro is sure to be a hit. They have a range of delightful rooms available, a spa and wellness centre on-site and breakfast is included, as well.

Chez Nous – A modern aparthotel located in Capoliveri, they offer both studios and apartments, some of which contain sea views.

Not quite what you’re looking for? Click here to browse other options on Elba!

If you’re after a busy city, scenic views, stunning coastlines or a quiet town, then Tuscany has a slice of Italian life for everyone. Wherever you choose to stay, you can’t go wrong because each town is perfect in its own way, and we’re sure that you’ll enjoy your stay in this incredible part of Italy.

Are you planning a trip to Tuscany? Have any questions? Let us know in the comments!

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Hope is a writer for The World Was Here First. Originally from Birmingham, England, she is passionate about budget-friendly travel and incorporating greener and more eco-friendly travel into her adventures. She keeps returning to Italy but loves to travel around any European country.

Comments

  1. Are you looking for the best town to stay in Tuscany? Have any questions? Let us know in the comments!’

    We are! Given limited time (1 week) and trying to stay in or close to 1 area – demoting like like Lucca or Siena. I have my wife and two kids with me. Looking to experience Italy and don’t want to travel all over – prefer to experience one area. thoughts?

    Reply

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