Tuscany Italy Travel Guide
Say hello to Tuscany-a region of Italy known for its fine art and extraordinary countryside. Wine connoisseurs and foodies alike travel from long distances to experience its simple yet amazing cuisine and vino. Tuscany has possibly the greatest repository of art in the world, from extraordinary fresco paintings to architectural masterpieces and sculptures. One can set eyes on famous paintings such as- the Madonna Enthroned, mosaic of St. John the Baptist and the Madonna di Ognissanti. When visiting Tuscany, many begin in Florence, then continue on to Siena and Pisa. By foot one can enjoy the mountain paths, by bike the rolling Italian hills, by beach the sea coast and the islands- they all call out for exploration. Rest assurred, a trip to Tuscany will both enliven and enrich the traveler's repertoire of experiences with beautiful memories imprinted with Italy's great Italian language and culture.
Tuscany is a region located on the Tyrrhenian Sea, on Italy's west coast. The Tuscan Region has an area of about 8,900 square miles and a population of about 3.8 million inhabitants. The regional capital is Florence. Tuscany offers small towns, villages, castles, villas and vineyards and provides an escape from all the traffic and noise of some of the larger cities of Italy. Tuscany's Island of Elba is famous around the world for harboring French Emperor Napoleon in 1814 during his exile. But its history goes back to prehistory, with the Ilvati tribe from Liguria who named the island Ilva. Inhabited first by the Etruscans and later by the Romans, the island was appreciated for its rich deposits of iron and its mud baths. The Etruscans created the first major civilization in this region, large enough to establish a transport infrastructure, to implement agriculture and mining and to produce vibrant art. A major reason for this civilizations eventual decline was the increasing absorption by the surrounding cultures of that time. Soon after the demise of Etruria, Rome established the cities of Lucca, Pisa, Siena, and Florence-endowing the area with new technologies, community development and peace. These developments included extensions of existing roads, introduction of aqueducts and sewers, and the construction of many buildings, both public and private. However, many of these structures have been destroyed by erosion due to weather. In the 15th century the Medicis, who ruled Florence at that time, annexed the surrounding land to create modern Tuscany. Throughout most of Tuscany's history, it has carried the role as the cultural center of Italy.
While Italy is the top tourist destination in the world, Tuscany is the traveler's first choice within Italy. It's no wonder when the traveler discovers such treasures are contained in this great city! The Magnificent Duomo Cathedral in Siena is one of these treasures! Set in a piazza above the Piazza Del Campo, it holds within its walls breathtaking masterpieces by Pisano, Donatello and Michelangelo as well as Pinturicchio.
Another wonder of Tuscany is the world famous Leaning Tower of Pisa set in the heart of the city. This university town of Pisa- with its Square of Miracles is considered to contain all that is central to the religious life. There sits three structures that symbolize the main stages of a human's life: the Baptistery representing birth, the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, life and the graveyard, alluding to death.
A unique destination in Tuscany is the Island of Alba, its beautiful blue water and its rich sandy landscape. Besides the great history found there, it is the perfect place for outdoor sports and activities. Among the most sought after sports, there is diving and snorkeling in Elba, thanks to its rich seabeds housing lots of different species of fish. But outdoors lovers can also enjoy spending time on land hiking and mountain biking, enjoying a round of golf, a day of sailing or enjoying days of complete relaxation at the thermal baths of San Giovanni. So whether Tuscany is chosen for its historic monuments and archeological finds, its renowned blue water beaches, -the opportunity to take the wine and olive tours or bask in the exquisite art and culinary tastes of Italian culture...The region of Tuscany is packed full of "firsts" and fabulous experiences that will not leave any vistor wanting in the joie la vie~joy of life!
For more information- http://www.turismo.intoscana.it/intoscana2/export/TurismoRTen/