Tuscan Honeymoon: Best Romantic Holiday in Italy

Every pasta and pizza loving newlywed couple share the ultimate fairytale ending: a romantic Tuscan honeymoon.

If you’re looking to organize the best romantic holiday in Italy, Tuscany is a year round destination ripe for the picking!

From Pisa to Pitigliano, Tuscany offers honeymooners a dramatic and diverse landscape. It’s here you’ll find some of Italy’s best luxury hotels, destination spas, art galleries, ancient cathedrals, Michelin starred dining, award-winning wineries and beautiful beaches.

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Tuscan Honeymoon

Teresa Santoro works for Destination Florence and is passionate about chatting Tuscany For Weddings, a unique project dedicated to promoting destination weddings and honeymoons in Tuscany.

So why is Tuscany the best region of Italy for romantic couples to discover on holiday? Santoro explains, “A Tuscan honeymoon has perfect settings for a couple in love: endless fields of sunflowers and poppies during summer, hilltop hamlets and medieval centres where the time seems to stand still. Tasty food, as well as unique wines, makes it even more special. Tuscany has astonished people with the beauty of its natural landscapes and its art cities featuring the highest concentration of artistic masterpieces in the world. Florence, Siena, and Pisa are just some of the most popular cities for a romantic honeymoon in Italy, but the great news is that Tuscany never fails to surprise.”

If you’re planning a honeymoon in Tuscany you’re likely wondering when the best time of year is to visit. Santoro adds, “The advantage of planning a Tuscan honeymoon is that it is always the best period to come, thanks to our mild climate year round. We suggest visiting Tuscany in the Spring for the ideal temperatures and longer days. The fields and trees show off their new colours and ancient squares fill with al fresco diners.”

Eyewitness Travel Italy is a comprehensive companion when organizing a romantic road trip in Tuscany.
Eyewitness Travel Italy is a comprehensive companion when organizing a romantic road trip in Tuscany.

Plan a Tuscan Honeymoon with Eyewitness Travel Italy

Whether you’ve travelled through Italy extensively or are keen to plan your first visit, it’s important to research a tuscan honeymoon in advance.

We suggest using the newest edition of Eyewitness Travel Italy. If you’re a first time visitor you’ll want to take notes on the “Reasons to Love” section, which sums up all of the top sights and experiences in Tuscany.

Eyewitness Travel Italy also features handy itineraries for romantic couples planning a road trip of Tuscany:

  • 2 Week Grand Tour of Italy
  • A Week in Tuscany
  • 2 Day Tour of Florence
  • Florence for Art Lovers
  • Florence for Foodies

Eyewitness Travel Italy also includes detailed itineraries and “don’t miss” destination highlights at a glance. You’ll also find illustrated cutaway 3-D drawings of important sights, floor plans for major museums, area maps marked with popular sights, and top hotel and restaurant listings. The guide also features a slew of info on niche interests such as Italy for breathtaking beaches, foodies, and ancient art.

We suggest reading Eyewitness Travel Italy from cover to cover. Take notes on the destinations and experiences that most excite you and then sketch out an ultimate honeymoon in Tuscany that is realistic based on your available vacation time.

You’ll find the informative guidebook acts as an excellent companion on long driving days. Once home, DK Eyewitness Travel Italy is a perfect memento to showcase on your bookshelf.

Romance yourselves on pasta and fine wine at Tuscany's award winning restaurants.
Romance yourselves on pasta and fine wine at Tuscany’s award winning restaurants.

Things To Do On a Tuscan Honeymoon

Thanks to the regions world-class tourist attractions, a Tuscan honeymoon can offer a little of something for everyone.

Art lovers will adore the Renaissance gems found in Florence, Pisa and Sienna. Outdoor enthusiasts with a penchant for fine wine can enjoy hiking to wineries in Chianti and Montalcino. Saturina is Tuscany’s most famous spa destination, offering romantic couples an opportunity to truly pamper themselves. Tuscany is also home to a long stretch of beautiful beaches. On the west coast, enjoy a sunset cruise or simply spread out your towel on the sand and work on your tan.

Start your Tuscan honeymoon at the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
Start your Tuscan honeymoon at the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

Start a Tuscan Honeymoon in Pisa

Known around the world for its famous leaning tower, Pisa is an ideal city to start a Tuscan honeymoon as it’s home to the regions busiest airport. Pisa’s medieval buildings date back to the Golden Age of the 12th and 13th centuries, when Italy’s powerful navy dominated the Mediterranean Sea and beyond.

Pisa’s postcard-perfect attraction can be found at the Campo dei Miracoli. Pisa’s iconic Leaning Tower is just one of several religious buildings that dot the lush green property known as “Field of Miracles.” After sipping a frothy cappuccino we suggest enjoying an early morning stroll before the tourist crowds arrive. Must-see attractions here include Pisa’s Duomo, the cathedral Baptistery and the Campo Santo cemetery.

Eyewitness Travel Italy offers insights into why Pisa’s famous tower leans, “Begun in 1173, the tower began to tip sideways before the third storey was completed, but construction continued until its completion in 1350. More than ten years of engineering work stabilized the tower in 2008, and visitors can now safely climb to the top.”

Explore Siena's famous medieval square, Piazza del Campo.
Explore Siena’s famous medieval square, Piazza del Campo.

Siena

Stunning Siena is home to one of Europe’s best medieval squares, a maze of narrow streets surround the city’s iconic Piazza del Campo.

Eyewitness Travel Italy offers a fascinating explanation into Siena’s sparring citizens, “The city’s 17 contrade, a series of parishes whose ancient rivalries are still acted out in the twice-yearly Palio. Loyalty to the contrada of one’s birth is fierce, and as you wander the streets you will see each parish’s animal symbols repeated on flags, plaques and carvings. Siena’s hilly position also means that city walks offer delightful hidden corner and countless stunning views.”

Siena Dumo is the city’s must-see architectural icon. Step inside and you’ll find treasures of late Gothic sculpture, early Renaissance painting and Baroque design. While the Siena Dumo’s architects dressed the cathedral in Romanesque strips, the cathedral is decidedly Gothic and considered one of the best examples in Italy for this unique style. Highlights from Siena Duomo’s interior include masterpieces from artists Nicola Pisano, Donatello, Michelangelo and Pinturicchio.

Couples planning a honeymoon in Tuscany should be sure to book a night at Grand Hotel Continental Siena. It’s the only 5-star boutique hotel in the historical centre of Siena, just steps away from Piazza del Campo. The luxury hotel in Siena features 51 rooms and suites, elegantly furnished with frescoes and Tuscan cotto tiles.

Sapordivino, Grand Hotel Continental Siena – Starhotels Collezione’s fine dining restaurant offers a fantastic selection of Tuscan wine paired perfectly with a contemporary take on hyperlocal cuisine. Highlights from the chef include lightly-smoked Carpaccio of Cinta Senese ham, quality Chianina beef marinated in powdered liquorice and balsamic vinegar and bitter orange Capocollo of Cinta with tarragon zabaione.

Wine lovers on a Tuscan honeymoon should take a tour of Castello di Banfi in Montalcino.
Wine lovers on a Tuscan honeymoon should take a tour of Castello di Banfi in Montalcino.

Montalcino

Perched on a hilltop, Montalcino sits at the heart of the world-famous vineyards that produce Italy’s finest red wine, Brunello. Sipping in Montalcino is a must for wine-loving couples on a Tuscan honeymoon. Three of the best wineries in Montalcino include Castello di Banfi, Fattoria dei Barbi, and Podere Le Ripi, all of which offer tutored tastings and tours of their cellars and vineyards.

Brunello, a diminutive of Bruno (brown), is the name that was given locally to what was believed to be an individual grape variety grown in Montalcino. In 1879 Siena’s Amphelographic Commission determined, after a few years of controlled experiments, that Sangiovese and Brunello were one and the same. In Montalcino the name Brunello evolved into the designation of a local wine produced with 100% Sangiovese. Today, Brunello is one of Italy’s best-known and most expensive wines, sought after by discerning oenophiles around the globe.

Castello di Velona is a luxury resort offering one of Tuscany's best spa getaways.
Castello di Velona is a luxury resort offering one of Tuscany’s best spa getaways.

Castello di Velona

No honeymoon in Tuscany is complete without a relaxing spa getaway paired with a jaw-dropping view.

Castello di Velona is located in one of Tuscany’s most famous wine regions, just outside Montalcino. The renovated 11th-century castle sits perched over sun-soaked Brunello vineyards and the ancient Franciscan abbey of Sant’ Antimo.

Overlooking the Val d’Orcia, a UNESCO heritage site, Castello di Velona is a popular romantic luxury retreat for couples. It’s along these winding rural roads you can indulge in Tuscany’s famous food, wine and postcard-perfect countryside.

Castello di Velona’s wellness facilities are world class, featuring natural thermal baths and a therapeutic spa. Romantic couples can enjoy the hotel’s spa facilities both indoors and outdoors. Once finished your spa treatment skip outside to the hotel’s infinity pool to enjoy an Aperol Spritz at sunset.

Bagno Vignoni skipped the town square and replaced it with an ancient thermal pool.
Bagno Vignoni skipped the town square and replaced it with an ancient thermal pool.

Bagno Vignoni

One of our favourite road trip stops in Tuscany is the tiny ancient town of Bagno Vignoni. Located in the heart of Val d’Orcia, the picturesque village is unique from other towns in Tuscany as the main square has been replaced by a bubbling thermal pool.

Bagno Vignoni’s famous thermal bath is 49 metres long and 29 metres wide and runs a temperature of 49° Celsius. The hot spring bubbles that stream up to the surface have been known to have a therapeutic quality since antiquity. The thermal water’s were appreciated by the Romans for their healing powers, and found a use in bathing-mud-therapeutic treatments beginning in 1170 with Emperor Federico II.

Enjoy a stroll around the town’s pretty pool and you’ll find contemporary artworks and sculptures which seem to burst into the air from the bubbles below. Bagno Vignoni’s famous thermal bath plays home to an annual art exhibit, adding a touch of modern to an ancient icon.

Don’t forget to bring your swim suite and towel to Bagno Vignoni. While you can’t take a bath in the town’s main square pool, take a short hike below the town for a steamy splash in Parco dei Mulini. The gorgeous bright blue thermal pools are located below a steaming waterfall. Entrance is free!

Flower lovers on a honeymoon in Tuscany should book a tour of the sweet smelling La Foce Gardens.
Flower lovers on a honeymoon in Tuscany should book a tour of the sweet smelling La Foce Gardens.

La Foce Gardens

If you’re a horticulture fan looking to find romance while surrounded by sweetly perfumed plants plan a trip on a sunny day to La Foce. Ranked as Tuscany’s best garden, La Foce estate lies close to the towns of Montepulciano, Chiusi, and Chianciano, midway between Florence and Rome.

La Foce was originally built in the late 15th century as an inn for pilgrims along the Via Francigena, a pilgrimage route to Rome. Years later the dilapidated villa was bought by Antonio Origo and Iris, his Anglo-American wife, in 1924 and transformed into a working farm estate.

Cecil Pinsent, an architect from England, was hired to renovate the buildings and design the gardens. His final creation offers a mix of English and Italian style gardens that blend in with the surrounding buildings and jaw-dropping landscape.

La Foce’s garden is open from March to November. It can be visited by guided tour only, offered on every Wednesday at 3pm, 4pm, 5pm and 6pm and every Saturday and Sunday at 11:30am, 3pm and 4:30pm. Visitors to Tuscany’s favourite garden enjoy a guided group tour which lasts 45 minutes.

For couples enjoying a Tuscan honeymoon, a stroll through La Foce offers unforgettable multi-sensory memories including the bright bloom of wisteria pergola, sweet smelling roses, gently swaying lemon trees, and postcard-perfect Cyprus tree dotted countryside as far as the eye can see.

Palazzo Piccolomini in Pienza was a filming location of Franco Zeffirelli's famous film Romeo and Juliet.
Palazzo Piccolomini in Pienza was a filming location of Franco Zeffirelli’s famous film Romeo and Juliet.

Pienza

Pienza is a small town in the southern part of Tuscany located just 15 kilometres from Montepulciano. The name comes from Pope Pius II, who was born here, so essentially translates to “city of Pius.” In 1458 the Pope wanted to transform his birthplace, the anonymous village of Corsignano, into an ideal Renaissance town.

He hired Bernardo Roseellino to build the new city in accordance with humanist urban planning concepts. Construction began in 1459 and took four years, creating a harmonious 15h-century town.

Today, Pienza bustles with tourists who come here to stroll the city’s ancient alleyways and cathedrals, and bustling restaurants and fashion boutiques.

Couples on a Tuscan honeymoon should be sure to stop here to take photos of the town’s romantic street names. Located on “The Love Route of Tuscany,” Pienza features adorable street signs such as Via dell’Amore (love street) and Via del Bacio (kiss street).

Classic Italian film fans should also make a point of visiting Palazzo Piccolomini. The impressive palace was used by director Franco Zeffirelli when filming scenes in his famous romantic movie Rome and Juliet. Visit the palace today and you’ll find photographs from various scenes of the adored Italian black and white film hanging throughout the space. The palace was the filming location for the first encounter between the two lovers at the Capulet’s home.

A jaw-dropping view of Sorano from our suite at Hotel della Fortezza.
A jaw-dropping view of Sorano from our suite at Hotel della Fortezza.

Sorano

Sorano is an ancient medieval hill town that sits perched over the Lente River. Sorano is an excellent spot to book a hotel for a few days as trips to nearby Sovana, Saturnia and Pitigliano are a short drive away.

Sorano is literally carved out of rock, creating a postcard-perfect panorama featuring a combination of ancient towers, alcoves and cantinas.

Local historians speculate that Sorano was first inhabited by the Villanovan people, the earliest known Iron Age culture followed by the Etruscans. The town doesn’t really make its mark on the history books until the Aldobrandeschi family in the mid 800’s. They reigned as one the most powerful feudatories of southern Tuscany for more than four centuries, thanks to Sorano’s strategic military position.

Sorano is best discovered by enjoying a stroll through its winding alleyways. You can easily see Sovana in a day with highlights including the city wall gateway, Romanesque church, and tour of the military tunnels under the Orisini Fortress.

The town’s iconic fortress also offers accommodation at boutique Hotel della Fortezza. Guests at Sorano’s most historic hotel enjoy jaw-dropping views high above the tiny town.

If you’re looking for a romantic restaurant in Sorano, Cantina L’Ottava Rima is located in an ancient wine cave. The chef serves local dishes from plump pasta to crunchy crostini topped with beef tartare. Tuscan dishes are paired with a fine selection of local, organic and biodynamic wine.

Step back in time at The Tomb of Winged Demons, an ancient find at the Necropolis in Sovana.

Sovana

The tiny town of Sovana is located a short drive west of Sorano. The area’s top attraction is the Necropoli di Sovana, located just outside of the pedestrian village.

Sovana’s famous necropolis offers visitors an opportunity to travel back in time to the period of the ancient Etruscans. The outdoor archaeological site features numerous Etruscan tombs, which you can visit easily on foot.

The most photographed is Tomba Ildebranda, completely dug in the rock and presenting itself as a monumental temple with a portico and six columns resting on a podium with two lateral stairways.

Walk 50 metres and you’ll find the Tomb of the Winged Demons. It was recently discovered in 2004 and dates back to the 3rd century B.C. It’s known as the best example of a kiosk-style tomb featuring a figure lying on a funeral bed. On each side of the facade stand two podiums with statutes of the noble lion, placed here to guard the souls of the deceased.

After exploring the regions ancient history at the necropolis drive into the tiny town of Sovana for a leisurely stroll. The 13th-century Plazzo Pretorio di Sovana is where you’ll find the town’s best restaurants, shopping, Etruscan Museum and the Church of Santa Maria.


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Tuscan honeymoon: enjoy an al fresco spa day in Saturnia.
Tuscan honeymoon: enjoy an al fresco spa day in Saturnia.

Saturnia

Spa lovers on a Tuscan honeymoon come to Saturnia to rest and relax in the therapeutic thermal water. The Cascate del Mulino consists of a series of natural pools, with rocks stained coppery green, on the Gorello River. It is possible to bathe in the warm sulphurous water here at any time of the year, free of charge.

Looking for a less rustic spa experience in Tuscany? The nearby Terme di Saturnia, is a luxury resort hotel that provides world-class spa facilities and restorative health treatments. The luxury resort in Saturnia sits above a crater of volcanic origin that feeds water straight to the hotel’s al fresco swimming pool.

The award-winning spa at Terme di Saturnia is one of the best in Europe, featuring 54 therapy rooms. The benefits of the antioxidant and anti-ageing sulphurous spring waters are best paired with a soothing massage treatment at the hotel’s spa.

After relaxing all afternoon, hop up at the hotel’s bar and order an aperitivo just in time for sunset. By 8pm Terme di Saturnia’s fine dining restaurant fills with romantic couples who feast on Tuscan dishes under the twinkle of candlelight. Each spa face in the space serves a relaxed mood while sipping Sangiovese and slicing through epic Florentine steaks.

Explore Pitigliano's unique "Little Jerusalem," home to one of Tuscany's most ancient synagogues.
Explore Pitigliano’s unique “Little Jerusalem,” home to one of Tuscany’s most ancient synagogues.

Pitigliano

Carved from volcanic stone, the town of Pitigliano, a short drive south of Saturnia, offers a fascinating historic timeline spanning from the Bronze Age to World War II. To visitors, Pitigliano looks like a fairytale village, exploding into the sky and surrounded by lush valleys that over the centuries have been carved out by the Lente and Meleta River.

A visit to Pitigliano is a Medieval architecture nerds dream. It offers a postcard-perfect skyline featuring tuff walls, lined with caves and tower houses.

Historians love strolling through Pitigliano’s ancient past; from prehistoric settlements from the Copper Age, to Etruscan traces in excavated tombs and the Romans who left their mark in its original name, Gens Petilia. History buffs can also travel back to Medieval times by exploring the palace of the noble Aldobrandeschi family and later the grandeur of the Renaissance thanks to the powerful Orsini family.

Unique to Tuscany, Pitigliano’s history features a Jewish community that was well integrated into society and still to this day has its own synagogue. The Old Town is known to locals as Little Jerusalem, home to a large Jewish community since the 15th century. After a lengthy restoration, Pitigliano’s synagogue has reopened to visitors. Tip toe through the Jewish cemetery, peak into the oven used to bake unleavened bread, spin around an underground kosher wine cellar, old butcher’s shop and women’s baths.

Take your Tuscan honeymoon to the beach and marvel at all the luxury yachts in Porto Ercole.
Take your Tuscan honeymoon to the beach and marvel at all the luxury yachts in Porto Ercole.

Porto Ercole

No honeymoon in Tuscany is complete without a romantic, long walk on the beach. The entire west coast of Tuscany sits perched over the sun-soaked Tyrrhenian Sea, so be sure to enjoy a salty splash in search of some of Italy’s best seafood.

Drive to the southernmost corner of Tuscany and you’ll find Monte Argentario, a former island, now connected to the mainland via three narrow sandbars. We suggest making a stop in the picturesque seaside town of Port Ercole, famous for its beachside restaurants, harbour filled with luxury yachts, and ancient fort. The Tuscan beach resort is popular with wealthy Italians who flock here each summer to rest and relax at posh villas.

A series of narrow streets leads to the oldest neighbourhood in Porto Ercole, home to the Church of Sant’Erasmo, whose interior guards the tombs of Spanish rulers. At the top of the hill you’ll reach the town’s mighty fortress, built from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance.

If you’re a nature lover head to Duna Feniglia Reserve, located in a pine grove between Orbetello lagoon and the ocean. Visitors can access the park for free, exploring on foot or by bike. The picturesque park offers sandy dunes and pretty pines where you might spot deer, wild boar and a choir of birds such as turtle doves and woodpeckers.

Skip up the steps to  Massa Marittima's iconic cathedral.
Skip up the steps to Massa Marittima’s iconic cathedral.

Massa Marittima

Sitting perched over an isolated hill, Massa Marittima’s beautiful historic square is enclosed and protected by its ancient city walls.

Lead, copper and silver ore have been mined in the hills of Massa Marittima for centuries, but the town is far from industrial today. Many Romanesque buildings survive from the time when Massa Marittima became an independent republic, dubbed “The Golden Era,” from 1225-1335.

Start your visit at Massa Marittima’s bustling piazza, which plays home to the jaw-dropping Cathedral of San Cerbone. The city’s architectural icon uniquely faces the public space at a diagonal and is surrounded by the Medieval Palazzo del Podesta, Town Hall, Market Place and Public Fountain.

In 1999, a fresco was found hidden beneath a layer of plaster during a restoration of the town’s famous fountain, Fonte dell’Abbondanza. The painting depicted the Albero dell’Abbondanza, or Tree of Abundance, a sprawling trunk and branches featuring twenty-five penises hanging from its branches and two women collecting them below!

After exploring the town square enjoy meandering through the city’s ancient alleys and arcades. You’ll find a mighty fortress and clock tower as well as the Sacred Art Museum and the Art and History of Mining Museum.

Art lovers on a Tuscan honeymoon can explore Volterra's alabaster heritage.
Art lovers on a Tuscan honeymoon can explore Volterra’s alabaster heritage.

Volterra

Volterra is a walled mountaintop town in Tuscany, which dates back to before 8th century B.C. The picturesque town offers visitors access to substantial ruins and artifacts from the Etruscan, Roman, and Medieval periods.

Volterra offers a treasure trove of artistic heritage, which can be admired while walking through the historic city centre and by accessing local museums, such as the Etruscan Museum, Pinacoteca, Museum of Sacred Art or the Alabaster Ecomuseum.

Other must-see attractions in Volterra include Piazza dei Priori, Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta and its Baptistery, Etruscan Acropolis, Medici Fortress at Porta a Selci and the Roman Amphitheatre.

While towns like Sorano, Saturnia and Sovana can easily be seen in a day, Volterra offers so much to see and do you really need to plan for at least two days of discovery. In our opinion, the best accommodation here can be found a short drive outside the city at an authentic Volterra Agriturismo.

Finish your Tuscan honeymoon by sipping Brunello in a suite at the luxurious St. Regis Florence.
Finish your Tuscan honeymoon by sipping Brunello in a suite at the luxurious St. Regis Florence.

Finish a Tuscan Honeymoon in Florence

Florence is where we suggest celebrating the end of your Tuscan honeymoon. After exploring the region’s rural treasures, visit one of the world’s most romantic cities, where jaw-dropping Renaissance art mingles with a contemporary cosmopolitan sensibility.

Florence is considered the cradle of the Italian Renaissance, the birthplace of a cultural and artistic revolution which launched in the 15th-century. Thanks to the lavish patronage of the ruling Medici family – the richest family in Europe – artists and architects like Michelangelo, Botticelli, Donatello, Brunelleschi and Leon Battista Alberti, crafted a city that sets hearts aflutter to this day.

We suggest spending a minimum of three days in Florence. If time is on your side add as many days as you can (a week would be so dreamy) so you’re not rushing to see all of Florence’s iconic attractions. For many couples who have enjoyed a honeymoon in Tuscany, fondest memories are rooted in romantic strolls enjoyed in Florence.

Must-see attractions in Florence include Santa Maria del Fiore, Uffizi Gallery, Piazza della Signoria, Palazzo Pitti, Santa Maria Novella, Ponte Vecchio and The David housed at Galleria dell’Accademia.

Couples planning a Tuscan honeymoon should be sure to book a night at St. Regis Hotel Florence. Considered one of the city’s most luxurious hotels, St Regis Hotel Florence is located on the north bank of the Arno River. Sitting perched over Piazza Ognissanti, St. Regis Florence is a short 10-minute walk from Ponte Vecchio.

In 2011 the hotel unveiled a $25 million top-to-bottom renovation of a Renaissance pallazo (formerly the Grand Hotel) designed by Filippo Brunelleschi. Skip inside and you’ll find marble hallways, coffered frescoed ceilings, a harmony of antique and custom furnishings, gorgeous gilt mirrors and sparkling Murano glass chandeliers.

Book yourself a Prelium Deluxe Arno Room and you’ll have access to your own butler who unpacks your bags, does your ironing and brings complimentary tea and coffee to your bed each morning.

Chef Valeria Piccini’s creative local take on Tuscan cuisine is served in the upscale Winter Garden by Caino restaurant. The celebrated dining room has earned a Michelin star, drawing foodie fans from around the globe who eat here under a gorgeous stained-glass ceiling.

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