Italy is a dream destination for tourists and travellers. Its culture, heritage and exceptional cuisine are well worth the trip! Italy is divided into several regions, each more beautiful than the last. Tuscany is one of them, and a truly magnificent destination. We invite you to discover our selection of the 12 most beautiful villages in Tuscany that are a must-see!
This is certainly one of the most prestigious Tuscan villages in this selection.
Pienza is a superb village overlooking the Val d’Orcia in the southern part of Tuscany. Here you can admire a panoramic view of the Tuscan hills. Pienza is the birthplace of Pope Pius II. A palace and Duomo were built here in the 15th century on the initiative of Pius II. It is a very popular destination for those who appreciate medieval and Renaissance history.
During your walk, you can discover the beautiful Piazza Pio II, the Duomo and the Palazzo Piccolomini, from which you can admire a beautiful view of the surrounding countryside. The palace was designed by Bernardo Rossellino, a very famous Renaissance architect. The palace features murals by Pinturicchio, a contemporary of Michelangelo.
We also recommend a visit to the Museo Diocesano or the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, another work by Bernado Rossellino. Other churches and monasteries can also be visited in Pienza.
If you want to admire the Tuscan countryside, then the village of Cortona should satisfy you! This ancient Etruscan town has become one of the most beautiful villages in Tuscany. It was built on top of a hill and offers magnificent views. Stroll along the steep streets and discover monuments, churches and museums.
Make your way to Piazza della Repubblica, the lively heart of the village. It is lined with palaces. Via a narrow passageway, you can also reach Piazza Luca Signorelli. Here you will find the Museo dell’Accademia Etrusca e della Città di Cortona. If you’re a painting enthusiast, then head to the Museo Diocesano. Here you can admire two works by Fra Angelico. You can also visit Cortona’s churches and fortress.
The village of San Miniato lies on a hill overlooking the River Arno. This village was the seat of the Holy Germanic Empire in Tuscany in the 10th century. This medieval village still includes the tower built by Frederick II of Hohenstaufen. From here you can admire a superb view of the surrounding area of San Miniato.
Take a stroll through the narrow streets and squares, and soak up the unique medieval atmosphere. Discover the palaces and museums of the village. And don’t forget the Duomo, whose façade itself, adorned with majolica (Italian earthenware), is well worth a visit.
This village is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. San Gimignano is perched on a hill in the Val d’Elsa, in the province of Siena. A wall surrounds it, and you can see a good fifteen towers.
San Gimignano is in fact a medieval village. It is one of the most picturesque villages in Tuscany. You can explore the tower-houses built by wealthy merchants in the Middle Ages. Today, around 15 of them remain, but the village once boasted more than 70. The village is built around the well in Piazza della Cisterna and the collegiate church in Piazza del Duomo. You can visit the interior of the collegiate church and admire its frescoes.
You can also admire a panoramic view of the village by climbing to the top of the Torre Grossa, 50 metres high and built in the 14th century. You can also go to the rocca di Montestaffoli for another viewpoint.
The village has several museums, including the Museum of Sacred Art, the Archaeological Museum and the Civic Museum. There are also several churches and monuments, including the Duomo, the church of Sant’Agostino and the church of Santa Chiara.
In San Gimignano, you can try Vernaccia, a very good Italian white wine produced on site.
Monterrigioni is a village of authentic charm surrounded by a wall. The wall is protected by a parapet walk and has several towers. Monteriggioni represents one of the most important walled castles in the territory. It has incredibly preserved an intact structure as if time had never passed on the hill from which it elegantly dominates the surrounding landscape. It’s a must-see if you’re visiting Tuscany.
The current structure of the village is essentially the original one, the only changes it went through date back to the 16th century when the towers were lowered and some earth accumulated at the base of the walls and another dating back to 1921 when 3 of the 14 towers were reduced to the level of the walls. Who knows why?
This castle in village has a very consolidated notoriety because Monteriggioni was cited by the “Supreme Poet” Dante Alighieri in his most famous work, The Divine Comedy:
“As with circling round
Of turrets, Monteriggioni crowns his walls;
E’en thus the shore, encompassing the abyss,
Was turreted with giants, half their length
Uprearing, horrible, whom Jove from heaven
Yet threatens, when his muttering thunder rolls.”
– Dante Alighieri, Hell, canto XXXI, lines 40-45
In the village, you can visit the church and a pretty little museum. Or simply stroll along the ramparts.
Arezzo often features in rankings of the most beautiful villages in Tuscany. And rightly so! This ancient Etruscan city boasts a truly extraordinary architectural and religious heritage.
You can visit the Basilica of San Francesco and the famous frescoes by Piero della Francesco, among others. Don’t miss the Church of Santa Maria della Pieve and the famous houses of Petrarch and Vasari. The Medici castle is not far away either, towering majestically over the city.
It’s impossible to talk about the most beautiful villages in Tuscany without mentioning Chiusi. It’s a small Etruscan village overlooking the Val di Chiana and is considered to be one of the oldest towns in the country! You’ll be able to verify the truth of these claims by visiting the Etruscan labyrinth and the Roman catacombs that can still be seen there.
Chiusi is home to many archaeological and religious wonders, including the 6th-century cathedral, the 3rd-century necropolis and the Etruscan Museum, which traces the history of the village.
Right in the heart of the Apennine mountains, you can discover the pretty, craggy village of Collodi. It was here that the mother of the creator of Pinocchio (Carlo Lorenzini) was born. That’s why the artist took the pseudonym Collodi!
In this village, you can discover a park dedicated to Pinocchio. It’s a great way to step back in time! You can also plan a bucolic stroll through the gardens of Villa Garzoni, which date back to the 17th and 18th centuries.
Massa Marittima is a small town in the italian region of Tuscany with a population of about 8000. The city center is well known for it’s medieval architecture. Especially noteworthy is the cathedral and it’s surrounding square.
This Tuscan village has a vast religious heritage. You can visit the magnificent Duomo, reminiscent of Siena Cathedral, or the Torre del Candeliere, where you can admire a sublime view of the old town. You can also visit Piazza Garibaldi, where you can soak up the Italian way of life!
This ancient Etruscan hilltop city offers you the chance to admire some stunning scenery. Volterra is protected by gigantic walls. Here you can explore architectural marvels dating from the Etruscan period to the Renaissance. The city boasts numerous museums and works of art.
You can head for the bustling Piazza dei Priori, bordered by the Palazzo dei Priori. This is the oldest communal palace in Tuscany. You can also explore an ancient Roman theatre in the city.
Montalcino is one of the most beautiful villages in Tuscany. When you visit it, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time! You can discover the Middle Ages and all their secrets. You’ll discover the many wonders of the fortresses, ramparts, polygonal towers and even the Cistercian abbey of Sant-Antimo, right in the heart of Montalcino.
If you’re a wine-lover, Montalcino is the place for you too. The town is the capital of Brunello, the region’s red wine. You can discover many local specialities in this commune and marvel at Italian savoir-faire!
Right in the heart of the Maremma, in the green hills and close to the coast, you can discover the charming village of Capalbio. This is an ancient medieval village, whose ramparts still stand today and surround the village. It’s the ideal place if you want to enjoy the sun and sea on your holiday.
Capalbio is also home to a church and a castle. Not far away is the Giardino dei Tarocchi, designed by Niki de Saint Phalle. The garden features several giant sculptures covered in mosaics by the artist, as well as works by Jean Tinguely.
You can also explore the Monte Argentario nature reserve or the Giuncarico castle: Capalbio is packed with tourist activities not to be missed!