• Florence, Italy
    Florence
  • Tuscan hills
  • Val d'Orcia
  • italy-pienza-pedestrian-street
    Pienza
  • Pitigliano
  • italy-volterra-hillside-buildings
    Volterra
  • Lucca

Tour Questions? See our FAQ | Email [email protected]

Best of Tuscany in 11 Days Tour

from $3,995 per person + air

Single Supplement $825

See Dates & Prices

Starting in Florence, the capital of Tuscany, you'll discover the incredible Renaissance art treasures of the Bargello and Accademia, followed by a deep dive into the Tuscan countryside. Roll your way through the Chianti hills sipping wine and strolling through Siena. Breathe in the fresh air of the Val d'Orcia, where vineyards and cypress trees go on forever. Experience Maremma, the birthplace of "Spaghetti Westerns." Meet local family farmers and taste their fresh products. Learn how to make homemade pasta and savor every meal. Soak up the Tuscan sun — and fall in love with everything about this beautiful region. Join us for the Best of Tuscany in 11 Days!

Book a 2025 tour by 6/30/24 and save $100 per person! See details.

Dates & Prices

2024

2025

What's Included

You'll get at least 20 group sightseeing events — at no extra cost!

Here's what you'll see and do on our 2025 Best of Tuscany tour:

  • Florence orientation walk
  • Accademia Gallery (Michelangelo's David)
  • Florence neighborhood walking tour
  • Local market tasting
  • Bargello Museum
  • Mosaic workshop
  • Siena Duomo tour
  • Chianti wine tasting
  • Brunello winery tour and tasting
  • Olive oil tasting
  • Pienza Hermitage walking tour
  • Italian cooking class
  • Sovana Archeological Park 
  • Scenic hill town drive
  • Pitigliano walking tour
  • Via Cava walk
  • Butteri (Tuscan cowboy) ranch
  • Volterra walking tour
  • Lucca walking tour
  • Opera demonstration

Plus you'll get all this, too.

  • A small, friendly group of 24–28 people — half the size of most tour groups
  • Full-time services of a professional Rick Steves guide and local experts who will make the fascinating history, art, and culture of Tuscany come alive for you
  • All group transportation from Florence to Lucca
  • 10 nights' accommodations in memorable, centrally located hotels
  • All breakfasts and 5 other meals
  • All tips for guides and driver
  • A tour kit including a guidebook (when available) and a moneybelt
  • Guaranteed tour price, locked in the moment you make your deposit
  • Tour alum discount of $50 for each tour you've taken with us
  • Flexibility should you need to transfer or cancel your tour

Fine print: You are responsible for the cost of your drinks and free-time sightseeing. See our Tour Conditions for important details regarding everything listed above.

Group sightseeing events subject to change.

Itinerary

Day 1: Welcome to Tuscany

Our adventure begins in Florence, the capital of Tuscany. At 4 p.m., we'll gather at our centrally located hotel for a brief welcome meeting, followed by an orientation walk through our favorite Renaissance city. Along the way, we'll be introduced to the divinely domed Duomo and its storytelling Baptistery doors. Then we'll get to know each other over an aperitivo of Tuscan drinks and appetizers before setting you free to enjoy the city's evening ambiance and a light meal on your own.

Light walking: 2–4 miles throughout the day with some hills and stairs. No bus. Sleep in Florence.

Day 2: Renaissance and Everyday Florence

A local scholar will join us this morning as we tour the Accademia Gallery and study Michelangelo's majestic David. Afterward, we'll enjoy a neighborhood walking tour that connects us with the daily lives of Florentines — and their love for food and local markets. It's the perfect introduction to the rest of your day, which is free to explore more of Florence (including the Uffizi Gallery if you've booked ahead) and enjoy dinner on your own.

Strenuous walking: 2–8 miles throughout the day with lots of hills, stairs, and uneven terrain. No bus. Sleep in Florence.

Day 3: Florentine Treasures and Chianti

We'll begin our day at Florence's famed National Museum of Bargello. Housed in a 13th-century palace (and 18th-century prison!), the Bargello welcomes us with intimate looks at Renaissance masterpieces by Donatello, Michelangelo, della Robbia, and more. We'll end our morning with a visit to an impressive mosaic workshop, where we'll learn how local artisans keep this Renaissance art form alive. After a break for lunch, we'll meet our coach and driver and embark on a scenic journey over the hills of Chianti, ending at our family-owned countryside hotel. We'll be welcomed with an aperitivo, followed by a traditional Tuscan dinner together.

Strenuous walking: 2–8 miles throughout the day with lots of hills, stairs, and uneven terrain. Bus: 1½ hours. Sleep in the Chianti countryside.

Day 4: Savoring Siena

Today we'll head out to one of our favorite Tuscan hill towns: spirited Siena. With a local guide, we'll introduce you to the city's treasure-filled Duomo and learn the story of Siena's medieval city-state rivalry with Florence. We'll also gain insight into the city's beloved Palio horse races and learn why this tradition means so much to residents of every Sienese neighborhood. You'll have some free time to wander around Siena's charming streets — or relax with a drink and a view along the famous Campo. We'll return to our countryside hotel for some down time before enjoying a tasting of the world-famous Chianti wines.

Moderate walking: 2–6 miles throughout the day with some hills and stairs. Bus: 2 hours. Sleep in the Chianti countryside.

Day 5: Tuscany's Val d'Orcia

This morning we'll head to Tuscany's picturesque Val d'Orcia region and visit the town of Pienza. After a short scenic walk along the town wall, we'll venture underground to find a unique piece of Etruscan history. Following some free time, it's onto a family-run Brunello winery for lunch, tasting their delicious homemade prosciutto, and sipping their fine wine. After checking into our hill-top hotel, we'll finish our day enjoying a traditional Italian apericena together.

Moderate walking: 2–6 miles throughout the day with some hills and stairs. Bus: 3½ hours. Sleep near Pitigliano.

Day 6: Vie Cave and Tuscan Flavors

We'll begin our day at the Città del Tufo Archeological Park, an area rich in Etruscan-era sites and artifacts. We'll visit the Necropolis of Sovana and explore some of the cave dwellings carved into the cliffs, then take a walk on one of Tuscany's Cave Roads, "Le Vie Cave," pondering the mystery of these ancient passageways. This afternoon we'll gather for a fun and informative cooking class, where we'll learn time-tested pasta-making techniques and the secret to sauces. We'll enjoy the labors of our culinary creations over a lovely Tuscan meal together.

Moderate walking: 2–6 miles throughout the day with some hills and stairs. Bus: 1 hour. Sleep near Pitigliano.

Day 7: Hill Towns

Today we'll explore scenic Tuscany — wandering through timeless hill towns with pristine views. At the "Little Jerusalem" village of Pitigliano, a local will treat us to a history lesson that reveals how its nickname came to be. After free time for lunch, we'll head to a working family farm — and our hotel for the night. We'll learn how Tuscany's proud agricultural traditions are kept alive and sample the family's wine and olive oil. There will be plenty of time to kick back and relax before a leisurely dinner.

Strenuous walking: 2–8 miles throughout the day with lots of hills, stairs, and uneven terrain. Bus: 1½ hours. Sleep in Maremma.

Day 8: Maremma's Old West

This morning your guide will treat you to their favorite "locals-only" part of Tuscany. In the afternoon we'll mosey back to our hotel and working cattle ranch to see how modern-day cowboys and their horses keep Maremma's "Old West" traditions alive. Then we'll sit down and enjoy dinner together.

Strenuous walking: 2–8 miles throughout the day with lots of hills, stairs, and uneven terrain. Bus: 2 hours. Sleep in Maremma.

Day 9: Charming Volterra

Today we'll make our way to lovely Lucca, but first we'll stop at the charming hill town of Volterra. After free time for lunch, we'll meet a local guide for a walking tour including a visit to an alabaster workshop. Then we'll head on to the final stop of our Tuscan adventure: the impressive walled city of Lucca. After an orientation to the city, you'll be free to discover a tasty trattoria for dinner on your own.

Moderate walking: 2–6 miles throughout the day with some hills and stairs. Bus: 3½ hours. Sleep in Lucca.

Day 10: Puccini's Lucca

This morning we'll take a tour of charming Lucca, hometown of the great opera composer Giacomo Puccini. We'll stroll the elegant, pedestrian-friendly streets while learning about the history, music, and artistry that still thrive within this Renaissance walled city. After a tasty gelato break, we'll provide admission to the Puccini museum and you can visit on your own, or spend the afternoon wandering through Lucca, walking atop its scenic wall, or taking a short train ride to nearby Pisa. This evening we'll enjoy an opera demonstration before our final dinner together, sharing memories and toasting our new friends. Salute!

Moderate walking: 2–6 miles throughout the day with some hills and stairs. No bus. Sleep in Lucca.

Day 11: Tour Over After Breakfast

Breakfast is provided, but there are no group activities today. It's a breeze to reach the Florence or Pisa airports by train. Your guide will help you with any post-tour planning, leaving you well prepared for the road ahead. Grazie e ciao!

Itinerary specifics subject to change.

Physical Demands

Our tours are physically active! It's an essential part of the Rick Steves tour experience. On our Best of Tuscany in 11 Days tour — among other things — you'll need to happily…

  1. Carry/roll your luggage over uneven pavement (possibly several blocks) and up stairways to reach your hotel, then up several flights of stairs to reach your room.
  2. Be on your feet, walking and standing for up to three hours, indoors and outdoors, in all weather conditions.
  3. Sleep with street noise and no (or weak) air conditioning.
  4. After orientation and transportation lessons, be able to navigate towns and cities on your own.

Reviews

Jacqueline

Tour: 05/27/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

No complaints. Well balance. Great guides. Interesting experiences. WOW moment: Tiny wine “bar” in Florence where we enjoyed a glass of wine in a plastic cup and a local bruschetta served by and older gentleman behind an ancient wooden counter. Totally unique experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"See previous section…I forgot to tab"

Jean

Tour: 05/27/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great guides and fellow travelers were very friendly.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sleeping in a castle "

Petula

Tour: 05/27/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I had a wonderful time. The guides were outstanding, the accommodations were great, the food was wonderful, and the off-the-beaten-path locations made the trip remarkable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to choose, but one thing that sticks out in my mind is watching the residents of Pitigliano working together to decorate the city streets for the Feast of Corpus Christi. Watching them create bright, beautiful designs was enchanting, but watching folks of all ages work together was even more wonderful. "

John

Tour: 05/20/24

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall, VERY GOOD! Karin was an outstanding tour guide. Itinerary still needs a few tweaks but this tour is very young. 1st bus driver was not up to the task. Only had 1 meal that was not up to RS standards.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking tour of Volterra and view of surrounding countryside."

Jeannie

Tour: 05/20/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour I took to Tuscany was so interesting and filled with gorgeous views, sights and wonderful food and wine!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several. I was deeply moved by the experience of visiting the American Cemetery outside of Florence, where a local guide explained the history of the American involvement in that part of the world during WWII. Likewise, our visit to the Jewish "Ghetto" of Pitigliano; the synagogue and caves where the jews of the town carried out much of their work. Learning the history was enlightening for me. "

Amy

Tour: 05/20/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first trip with Rick Steves. It was absolutely fantastic from start to finish. Everything and I do mean everything was top notch. I have food sensitivities and was taken care with wonderful substitutions at every stop on our trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The whole tour of Tuscany was a wow moment for me. I think one of the memorable stops was our tour of the American cemetery. It was definitely one worth seeing. Ironically this tour came the day before Memorial Day for us. "

Michael

Tour: 05/20/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very full and enriching, and well planned

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing David in the Accademia for the first time."

Charles H

Tour: 05/20/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Too many good to single out any one thing

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Really liked the David and The Castle"

Kathleen

Tour: 05/20/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As always with the Rick Steve's tours: superb guide and off the grid experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Probably Gargonza, though there were so many others!"

Kim

Tour: 05/20/24

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was my first Rick Steves tour and I was very, very impressed. Our tour guide was incredibly well informed, helpful, and entertaining. I wasn't sure what to expect and was a bit concerned about the overall cost; but having everything taken care of and getting to visit some out of the way places made the overall value of the tour far in excess of what it cost.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Getting to see the hermitage cave complex on the private property in Pienza was incredible; as were the Etruscan tombs we got see."

Kirk

Tour: 05/20/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Well organized. Exposed us to the diversity of Tuscany, from the large and crowded city of Florence to the smallest of Tuscan hill towns. The food was excellent and local guides were great. It was enlightening to see the most ancient of Tuscan history up to the more recent WWII history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"As is typical of a Rick Steves tour, nearly every day has one or more wow moments. To choose only one, I would have to say that Gargonza was ganzo!"

Qun

Tour: 05/15/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip to the "Best of Tuscany" is gratifying. During these 11 days, I learned and experienced so much about this region. The tour was carefully arranged by selecting unique medieval villages, tasting exquisite local wines and olive oil, participating in an Italian cooking class, experiencing Italian Opera, etc.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was so impressed by the civil architecture design and city-state secular governing, which are still not fully adopted by some countries in the 21st century."

David

Tour: 05/15/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide Eleanora "Ella" was outstanding and really made the tour memorable and interesting.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Tuscan countryside vistas, the castle hotels of Castello di Gargonza and Hotel della Fortezza, and the hill town of Volterra."

Michael

Tour: 05/15/24

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our tour of the best of Tuscany was on of our finest ever tours. We had a wonderful bunch of about 14 people in our group and the whole tour was filled with wonderful experiences of great times around Tuscany and interactions with our traveling conpanions in the group. We ate together, spent time in good hotels together and exclaimed together when we shared experiences we all enjoyed. Rick Steves, Eleonora, your generous and competent hq person were all part of it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Listening to the soprano and piano player playing Puccini."

Marie

Tour: 05/15/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

lovely tour that includes locations less visited

Robert

Tour: 05/13/24

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This tour delivered what I wanted - an introduction to Tuscany, its people, culture and history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One of my favorite parts of the tour was the visit to the family winery and the dinner/wine tasting. They grew the grapes and made the wine; they grew the wheat and made the pasta, they raised the pigs and made the salami and prosciutto "

Millie

Tour: 05/13/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steves Tour and we thought it was beautifully managed and we enjoyed meeting the nice people in our group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was having lunch at the winery. "

Richard

Tour: 05/13/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Was our first tour. Thought Cecilia was a terrific person and great tour leader. It was good to get up and go with a schedule of activities. Local guides were very good, as well. We found several people on the tour we would be happy to call our friends. Thought we got a good overview of Tuscany.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our pregnant daughter was in a severe car accident at home and we communicated only to Cecilia about it. She, and the baby are ok. Cecilia was so caring and kind. At the end of the tour, she presented us with a small baby gift to bring home to our daughter. Also loved the winery."

Michael

Tour: 05/13/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Ceccilia was awesome. So much know and organization! The bus driver was highly skilled and professional. The accommodations were unique and interesting. I loved the local guides with their knowledge and I learned immensely

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many but the duomo in sienna was over the top and I really enjoyed the Gargonza town"

James

Tour: 05/13/24

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Overall, we had a good experience with our outstanding guide (CeCe) and outstanding local guides making up for adequate accommodations and somewhat disappointing food.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Driving through the beautiful Tuscan countryside. Sleeping in a beautiful hilltop town in Chianti."

Robert

Tour: 05/06/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Delilah

Tour: 05/06/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was just incredible. Very organized. My husband and I always knew that all details were taken care of… Rick Steves tours came highly recommended and this tour did not disappoint in any way!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The working farm/winery lunch and wine tasting at Santa Giulia. Food, service, and wine were perfect. The farm was beautiful. Our hosts went above and beyond. . "

Brian

Tour: 05/06/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our primary guide, Francesco made our trip an amazing experience through his caring and supportive explanations of the many sites visited and ready accessibility for any questions or concerns. He made the difference!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Francesco enhanced opera singer Silvana’s humorous performance of a Puccini composition in our Lucca hotel’s courtyard which helped me appreciate and understand why so many people enjoy operas. Priceless."

Robert

Tour: 05/06/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As usual, our Rick Steves' guide was wonderful. The guides are why we keep returning for more RS tours. Francesco was informative, funny and did a great job of showing us his "home" part of Italy. The Tuscan countryside was gorgeous, and we learned so much about Renaissance art, the Etruscan civilization and much more.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite moment was the tour of the hermits' cave in Pienza - as it is privately owned, it felt like we were present at on ongoing archeological discovery (which is actually true), especially when we were shown the very recently discovered Etruscan carvings."

Karen

Tour: 05/06/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved every day of this tour! Great variety, fun experiences, good guides, fascinating history and beautiful scenery!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can't pick one! We loved the tour of Siena...Roberto was an interesting and endlessly entertaining guide! Loved staying in the castle in Gargonza! The tour of the hermitage was an incredible experience! We loved the inclusion of the American Cemetery and the Gothic Line museum and bunker! We loved walking on the Cave Roads! We loved Castiglione della Pescaia...what could be better than a medieval town with a beach!! We loved the night at the ranch with the accordion player! And much more! "

Larry

Tour: 05/06/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Absolutely everything was wonderful, perfectly executed, well-paced, educational, enjoyable, everything we love about Rick Steves tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Tie between knowledge gained on Gothic Line presentation and the group dinner at the ranch near Maremma "

Deborah

Tour: 05/06/24

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The experience was very good. We had a wonderful and informative tour guide, a nice group of people to travel with and nice places to stay along with good food and wine!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The scenery everywhere was wonderful."

Michael

Tour: 04/22/24

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great overall tour...another group of interesting and nice travelers. Karin our guide was very professional and gave us great advice beyond her guidance, such as restaurants outside the group, sites we might want to see outside the planned tour itself, etc.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was really moved by the American Cemetery outside Florence."

Phil

Tour: 04/22/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thoroughly enjoyed the Best of Tuscany tour. It fulfilled all my expectations for

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Listening to soprano singer Silvana Froli sing Puccini arias for our group in our hotel in Lucca"

Arthur

Tour: 04/22/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide, Karin, was amazing. Most of the hotel stays were also great. Saw a lot. Learned a lot.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The castle, fortress, and agrotourism hotels were the best! Seeing the Butteri work the cattle was cool, and the Gothic Line bunker tour was also very amazing."

Sandra

Tour: 04/22/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We enjoyed all the various activities. We loved our overall tour guide and liked our local guides as well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Agro tourism farm and surrounding area including beach. "

David

Tour: 04/22/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is my first time on a Rick Steves tour, and I find myself totally on board with the Steves’ approach to European travel. I really like the “no grumpy people aboard” admonishment, and the emphasis on a certain level of self-sufficiency (e.g., carrying my own bags). Traveling with a right-sized group of fellow travelers with whom you can share new experiences and cultural insights is far superior to traveling alone or with a partner. And my Rick Steves tour was an excellent value.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Castle Hotel. My first sight of the Castillo di Gargonza! I knew that the tour would include a stay in a castle, but I assumed an old building in an urban setting turned into a hotel. I was not expecting a perfectly preserved 13th Century hilltop fortress, complete with keep, isolated by its lonesome in the middle of the Tuscan countryside. The two-day stay in the Fortress Orsini was another stroke of genius by Rick Steves, but with Gargonza he has invented time travel!"

Susan

Tour: 04/22/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The itinerary was active, educational and varied filled with wonderful scenery, museums, unique lodging and experiences coupled with a great group of interesting travelers. Our guide, Karin, added lots of humor and fun to our tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"More than one - WWII American Cemetery outside Florence, Santa Giulia Winery Lunch and Maremma Farm Stay"

Sharon

Tour: 04/22/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great tour even though we had rain at the beginning and at the end.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Tuscany countryside. "

Veronique

Tour: 04/22/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first visit to Tuscany, and the tour far exceeded my expectations. The size of the group was perfect. Our guides were very personable, knowledgeable and engaging, and the tour was very well planned, giving us an experience of city life, its countryside and beach alike. The hotels were very comfortable, well located and often unique (converted fortress etc), the food delicious, and I felt the tour gave us access to sights few other tourists are lucky enough to experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Having a soprano sing Puccini's arias to our group on the 100th anniversary of his death on our last evening was very special."

Frank

Tour: 04/22/24

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Really enjoyed the tour with our tour guide, the local tour guides and destinations being the highlights. There was some duplication of small town visits (Sorvana/Sovana/Volterra/Pitigliano/Pienza/etc). This duplication tended to keep the group moving between hotels every 2 days which wasn’t ideal. A more immersive experience at a place like Volterra, Pienza, or Sorano would be preferable with hotel stay of 3 nights.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Castello di Gargonza is an extraordinary place and Neri, his wife and daughter were wonderful hosts. Truly a wow moment. Thoroughly enjoyed the group experience there, the trip to Siena. . My sense is the group would have been happy to spend another day at the Castello with some walks or outings in nearby as an option. "

Bradley

Tour: 04/22/24

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall, my experience was very good. I did feel that it was a little hectic at times and could have used a bit more relaxing downtime.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I love the small, medieval towns and the history of each. The stay in Gargonza was especially nice to me, could have spent another day there and the food was outstanding."

Michael

Tour: 04/22/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was the best RS tour we've been on yet! Tremendous experiences, guides, art, culture, food, music... I could go on and on. The contrast of the art and culture of Florence with the stunning ancient beauty of the Tuscan hill towns was perfect! Our guide Karin was THE BEST!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me, exploring the narrow streets of Volterra. Every view was just jaw-dropping. For my wife, walking through the Uffizi and not quite believing she was standing right next to the works of Michelangelo, Donatello, Da Vinci, etc."

Charlotte R

Tour: 04/15/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my second Rick Steves Tour and it was so wonderful. The accommodations, the food, and the experienced tour guides made everything very enjoyable. There were so many things to see!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many "wow" moments! Walking thru the Etruscan Ruins was really remarkable and something I will never forget."

Charles

Tour: 04/15/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I think we lucked out with the most wonderful tour mates. We enjoyed every minute with them. Francesco and Andrea were t terrific tour managers. There knowledge and love of the area was apparent every second of the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Gargonza . Beautiful. We would have appreciated more time there. "

Suzanne

Tour: 04/15/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our 6th RS tour, and our 3rd extended time in Italy. The tour was extremely stimulating and interesting, as guides both from RS and local always have much to share. Even though we had been to several of the towns before, it was as if they were new to us due to what RS had planned for us to do and see. This was a great balance of learning, food and drink , staying in very interesting and comfortable hotels, fortress, hamlet and agriturismo. Our guides were exceptional in every way.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the winery experience. "

Joan

Tour: 04/15/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Best of Tuscany tour exceeded our expectations. We were fortunate to have a tour guide and an apprentice, both from Tuscany.They gave us a deeper understanding of what it was like to grow up in Tuscany, and live and work there as adults. They were not only very familiar with the places we visited but were close to the people we met. I have visited Italy three other times and was in awe of the experiences we had each and every day, too many to list here and more than listed in the itinerary.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "Wow" moment has to be from the last night of our tour which ended in Lucca. Lucca was the opera composer Puccini's home. Our tour guide arranged for a personal friend of his, the world famous opera soprano Silvana, to give us a private performance at our hotel. As we sipped champagne we listened to several arias from Puccini's operas. The atmosphere was very relaxed and Silvana was funny and fun and the performance was just perfect for our group. It was a once in a lifetime event. "

Renee

Tour: 04/15/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour of Tuscany was beyond anything I could have imagined. I was truly changed for the better. Francesco and Andrea made our time in Italy a true dream come true.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The accumulative knowledge all of the guides have."

John

Tour: 04/15/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Francesco, our tour guide, and Andrea, his assistant were outstanding, very good with logistics and keeping the group moving and together. Every individual guide we had was also truly outstanding in different areas - these were well chosen. We arrived in Florence a few days early and stayed later in Italy, and this helped us enjoy the tour. Our group was uniformly excellent travelers, caring, considerate, and we enjoyed them all.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This was hard to say. The sights in Florence were great, especially the art. I also thought the presentation and visit to the Florence American Cemetery and Memorial was really moving. Volterra was very interesting and beautiful. We enjoyed being “off the beaten path” in small hill top towns in Tuscany. The walking was challenging but not too bad."

Sarah

Tour: 04/15/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Every element of this tour was phenomenal. Our guides, the locations, accommodations, logistics, the group. I learned a ton, met some amazing people, saw unbelievable things, ate incredible food--we will definitely go back to Tuscany AND be back on another Rick Steves Europe Tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can't pick one moment--but the overwhelming feeling of welcoming and inclusion I had the entire time is something I will never forget. I will say there was an evening when we got a tour of our hamlet castle/hotel in Gargonza, Castello di Gargonza, and we all just sort of looked at each other as we walked around and went "look at where we are...!" and really connected with one another as to how special this place and our experience together was!"

Judith

Tour: 04/15/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our second Rick Steves tour, the first being Sicily. (Highly recommended!!) I couldn’t imagine our experience being any better. From start to finish, our guide Francesco was welcoming, enthusiastic, helpful and knowledgeable. Attention to detail seems to be a hallmark of RS tours - every day we had a fun schedule that balanced guided tours with opportunities to explore on your own. We lucked out with an additional tour guide, Andrea, who was training to do the Tuscany tour. Amazing guy!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many wonderful memories! But in the category of going the extra mile (which is just the usual for Rick Steves folks!) we had a private performance of Puccini arias from a well-known Italian singer. Unbelievable! And in a stroke of luck we had an opera singer in our tour group. Francesco arranged for him to serenade another group member for her birthday, which was celebrated at our group dinner following a cooking class. You can’t even imagine how personal and professional RS guides are. "

James Michael

Tour: 04/08/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Karin and Chiara, and all the local guides were excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The opera demo was a divine experience."

Norean

Tour: 04/08/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip exceeded my expectations! Guides Karin & Chiara were wonderful and knowledgeable, and driver Carmine was amazing getting us around on challenging roads. This was our second Rick Steves tour and did not disappoint. The mix of cities like Florence and countryside like the castle at Gorganza were a great contrast. Just like the first trip, the knowledge shared by the tour guides and local guides were great! Things I would never learn traveling on my own through the area. Fun group!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many it's hard to pick! Staying in the castle and seeing the hilltop cities of Tuscany were amazing! So much history in a beautiful area. Walking the wall at Lucca, learning about the Etruscan people, seeing the olive oil processing, the wineries - all so much fun! I loved the contrast between the cities we visited with the urban activity, and then the country, waking up to birds chirping and the quiet of the countryside. Thoroughly enjoyed the trip and our fun group to travel with!"

Louis

Tour: 04/08/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fantastic tour guides who partnered with local guides who provided an even more immersive experience in certain locations

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the site where Maxiumus in Gladiator (my favorite movie) walked to meet his family in the movie. Beautiful scene in Val. D Orcia outside of Pienza"

Ila

Tour: 04/08/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was our first time in Italy and we were blown away by the history and the culture! Great experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had so many “wow” moments it’s hard to pick just one. I guess standing next to a sculpture or church that was created or built in the 12th or 13th century was the most outstanding. "

Eric

Tour: 04/08/24

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great tour leaders, extremely unique places to stay, wonderful people on the tour

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Staying in a little hamlet, Castello dl Gorganza, with its own watch tower and church"

Cynthia

Tour: 04/08/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everything about it was great- experiences and tour guides.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Actually have 2- the American cemetery was very moving and the demonstration by the butteri was interesting"

Judy

Tour: 04/08/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a great tour experience due to the size of the group, the Rick Steves guide(s), the lodging, the meals and the places we visited. It checked all my boxes for a great trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Going to the mosaics workshop in Florence was a huge "wow"! Witnessing the craftsmanship that produced unbelievably beautiful works of art using stone was jaw-dropping!"

John

Tour: 04/08/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The effort put into developing the itinerary is much appreciated. This trip isn't just about art, history, and wine (although wine does have a significant role). Interacting and getting immersive with the locals at each of our tour stops was just as rewarding as getting to explore 2300 year old hermit caves in Pienza. Each lodging choice had its own character and unique attributes. The pacing and scheduling was well thought out and executed. The bus drivers get a standing ovation and bravo.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Those hermit caves in Pienza and the story behind their discovery and gradual uncovering. It felt like a special privilege to stand in a place carved out of rock that had been used as shelter thousands of years ago by humans who were the ultimate isolationists. Many thanks to the owners of the property for allowing our visit and for their preservation and conservation commitment. Told my wife I would like to go back and volunteer to dig and unbury more of the history in those caves this year."

Carmen

Tour: 04/08/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The team leaders along with the local guides were excellent. The choice of sites was well planned and worthwhile

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Florence was WOW especially out tour with Luca visiting the museum workshop housing the David"

Christa

Tour: 04/01/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The main guide and all of the local guides were fantastic

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The mosaic workshop was amazing and unexpected coupled with the alabaster artisans. Seeing these masters at work was a highpoint"

Paul

Tour: 04/01/24

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great experience overall. Guide Francesco was excellent and the choice of hotels, locations, foods, cultural experiences all added to the experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My picnic lunch in Siena’s crescent-shaped square was sublime. But the American Cemetery Florence visit was unexpectedly moving."

Thomas

Tour: 11/06/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steves tour, and it was a magical experience. From the people on the tour with us to the incredible places we saw and stayed at, it was just incredible. x

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is hard to pick out a single moment, but I would have to say the views in and around Pitigliano were breathtaking. "

Karen

Tour: 11/06/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip itinerary included the many treasures of Florence, the Florence American Cemetery, the Chianti area halmlet (Castello Di Gargonza), Siena, the incredibly beautiful area of Val d'Orcia, Pienza, Pitigliano, Portoferraio and the island of Elba (including the iron mines), Volterra, and Lucca.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I absolutely loved driving through the very scenic Val d'Orcia!!! One magnificent view after another."

Heather

Tour: 11/06/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Every day was a real treat. History, art, architecture, culture, food and wine.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The unexpected pre-dinner musical treat on our last night managed to outshine even the numerous previous wow moments on the tour! The tenor was outstanding. The pianist equally so. It felt so authentically Italian. "

Jeri

Tour: 11/06/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was absolutely incredible and was beyond my expectations. Our tour guide, Alfio, was exceptional and kept us informed as well as surprised with each days new adventure. Everything was so organized and well thought out throughout the entire tour. While traveling on the bus with Alfio, we learned Italian phrases, history of the city or village we were traveling to, and were entertained with Italian music or opera.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Each day of the tour had a "wow" moment which I did not expect. Each day kept getting better and better. Never a dull moment. My favorite wow moment was the last night when we were surprised to have a pianist and a tenor surprise with a private performance of 5 Arias of Puccini's music. The performance was fantastic and took my breath away. It was totally unexpected and was the icing on the cake of a wonderful 12 day tour of Tuscany."

Deborah

Tour: 11/06/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Janet

Tour: 10/30/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had never taken an organized tour vacation before and was concerned that I would not like it, but it was the best trip I have ever taken. Wonderful locations, excellent guides, delicious food, and great travel companions

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have to choose two moments (out of many).... walking into our hotel "apartment" in Gargonza, and visiting the archeological site on Nico's family farm. Oh wait.... I have to mention the amazing views of the hills in Val d'Orcia"

Dan

Tour: 10/30/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first organized land tour and we went into it with some apprehension but those feelings quickly disappeared. This was the best vacation we have ever taken. Good weather, great guides, spectacular locations awesome travel buddies and outstanding food and wine.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Can't choose just one because there were so many. The first glimpse of the rolling Tuscan hills and the accommodations at castle Gargonza with its tower view of the Tuscan countryside are my most memorable. "

Beth

Tour: 10/30/23

Annette

Tour: 10/30/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The "Best of Tuscany" tour was one of my favorite Rick Steves' tours because of the incredible food, wine, countryside and people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was the view across the Tuscan landscape from Pienza. It's not surprising that is where the iconic scene from the movie "Gladiator" was shot. "

Cynthia

Tour: 10/30/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the variety of experiences and destinations we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several - seeing David in Florence, staying at Gargonza and La Moscadella, walking the wall around Lucca."

Matthew

Tour: 10/30/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour exceeded our high expectations. Our guide, Eleanora, was the best we'd ever had and was superlative in every way. The bus rides from location to location were very enjoyable as the views through the windows were consistently stunning and the bus itself was very comfy. Our group was very congenial too--intelligent, curious, considerate, and fun-loving. We went to many sites we would never have seen on our own, such as the charming hilltown of Montecchielo and the Santa Guilia winery.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Climbing the tower at Castello di Gargonza. This hamlet was special and a perfect first stop after leaving Florence. The views from the top of the tower were magnificent.; this experience was indeed a sublime moment. The medieval origins of the place really sunk in. Another "wow" moment equally exciting was the recital of Puccini arias that we enjoyed at our hotel in Lucca, home of the composer. It made for a rapturous conclusion to the tour."

Robert

Tour: 10/30/23

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Some of the hotels were out dated with very little room and the breakfast was just adequate. There was really no need to travel to Elba because most of shops were closed for the season.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The surprise visit to the American Cemetery outside of Florence. It was breathtaking and a privilege to see the thousands of American heros buried there. "

Susie

Tour: 10/30/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was a great mix of experiences. starting with the art in Florence, continuing with beautiful Tuscan villages and towns, and concluding in quaint Lucca. Throughout the food and wine was amazing. Ella, our guide, went above and beyond looking after us, giving up her free day to organize an extra outing for us on Elba.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our stay at Gargonza, an old village that has been restored and converted into accommodations. It was a unique experience. "

Debbie

Tour: 10/16/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour itinerary was excellent and exceeded my expectations. It included a nice mix of art, history, culture, food and wine! The other tour members were awesome, which made the tour even more special. Our tour guide, Karen, was fabulous! Being on tour with her was like going to Italy and hanging out with family! She was so knowledgeable, explained things well, told many fun stories of her family and went out of her way to set up tours on our free day in Elba when it was raining.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were too many to choose from so here are some top picks: the Mosaic workshop, the local guides making the art/history/culture come to life, Volterra, Lucca and the white pebble beaches at Elba."

Karen

Tour: 10/16/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steves tour, our 30th Anniversary and it exceeded my expectations! The geography was stunning, the towns amazing, the artwork truly inspiring, the food delicious, the wines without fault, the guides fantastic, our driver, Danielle, was a magician, the Cathedrals and Sacred spaces filled my heart and soul and the people were so welcoming, friendly, down to earth, genuinely good people!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"THe Castle in Gorganza"

Joseph

Tour: 10/16/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Accommodations were good to excellent. Breakfast was Excellent-Every day! Tours and daily tour guides were superb and many were passionate and committed to their culture, history, art and food. Our tour guide was Karin Kibby. I can't add enough superlatives. She was incredibly knowledgeable in ALL things Italy! Smart, witty, extremely personable and helped the whole group bond and have a total WOW experience. Karin was just awesome. The tour itself, especially the Val D'Orcia was superb!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to narrow down....Mostly the Val D'Orcia! Second, seeing Castello di Gargonz, the first time, in a mist and almost dreamlike fog. La Moscadella, Volterra( our guide Annie !!) Pitigliano, Pienza, Santa Giulia Winery, San Gregorio Agriturismo, Montichiello, Florence American Cemetery and Memorial, Lucca(despite the rain we encountered, AND our guide Gabrielle.) Siena was excellent, but I feel we needed more time there? Via Cava was a great history lesson- keep focus on the Etruscans!!"

Sara

Tour: 10/16/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great guides, and of course the art, architecture, culture!

Andi

Tour: 10/16/23

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I enjoyed this tour. My favorite memories will be my fellow tour members and the towns and specific sitesI have never visited. I particularly enjoyed Elba and the iron mine tour! That was sort of a last minute addition due to the rainy weather we were experiencing during our "free day" on the island. Please add this in somewhere. It was a fascinating experience and the guide was excellent!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really enjoyed our hilltop stay in Gargonza.That was truly a unique and wonderful experience!"

William

Tour: 10/16/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fantastic guide; wonderful, friendly group of like-minded travelers. Great itinerary.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Gargonza Castle hamlet. So captivating and unique. Unlike any previous experience I’ve had. I skipped the day trip to Sienna (we had been there previously on our own travels) just to explore Gargonza and its surroundings more thoroughly. Felt like I went back into history. I wanted to soak it all up. My 2nd “wow” moment was touring the mosaic workshop in Florence. I am not an artist but the unbelievable care and skill needed to create one of the pieces of art filled me with awe. Amazing!"

Rod

Tour: 10/16/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Top notch; Rick Steve tour guide, local expert guides, and bus driver. Lodging was varied and all unique. Meals were representative of local cuisine and fine. Tour destinations were all of great interest.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"How well the Rick Steve tour guide managed the clients well being and enjoyment and every aspect of the tour. "

Nancy

Tour: 10/05/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour of Tuscany was wonderful. I loved visiting the little hill towns. We ate delicious food on the tour. I have been on 9 Rick Steves tours and have had excellent tour guides, but David was the best of the best. A++. Having him for our tour guide really made the tour special.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"As usual, there were many. I especially enjoyed our pasta cooking class at La Moscadella and the surprise concert by David's band there. Also, local tour guides Nico in Pienza and Annie in Volterra were really excellent."

Anne

Tour: 10/05/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had an excellent guide. We went to places we never would have had access to. We met lots of friendly and interesting fellow tourists.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many! If I have to choose, it was tasting bread that was drizzled with the first pressing of olive oil that was one hour old? We relished it as we ate outdoors at a farm, among their olive trees."

Julie

Tour: 10/05/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had an excellent time on our tour of Tuscany! David was an incredible guide who was informative, caring and fun. He went out of his way to make our trip memorable. I was so impressed with how professional yet personable he was. Thank you David and Rick Steves for an outstanding experience exploring Tuscany!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We loved staying at Gorgonza and Moscedella! Rich in history and wonderful to actually meet the families who lived there and worked the land. I loved spending the day on Elba. Swimming in the sea and soaking up the sun in October was magical. "

Susan

Tour: 10/05/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was much more than I expected it to be. Some of the accommodations were truly outstanding. Our guide David was amazing. All the impromptu music on the tour was really special.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beauty and diversity of the Tuscany region."

Pauline

Tour: 10/05/23

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Visiting Tuscany was a 20-year goal of mine. I loved every stop on our tour. We were able to experience so much. Our tour guide was knowledgeable and entertaining. As a solo female traveler, I felt safe and included. One stressor during the trip was my inadequate amount of Euros. Based on material I had read in the tour materials (or in an article on the website), I understood that I could exchange cash at banks in Italy. That was not true. I don’t use an ATM. Better communication is needed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

" Visiting the Etruscan Museum during our free time in Volterra was extraordinary. The opportunity to see the collection of artifacts from this pre-Roman civilization was truly a gift and one I wouldn’t have known about but for this trip. Sadly time was limited so the group of us ran out of time to see everything. We should have moved through the exhibit faster, but had taken our time with it all, soaking in every remarkable display. "

Marianne

Tour: 10/05/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was very well-organized and executed. There was a very good balance between appealing scenery, historical/archaeological, and practical hands-on experiences. Size of tour group seemed ideal, as there were plenty of people to share experiences with, while not feeling overwhelmed by a crowd. (This is important to me as I am a confirmed introvert and worried about having too much of personal interactions.)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Simply being in Tuscany I think qualified as a "Wow" moment for me, the spectacular food and wine definitely would be on my list, but I think that overall the one single "Wow" that stood out was staying in the medieval castle/village of Gargonza. Living right in the midst of the history of this place was awe-inspiring, and the chance to be only the second group to ascend to the top of their recently renovated Tower was an unforgettable experience."

Heidi

Tour: 10/02/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Really great tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Staying at La Moscadella and the Medieval Hamlet"

Karen

Tour: 10/02/23

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Francesco and our driver were awesome as were the local guides. The one thing that I would have preferred was different was the tour of the Accademia. We spent a lot of time in one room and then about 30 minutes at the statue of David and then were given 10 minutes to see the rest of the gallery, use the bathroom and meet outside. I would have preferred less time at each of the two area and more time to look around.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I enjoyed the pasta making experience. "

Monica

Tour: 10/02/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I felt I knew what to expect from the tour itinerary but this trip definitely exceeded my expectations in all ways...experiences, lodging, education, beauty, food and fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many where I was amazed by the beauty and the age of everything but my total wow moment was experiencing our lodging at La Moscadella."

Gregory

Tour: 09/21/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everything was great Tours, lodging, food, David.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"David and his band surprising us after dinner with a concert."

Jean

Tour: 09/21/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

To say that our Tuscany tour was a trip of a lifetime is an understatement. The 12 days spent with our absolutely fantastic tour guide, David, exceeded our expectations. David brought Italy alive with his knowledge of its history as well as the everyday workings of its government and citizens. David filled our bus rides with such interesting facts and observations we were able to feel his love and loyalty to his country which broadened our appreciation of Tuscany.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many! We visited the Florence American Cemetery where over 4,000 American soldiers who died in Italy during World War II were buried. A very sobering experience that I wouldn't have wanted to miss. Also the Isle of Elba!! Breathtaking!! Then there was the night David's band played a gig for us after dinner!! WOW!!"

Karen

Tour: 09/21/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful in-depth tour of Tuscany. The food was fantastic; the hotels were lovely, the city guides were amazing; our guide David was incredible. The itnerary was well thought out. Could not have asked for a more thoughtful itinerary. Our travel group was so fun to be with , It all was an off the charts 11 on a scale of 1-10 (my reference to the Spinal Tap movie)

Favorite "WOW" moment

" Many WOW's on this tip -The afternoon at the Maremma farm visit- seeing first hand working with the cattle- Giddy-up ,indeed! Also the visit to the seeing the excavations in Pienza was something out of an Indiana Jones movie- fascinating to see history coming alive. "

Claudia

Tour: 09/21/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was so far beyond what I could have imagined. Every moment was special and every day a new adventure! I had never been but always dreamed of visiting Tuscany. I would highly recommend a Rick Steve’s tour and am planning my next one. All of the people in our group were so great, we had so much fun together.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Can’t choose just one: Swimming in the Mediterranean Sea! Our final meal together, and the amazing entertainment from our fabulous tour guide, David Torde. "

Jorge

Tour: 09/21/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful selection of towns and villages. Food, hotels, guides and transportation were impeccable

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The views in Tuscany are a masterpiece "

Susan

Tour: 09/21/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

What's not to love about Tuscany?!? The art, architecture, countryside, and of course the food, were all outstanding. Local guides were very good, but our tour guide David was truly extraordinary! We had a great group of people on this tour. Everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves and mingled well. Its a good mix of larger and smaller towns with an appropriate mix of group and free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the hill towns, learning their history from the guides, and popping into churches or museums. Always something to see and later discuss over some tasty food and wine!"

Teresa

Tour: 09/18/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour covered areas of Tuscany I had not seen before. We were blessed with beautiful weather and scenery. We had wonderful guides and amazing accommodations. The food was outstanding and plentiful. Overall a great tour and I would highly recommend it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I enjoyed our three night stay at La Moscadella, The Isabella Experience. Beautiful setting, great accommodations and food as well as a fun cooking class. "

Bret

Tour: 09/18/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We were able to experience and learn much more than we would have without our tour guides. Local insight was invaluable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Realizing that the Etruscan works that we were looking at are 2800-2900 years old. Unreal!"

Daniel

Tour: 09/18/23

Overall rating: rating 2 of 5

This was our seventh tour. The first six were outstanding, inspirational, and thoroughly fun. The tour guide arrived late working on another tour she said and in doing she told us we weren’t important. At the end of the tour, she left early in the breakfast because she had something else to do. She lacked any warmth whatsoever, literally belittled tour members who answered her questions wrongly. In summary, if she had been the guide on our 1st tour, we wouldn’t have made a second tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The local guides Ana was particularly good and gave us a great tour of Volterra "

Steven

Tour: 09/07/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steves tour, and it exceeded my expectations. The guides were great; I really wouldn't have gotten half as much out of most of the places we went without them. The accommodations were better than I expected. We had a nice mix of filled and open time. Most of all, our group of travelers was really fun and we thoroughly enjoyed one another, which made the whole trip more special.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lots to choose from, but I'll go with the emotional stop at the Florence-American cemetery and recalling the sacrifices made in the much-less-publicized campaign to liberate Italy. "

Lydia

Tour: 09/07/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was well organized, the itinerary was excellent, and the pacing was good. Francesco is an outstanding guide, so knowledgeable. The other guides were excellent as well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite wow moment was the incredible view from the tiny village of Monticchiello. I also loved our stay at La Moscadella--the beautiful grounds and fresh air, hotel design, the view, fabulous food, and the pici-making class with the owner, Isabella, where she shared her touching story of how she learned to make pasta."

Steve

Tour: 09/07/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very fun great people. Amazing guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The last group dinner. It was great."

Bev

Tour: 09/07/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Best of Tuscany in 12 Days Tour was outstanding! Our guide, Francesco, was so organized and did a great job educating us about countless things. We loved Tuscany, especially Volterra, Siena, Lucca and the Island of Elba. Our tour group was the best and made the trip even more amazing!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Experiencing Volterra and staying at La Moscadella!"

Sandra

Tour: 09/04/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was so well balanced with tour time and free time. Cici was great! She was patient and available to us for questions and concerns. The group dinners were amazing and the hotels were a treat, especially the Garganza hamlet, so fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many wow moments, but did especially enjoy the pasta making class, then enjoying our efforts. "

Judi

Tour: 09/04/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Was a very well planned tour with plenty of planned activities but also free time to go on your own explorations at your own pace

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The 13th century private town we stayed at, could have spent the entire trip there but there were also multiple other memorable places we saw and stayed at."

Annemarie

Tour: 06/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We covered a lot of interesting places and the pacing of the tour was good to cover as much sites in a reasonable time. Our tour guide Lisa was also fantastic.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Siena and learning more about its history and traditions"

Emilie

Tour: 06/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent tour. It was a great mix of guided and free time. It was our first time touring with a group (we are in our 50’s) so we weren’t sure what to expect. I possibly would have liked a few more activities added in the days, but if you came to relax, see gorgeous sights, spend time with happy vacationers, eat delicious food and sip the best wine I’ve ever had, then this is your trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The first glimpse of the Tuscan town of Pitigliano, a walled city built on toufa rock. Amazing! Also seeing the David in person, it was huge and just emanated the work of a genius."

John

Tour: 06/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Well guided with lots of down time

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Stay at the Villa - facilities and staff were amazing"

Richard

Tour: 06/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was rigorous, but evenly paced and informative. The Tao of Rick was evident in every way, from what was included, to what was not. Need to do the tourist shuffle? There’s free time for that! But check out this quirky museum, and try this unusual street food. Some folks in our group had done multiple Rick Steves tours; one couple was on their 16th. It’s easy to see why. No following of sing-song tour guides here, it’s about the lives of our fellow earthlings and the beauty of their world.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The view from Volterra, and every expansive panorama from the higher points of Tuscany. Yogi Berra said you can observe a lot by looking, and sometimes looking without analysis is what your soul needs."

Meredith

Tour: 06/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was the first guided tour we have ever been on and it was so fun. Getting to know all the people on your tour and all the little "surprises" was great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Having our tour guide play my favorite opera song riding through Tuscany brought tears to my eyes. It was the fulfillment of one of my bucket list items! I could hardly believe it was true. "

Mary Anne

Tour: 06/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Thoroughly enjoyable. I saw things I never would have found on my own. The trip was well-organized and Lisa, our tour guide, was excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The opera concert at our hotel in Lucca."

William

Tour: 06/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tuscany is an incredible region of Italy. The countryside was magnificent, green, rolling hills. Our guide was amazing with deep knowledge of the area and the differences between living in the USA and Italy. It was fascinating. She also completely managed all of the unknowns of the trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the Hermitage that had been found recently on a farmer's property was incredible. Seeing the caves dug out of the hillside and the images that had been carved into the walls, some early Christian, like the six-fingered Madonna, and others pre-Christian, like the mermaid. Getting to the caves was breathtaking, walking through the verdant forest down the cliff. Absolutely made the trip for us! "

Eileen

Tour: 06/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a tour with a fantastic guide, very skilled bus driver, and a very nice group of fellow tour members. Lisa's personal stories brought Italian culture and society to life. She was also super helpful with a medical issue. I enjoyed the in-depth focus on Tuscany, an enchanting area of a beautiful country. Be aware that this is a strenuous tour, especially if you've lost stamina in the last few years. Train now to be ready for this great experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Staying at La Moscadella, visiting the Hermitage near Pienza, and the Florence American Cemetery and Memorial. (Okay, that's three.)"

Susan

Tour: 06/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I wanted to see parts of Italy I had not seen before, though I've been many times (3 other RS tours). It did not disappoint. The countryside was stunning, food and wine outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our first glimpse of the Val d'Orcia as we walked to the Hermitage in Pienza. It literally took my breath away."

Kristine

Tour: 05/29/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved everything about this tour. Beautiful scenery, wonderful accommodations, great guides, and a very nice group of fellow travelers. Becoming acquainted with several local families and visiting their homes and getting to know how they live was something that we would not have experienced if we had been traveling on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to choose, but seeing "David" for the first time was awe-inspiring. And the beautiful views from the bus of the Tuscan countryside never failed to impress."

Dale

Tour: 05/29/23

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

This was my first tour of any kind. The guide was excellent, Vanessa (Princess Peachy). The walking over Tuscany was a little difficult for me, and I'm in pretty good shape for the shape I'm in. Several of our tourists missed parts of the tour because they couldn't do the walking/hiking. I noticed as a single guy, most of the activities were for couples. I felt a bit left out. The hotels were the worst part of the tour for me. The crowds in Rome and Florence were hard to get through.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Academie in Florence, the David."

Bob

Tour: 05/29/23

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Overall, the tour was decent but not our favorite. Tuscany is beautiful, but there's just not enough there for us to recommend this tour to other people. The provided meals on this tour weren't memorable either, with a couple of exceptions.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Michelangelo's David"

Kathryn

Tour: 05/29/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyed walking the varied (but similar) small hill villages. We like the Rick Steve's combination of group activities/meals and time to explore personal interests/meals on our own. Rewarding to learn history and culture of each village.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Bargello museum"

Roger

Tour: 05/29/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Terrific guide for the overall tour and fantastic local guides at our various stops. I really appreciate the attention to cultural experiences and meeting the local residents.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beauty of Sienna"

Jennifer

Tour: 05/29/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We followed Ireland with a Tuscany tour. Turns out, the two guides are good friends, so we knew we were going to have a great time! Vanessa is a party with trainers. She's a whirlwind of energy, cheerful and informative, lively and always up for anything! Tuscany is physically challenging with many stairs, rocky and cobbled roads, and some long inclines. This was harder for my husband (had open heart surgery in Oct) than we expected. Vanessa went above and beyond to help tourers who had issues.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It has to be Gargonza. WOW. Not an activity per se, but an ancient Etruscan village we were thrilled to stay in. We got to know whose house we occupied, how the village operated, and how the current owners are stone-by-stone returning it back to a working village. The wine tasting and the views were equally thrilling. WOW!"

Michael

Tour: 05/29/23

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The only reason I didn't put outstanding was because I had a strained achilles tendon and walking was very difficult. Otherwise, it was a wonderful trip

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the Castello di Gargonza and Santa Guilia family winery were absolutely wonderful. Definitely my favorites."

Janis

Tour: 05/22/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour experience was exceptional in every way! The scheduled itinerary stops were interesting, beautiful and oftentimes, places we would have never discovered had we traveled independently. Our tour guide, Cecilia and her apprentice, Eleonora were phenomenal! They were knowledgeable and helpful which allowed us the opportunity to enlarge our minds as we listened to their stories and insight about life in Italy. I felt as though I were temporarily immersed in the Tuscan culture.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have several “wow” moments from our trip! Staying at the agriturismo, La Moscadella and traveling through the Val d’Orca countryside top my list. Pienza, Volterra and Siena were my favorite hilltop towns. Walking through the charming medieval villages was like a step back in time. Our stay on a hilltop at Castello di Gargonza was so enchanting. Wine tasting, eating delicious food, pasta making and the community built with fellow tour members also positively impacted my experience."

Connie

Tour: 05/22/23

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Fun knowledgeable guides. Well planned and executed Itinerary. We had a great experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The time at Moscadella Working farm and pasta making "

Linda

Tour: 05/22/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent tour guide, good balance of activities, good accommodations, comfortable transportation with a very competent driver.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It’s so hard to pick just one! I had at least one a day! Visiting the mosaic workshop, the alabaster workshop, the Accademia and the Bargello for starters. The Etruscan archeological site and Etruscan Museum were unexpected and fascinating. I really enjoyed every minute of this trip."

Martin

Tour: 05/22/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour exceeded our expectations. There was a good balance of tour activity and free time. Meals were very good. Cecelia was an excellent tour guide, and she went the extra mile to help anyone's special requirements. Good accommodations, especially Castell di Garganza and La Moscadella.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many. Every day, something was exceptional. I guess my "wow" moments were discovering the small Tuscan hill towns. Breakfast outdoors at Moscadella was memorable. The Museo di Borghello was really nice."

Jim

Tour: 05/22/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Best of Tuscany in 12 Days tour was a fantastic experience and a wonderful tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting Lucca is always a "wow" moment for me. I just love the city and each visit reminds me why!"

Ian

Tour: 05/22/23

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

First time out of the country felt like a good overall experience and will probably do another in the future.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The art was very impressive. Seeing the David in person was great and the landscape was picturesque."

Kevin

Tour: 05/22/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very Enriching!! This by far was the best experience ever. I had never been on a group tour before but soon realized this was a very good decision. We started in Florence and went to many walled hill towns in Tuscany. I would have never driven to all these places on my own. Our tour Guide Cecilia made the trip unforgettable. Her knowledge about history and explaining life in Italy was very humbling. Eleonora her apprentice was just as warm and Knowledgeable. Our group of 18 was great. Do it

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had many great moments. I enjoyed the countryside stays, exploration of medieval villages, wine tastings and amazing food provided. My stay at the La Moscadella was phenomenal! I thoroughly visiting Santa Giulia for our wine tasting and lunch as well as Isabella’s family farm and winery and learning about the process of making olive oil. I even met Grandpa! Equally as impressive was my stay at Castillo di Gargonza. My visit to The American Cemetery in Florence was very moving."

Ann

Tour: 05/22/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Just an amazing tour with the best guides, itinerary, food/wine, accommodations, unforgettable scenery, and fun/interesting cultural experiences, and the best “tour family”! Especially loved the smaller towns with fewer tourists and more opportunities to engage with the locals. Special trip with breathtaking scenery I’ll always remember.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many to choose from! (The workshop of mosaic artisans, the Brunello winery, cappuccinos on the terrace of La Moscadella overlooking Tuscan hillsides, etc.) But two stand out: First the breathtaking Tuscan scenery surrounding Pienza and buying a painting of it from a delightful artist. Also having a lovely meal with a dear friend in the Piazza dell’Anfiteatro—sipping wine, eating excellent pasta, and listening to the nearby musicians. A fun Italian memory!"

Debra

Tour: 05/22/23

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

it was a wonderful experience

Favorite "WOW" moment

"walking through the Tuscany villages"

Wendy

Tour: 05/22/23

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Our tour guides were wonderful and the sights we saw we enjoyed. Unfortunately, we caught Covid three days in and that ended our tour. Not a great feeling to be left behind with no Rick Steve's personnel contacting you, other than our tour guide who checked on us a few times.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our favorite "Wow" moment was during our "on your own" time when we caught a bus to Fiesole. The view was breathtaking, the old monastery hauntingly beautiful and our dinner overlooking Florence was relaxing and delicious."

Carol

Tour: 05/15/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first RS tour and I’m glad I did it! I saw, ate, and drank things I never would have on my own. Francesco was fantastic as were all the local guides.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have many WOW moments but one that stands out was being at Ponte Vecchio during sunset. It was beautiful!"

Glenda

Tour: 05/15/23

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I had a wonderful time on this trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Florence American Cemetery and Memorial blew me away. What an unexpected emotional moment."

Steffenie

Tour: 05/15/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide was incredible - knowledgeable, fun, kind, organized and went above and beyond in all aspects. The towns we visited were all excellent and many we had never heard of.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"La Moscadella - wow! and their family's farm tour, olive oil and wine tasting. "

Sally

Tour: 05/15/23

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Fun, educational, beautiful, friendly group, great tour guide and local guides

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to choose from "

Hayley

Tour: 05/15/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everything was perfect from the time we arrived until the time we left. We saw, and learned so much about the culture and history and food.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One of the wow moments was the cooking class then eating what we made after. Pretty cool and fun! "

Lee

Tour: 05/15/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful tour of Tuscany. Excellent guides, nice fellow travelers, and what a place!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Volterra. What a gem. "

Debra

Tour: 05/15/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide, Francesco Gronchi, made the tour exceptional. I learned a lot more about wine and wine tasting and enjoyed the various experiences along the way. I had been to most of the towns on previous tours of Italy, but they are different each time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved visiting the working family farm, a sensory experience - seeing, smelling goats, pigs, sheep - and the olive oil."

Teresa

Tour: 05/15/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The cadence of this tour was perfectly suited to my sensibilities, notably the 3 day stay at La Moscadella was perfection. There was less time on the bus on this tour than on previous tours which was by design and why I chose this tour. Francesco, our tour guide, was a multi-faceted and well-rounded individual, and uniquely suited to offer an exceptional experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the American Cemetery, while sobering, was the unexpected "wow" experience. The beauty of the grounds was remarkable and a testament to the strong respect the Italians have for the service men and women who risked their lives to save others. "

Susan

Tour: 05/01/23

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our 7th RS tour and, as always, a well organized trip with an excellent guide, enjoyable tour members, and interesting itinerary

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Beautiful Tuscan scenery and stays at the hilltop village and La Moscadella"

Dennis

Tour: 05/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Being Toscano on both sides, this tour had special meaning and it did not disappoint. We had been to the major cities before so I was really looking forward to experiencing the interior. It was springtime and just beautiful in the valleys and rolling hills. The agriturismos and wine tasting were much enjoyed. I found the monastery experience lacking; too much time on frescos and not enough on the life of monks. There was COVID on our tour and I think guides should push people more to test.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lots of them, but the biggest surprise was entering the ancient hill town of Gorgonza and finding we were the only ones in that cool little place. I enjoy wine and the visits to the family owned wineries were a highlight. The extended stay at the Moscadella villa was incredible. I will always remember our visit to the American cemetery and the story behind the beautiful gardens of La Foce. Lucca was as charming as always. Our guide, Francesco, was excellent. Last but not least...the FOOD!"

Ralph

Tour: 05/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fantastic. This was our 9th Rick Steves tour, so I guess we count as groupies. We visited places and met people we could not have visited and met on our own. Francesco is a wonderful guide, providing valuable insights about the places we visited, Tuscany, and Italy.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Staying in Gargonza and Castelmuzio and visiting Pienza and Volterra all count as "wow" moments. I can't choose one above the others."

Kathleen

Tour: 05/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tuscany was full of pleasant surprises. I loved seeing the green hills. The countryside with all the spring wildflowers was beautiful and unusual.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were a number. "

Vincent

Tour: 05/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I went into it with no tour experience or expectations. It blew me away. The amount of activities and the guide experience just left me in awe.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My tour guide, Francesco was my wow moment. He made the entire trip worth every penny. "

Judith

Tour: 05/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The first week was terrific—educational, food, drink, hotels, castles, outstanding guide, great fellow travelers. The 2nd week I tested positive for COVID. Florence was a great place to recuperate.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking around the Costello di Gargonza—the natural beauty was stunning. Neri was such an interesting, charming person. Our room was magnificent! The food, the drink. Wow!"

James

Tour: 05/01/23

Overall rating: rating 1 of 5

Flights cancelled at last minute, missed first two days of the tour, eventually caught COVID and missed last two days of the tour. The tour itself was boring with a great deal of up, down and up again walking to view repetitious, mediocre sites.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One guide talked about secular humanism with insight and passion. Also, a visit to one winery was both interesting and appealing. "

Anne

Tour: 05/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was wonderful. We got a really taste of the real Tuscany. Enjoyed our guide, the group and all the wine tastings and the food.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sitting in the breakfast area at La Moscadella and viewing the hills of Tuscany - it was beautiful. "

Gordon

Tour: 05/01/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Francesco was absolutely fantastic. Knowledgeable, professional, and super enthusiastic. The tour was a perfect mix of activities, "experiences", and downtime.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Any number of the hill towns we were able to visit. "

Jeffrey

Tour: 04/17/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

First time traveling to Europe and participating on a travel tour. Everything about this trip exceeded my expectation. Guide, hotels, daily itinerary, free time, meals, selected towns to visit and stay in and our 20 person group was fantastic!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I’d say walking from our hotel on day 1 in Florence and seeing the Duomo, baptistery and piazza. It was an amazing sight in person. That set the stage for so many more “wows”. "

Patricia

Tour: 04/17/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This long awaited and dreamed of tour was everything we had hoped it would be and so much more. The thrill of seeing renaissance masterpieces in Florence was equaled by the amazing countryside and beautiful hill towns of Tuscany. We saw many amazing things and learned much. It was a total delight we will always remember and cherish.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Just realizing we were where we were and getting to experience Florence and Tuscany."

Douglas

Tour: 04/17/23

Overall rating: rating 1 of 5

My wife and I both got covid because a person on the tour refused to test and was sure her sniffles were just a cold. We appreciate that you have refunded a generous share of the tour price. In my opinion testing should be mandatory for any person on the tour who shows symptoms of covid.

Ralph

Tour: 04/17/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very informative, first hand view of the local community and an outstanding guide and facilitator.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to describe. The incredible history of the area spans from Before Christ through WWII. The people are genuine and with the Rick Steve's connections are very accessible. The environment of the trip and the leader's approach foster a communal learning experience. "

Jill

Tour: 04/17/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

included some cool off-the-beaten path accommodations and experiences, some wonderful food and wine, our guide was fantastic, we had a really nice group of people on the tour. Nice pace and a perfect mix - Florence and then beautiful historic towns in the Tuscan countryside and the island of Elba.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"seeing my covid test turn positive, haha. Seriously, there were so many it's hard to come up with just one. The drive up to Castello di Gargonza was a wow - realizing we were going to be staying so off the beaten path in such a unique and historic place, surrounded by such beauty, a place we'd never find on our own. And every time we wandered down to the incredible aperitivos and dinners in La Moscadella dining room with that beautiful view, it was like wow, we are really getting spoiled. "

Alvin

Tour: 04/17/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved the tour and the wonderful itinerary. Our guide, Alfio, was well organized, very funny, kind and added so much to our trip with language lessons, history filled discussions and cultural insights. Ray and Cathy promise to never kill the pasta again. The local guides were fabulous and of course the food and wine was outstanding. Our fellow tour members added so much to the experience with their wonderful questions and helpful suggestions. The hotels were mostly outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My Wow moment was seeing Michelangelo’s David, the beautiful Tuscan country side and seeing Voltaire and Lucca. Our private concert of Puccini’s operas, in the town he called home, will be a lifelong memory. "

Susan

Tour: 04/17/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour exceeded my expectations on every level! Each site we visited was unique and the local guides were outstanding. Our own tour guide was excellent - well informed, enthusiastic and with a broad level of interests and expertise.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the Hermitage archaeological site in Pienza that was owned and cared for by a local family, then visiting their family farm where the young guide and his grandfather showed us their animals, and how they produce wine and olive oil. "

Susan

Tour: 04/17/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour experience gave us something unique, surprising, informative & special each day. The variety of experiences was amazing; from staying in a renovated castle to visiting a cattle ranch.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"In retrospect, Nikko's tour of the medieval/Etruscan ruins discovered on his family property in Pienza literally blew us away. His stories of discovery, cleaning/excavation, challenges with bureaucracy, etc. with regard to this site were enlightening & more often funny. It became very clear how important this was to his family. "

Martha

Tour: 04/03/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Tuscany tour was a great combination of history, culture, beautiful rural scenery, and cuisine and wine.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting multiple medival towns and the gorgeous spring fields and hills they were situated in."

Theresa

Tour: 04/03/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a wonderful Tour! Francesco made our time together so special. his knowledge of the region and the wines gave us an even greater depth of understanding about the culture of Tuscany. we enjoyed being in Volterra and meeting his wife and the local people. The tour was well paced, the meals and entertainment (especially the opera singer ) were excellent. Loved all the wine tastings

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our hotel room in ValD' Orcia was phenomenal. We loved the alabaster carving and the Opera singer. I think seeing each of the hilltop fortresses was amazing and the fact they are all still standing and people live in the cities with all the antiquity that that brings is so amazing. We loved the stop at the WWII memorial site"

Dan

Tour: 04/03/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The best tour I’ve ever taken

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Gargonza and Casa Moriccciani the best food, the best hospitality of any place we stayed, I felt like they treated us like we were family, the views were fantastic both places were my WOW moments "

Susan

Tour: 04/03/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my fourth Steves tour and it met all expectation.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Learning that Christians had been forbidden from banking in early history. That fact explaining why the bankers were Jewish and also were able to concentrate wealth. Mind blown!"

John

Tour: 04/03/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We were impressed by the knowledge and friendliness of the guides, and were impressed by the variety of daily fine expereince on the tour. Bravo.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The artwork within the Piccolomini Library of the Siena Catherdal was unexpectedly beatiful."

Mark

Tour: 04/03/23

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first trip overseas and the first tour we've taken. We had a great time and found Francesco and his partnerTrina to be wonderful tour guides. The local guides were also fantastic. We learned so much about Tuscany and really enjoyed every minute of our educational experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many "wow" moments it would be difficult to pick one. The Duomo in Florence and the main Piazza in Sienna were amazing to see in person. Then there were the mountain villages of Pitigliano and Voltare, and the tour of a family owned vineyard and winery, no to mention the food. The entire trip was wonderful."

John

Tour: 10/10/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Interesting sites, fabulous guides especially at the Academia and Bargello, and Volterra. Good food, hotels (La Moscadella was spectacular). Tour Guide Karin was excellent !

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Elba and the ferry ride were unexpectedly enjoyable. David never disappoints. We separately booked the Uffizi and was greatly impressed with the Michelangelo Holy Family painting and it's brilliance from restoration."

Laura

Tour: 10/10/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide was amazing ,she took us to many places we would not have been able to see on our own. She also gave us opportunities to experience the lives of people living in the area, there jobs and lives and activities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing David !"

Scott

Tour: 10/03/22

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The Tuscany tour was fantastic, arduous at times but we knew that going in. Our guide, Francesco was top notch - knowledgeable and accommodating. He made the tour a wonderful experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the village of Volterra was the best part of the tour. It was not over run by tourists and it had a charm that is reminiscent of how we imagine Italy used to be, before all of the undiscovered, back doors were found. Volterra could easily replace Elbe Island as an overnight (2 nights) stop. "

Elsa

Tour: 10/03/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a lovely tour. We went from big city Florence to wonderful Val d'Orcia where the views of the hill towns was amazing. We even got to go to an island and we ended the tour in a walled city!!!!!!!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have to say that our 3 day stay in La Moscadella was superb. Volterra was also great and wish we could have stayed here longer."

Steven

Tour: 10/03/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tuscany is a unique place filled with important history, great food, friendly people and beautiful scenery. Francesco and the local guides did a wonderful job showing it all to us.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Staying in Moscadella."

Dennis

Tour: 10/03/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Thought the Best of Tuscany tour was well organized and our primary tour guide, Francesco, superlative with his infectious enthusiasm and good humor. Our local guides were also quite good ( e.g. Cora in Florence and Annie in Volterra; also Roberto in Sienna). Food was always the best and the hotel Moscadella was fantastic, as was Gargonza on the hilltop. Elba island was pretty but hotel rooms cramped, although hotel close to beach. We traveled with a very amiable group on the bus; very nice folk

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the cathedral ( Duomo) and bell tower in Florence, and of course, “The David.”The Arno river and open air markets of Florence were quite impressive."

Martha

Tour: 10/03/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As usual, great guides, well placed hotels, countless treasures for the eye. This tour, and Italy enriches mind, body, and spirit with amazing art, artisans, scenery, delicious food, wine, coffee, and a centering found in the amazing Tuscan lifestyle both ancient and modern. The pillows were wanting in several hotels, especially Florence. While Elba was relaxing and the rest welcome, the hotel staff was surly, and unfriendly. Perhaps staying an extra day or two in Volterra or Lucca to explore

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would have to say the scenery: the tower, castello, fortress, villa or walled town on seemingly every hilltop, with the lines of cypress,vines, olive trees, the scattered umbrella pines. The warm stone colors at every turn. The delight of figs, lemons, rosemary, wild fennel, capers growing in and on stone walls. "

Tammy

Tour: 10/03/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour guide was really knowledgeable and helped to make it a fantastic trip! Each stop also had local guides that really enhanced the experience as well! Felt we got to really see things not seen by most tourists.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many, but I would have to say staying in Gorgonza! What a treat to stay in such and old city converted to a vacation spot! Truly unique place and so good to unwind there with the solitude and views after a busy day of tours."

Mary

Tour: 10/03/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was flawless. Everything flowed with no wasted time. We visited fascinating places that were back door experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is hard to choose because there are so many, but the Isabella Experience at La Moscadella was a big beautiful wow. "

Greg

Tour: 10/03/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Exceeded our expectations..which were high.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The places we wentt, the things we did and the experiences we had, the accommodations, tour guide, fellow tour members...where do I stop?"

Robert

Tour: 09/26/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As first-time Rick Steve’s’ tourers, we had few expectations. We got our first hint that we were in for something special during the intro session. One couple, who had toured with our guide, David Tordi, celebrated upon learning that David would be our guide for this tour. Several other couples were repeat RS tourers, one having completed 8 previous RS tours. We immediately knew we were going to have a blast. AND WE DID! The tour far exceeded all our expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I didn’t have one wow moment, but rather an ongoing series of moments that led to continuous and escalating WOWs throughout the tour. From the organization of the tour to the outstanding communication to the variety of experiences, WOW! By far my favorite thing about the tour was THE PEOPLE! This includes fellow tourers, our guide David, all local guides, the people at hotels and restaurants included in the tour, and mostly the everyday people we met everyday. What a treat!"

Lewis

Tour: 09/26/22

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was well organized and well guided by our tour guide, David Tordi. Overall the tour was very interesting and informative. A little too much art and churches for me. But that is me. When signing up for RS tour I understand that is what you are signing up for. The Tuscan countryside is beautiful and visiting the hill towns was fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Elba Island is beautiful, and it was a great change of pace from the rest of the tour."

Anna

Tour: 09/26/22

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This tour was excellent, but a little fast-paced at times. I loved seeing more of the "less travelled" areas of Tuscany that can't be easily reached by public transportation. Would have loved more time to explore places like Siena, Pienza, and Pitigliano, but as our tour guide said we got a taste & have to come back for more!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There are so many, but I loved making pici with Isabella! (And getting to eat the efforts of our labors afterwards. Wow, it was delicious!) It was a great local experience and I can't wait to make more at home with her recipe. Seeing Michelangelo's David is always stunning and our local guide Lucia was incredible at bringing out all the details in the exquisite sculpture. Incredible!"

Cyndy

Tour: 09/26/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our 4th Rick Steves tour (all have been in Italy) and like the others, we had an amazing experience. Being guided through Tuscany with David was a top-notch tour. The blend of history, culture, music, art, food, wine and humor was magnified by his passion for each aspect of the trip. He taught each of us how and what being part of an Italian family meant centuries ago and what it means today. Making new friends with our travel group and creating new memories equals a successful tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Having arias by Puccini sung to us by a local opera singer, accompanied by a pianist in Lucca was definitely a WOW moment. And then to have David's group, Bartender, play for us at La Moscadella raised our party momentum to new heights. It was a WOW night"

Lillian

Tour: 09/26/22

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I enjoyed the tour, but overall things felt a bit rushed. David was fantastic! Elba was extremely disappointing. You may want to consider skipping it for late season tours and adding stays at Orvieto or Pitigliano or another hill town. Elba considers the season over October 1 and many things were shut down and service at the hotel was lacking. At the Elba hotel, everyone should be guaranteed a sea view room on an upper floor. Lower floor, back side rooms were stifling and oppressive.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The food was my "wow" this trip. I really enjoyed the Florence local guide walk to Mercato di Sant 'Ambrogio, the brucellosis wine tasting lunch, and the local farm lunch in Pienza."

Troy

Tour: 09/26/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great tour, wonderful Tour Guide.

Christine

Tour: 09/26/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Tuscany tour was a great mix of history, culture, architecture and fabulous food! Our tour guide, David was perfect - witty, informative and a great coach to help us navigate Italy. It was our first time in Italy and the tour provided a great foundation for future exploration!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many! Just when I thought I had seen it all, more gorgeous sites to behold. However, in Florence, the changing light on the Baptistery of St. John as the sun was setting was an unforgettable site. "

Wendy

Tour: 09/26/22

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall, the tour was nice. We visited many different places, saw lots of art and architecture, and experienced Italy's tuscany region.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Duomo in Florence. Absolutely beautiful. "

Yvonne

Tour: 09/19/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tuscany was beautiful…much beyond my expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All the hilltop towns! I loved the history and preservation of them. "

Linda

Tour: 09/19/22

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Organization was spot on. Francesco made everyone feel welcome and was always there to answer questions or solve problems. Most of the hotels were wonderful (more on that later). Nice mix of activities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Learning about the Etruscans"

Julie

Tour: 09/12/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved Tuscany, our guide, the local guides, the hotels, the food, the wine...

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Touring lovely Tuscany with my family. Our Villa at La Moscadella Hotel was 5 star. The beach day on Elba Island was relaxing and needed."

Pam

Tour: 09/12/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Pam's and my Tuscan tour was one of the best we've been on (4 RS tours to date)! Our tour guide David Tordi is one the best. He is very informative and knows his history, add to that a great sense of humor and patience. The overall tour was fantastic. So much to see and do at a comfortable pace. Food and lodgings were excellent. We look forward and plan on taking another RS tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I'm unable to come up with a specific "wow" moment. Let me say that the whole Tuscan experience was great with a few unexpected extras thrown in."

Bonnie

Tour: 09/12/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved the tour of Tuscany! We especially loved the selection of cities and events. We felt immersed in Italian culture, history and life by having an extraordinary guide and incredible local guides. We loved the very active pace and felt overall the opportunity presented a great value. Our weather was amazing which made the trip absolutely fantastic!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had so many wow moments, it is difficult to chose one. One “wow” moment came when we had an amazing pasta making class by Isabella at La Moscadella. Everyone had so much fun and then we enjoyed a lovely meal together. That place was magical in every way! We also had a “wow” moment when after a sensational meal at La Moscadella, our guide David performed beautiful music for us along with his band mate. We all sang along and had the best time! "

Deborah

Tour: 09/12/22

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We thoroughly enjoyed the various towns we visited, even those that we had seen on previous tours. One thought is that we might have benefited more from visiting an Etruscan museum rather than the empty burial grounds.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the Duomo in Siena, particularly seeing the mosaics on the floor, the pulpit and the Piccolomini Library."

Rita

Tour: 09/12/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Best of Tuscany tour was absolutely wonderful and amazing!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"La Moscadella in Val D’Orcia."

Christine

Tour: 09/12/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

There are no words because it was so amazing and life changing! First Rick Steve’s tour and won’t be the last for sure!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There are so many because every day was but Lucca was definitely a highlight."

Kathleen

Tour: 09/12/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Each day, and every moment was more spectacular than the next thanks to the outstanding people at RS. The locations we visited, the accommodations in which we stayed, and the food & special events we attended, not to mention the people we met along the way, proved to be an incredibly beautiful experience. Most importantly, our wonderful tour guide, David Tordi provided a life-time of unforgettable memories by sharing his expertise, warmth, & good humor every day. Thanks to driver Rudolfo, too!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One is impossible. Here's a few: Visiting Maremma region & watching legendary butteri horsemen work. Discovering the fizzy joy of Prosecco. Being immersed in the elegant beauty of the Isabella Experience. Making new friends (Colleen, Chris, Bonnie, Mary, Tony, Sarah, Mario, Mara & more). Attempting to make Pici Pasta and enjoying the hilarity that ensued. My early morning walk around Castello di Gargonza. Sampling my first taste of Florentine steak. Listening to The Bartenders. Much much more."

Suzanne

Tour: 09/12/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Terrific. Our trip was greatly anticipated after covid delay. David, our tour guide, was a superb leader ensuring everyone's needs and concerns were met. He arranged unforgettable experiences that fed all the senses; seeing, hearing, tasting, touching. We were tired at the end of each day but always looked forward to the next day's activities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The hotel Della Moscadella!!! Opera performance in Lucca. Our stay in Gargonza, a true Tuscan hilltop castle. Everyday presented a wow moment."

Mary Ann

Tour: 09/12/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Words fail! From start to finish, this tour was exceptional. Each of our local guides was passionate about their town and all of the history, art, culture and oh yes, the food and wine. All of these wonderful things would not have happened without our leader David, and our bus driver, Rudolfo. The whole experience was one wow after another.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Two stand out in my mind. The first was when at Moscadello, David and his bandmate, Antonio gave us an impromptu concert. We were all overjoyed and overwhelmed. In Lucca, we enjoyed Silvana and Manuele perform a selection of arias by the composer, Puccini."

Mary

Tour: 09/12/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

great balance between structured tour time and leisurely sightseeing, loved the less "touristy" feel of places visited

Favorite "WOW" moment

"visiting the farm in PIenza was like reliving my childhood, brought back lots of fond memories"

Cristina

Tour: 09/05/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Every day brought a new and interesting mix of experiences for the curious minded. The diversity of amazing Renaissance art, picturesque towns and countryside, and of course the lovely Tuscan wines, made for a wonderful feast for the soul, eyes, and palate.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beauty of the Tuscan countryside was breathtaking, so definitely a series of “wow” moments, but as an avid Puccini opera fan, I have to say the private concert of Puccini opera selections by Silvana Froli in Luca was a personal highlight."

Gary

Tour: 09/05/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

For some people, a tour like this eliminates an item on a bucket list. For us, our list of things has gotten longer--we have many more places to visit on our next foray into Tuscany.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our stay on the island of Elba. "

Patricia

Tour: 09/05/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our 7th tour, and we have come to have high expectations. It did not disappoint and added a few special surprises. It was a perfect combination of the beautiful Tuscan countryside, art, history, food and wine. Francesco was an outstanding guide. Being a native Tuscan, his passion and love of his homeland was evident throughout. He was friendly, knowledgeable, and caring. We learned so much about the Italian culture and especially appreciated his knowledge about wine as a sommelier.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The breathtaking views of Tuscany from atop the medieval hamlet of Gorgonza, of the Val d'Orcia from the town wall of Pienza, and of the Mediterranean from the Island of Elba. Our stay at La Moscadella with beautiful luxurious accommodations, excellent food, and a fun cooking class. The private Puccini concert by a local opera singer."

Jane

Tour: 09/05/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first RS tour and first time to Tuscany my experience exceeded my expectations; the itinerary, all the guides, people and places we went, the food! Good balance of your own time and tour time. I did not feel like a tourist more of a friend visiting. I was and am so thrilled with the tour I signed up for Ireland in 2023. I see many more RD tours in my future! Yes I will keep on Traveling.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There are so many..... the emersion in tradition and culture to pick one.. The American WWII Cemetery "

Cynthia

Tour: 09/05/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Delightful.well organizes,excellent guides and very knowledgeable and passionate about their country. I learned alot about their rich history and culture. Accommodations were outstanding. My thanks and gratitude to all those that put this trip together.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Traveling through Tuscan region snd seeing all the olive trees and grape vines. Tasting the food and walking in the small walled towns dating back centuries."

Stephen

Tour: 09/05/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall tour was great do in large part to our guide, Francesco

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Not so much a wow moment but enjoyed Elba and was surprised by the American WW2 cemetery"

Janet

Tour: 09/05/22

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The group I traveled with was so much fun. I truly enjoyed all of the extra tours and activities that we got to do and all the local guides were amazing. Our guide Francesco was so knowledgeable about the Tuscany area and I loved sitting back and enjoying the ride.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There was just so many to choose just one."

Dan

Tour: 09/05/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Delightful. Very well organized. As I'd never been on a Rick Steves tour before, the immediate 'first' impression was positive with great optimism. This feeling remained throughout the entire tour. Outstanding primary guide (Francesco), and excellent 'local' guides. The travel agenda, accommodations, wine and food choices left very little to be desired.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"An interesting question and one I've asked myself a number of times since returning home. For me, there was no one favorite 'wow' moment. Numerous 'wow' moments come to mind, but none at a level that pointedly exceeded others. I really had a great time on this trip. "

Paulette

Tour: 09/05/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I always wanted to take a "deep dive" into Tuscany and this tour satisfied this desire. We could not have wished for a better tour guide than Francesco.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Two "wow" moments come to mind: firstly, the Santa Giulia winery experience, with its beautiful landscape, wine and lunch; secondly, the La Moscadella experience, where the dinner (and all the food) was as good as anywhere we've been, and the grounds were so beautiful it took my breath away."

Curtis

Tour: 09/05/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The hotels were wonderful. We loved our guides especially Francesco and Roberto.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Puccini Aria performance on the last night."

Salvatore

Tour: 06/13/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very informative and fun

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Statue of David"

Grace

Tour: 06/13/22

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Imelda

Tour: 06/13/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I've been to Italy four times and this trip surpasses them all by far. I felt truly immersed in the culture, history and people of Tuscany. I learned and experienced so many new things. I've come away enriched and so much more appreciative of the gifts shared by Italy with the rest of the Western world.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment happened the evening we were treated to a mini- Puccini concert in Lucca with the lovely soprano, Silvana. Listening to her hit those high notes in the restaurant made my soul shiver. What a delight! "

Alice

Tour: 06/13/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

First, our guide, Francesco, was wonderful. He was very friendly, knowledgeable, patient, & fun to be with. It helped that he was also a sommelier! Next, our bus driver, Mario, was “super!” He was personable & very responsible - not drinking wine at meal stops and sometimes not eating lunch for fear of becoming sleepy at the wheel. I felt like we were in safe hands w Mario & Francesco at the helm. Our other guides throughout were great, & we very much liked all other 18 people on tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Arriving at Gorgonza was my “wow” moment. I felt like I got off the bus and stepped into a fairytale!"

Gary

Tour: 06/06/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first tour of any sort. It was my first time in Italy. It was my honeymoon. I cannot imagine having has a better experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"No single "Wow" moment --there were several. "Wowed" by the landscapes we travelled through. "Wowed" by the knowledge, professionalism, & friendliness of our guides. "Wowed" by what I learned of the culture and history of Tuscany. "Wowed" by the people our tour guides introduced us to, famers, vineyard owners/workers, etc. "Wowed by the pristine water on the beaches of Elba. "Wowed" by how congenial our tour mates were. "

Angel

Tour: 06/06/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first RS Tour and we were a little concerned about being with a large group, BUT we had a wonderful time! It was fun to get to know the other travelers and we had plenty of time on our own. It was so convenient to have all hotels, guided tours, transportation, and special meals pre-arranged for us. We had opportunities to meet locals and be welcomed into their homes. We learned SO much! Our guide was knowledgeable, kind, and caring. Will definitely sign up for another RS Tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When we arrived and stood at the balcony terrace of VILLA LECCHI and witnessed the splendor of the Tuscan countryside laid out before us, I audibly gasped! It was magical! Our host, Laura, welcomed us with prosecco and appetizers as she shared her family's story. Her son treated us to a wine tasting experience in the underground cellar of the villa. It was a real treat! "

Matt

Tour: 05/30/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Francesco was a perfect fit for this Itinerary and our group of people. The small group tour worked very well for the sites we visited. The included dinners were outstanding and every dish was explained. The local guides added specific knowledge to those visits. La Moscadella was very disappointing and several people had terrible nights trying to sleep. They would not turn the AC lower than 80 degrees. Every other part of the tour was perfect. We covered a lot of great towns and history!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had 3 WOW moments. The Opera singer entertaining just our small group with Puccini was an amazing WOW moment. Siena, Volterra, Pienza, Lucca and Pitigliano are all WOW Tuscany towns to explore. The family run Santa Giulia Brunello winery visit, wine tasting, lunch and product purchases was a WOW afternoon."

Cindy

Tour: 05/23/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tuscany is stunningly beautiful. Tour offered a great balance between planned activities and free time! Fellow travelers, local guides, accommodations, variety of sights and guide, David were exceptional. Amazing opportunity!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every day was a "wow" moment! Several wow's included David, the sculpture and David, our guide! Other wow's included Gargonza and La Moscadella! Pitigliano, group dinners (one with a band), cave roads and free day on Elba with a climb to the top of the fort, followed by a swim in the Mediterranean! Oh, can't forget opera in Lucca. Was a joyous trip!"

Jacqueline M

Tour: 05/23/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The accommodations, destinations, and our tour director, David, were all outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The entire experience was excellent. David’s knowledge, interaction, professionalism, and his willingness to share his talents and personal experiences regarding his family history, (wwII) , brought much unanticipated meaning and value to my trip."

Barbara

Tour: 05/23/22

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was fantastic with gorgeous places to visit, amazing sights to see, perfect pacing, tranquil (and mostly spectacular) hotel rooms, authentic and delicious meals and wine, genial and fun- loving fellow travelers, and the very talented, personable, and well organized tour guide, David. Despite having been to Tuscany before, every day on this tour was a new adventure.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary on this tour, and David our guide made it a most memorable occasion by arranging for flowers, a prosecco toast, and a live band (with him on guitar) and even a little dancing. Aside from that personal "wow," we thought the hotel rooms and setting of Gargonza and Moscadella in the Italian countryside were the finest we have experienced on any tour."

When To Go & Weather

Any time between April and October is a good time to visit Tuscany. However, the months of April, May, September, and October are best for combining the convenience of peak season, fewer crowds, and the most pleasant weather.

Italy / Florence

Hotels & Flights

Tour Hotels

In case you wish to book pre- or post-tour hotel accommodations, the contact information for the tour's first and last hotels is available in the Itinerary section of your tour account. One month prior to your tour's departure, you'll find directions on how to get from the airport to your first tour hotel and a complete list of hotels where we'll be staying in the Documents section of your tour account.

Flights

Our tours don't include airfare, so your flight arrangements are completely up to you.

Most tour members arrange to fly into Florence (FLR) and out of Florence or Pisa (PSA) — choose "multicity" on flight-booking websites if departing from Pisa. From Florence's airport there are shuttle buses and taxis to the city center. If traveling from Lucca to Pisa upon departure, Pisa's airport has a train that offers an easy connection to and from the Pisa Centrale train station.

We suggest arriving a day or two before your tour begins to allow ample time to get over jet lag and be well-rested for the first few days of your tour. For more information about transportation options for getting to and from your tour, see your Rick Steves Florence & Tuscany guidebook.