Recognizable as one of the most beautiful and historic cities in the world, Florence is both the capital city and cultural heart of Tuscany. It was home to some of the world’s greatest artists and the works that survive them – many of which are now preserved in museums such as the Accademia di Belle Arti and the Uffizi Gallery.
Read about our Florence tours below, or contact us to create your own custom itinerary.
THE ULTIMATE FLORENCE TOUR
Enjoy Florence in an exclusive and more private way thanks to our Florentine know-how and your private licensed guide that will first take you to Piazza del Duomo, home of Florence’s world renowned Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, where you will be introduced to the history of this stunning gothic structure and its magnificent façade in detail, the inside architecture and its beautiful decoration. Going up the stairs, that will lead to the entrance door of the cathedral’s terraces you’ll find yourself out on the balcony where you will enjoy the breathtaking view of Florence from this unique spot.
From the terrace, you’ll reach a close point of view of Vasari’s frescoes that decorate the inside of the cupola It is a 464 steps climb, but it is all worth it because you will get to see Brunelleschi’s brilliant workmanship and then at the very end, be presented with the beautiful marble lantern that decorates this stunning structure topped by a much higher view of Florence’s city landscape.
After a lunch break you will reach the Accademia di Belle Arti, home of Michelangelo’s world famous David and get to understand all there is to know about this beautiful piece of art, beloved and admired by everyone that lays their eyes on it.
After the David your guide will arrange a nice coffee or gelato stop at Florence’s most beautiful café so you can get ready for what is coming next; Florence’s oldest square Piazza della Repubblica, the belly button of the city and original core of the first Roman settlement. You will then continue and reach Piazza della Signoria, Florence’s political center, here you will not only be stunned by the enormous presence of the amazing medieval castle, but also be mesmerized by all the marble sculptures that decorate it.
After learning about the imposing Palazzo Vecchio and the famous Loggia dei Lanzi, you will move over to the one and only, Uffizi Gallery, where you’ll be given a brief introduction to the history of the museum and it’s beautiful structure. Your guide, following a brisk tour through the highlights of the collection, will lead you straight to the Vasari Corridor’s private entrance door. Here you will enter a remarkable space with a magical atmosphere used exclusively by the Medici family members. This passage, decorated with the world’s largest artists auto portrait painting collection, will leave you stunned, the view will leave you enchanted and completely satisfied, but the most amazing memory, will be the feeling of walking on top of the Cradle of the Renaissance.
FULL DAY FLORENCE
The full day will give you a much deeper experience about the history, the art and the traditions of the city of Florence.
This day includes both the Accademia (The David) and the Uffizi Museum with its huge collection of art. Your guide will make sure that you will see the major highlights, including Michelangelo’s Tondo Doni, the Madonna del Cardellino by Raffaello and the Birth of Venus by Botticelli.
In between the two museums (tickets are reserved in advance so no three hour lines….) your guide will take you through the charming Streets and the beautiful Piazze giving you a clear and unforgettable description of all the main sites such as Piazza del Duomo, Piazza della Repubblica and Palazzo Vecchio. Together you will choose a nice trattoria for lunch and maybe have a refreshing gelato later in the afternoon.
HALF DAY FLORENCE
This tour is an introduction to the city known as the Cradle of the Renaissance. Your guide will take you on a 3 and 1/2 hour walking tour that will include Michelangelo’s David (tickets are reserved in advance so no line!), the Duomo, Piazza Signoria and the Ponte Vecchio. You will experience the history of the city, from its origin as a Roman settlement to today’s status as Europe’s # 1 destination.
It is a perfect start for families with kids who want to have a good overview without too much pressure.
The guide will make sure to end the tour at a nice local trattoria where you can sample some of the famous Florentine dishes.
MICHAELANGELO IN FLORENCE
The tour is a day dedicated to exploring and experiencing the genial artwork of Michelangelo in the city of Florence.
Your guide will start with the Church of Santa Croce, where Michelangelo is buried, and will take you on a fantastic journey through most of his art, including The Medici Chapels, the David (tickets are reserved at the Accademia so you don’t have to worry about lines!) and The Pieta’ at the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo. Time for lunch and a nice espresso will be scheduled with your guide so that you can take a break in between all of this art!
This is a half-day walking tour, which focuses on the major Jewish landmarks and the history of the Jewish community in the city of Florence.
It will include the beautiful Jewish Synagogue, the Jewish Museums and a visit to the Galleria dell’Accademia to admire Michelangelo’s David.
Known for red wines and the grapes which they come from, the Chianti hills are one of the most beautiful parts of Italy. Recorded as a region for winemaking as early as 1716, Chianti serves as a beautiful region rich in culture waiting to be discovered by you.
Visiting the regions of the Chianti Hills will provide for an interesting day filled with refreshing culture and local flavor. The broadness of the Chianti region can make for an amazing tourist experience. Come and see the heart of this iconic wine center of Tuscany: Chianti!
The typical tour will start from Florence at around 9:30 am. On the way to the heart of Chianti, your driving guide will stop at the American War Cemetery and Memorial, where you will learn about America’s role in the region during the Second World War.
The rest of the morning will be spent visiting the medieval “Castello di Montefioralle” and the charming town of Greve in Chianti. In Greve, your driving guide will show you the “Macelleria Falorni” – an incredible butcher shop in business since the 1700’s – where you can try some of their famous salami and cheeses, an excellent staple for enjoying the wines of Chianti!
After this stop, you’ll have some time to leisurely explore the main square–don’t forget to take picture of the statue of Giovanni da Verrazzano, who discovered the New York Bay!– you will meet again with your driving guide to visit the Cantine di Greve. Here, you will be given an overview of the Italian wine classification system, receive an explanation for what “Chianti” exactly is, and tantalize your taste buds with an extra virgin olive oil tasting! A wine tasting can be arranged here as well, for a true taste of Tuscany.
After lunch in a charming local restaurant, you will be taken to a winery such as Fonterutoli, Fontodi, Felsina or Casa Emma. Specific wineries may be arranged upon request and availability. Private tours of the facilities you visit are on the agenda, as well as a wine tasting. This will be a unique opportunity to closely see and understand how wine is made. Don’t forget to interact with your guide and ask any questions that you might have about this fascinating process!
This tour can be customized to appeal to any kind of traveler, and there’s plenty to see and do; start your reservation today.
This tour takes up to approximately four hours of the day, allowing you to select from an varied group of locations for your trip out into Chianti. Enjoy places such as Montefioralle, Macelleria Falorni, or other wineries to enjoy the taste of this Tuscan historic staple. You could also combine in a stop at Siena, San Gimignano, or “The Mall” shopping outlets. Great for a tourist on the go.
MARCHESI ANTINORI ESTATES
You will begin by visiting the state-of-the-art new Antinori nel Chianti Classico winery. This is one of the most advanced facilities in the world, and only just left the final stages of construction a year ago. Here you will be given the privilege of seeing exactly where some of the finest wines in the world are crafted. You will have the opportunity to see how these wines evolves from the vineyard to the bottle through the entire processes and then be given your first introduction to the Marchesi Antinori wines. You will begin by tasting ‘Villa Antinori Bianco’, ‘Pèppoli’ and ‘Marchese Antinori’. Of course, there will be more to come.
At this point, you will be starting to get hungry, so it’s off to Rinuccio 1180, where you will be served an exceptional, authentic Tuscan meal and continue to enjoy Marchesi Antinori wine tastings. With lunch you will be served the sauvignon blanc ‘Conte della Vipera,’ the ‘Vin Santo Tenute Marchese Antinori’ and the famous ‘Solaia,’ blend of Cabernet and Sangiovese, considered one of the best wines in the world.
After lunch, and a reinvigorating espresso, you will be driven to the Marchesi Antinori resort, Fonte de’ Medici. Here you will take part in a hands-on cooking class, with Michelin Star chef Matia, where you will be shown exactly how to prepare a traditional Tuscan meal. Matia will reveal to you the secrets of real Italian cooking–from antipasto to dolce–and guide you through the tasting of selected pecorino cheeses and the finest Italian chocolates.
After the class, you will driven to the small community of Badia a Passignano where you will visit the historical cellars in the basement of the Abbey that dates back to the 12th century. It is here that the homonymous wine Badia a Passignano is still aged today.
After you have had enough time to soak in the rich history of this highly functioning antique, it is time for the final stop of the day, the evening meal. In the Michelin star restaurant, Osteria di Passignano, you will enjoy some of Italy’s finest cuisine alongside the day’s final wine tasting. In this beautiful restaurant you will be offered Chardonnay based Cervaro della Sala, the 100% Sangiovese Badia a Passignano, the ‘Supertuscan’ Tignanello and the Brunello di Montalcino ‘Pian delle Vigne’.
We love Italy and we are devoted to providing our clients with the kind of experiences that they couldn’t have anywhere else. This tour is an exclusive, highly immersive Italian experience perfect for food and wine lovers that represents my country in the way that it deserves and I hope that I can share this side of Tuscany with you.
EARLY MORNING BALLOONING AND WINE
If your vacation needs a truly memorable experience, then consider this package for your touring and vacationing needs. This is a very special treat offered to the client, made especially for the adventurer in us all. If you have ever found the idea of riding in a hot-air balloon to be romantic or exciting, then look no further than Italy to the Max.
After landing, you will have the opportunity to celebrate this unique experience with a typical local breakfast and a glass of champagne, before meeting with your driver again to do a mini tour of Chianti. This tour will include a charming village and a private visit of a winery. After lunch you will return to Florence.
CHIANTI AND COOKING
This day-long tour is an opportunity to be fully immersed in great wines and fantastic Tuscan food. You will meet your driving guide in Florence and head south, towards the heart of Chianti. First, you will visit a winery for an extensive explanation of the wine making process and a wine tasting.
Then you will be taken to Greve in Chianti where you will visit Falorni, a butcher shop famous for being in business since 1729. Here, you will sample their salami and cheeses. Next is a stop at the Cantine di Greve, which offers one of the largest wine and olive oil tastings in the world! Here your driving guide will give you a full explanation of the most important wines produced in Tuscany, leading you through a tasting that will include different Chiantis as well as Brunello di Montalcino and a Super Tuscan. With more than 100 wines available by the glass, there’s plenty for your taste buds to enjoy!
After a light lunch in a local trattoria, you will be taken to a charming small village or a cozy farmhouse to meet the chef. With her help you will be spending the rest of the day coking your own Tuscan dinner; learning how to make pasta or a traditional bean soup. After an evening of soaking up the culture and local flavors of Tuscany, your driver will take you back to Florence, providing you one last view of the hills of Chianti.
In the last few years, Brunello di Montalcino has become a favorite traditional Italian wine in America. Take this opportunity to see for yourself the origin of this unique and delicious flavour intrinsic to Brunello wine!
While focused on Brunello wine and visiting the wine producers, as well as tasting some great examples of the latest vintage, this tour can also combine one winery and some sightseeing. This can include the Fortezza di Montalcino–an incredibly preserved Medieval Castle–where you can climb the towers and take beautiful shots of the valley, the Abbey of Sant’Antimo where the monks sing Gregorian chants at 12:45 and 2:45, and the small town of Pienza: It is one of the most gorgeous renaissance villages in Italy.
As for the wineries, we usually suggest Altesino for a full tour of the wine making cellars and tasting, and San Filippo, Conti Costanti, or Casanova de’ Neri for a tasting.
Of course, we are very open to your requests! Just let us know which ones you would prefer and we will make the necessary arrangements. For this tour you will have the assistance of a driving guide who will be able to explain everything about Tuscan and Brunello wines to make this a truly unforgettable experience!
A shorter version of this tour can also be combined with a stop in Siena.
HISTORY OF BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO
Brunello di Montalcino is regarded as one of the most elegant, classy and distinctive wine in the world, no other area in Italy has given so many outstanding vintages in the last two centuries.
We will take you to the heart of the DOCG Brunello di Montalcino wine producing area for the ultimate wine tasting experience, via three of the most influential producers of Brunello and its ‘younger brother’, the less complex Rosso di Montalcino, so that you will be able to understand the different taste and styles of production.
To start we will make the necessary arrangements to visit Biondi-Santi whose founder, Ferruccio Biondi Santi, “invented” Brunello in 1888 by becoming the first to bottle it and define its aging process. Biondi-Santi isolated the celebrated Brunello-Biondi-Santi-11 clone at the Il Greppo Estate to make elegant wines for long cellar aging exclusively in larger Slovenian casks.
You will visit the beautiful Il Greppo Estate, see the cellars and have a tasting which will include the ‘Rosso’, the last vintage of ‘Brunello’ and the elegant ‘Riserva’ After a lunch break at Osteria Osticcio where the traditional Tuscan food meets the stunning view of the ‘Val d’Orcia’, you will proceed visiting the Siro Pacenti winery, an extremely small and widely popular young producer of Brunello which symbolize the fusion between tradition and innovation. Here Giancarlo Pacenti will walk you through his small cellar and tell you the secrets of his wine, entirely aged in small French oak barriques for a richer, fresher wine than the ’old style’ Brunello.
Last stop will be at Casanova di Neri, considered one of the ‘hottest’ producers in the world, constantly in the top ten on all wine rating reports. You will visit the modern cellar and enjoy a complete tasting of their vineyards and farm products which will include the famous ‘Tenuta Nuova’ (Robert Parker’s 100/100 points). Salute!
Bolgheri means Supertuscans, the new generation of wines that have changed the image of the italian reds! From the ‘fiasco’ to fantastic Bordeaux style, full bodied, international grape based wines are the artistic image of Bolgheri.
We would love to open the gates of your favorite winery, but unfortunately not all of the famous producers are easily accessible for visits. This tour needs to be carefully planned in advance for the best opportunity to see the wineries you’d like to visit. Let us know when you are going to be in Tuscany, and we will create an itinerary that includes the best available wineries to visit. Sassicaia or Ornellaia may potentially be available together with Grattamacco, for a fantastic one-of-a-kind experience!
Your driving guide will give you an overview of the most famous of Tuscan wines, with a special focus on the history and the genesis of the Supertuscans! Lunch can be in a charming enoteca or at the Sassicaia’s Osteria di San Guido, Fine wine, fine food, fine company; nothing paints a more accurate and colorful picture of Tuscany!
Siena and San Gimignano
Considered to be the most classic excursion from Florence, this makes for a very enjoyable day of visiting two top destinations in Tuscany!
Your driving guide will pick you up around 9:30 in Florence and take you south, on the Florence-Siena freeway that runs along the Chianti hills. While enjoying this scenic drive, he will give you an overview of the history of the area, the medieval war between the cities, and the rivalry that still exists even to this day. Your first stop will be San Gimignano where you will be dropped off at the Porta San Giovanni, the main gate to the city. Following your driver’s instructions, you will have enough time to visit the Duomo, the Rocca, and walk around the charming alleys before returning to the meeting point.
A few more miles south, you will stop at the Castello di Monteriggioni, an old Sienese fortress built in 1213. Here you can enjoy a nice meal in one of the trattorias or just grab a sandwich before returning to the car for a short drive to Siena. You will have plenty of time to explore the area on your own, before returning to the car.
In Siena, your driver will point out how to get to the Piazza del Campo and explain all you need to know about the colorful Palio bareback horserace that takes place here biannually. They will make sure that you know exactly what to visit and see before leaving you nearby these excellent attractions; you’ll have plenty of time to experience the local culture before returning to the vehicle!
By request we can provide local guides and arrange a visit to a Chianti winery for a more complete, in-depth experience! Get started on your Italian tour today.
Pisa and Lucca
This full day will tour will take you west of Florence, along the Arno River until reaching Pisa. Your driving guide will give you a general overview of the local history, the rise of Pisa as one of the most powerful maritime cities in the Middle Ages, as well as the construction and the restoration of the Leaning Tower.
You will be driven to the base of the Tower one block from the magnificent Piazza dei Miracoli, where you will have time to explore the square. With the proper reservations, you could even climb the famous Tower! You will then reunite with your driver in order to proceed onward to Lucca.
Lucca is one of the jewels of Tuscany, not yet as popular as Siena or San Gimignano; therefore, the location is more charming, enjoyable, and less congested. You will have the chance to rent bicycles and take a safe stroll on the walls surrounding the city–which date back to the 1500’s–where no cars are allowed! After lunch, you will have time for a visit to the Duomo, Piazza Anfiteatro which was built over the basement of the old Roman Amphitheater, and the central Piazza Napoleone before returning home.
Forte dei Marmi can be an alternative destination to Pisa, especially for the market on Wednesday, or to just enjoy a nice lunch at a restaurant on the beach! Local Guides can be furnished on request.
Fill out our reservation form to start your journey through Lucca and Pisa.
- Learn about the city of Pisa and the construction of its famous Leaning Tower.
- See the tower itself (remember to take pictures!)
- With reservations, climb the tower and enjoy the view.
- Ride bicycles along the walls of the beautiful city of Lucca.
- Visit the Duomo, Piazza Anfiteatro and the Piazza Napoleone.
This is probably the easiest way to discover a charming corner of Italy, rarely seen by other tourists! Your driver guide will take you from Florence to Riomaggiore, the south-most point of the ‘Cinque Terre’. Here, you will be walked through the first two villages until reaching the town of Manarola. From there you will hike the “Via dell’amore” trail to the next town—a beautiful walk that you will be taking by yourself—where you will have time for a nice meal before departing. The schedule follows with a trip by boat service to Monterosso, where you will meet with your driver to return to Florence.
An early start in Florence is needed, on or around 8:00 in the morning. This is a very “weather sensitive” tour and the itinerary might require a change due to various weather conditions. In the event of poor conditions, we will be willing to suggest alternative tours or itineraries. This tour is non-refundable.
Start planning your itinerary through beautiful Cinque Terre today.
HIDDEN TRAILS OF CINQUE TERRE
Cinque Terre is one of the most amazing parts of the Italian Riviera, included in the UNESCO Heritage List. Recently discovered by tourists from all over the World, Cinque Terre can only be really appreciated in its unique splendor with the help of a professional licensed hiking guide.
Your private guide will meet you at your local hotel or upon arrival for a full day outside the beaten path, in which you will admire the five fishing villages and the dramatic steep cliffs, surrounded by breathtaking views. During this hiking tour you will visit Monterosso, dated back to 643 AD, the oldest and largest of the villages.
Hiking the hidden path at the very end of the main road leaving behind the mainstream of tourism you will have stunning views of the old part of Monterosso, get an understanding of its origin as a fortified town in the Middle Ages and also get the opportunity to see where originally the first inhabitants settled down. Surrounded by chestnut trees you will discover a beautiful monastery- called Soviore.
Walking further following the main path, you will then reach the valley around Vernazza, the most alive, colorful and picturesque village and its sanctuary beautifully hidden in the fresh, evergreen, scented vegetation, with the sea constantly on sight.
Vernazza offers you also the chance for a traditionally locally sourced lunch and break before restarting your hike towards the next village of Corniglia. During the day you will go through Cinque Terre’s Muretti stone walls, you will see several castles and illustrious parish churches and you will admire the beautiful scenic terraces cultivated with vines and olive trees, facing the sea, and offering stunning views in all directions in what truly is one of the best hidden gem of Italian coastline.
- Guided travel to Manarola, where you’ll then be able to hike along the Via dell’Amore.
- Stop and enjoy a meal in the next town.
- Travel by boat to Monterosso before returning to Florence.
Just a few miles south of Florence resides the ultimate shopping experience! Your driver will pick you up at your hotel and drive you first to the Prada outlet. This is an incredibly large store carrying a wide selection of the best Prada products, as well as Miu Miu and Car Shoes. After an hour of shopping, you will meet with your driver again to head to “The Mall” Shopping Outlets, which likely contains the best selection of fashion designers possible at one location. Some of these designers include Gucci, Ferragamo, Fendi, Tod’s, Burberrys, Bottega Veneta, Sergio Rossi, and Valentino.
Make sure you take a break for a slice of pizza or a salad at the cafeteria in between your shopping trip!
“The Mall” can be combined with a half day in Chianti, for a beautiful day of shopping to wind down with fine food, wine, and culture in the hills.