Visit Tuscany during this magical season when you can mix with the locals and bundle up for brisk walks in the fresh crisp air along quieter streets. The frosty landscape is a stunning glistening backdrop for the historic art towns and cities which are beautifully lit up for the holidays and full of festivity with their traditional Christmas markets.

The trattorias and osterias are ready to serve their seasonal specialties which include some of their most scrumptious desserts and the street vendors and cosy cafés will draw you in with the irresistible scents of vin brulé, hot chocolate and roasted chestnuts. The winter cuisine will be sure to keep you warm, satisfied and ready to explore but, when you’re ready for a break, you can stop to enjoy the uncrowded museums, theatres and exhibitions or the shops and outlets with their January sales.

Keep in mind, winter is also the perfect season to partake in wine tasting in towns like Montalcino, truffle hunting in the area of Mugello and cooking classes in and around Florence (see our Experiences for more details). Take some time and invest in well-being at one of the many thermal hot springs and spas in and around Tuscany, where the cold days make it the best time of year to simply soak your stress away (see our Experiences for more details).

Thinking of treats, many Tuscans will tell you that February and March are the months dedicated to fritelli, cenci and castagnole because they are the specialties baked to celebrate the Carnival season. Viareggio has the biggest Carnival and parade but there’s also a selection of quaint winter festivals which are held in small towns like Lupicciano and Montefioralle (both known for their 19th of March Italian Father’s Day celebrations). If you are a chocolate lover, the ‘Chocolate Valley’ in the area of Pisa, Prato and Pistoia should be on your itinerary; as it’s home to prestigious chocolate makers like Torrefazione Trinci, Amedei and other high quality producers.

Believe it or not, Tuscany has even more to offer in the winter with Abetone and its peaks of almost 2,000 meters! This lovely little ski resort near Florence is suitable for all levels and, due to its small size, offers very competitive prices and a warm family atmosphere. Closer to Val d’Orcia, you’ll find Monte Amiata, another nice location where you can enjoy a variety of winter sports.

Perhaps you should come to Tuscany and raise a glass of spumante to bring the New Year in Italian style or think of us when it’s time to start planning your holidays for 2021!

Buone Feste e Felice Anno Nuovo from all us at Tuscany Travelist!