Wheelchair Rental in Tuscany and Umbria

Friday, January 20, 2017

Wheelchair Rental in Tuscany and Umbria

Posted by Ruth (20/01/2017)

If you are planning a trip to Tuscany or Umbria, but need to know where you can rent a wheelchair, we’ve got it covered. Our local experts have searched both regions in order to identify places where you can rent a wheelchair, so that you can make the most of your Italian holiday.

Some cities such as Florence and Siena are far more wheelchair friendly than you might think, although navigating through old towns with cobbled streets and lots of hills can be a challenge. You just need to do a little research in advance. Before you visit each city you may want to see what hills, bridges and cobbled streets they have, and pick out which routes will be easiest to take.

Feel free to call our experts for advice, especially if you are looking for a luxurious, wheelchair friendly apartment or private villa in Tuscany or Umbria. We personally visit all our properties, so we know exactly the kind of facilities they offer and are of a high standard.

You can book wheelchair hire in Italy via this site. For some wheelchair accessible activities you can enjoy throughout Italy click here.

Florence accessibility
Most of the museums in Florence are easily accessible by wheelchair, they have stairlifts, elevators and ramps, so you don’t have to miss out on seeing any of Florence’s magnificent museums. What’s more, all state museums, such as the Uffizi Gallery and Academy Gallery, are free of charge for EU citizens that are disabled and the person that is accompanying them.

When it comes to parking, you will find that most of the car parks in Florence have designated disabled spaces and disabled access. However, you do need to display your disabled permit in your window. For more information check out visit Florence.

Siena accessibility
Siena is on a hill, so there are lots of ups and downs. Wheelchair access has been taken into consideration for transport, museums, theatres and cinemas. There are specific taxis designed for wheelchair users and the train system is also equipped for disabled tourists and travellers.

A lot of the museums and main attractions in the city are wheelchair accessible, clickhere for more information. Siena is a good base for wheelchair users to stay and explore the Tuscan region. This video is really helpful and explains about getting around Siena.

Here is a list of shops where you can rent wheelchair (sedia a rotelle), crutches (grucce) and similar.


In Lucca:
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Unexpected Romantic Moments

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Unexpected Romantic Moments - When Tuscany Takes You By Surprise

Posted by Kiri (13/01/2017)

They say Tuscany is one of the most romantic places you can visit. Lots of newlyweds head out there on their honeymoon, exploring magical cities like Siena and Florence together. Before I went, I knew that it was going to be the perfect holiday for my partner and I, but it was the unexpected moments that really showed me Tuscany’s full potential for romance.

I had pictured romantic moments such as horseback riding through the Tuscan countryside, sitting and watching a famous Tuscan sunset together with Prosecco and strawberries, and maybe getting a cute selfie at the Leaning Tower of Pisa. In reality, none of those things happened, but the experiences and moments we shared were even better, and many came as a complete surprise.

Whatever you have pictured in your mind, when you get to Tuscany and experience it for yourself, it will exceed your expectations. I’m not a big romantic, so the subtlety of some of the moments we had was ideal. Here’s some unexpected romantic moments we shared on our recent trip to Tuscany.

Gazing at Siena from above
You can't help but gasp when you get to the top of the bell tower (Tower of Mangia) in Siena. Once at the top we just stood there together in awe, and picked out all the things we could see in the distance such as the mountains, little Tuscan houses, fields lined with trees, and the outskirts of the city.

A natural mud mask in the hot springs
This may not sound that romantic, but it’s a brilliant experience. Picture bathing in soothing, natural warm waters with your partner, and being surrounded by woodland.
The temperature of the water gets warmer the higher you are, so you can literally choose the perfect temperature. We grabbed some of the natural mud and covered ourselves in it, it’s naturally exfoliating and leaves your skin feeling soft. We also took a few selfies of us both covered in mud to capture the moment.

The walk home after wine tasting
We had a rather entertaining walk home after the epic wine tasting session at Casanova di Ama. To be fair it wasn’t really ‘tasting’ as we had about half a glass of each type of wine. If I’m honest, we were pretty tipsy on the walk home, but still managed to enjoy the stunning scenery. When we got back we had the best nap ever on the sun loungers as the sun was setting.

Wandering around San Gimignano in the rain
Again this doesn’t sound romantic, but it was. We didn’t let the rain dampen our spirits and it was actually quite refreshing. Everyone else had thought to bring umbrellas, and we forgot to bring ours from the apartment, so we braved the rain and got soaked together! It didn’t make San Gimignano any less beautiful (check out my video here).

Cycling around Lucca
I would say this was one of my favourite memories. It was one of the first things we did on our trip, so we were super excited to get out and begin exploring. We cycled round on the oldest bikes you have ever seen (kindly given to us by the budget hotel owner), and had great fun filming cycling round Lucca’s walls on the GoPro. Check out our video of Lucca here.

Watching a sunset on our balcony
We didn’t manage to capture any spectacular sunsets in and around Tuscany, as we just weren’t in the right place at the right time. However, it didn’t matter, because every evening we were gifted with a breathtaking sunset on the balcony of our private Tuscan villa. The first day we arrived we cracked open a bottle of Champers, took in our new picturesque surroundings and watched the sunset.

Wandering round Brolio Castle
I have visited a few Castles in France and throughout Europe, but I have to say, Brolio is probably one of the most impressive I have seen. The views surrounding the castle a simply phenomenal. We really enjoyed walking round the grounds together in the late afternoon.

Eating a home cooked meal by the fireplace
One evening we arrived home late and decided to stay in and enjoy the apartment. We ended up having a really lovely meal at the dinner table next to the fireplace. It was nice to cook fresh local ingredients together and have a chilled night in.
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How to beat the dreaded January blues

Friday, January 6, 2017

Beat the January blues by booking a holiday to Tuscany

Posted by Sonia (06/01/2017)

The end of the Christmas season is difficult to accept. Plus, the thought of entering a New Year can be overwhelming. January tends to be a bit of a dull month, where we all figure out our plans for the next twelve months, and struggle to deal with going back to work.

But, there’s no reason why you can’t plan some exciting things in January to cheer you up. Lots of people end up booking holidays in January because they want something to look forward to, and want to know what trips they have planned for the upcoming year.

How to beat the dreaded January blues
Research has proven that going on holiday can improve your happiness, and simply booking a trip can instantly boost your mood. As soon as you have booked a holiday for 2017, you can start to plan what you want to do, and get excited about your trip, which makes January a lot more bearable.

What better way to beat the January blues than to book an amazing trip to one of the most beautiful regions in Italy? Picture yourself laying back on a sunbed under the Tuscan sun and sipping on bubbly by the pool.

Book our most popular properties now
The last thing you want to do is to put off booking to later in the year, and miss out on all the top apartments in Tuscany. We personally visit and check all our properties, so we can feel confident that our customers are getting the very best.

Whether you are looking for a family villa, group villa, or romantic retreat for two, we’ve got it covered. Many of our apartments and villas have their own private pool, and are in some of the most stunning locations.

Easter breaks to Tuscany
Why not cheer yourself up and instead of thinking about the fact that Christmas is over for another year, focus on booking a lovely holiday that you could be going on in just a few short months.

Book a holiday to Tuscany in Easter and experience how magical Tuscany is during the spring time. Plus, there are lots of parades, events and markets to experience at this time of year. On good Friday you might just stumble upon some religious processions in the hilltop towns.

If you love a bit of sunshine but prefer slightly cooler temperatures, then April and May are an excellent time to visit Tuscany. You can go sightseeing without getting too hot and sweaty.

Plan activities for your holiday now
Already booked a trip to Tuscany? Then why not take the opportunity to start planning the holiday of a lifetime. Cheer yourself up in January by thinking about what activities you might like to do. You might want to go horseback riding, on a cycling tour, book a private chef, or go wine tasting. We’ve got information about all these activities in our handy guide book, check it out here.

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Uncovering San Gimignano

Friday, December 30, 2016

Uncovering San Gimignano

Posted by Kiri (30/12/2016)

Of all the medieval hilltop towns in Tuscany, San Gimignano is possibly the most well-known. It’s famous for its 13th century walls and medieval towers and houses. Naturally it was on the top of my to do list for our Tuscan trip. I had done my research and browsed pictures of San Gimignano online. I had a pretty good idea of what it might look like, but the reality surpassed my expectations.

I was first captivated by this charming town when we were driving through the bendy Tuscan roads and I caught a glimpse of San Gimignano in the distance. Seeing it from afar definitely entices you to get closer. Once you get to the top of the road that leads to the town, you will instantly notice the towering walls.

I would recommend going early in the morning, rather than just before lunch time like we did. Parking is a bit of a struggle. If you are feeling active you may want to park outside the town at the bottom of the hill, but be prepared for a climb.

Once inside, you can admire the architecture and really start to uncover the town. It felt like we were inside some sort of medieval castle or village, especially when you are walk along the cobbled streets and notice all the buildings. You won’t fail to notice the distinctive The Duomo di San Gimignano, a 12th century church in the centre.

One thing I particularly remember about San Gimignano is the quirky shops. If you want to buy some traditional Tuscan goods such as pottery, pasta, Tuscan sausages, olive oil and wine then you will be spoilt for choice here. I also remember the two torture museums which unfortunately we didn’t have time to explore, but they definitely added to the medieval atmosphere of the town.

There’s also plenty of restaurants to try, but some are tucked in hidden corners and up cobbled paths. You have to investigate the backstreets properly in order to find some of the really local restaurants.

We settled for a traditional pizza place run by a local family. We tried the Tuscan sausage and spinach pizza, which didn’t have tomato sauce, but was delicious nonetheless. The spinach in Tuscany has so much flavour, I have tried to recreate it back home b8ut it never tastes the same.

Make sure you save some time to walk to the highest point in San Gimignano where you can enjoy spectacular views. You can see right into the Tuscan countryside and beyond. Some of the restaurants also boast amazing panoramic views so you can take in the scenery whilst tucking into your meal.

I made a video of our time in San Gimignano. Unfortunately it was raining, but that didn’t stop us from really appreciating this unique medieval town. Check out the video here and see what we got up to. Thinking of booking a holiday to Tuscany? Take a look at some of our luxurious private villas we have in and around San Gimignano and find out more about the town here. 
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Stay In A Private Tuscan Villa

Thursday, December 22, 2016

What Is It Like To Stay In A Private Tuscan Villa?

Posted by Kiri (23/12/2016)

I had all sorts of ideas about what it might be like to stay in a traditional Tuscan villa in the middle of the countryside. For me, that’s my ideal place to stay. I’d much rather stay somewhere with character and charm than a fancy hotel.

Every apartment you stay in is different, and has it’s own defining features. It’s the interior decor and the attention to detail that makes an apartment very special. That’s what you get when you stay in a private villa or apartment with To Tuscany. They have hand picked all their villas, personally visiting each and every one of them. We were lucky enough to stay in one of their stunning villas, and I want to share with you what it was really like.

Our apartment was way off the beaten track, not far from Lecchi in Chianti, which meant we got to stay in the depths of the Tuscany countryside. It didn’t matter that we were out of the way a little, because we hired a car. Radda in Chianti, a lovely hilltop town, was only around 15 minutes away. I think being in this location really added to the magic of this place, because we felt like we could really switch off.

It was so quiet. We couldn’t hear any cars, people or noise. Instead, the only things we could here were the melodic and soothing sounds of the birds singing, and the sound of bees buzzing around the beautiful flowers.

I think the best thing about our villa was the spectacular view from the balcony. If you picture a dreamy Tuscan view with rolling hills, olive groves and vineyards, then you can imagine what our view was like. Sitting out on the balcony with a glass of wine in the sunshine was blissful.

Inside the villa had character features such as a fireplace and oak beamed and terracotta ceilings. We had a kitchen with all the amenities we needed plus TV and of course, Wi-Fi.

The bedroom had an enormous hand-made iron bed and views out to the vineyards. The villa also had air conditioning and heating, neither of which we used because we visited at the end of March, when it was just beginning to warm up for spring.

There are a total of 14 villas situated in the heart of Chianti wine country. We were able to walk to the local farm for a wonderful wine tasting experience. The villas have a shared pool which looked lovely, but it was off season so it wasn’t open when we went. There’s only a few villas clustered together here, but it feels a bit like a Tuscan hilltop village on a very small scale. I would highly recommend staying here if you want to experience a real piece of Tuscany and truly get away from it all in picturesque surroundings. Click here to view the villa and book online today with To Tuscany.

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