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Things To Do in Florence Italy

Florence Literally and figuratively, the cultural heart of Tuscany. View works by Renaissance masters at the Uffizi, see Michelangelo's David up close at the Galleria dell'Accademia, walk across the Arno River by way of the Ponte Vecchio to the Pitti Palace in Oltrarno, shop bargains and boutiques at the San Lorenzo market.

Pisa Go to the Campo dei Miracoli (Field of Miracles) and see the Leaning Tower that put this university city on the map, along with the great Duomo and Baptistry that flank it.

Lucca See why the elegant walled city has become a mecca for lovers of classical music. Experience the Festival of Sacred Music springing from every church in town from April to June; in September, enjoy the opera, including works created by hometown Luccan genius and celebrated composer Puccini.

Siena Make your way through narrow, winding streets to the Piazza del Campo in the center of the city, where every July 2 and August 16 the thrilling bareback horse race and urban festival known as Il Palio delle Contrade is staged. Outdoor cafés and eclectic high-end shopping abound in this romantic medieval town.

Montalcino Here is a wine connoisseur's dream come true, home to famous Brunello red and delicious Rosso di Montalcino. A small village punctuated by one enoteca after another, it also is a source of extra-virgin olive oil and delectable mushroom-based spreads.

Montepulciano One of the highest hilltop towns in all of Tuscany, views from its towering battlements pan vineyards that stretch into the distance across the surrounding plains. Renowned for its popular Vino Nobile wine.

San Gimignano Conspicuously well known for the 13 dramatic towers that dominate its medieval skyline, the town is a magnate for local painters and craftsmen; it is filled with works of art, good shops and great restaurants.

Cortona Anyone who has ever read or even heard of Frances Mayes' books– Under the Tuscan Sun is one–should make it a point to visit her beloved Cortona. It rises poignantly from a landscape of olive groves. Visit the Galleria d'Arte Nocchia and Il Pozzo, and see works by Fra Angelico and Signorelli at the Museo Diocesano.

Pitigliano Located in the far southern reaches of Tuscany, it is a visually spectacular town built into rocky cliffs that rise from a grassy gorge. There is a small Jewish ghetto here that came to be known as "Little Jerusalem" following its creation in the 17th century. See well-preserved Etruscan burial sites locally at Tomba.

Arezzo A prosperous Tuscan city fueled by a vibrant jewelry industry, it features broad avenues and wide-open public squares such as the Piazza Grande. See Piero della Francesca's magnificent frescoes in the church of San Francesco. Visit the city's enormous Duomo and a host of high-end museums.

Massa Carrara The epicenter of some 300 marble quarries dating back to Roman times, Carrara is heralded around the world for the quality of its immaculate white stone, treasured by artisans and sculptors.

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