There are so many things to do in Autumn in Tuscany, that visitors are always in for a treat. It’s a great time for nature lovers, as Tuscany offers beautiful landscapes that offer great spectacles in Autumn. You can hike the countryside, amongst vineyards or olive trees and colourful woods, and foodies can go in search of that perfect chestnut or truffle at one of the many seasonal food festivals.
Things to do in Autumn in Tuscany
1. Explore the hilltop towns in Eastern Tuscany
Enjoy Autumn atmosphere in Eastern Tuscany, a less travelled part of the region and so much more fascinating because of it. You’ll find Medieval hilltop towns like renowned Cortona, Lucignano with its romance-inspiring ‘Tree of Love”, the mighty castle of Poppi, or picturesque Anghiari that every year in November (dates for 2019 haven’t been confirmed yet) hosts the “Centogusti dell’Appennino” Food Festivals, where you can gorge yourself on all kinds of traditional specialities.
=> Explore the highlights of the Casentino area in Eastern Tuscany.
2. Follow the scent of chestnuts
Marroni are an especially delicious variety of chestnut, that are eaten roasted, boiled or in various treats that are prepared with chestnut flour. To try some, head to the Chestnut Fair in Marradi (every week end in October 2019) in the Mugello area, Caprese Michelangelo (19th-20th and 26th-27th October 2019), where Michelangelo Buonarroti was born, or Bagno Vignoni (usually at the beginning of November, dates for 2019 haven’t been confirmed at time of writing).
On the slopes of Mount Amiata, Abbadia San Salvadore has a great “Festa della Castagna” (2nd and 3rd weekend in October 2019) while Piancastagnaio boasts the most ancient of chestnut festivals, the “Crastatone” (31st October to 43rd November 2019).
⇒ See more October events around Tuscany.
3. Wine Tasting in style
While the new wine is fermenting in the barrels, it’s the perfect time to explore the world of Tuscan wine. From ancient cellars to historic villas in the Chianti, from contemporary cantine like Antinori to family-run wineries, you’ve plenty of choices for your wine experiences in the region.
If you don’t want to drive around and organise the wine tasting yourself, you can comfortably join one of the many tours, leaving from Florence or Siena. Take this Taste of Chianti Tour (with cheese and wine tasting around the scenic Chianti hills) or this Small Group Wine Tasting Experience from Florence. Or the Wine Tasting Tour including a visit to San Gimignano leaving from Siena.
4. Hiking in the Casentino National Park. The best fall foliage viewing in Tuscany
Feel the magic of fall foliage in the Foreste Casentinesi National Park where the Apennines, which are covered in thick beech and chestnut trees woods, take on all the colours of autumn and the scents of the mushrooms growing in the undergrowth. Different trails lead the explorers through a world of silence and unspoiled nature. This surely has to be one of the best things to do in Autumn in Tuscany. For information and itineraries see the official site.
=> Discover all the Highlights of the Casentino region.By Elwhajeff at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link
5. Go truffle hunting
If you love the intense flavour of truffles you can join a private truffle hunting expedition and get your hands dirty. A local guide and his dog will lead the search for this prized delicacy, and after the hunt you’ll be able to taste your pickings!
Or more simply join one of the Truffle Festivals that takes place in November in various locations around Tuscany. The famous Truffle Festivals in San Miniato (9th-10th November 2019) and San Giovanni d’Asso (second and third weekend in November 2019, official site).
6. Explore the delights of welcoming Lucca
Lucca in autumn is a special sight. The massive walls that surround the historic centre form a 4 km round route with trees that take on all the yellow hues of fall. Bring your camera and you’ll find plenty of angles to capture the charm of this town.
Visiting Lucca out of season means that you can really feel like a local, brush up your Italian and practice by ordering some buccellato, the local sweet treat at one of the traditional pasticcerie. For more food experience, see the dates of ‘Lucca al Desco Festival‘ that takes place in the beautiful Real Collegio – 29th November – 1st December and 6th-8th December 2019).
7 – Photographing the Chianti region
The mellow expanses of orangey-yellow vineyards in the Chianti region make for wonderful photos. Driving around in the early morning with the soft fogs embracing the hills, or in late afternoon when the light caresses the vineyards, offers a wealth of photo opportunities. To get the best tips and views, check out this Photo Tour of the Chianti.
For another kind of active experience, don’t forget that the Ecomaratona del Chianti is on (20th October 2019), full of different trails that allow you to enjoy the countryside while getting fit.
♥ See the best places to visit in the Chianti region.
8.Take a relaxing bath at Saturnia hot springs
Many visit the Saturnia natural spa in the Summer, but we definitely prefer the idea of a 37 degree warm bath when the temperature outside is cooler. Out of season there are fewer people, and this is a great way to relax in the sulphuric water (don’t worry about the smell, you’ll get used to it!) of the Cascate del Mulino where people have been soaking their bones since Roman time. It’s totally free too.
There are other options of course, at one of the many excellent spa resorts that dot this area of southern Tuscany. Whichever option you choose, these waters and the peaceful scenery are sure to relax your body and still your mind.
9. Get spiritual
Autumn can be a meditative season, so If what you’re looking for is some spiritual inspiration, visit the Franciscan monasteries of Le Celle near Cortona or La Verna, an enchanting sanctuary immersed in the scenic woods of the Appennines.
10. Taste the new olive oil
November is the month of the olive harvest, when farmers spread their huge nets at the base of the olive trees and pick their precious fruits. Picked olives are immediately taken to the frantoio (olive mill) for pressing and the result is one of Tuscany’s most prized products. The new olive oil is intense, green and spicy.
Various events are dedicated in November to the new olive oil, from tastings to visits to the mills. See the ones in Montemurlo, near Prato, on 17th November 2019, or San Quirico d’Orcia (6th – 8th December 2019) and Trequanda (20th October 2019) in the province of Siena.
⇒ Find out What to Wear in Tuscany in Autumn.
⇒ If you’re in Tuscany for Halloween and if you want to get into the spirit, have a look at how we celebrate here. In Italy the 1st November is a public holiday: Ognissanti (All Saints’ Day) and the 2nd Novemebr is known as ‘Giorno dei morti’ (All Soul’s day).