One week in Tuscany: Epic 6-7-8 Day Itinerary (First Time Visit)


Tuscany Itinerary 7 Days: How to Visit Tuscany in a Week?

You’re planning to visit Tuscany for your next trip and you’re looking for the best itinerary?

You’re at the right place!

In order to help you plan your stay, I have prepared for you the perfect one-week itinerary in Tuscany, to discover the must-see places of interest in this magnificent region of Italy.

During your trip, you will discover the cities of Pisa, Siena, and Florence as well as the typical towns of Lucca or San Gimignano.

In addition to the best things to do, I will also give you my best tips to visit Tuscany in 6, 7 or 8 days as well as my selection of the best accommodations depending on your budget.

So, what are the best places to vist in Tuscany in a week?

Let’s find out!

1) Pisa (1 day)

To visit Tuscany in one week, you should arrive in Pisa. Fares are often more advantageous than for Florence airport.

Pisa Airport is also super well-located as it is only 3 km from the city center. This means you will only need a few minutes to reach your hotel by bus or car and won’t waste any time. You will be able to start your discovery of the city directly!

For this recommended 7-day itinerary in Tuscany, you can choose to rent a car or travel by train.

For your car rental in Tuscany, I suggest using I use it for all my trips, whether it’s for Scotland or Sicily, Canada or Thailand.

It’s very user-friendly and allows you to compare all the rental company rates at Pisa airport in one click.

Their full protection insurance also allows you to be refunded in case of accidents or theft, without having to send hundreds of emails. Tested and approved, they refunded me more than 1200€ to date!

And if you needed one more good reason: cancellation or modifications are very often free!

Simply click on the button below to check car rental prices:

For your train bookings, to check schedules and fares, click here:

Note that if you’re traveling by train, you’ll need to slightly adapt the second stage of this tour, as some villages are not accessible by train. I’ll explain how a bit further down.

For the first day of this one-week itinerary in Tuscany, you will start by exploring Pisa on foot.

Head to the iconic square of the city: Piazza dei Miracoli, also known as Piazza del Duomo. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it hosts the city’s must-see attractions, especially the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa!

Piazza dei Miracoli Pisa
Piazza dei Miracoli, in Pisa

The Leaning Tower remains the undisputed symbol of the city. Construction started in 1173, and it stayed upright for only five years, even though at that time, only the first three floors had been built.

Numerous architects subsequently attempted to compensate for the tilt, but even today, there’s nearly 4 meters difference in elevation between the base and the top of the building.

You can climb the 293 steps of the spiral staircase leading all the way to the top of the tower, 56 meters high. From up there, the view is completely unobstructed and you can enjoy a 360-degree panorama over the entire Piazza dei Miracoli.

You really need to book your tickets in advance to climb to the top because only 30 people are allowed every 30 minutes.

Tickets to visit the Leaning Tower of Pisa during your one-week trip to Tuscany need to be booked by clicking the button below:

Leaning Tower of Pisa
The Leaning Tower of Pisa

After this warm-up, you can explore the other monuments of Piazza dei Miracoli:

  • The Cathedral: Built in Romanesque architectural style, it was constructed in the Pisan style, with alternating layers of white and dark marble slabs. A visit to the cathedral is included with your ticket to climb the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
  • The Baptistery: the largest in Italy, famous for its exceptional acoustics.
  • The Camposanto Monumentale: a unique cemetery located in a cloister, with the graves under the alleys. The Camposanto is also renowned for its immense 14th-century frescoes, currently being restored.
  • The Museum of Sinopie: where the original drawings of the frescoes are on display.
Voyage Tips - Advice

To visit all the monuments I’ve just mentioned, you should get a combined ticket.

They are sold at the ticket office next to the tower, but there is always a huge crowd, so it’s better to buy them online in advance. It may cost a little more, but it’s worth it to save time.

To book your combined ticket for the Baptistery + Camposanto + Sinopie Museum + Cathedral, simply click on the following button:

Note: these tickets (purchased on site or online) do not include the Leaning Tower of Pisa. For that, you need to buy the special ticket to climb the tower which I mentioned earlier.

Saint John's Baptistery in Pisa
Saint John’s Baptistery in Pisa

Continue your exploration of Pisa by admiring the Piazza dei Cavalieri, only 600 meters by foot from the Piazza del Duomo.

This other must-see square in the city is lined with several beautiful buildings like the Palazzo della Carovana, the Santo Stefano Church, and the Palazzo del Orologio.

Then follow Via Ulisse Dini to pass by the Palazzo del Podesta and reach the Borgo Stretto.

This typical neighborhood has kept all its authenticity and houses several bars, restaurants, and small shops.

Take your time to stroll through the pedestrian streets and make sure to pass by Piazza delle Vettovaglie and Piazza Garibaldi, which is right by the river.

Once you get to this side, cultural enthusiasts can choose from 3 different museums, all located near Piazza Garibaldi:

  • The National Museum of San Matteo exhibits paintings by Pisan and Tuscan masters.
  • The National Museum of the Royal Palace with its private collection of works from the House of Medici and the Savoys.
  • The Palazzo Blu where one floor recreates an aristocratic apartment while another hosts a painting exhibition.
Borgo Stretto in Pisa
Borgo Stretto in Pisa

On the other side of the river from Piazza Garibaldi, you can also pay a visit to the tiny marble church of Santa Maria della Spina.

Finally, if you have some extra time, take a walk along Corso Italia, a shopping street lined with big international brand stores like H&M or Zara – useful if you forgot to bring something!

At the end of the street, towards Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II, you can also check out the city’s most famous mural by Keith Haring – “Tutto Mondo,” designed to symbolize world peace.

Spend a night in Pisa.

Voyage Tips - Advice

If you want more details on Pisa and all the best places to visit, you should read my dedicated article by clicking here: The 21 Best Things to Do in Pisa.

Where to Stay in Pisa

As Pisa is a small city, you can easily explore on foot, no matter which neighborhood you choose to stay in.

You will anyway be close to the points of interest and the train station if you choose to continue your one-week Tuscan itinerary by train.

One small note: most hotels in Pisa are very good, but don’t expect cutting-edge decor.

Here is my selection of accommodation options in Pisa:

  • Hotel La Pace: Located just 100 meters from the train station and a 20-minute walk from the tower. Double room with vintage wooden furniture starting from 70€, breakfast for 9€. Strong points: the comfort of the rooms, the excellent breakfast. This is definitely my favorite for its great value for money!
  • Hotel Roma: Just 100 meters away from the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Double room with a view of the tower or the cathedral starting from 85€, breakfast included. Strong points: the garden, proximity to the Piazza dei Miracoli, and the good breakfast.
  • Hotel Bologna: Just 5 minutes from the train station and a 15-minute walk from the Leaning Tower. Cozy and colorful double room starting from 105€, breakfast included. Strong points: the warm welcome, excellent breakfast buffet, comfortable room, parking available.
  • Grand Hotel Duomo: Only a 2-minute walk from Piazza del Duomo. Double room with views of the monumental complex starting from 105€, breakfast included. Strong points: the panoramic roof terrace, the friendliness of the staff, and the good and varied breakfast. An excellent choice for accommodation near the Leaning Tower of Pisa!
  • Hotel Pisa Tower: Located 50 meters from Piazza dei Miracoli. Spacious and bright double room starting from 115€, breakfast included. Strong points: the very pleasant terrace for breakfast, the hotel’s setting, and the smiling staff.
  • Il Giardino Dei Semplici: This B&B welcomes you just a 5-minute walk from Piazza dei Miracoli. Double room with tasteful, modern, and comfortable decoration starting from 125€, breakfast for 8€. Strong points: the warm welcome, the comfort of the rooms, the quietness, the excellent location. The best choice for a luxury stay in Pisa!
Pisa Cathedral viewed from the Leaning Tower of Pisa
Pisa Cathedral viewed from the Leaning Tower of Pisa

2) Volterra and San Gimignano (1 day)

For the second step of your week-long stay in Tuscany, you will leave Pisa and dedicate the day to discovering 2 stunning medieval towns: Volterra and San Gimignano.

It’s important to note that these two visits can only be done if you have rented a car, as the nearest train station to Volterra is 10 km from the center and there isn’t one in San Gimignano.

If you’re traveling by train, I’ll give you a second option in my “Voyage Tips advice” at the end of this stage.

From Pisa, it’s about a one-hour drive to reach Volterra.

Twilight saga fans will immediately recognize its name as the headquarters of the Volturi, the sovereign vampire family mentioned in the books and movies.

But for the others, know that Volterra is above all a beautiful hilltop town that offers lovely views of the Tuscan countryside and has a very charming historic center.

During your visit to the town, you should not miss:

  • Piazza dei Priori, the heart of the old town, where you’ll find the Palazzo dei Priori, one of the oldest buildings in the region
  • Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, dating back to the 11th century, renowned for its stained-glass windows
  • The ruins of the Roman amphitheater in the archaeological park
  • The Etruscan walls and the Porta dell’Arco
  • The Guarnacci Etruscan Museum and its thousands of funerary urns
  • Palazzo Viti, turned into a museum with period furniture.
  • The Medici Fortress, which unfortunately can’t be visited as it currently serves as a prison!
  • The Torture Museum, where various objects and instruments designed to inflict pain are on display! Not recommended for young children.
Volterra Italy

Then continue this one-week Tuscan road trip with another medieval village: San Gimignano.

It’s only a 40-minute drive from Volterra.

Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, it’s one of the most beautiful Tuscan villages. Its charm mainly lies in the dozen tower houses that still stand, out of the 75 it had at its peak.

Built by nobles as a symbol of their wealth, the taller the house, the richer and more powerful the family.

Within the 13th-century walls, you can explore the old town (the Borgo) and its historic monuments:

  • Piazza della Cisterna
  • Piazza del Duomo
  • Torre Rognosa
  • Palace of the Podestà
  • Palazzo del Popolo
  • Torre Grossa.

At the end of the day, head to Siena, a 50-minute drive from San Gimignano.

Spend the night in Siena.

Voyage Tips - Advice

As I told you, without a car, you won’t be able to do all these visits.

But don’t worry, I have two options for you on this second day if you’ve chosen to travel by train during your one-week trip in Tuscany:

1) From Pisa, you can take a train to reach the pretty village of Lucca in just 30 minutes.

Just like San Gimignano, the town is fortified and features several squares, churches, and towers such as the Guinigi Tower and the Clock Tower, where you can climb to the top to enjoy the view.

2) Leaving from Pisa, take the train to spend a day in Cinque Terre. You can find all the information to plan this day in my dedicated article: The complete guide to visiting the Cinque Terre.

For both of these options, the most convenient thing to do is to take the train back to spend a night in Pisa. The next morning, you can reach Siena and resume this itinerary from stage 3.

Where to Stay in Siena

  • Hotel Italia: Located a 20-minute walk from Piazza del Campo. Double room might be a little dated (some have been renovated, but not all) yet it’s spacious and comfortable starting at 70€ per night with breakfast included. Strong points: close to the train station, hearty breakfast, parking available, very friendly staff.
  • NH Siena: Just 10 minutes from Piazza del Campo and 1.5 km from the train station. Modern double room with city views starting at 90€. Strong points: ideal location for visiting Siena, comfortable bedding, good breakfast. This is my favorite for its excellent value for money in Siena.
  • Hotel Athena: Located within the city walls, a 10-minute walk from the cathedral. Spacious and elegant double room starting at 110€. Strong points: the terrace with breathtaking views, free parking, comfortable beds.
  • B&B Il Corso: Situated on Piazza del Campo. Cozy and warm double room starting at 120€ with breakfast included. Strong points: the warm welcome, very good breakfast, meticulous decoration.
  • La Barriera di San Lorenzo: Just 800 meters from Piazza del Campo. Spacious and bright double room starting at 140€. Strong points: the tranquility, the location, very friendly owners, excellent breakfast with fresh products and homemade jams/cakes. One of the best choices for your stay in Siena!
  • Grand Hotel Continental Siena – Starhotels Collezione: A 5-star hotel located just 250 meters from the Piazza, in the historic center. Double room decorated with artworks and period furniture starting at 230€, breakfast included. Strong points: attentive staff, good breakfast buffet, the hotel’s charm. This is my recommendation for a luxury stay in Siena!
San Gimignano
San Gimignano

3) Siena (1 day)

Let’s continue your one-week itinerary in Tuscany and explore Siena.

The city isn’t too big and can be easily explored on foot in a single day.

First, you should head to Piazza del Duomo, which hosts the majority of the must-see attractions. Start with visiting the interior of Siena’s cathedral.

It’s impossible not to be impressed by its decor, sculptures, paintings, and especially the stunning floor mosaics. There, you can admire more than 50 scenes depicting the Bible and the sibyls.

The cathedral’s floor is unique in the world, created between the 14th and 19th centuries, and is today highly protected. It’s uncovered for viewing only two months a year, between September and October.

If you visit at other times of the year, don’t worry; there are plenty of other masterpieces to admire like the exquisite blue vault, the Vow’s Chapel with its golden dome, the main altar, and the Piccolomini Library.

Siena Cathedral
Siena Cathedral

Upon exiting the cathedral, you should go down into the crypt to take a look at the extremely well-preserved 13th-century paintings that were only discovered in 1999!

Then, you can visit the San Giovianni baptistery followed by the Museo dell’Opera, which houses the original statues that once adorned the cathedral’s facade and numerous paintings.

From the museum, you’ll also have access to the Facciatone, a panoramic terrace that is simply the best viewpoint over the city, the cathedral, and its surroundings.

Only 30 people are allowed in the Facciatone every 30 minutes, so you might have to wait your turn, but the climb is definitely worth it.

To wrap up the visits around Piazza del Duomo, you can also explore the Santa Maria della Scala museum complex. It includes the archaeological museum and the children’s museum along with several exhibitions.

The entrance is located across from the cathedral, close to Siena’s tourist office.

Next, head over to the second must-see site in Siena: Piazza del Campo. This massive, elliptical square is considered one of the most beautiful in Italy!

Piazza del Campo Siena
Piazza del Campo, Siena

It’s dominated by the Palazzo Publico, which you can visit, and where you’ll find magnificent halls decorated with many frescoes created by the greatest Sienese masters.

Right next to the palace, you can also climb to the top of the Torre del Mangia to enjoy the panoramic view of the square and the cathedral.

After strolling the two emblematic squares of Siena, wander at your own pace through the alleyways to discover the numerous palaces, churches, and other squares in the city.

At the end of the day, just before sunset, head over to the Fortezza Medicea, a 15-minute walk from the Duomo. The place is simply the best spot to watch the sun set on the horizon. You will for sure take some beautiful photos!

Spend a second night in Siena.

For more details about the best places to visit in Siena, you should read my article: The 20 Best Things to Do in Siena.

Voyage Tips - Advice

To visit Siena during your one-week trip in Tuscany, you should purchase the OPA Si Pass, also called Siena Pass.

It includes visits to the cathedral, the crypt, the baptistery, the Museo dell’Opera, and the climb to the Facciatone.

To purchase the OPA Si Pass, you just need to click on the green button below:

And if you also want to visit the Santa Maria della Scala complex, choose that pass instead (not always available, in that case, take the other one):

Viewpoint of Fortezza Medicea Siena
Viewpoint of the Fortezza Medicea, Siena

4) Florence (3 Days)

You simply can’t visit Tuscany in one week without stopping by Florence!

To get there from Siena, it will take you around 1.5 hours by car or train.

The capital of Tuscany is teeming with magnificent places to visit, and you’ll find that 3 days are barely enough to discover all its treasures!

For your 3 days in Florence, you should really purchase the Firenze Card.

It will allow you to get priorty access (and thus save a lot of time!) at the entrances of the main monuments and museum, while also saving money.

Simply put, the Firenze Card includes all the visits I’m suggesting here and is absolutely essential to keep up with the program!

You need to purchase your Firenze Card by clicking on the following button:

For your first day in Florence, start by visiting the Accademia Gallery, home to the David, the famous sculpture by Michelangelo.

Upon exiting the gallery, head up Via Ricosoli for 600 meters to reach Piazza del Duomo, where the stunning Florence Cathedral is located.

Inside, you can climb up to the very top of the dome and access the cathedral’s roof, offering a magnificent view of the entire city. Be aware, reservation is mandatory, and you will need to adhere to the time slot you chose when you ordered the Firenze Card.

Next, visit the other monuments on the square (all included with the Firenze Card):

  • The Museo dell’Opera del Duomo, with its impressive statues and sculptures that were once on the façade and inside the cathedral
  • The Baptistery, for its ceilings decorated with mosaics
  • Giotto’s Bell Tower, whose summit offers a 360° view over the entire city and the dome.

You can find all the information to organize your visit to the Duomo in this article: Ticket for Florence Duomo.

Then, let’s explorer 2 other famous churches located near the cathedral:

  • Santa Maria Novella Basilica, renowned for its sumptuous frescoes.
  • San Lorenzo Basilica, where the tombs of the Medici family are located.

And to end your first day in Florence, head to dinner at San Lorenzo Market. In the food court situated on the upper floor, you’ll find plenty of restaurants offering pasta, pizza, and other Italian specialties.

Spend the night in Florence.

Florence Cathedral

Let’s continue your 7-8 days Tuscany road trip by visiting another part Florence.

Here’s the itinerary I suggest for today:

1) Visit the Uffizi Gallery.

Along with Florence Cathedral and the Accademia Gallery, it’s definitely the third must-see in Florence. It hosts dozens of works by the greatest Italian artists and painters like Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Botticelli, Raphael, Titian

2) Take a photo on the Ponte Vecchio, the most famous bridge in the city, located right next to the Uffizi Gallery.

The little houses built on it nowadays house exclusively gold jewelry shops. Just a heads up that if you venture there, you might blow the budget of your one week itinerary in Tuscany!

Ponte Vecchio Florence
Ponte Vecchio, Florence

3) Head to the stunning Piazza della Signoria, the historic political center of the city.

There you can discover the Palazzo Vecchio, Florence’s city hall. It’s up to you to decide whether you want to visit or not since it involves yet more paintings, which might be a bit too much after the Uffizi Gallery.

4) Stop by the Bargello Palace, where the museum of the same name is located. It’s dedicated to the sculptures of great Italian artists such as Donatello, Michelangelo, or Verrocchio.

5) Visit the Basilica of Santa Croce.

The world’s largest Franciscan church houses the tombs of illustrious Italians: Galileo, Machiavelli, Dante, Rossini, and even Michelangelo.

Spend a second night in Florence.

Palazzo Vecchio
Palazzo Vecchio, Florence

For the penultimate day of your one-week holiday in Tuscany, let’s stay in Florence as there’s still more to see!

Today, you can discover:

  • Pitti Palace where you can tour several galleries adorned with paintings by Botticelli or Caravaggio, as well as the silver museum and the royal apartments.
  • The Boboli Gardens, adjacent to the Pitti Palace.
  • The Bardini Gardens and their panoramic view of Florence.

Then head towards the city’s most famous viewpoint: Piazzale Michelangelo. It’s undoubtedly the best place to go to contemplate Florence’s iconic landmarks.

And after all these cultural visits, you can conclude your 7-day trip in Tuscany with a shopping session. Take the chance to pick up any last-minute souvenirs or add the latest Italian fashion items to your suitcase!

Spend one last night in Florence.

Voyage Tips - Advice

To learn more about the best places to visit in Florence you should read my detailed guide: The 27 Best things to do in Florence.

Where to Stay in Florence

  • Plus Florence: A hostel located just 1 km from Piazza del Duomo. Dormitory bed starting from 25€, breakfast for 7.50€. It’s also possible to stay in a double room, starting from 80€ per night. Strong points: the swimming pool, the terrace with a view of the dome, the comfort and cleanliness of the rooms and dormitories.
  • Hotel St. James: Located near the Galleria dell’Accademia. Spacious double rooms starting from 80€ per night, breakfast included. Strong points: ideal location, private parking, warm welcome.
  • TSH Florence Lavagnini: Located 15 minutes on foot from the cathedral. Modern and colorful double rooms starting from 95€, breakfast for 12€. Strong points: the rooftop with magnificent views of Florence, the swimming pool, architecture and design, services offered. This is my favorite for its excellent value for money!
  • c-hotels Ambasciatori: Located next to the Santa Maria Novella church. Warm and super comfortable double rooms from 160€, breakfast for 10€. Strong points: great location, excellent breakfast, friendly staff. An excellent choice for where to stay in Florence!
  • Horto Convento: Located 1 km from Pitti Palace. Modern double rooms tastefully decorated starting at 170€, breakfast included. Strong points: the garden with terrace, peaceful surroundings, delicious breakfast, the hotel’s charm.
  • NH Collection Firenze Porta Rossa: A 5-star hotel situated 300 meters from Ponte Vecchio. Double rooms with sleek decor starting from 315€. Strong points: the kindness of the staff, super breakfast. My recommendation for a luxury stay in Florence!
  • Four Seasons Hotel Firenze: This 5* hotel is a 15-minute walk from the Uffizi Gallery and offers lavish rooms blending modern and Renaissance elements. Starting at 750€, breakfast for 48€. Strong points: the Spa, Michelin-starred restaurant, beautiful park. One of the best luxury hotels in Florence!
Piazza della Signoria
Piazza della Signoria

5) Return to Pisa (1 day)

You’ve reached the end of this 7-8 day itinerary in Tuscany.

For the last day, return to Pisa by train or car to catch your return flight.

Voyage Tips - Advice

For a 6-day road trip in Tuscany, you should skip the day in Volterra and San Gimignano, or shortening your stay in Florence.

For an 8-day stay in Tuscany, you can spend an extra day in Pisa to go to Lucca or visit the Cinque Terre.

From Siena or Florence, you can also discover the Chianti region, known for its excellent wine.

So, ready for your one-week itinerary in Tuscany?

If you have any questions to plan your 6, 7 or 8 days itinerary in Tuscany, don’t hesitate to ask me in the comments sections below.

7 Days in Tuscany: Flight Prices

Since flight prices to Pisa can vary a lot, it’s a good idea to compare them as early as possible. You can use our flight comparison tool, in partnership with Skyscanner. It’s the assurance of getting the best price.

Book your trip now and save money!

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Tuscany itinerary 7 days
Tuscany itinerary 7 days

Creator of the Voyage Tips blog, travel and photography lover. I give you all my best tips to plan your next trip.

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