Looking for ways to shed those few extra holiday pounds packed during days of never-ending festive feasting? Travel Tuscany and stay active with our useful destination guide! With its varied landscapes and healthy vegetable-packed recipes, our region is definitely the perfect destination for sports lovers and fitness buffs. After an intense day spent hiking, horseback-riding, cycling through cities or hand-gliding over verdant hills and lakes, you can remorselessly master the Tuscan sport par excellence: running to the dinner table for a well-deserved meal paired with a hearty glass of Dievole red wine!
Walking the Francigena
This recently restored medieval path is one of our region’s most interesting attractions. Grazing past the historical region of Lunigiana, its Tuscan stretch cuts across hilltops, vineyards and breathtaking sceneries. If you don’t have much time and want to get some exercise done, we suggest walking the 28.5 km leg that will take you from Siena to Ponte D’Arbia. This 7-hour walk will lead you into the pulsating heart of Tuscany’s Chianti and wine region, offering a splendid view of the world-renowned Crete Senesi and Val D’Orcia. You won’t even feel the pain – such visions of beauty are regenerating!
If you’re dreaming of a white Christmas, we suggest seeking refuge in Pistoia’s snowy hilltops. With over 50 km of tracks and slopes, Abetone is one of our region’s most sought-after destinations when it comes to ski and snowboard lovers. Perfect for families and experts, it also offers fun trips on snowmobiles and hikes in the mountains. This is the perfect trip if want to oxygenate your brain and skin. Snow can be usually found from December to March, but check snow reports before you go!
Under and over Water
115 km from Siena, near Barberino di Mugello, Lake Bilancino is the perfect place to relax on a sunny day. Its rocky beach is open to all and you can rent umbrellas and paddle boats. Here you can practice uncommon sports such as canoeing, sailing, windsurfing and fishing – If you’re particularly interested in the latter, you can also set up your pole on banks the lakes of Chiusi and Montepulciano near Siena – you will a permit, but it is easily attainable. If you’re looking for something more unique, then we might just have the right tip for you.
Not far from the historical medieval hamlet of Pontremoli, in the province of Massa and Carrara, the clear waters of the Gordana river flow between the high multi-coloured walls of a natural canyon – this one-of-a-kind natural attraction is known as the “Stretti di Giaredo“. We suggest booking a group tour and wearing the right “water-walking” attire. Check with the tourist office in Pontremoli if you have any concerns! The Tuscan seaside offers beauty all-year-round – take a walk on the pier in Viareggio or Castiglion della Pescaia and admire the sunset.
Cycling with style
Siena, Florence, Arezzo – each Tuscan city has its own two-wheel itineraries . Take a guided tour or simply rent a bike and get lost in the many mysterious and charming alleyways. Although the centres might be crowded, take it as a challenge and make sure to work your way through these urban slalom tests unscathed! Remember: always keep an eye on your bike, unless you’re looking forward to running after it! If you want to do thing in grande, check out the beautiful countryside tours that some of these companies offer – some also include wine tasting!
Gliding over Tuscany
If you’re in need of something extreme, get the adrenaline flowing by leaping into the Tuscan skyline. There are several services in Tuscany that offer paragliding, hang gliding and skydiving experiences. Take off like a bird and travel Tuscany from above – see Siena, Chianti and even the brick-red stretch of Florence’s skyline.
Dievole Natural Path
If you’re into fresh air, biking and nature photography – this is our gift to you! Circling the heart of our estate with over 27 km of country roads, Dievole’s modern Natural Path revives the roads that the property’s medieval sharecroppers followed to reach their farms. The shortest, a tranquil 3km loop, goes around the borgo of Dievole and is an easy walk, giving access to the Old Farm with its adorable animals, the borgo and its restored buildings, and the unadulterated landscape. The other rougher paths are more suitable for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding. All routes are clearly marked with signage, in order to guide you in the discovery of our estate and its surrounding countryside. Our hospitality season will re-open this Summer but you are welcome to uncover our territory’s most well-kept natural treasures. Be curious, bold and hungry for experience (and good, healthy local food) – this is how we believe you should travel Tuscany.
Main image from flickr