Classic Tuscany & The Puccini Opera Festival - with RTÉ Lyric fm's Marty in the Morning
- Discover the picturesque charm of Tuscany, Italy’s most famous region with Marty Whelan.
- Enjoy a special open-air performance of Puccini's greatest masterpiece Tosca in Torre del Lago
- Spend 7 nights in Montecatini, a scenic town surrounded by natural thermal springs.
- Experience the Renaissance capital on a day trip to Florence, including stops at the Ponte Vecchio & Duomo.
- Learn about the incredible architecture & history of Lucca & Pisa on a guided day tour.
- Visit the traditional Italian towns of Siena & San Gimignano on a full day guided excursion.
- Explore at your own pace with plenty of leisure time & recommendations from your expert guide.
Your Guided Group Holiday to Tuscany
RTÉ lyric fm is teaming up with Travel Department for a very special programme. Listen in this August to hear 'Marty in the Morning' live from Tuscany.
Join lyric fm’s Marty Whelan for a night at the opera in the glorious surrounds of Tuscany and the Puccini Festival. Regarded as the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance, many famous artists, including Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci, have called Tuscany home throughout the centuries. The area is not only rich in art and culture but is also world renowned for its medieval hill towns, lush vineyards, olive groves and the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa.
On this 7-night holiday we will visit the beautiful city of Florence with its famous Piazza della Signoria and travel to Lucca, a walled city that was the birthplace of Puccini. We will also visit Siena, a city famous for its art, cuisine, museums and medieval landscape and the small medieval town of San Gimignano. A highlight for many is the trip to Pisa, which is home not only to the tower, but also to some magnificent cathedrals and baroque buildings.
The Puccini Festival is held annually during July and August to celebrate the life and works of the famous Italian composer Giacomo Puccini. Together with Marty, we will enjoy a special open air performance of Puccini's greatest masterpiece Tosca in Torre del Lago on the banks of Lake Massaciuccoli as part of this special Classic Tuscany holiday.
Activity Level: Moderate
Travel to Italy
Transfer to Montecatini
Upon arrival in Italy, we will be met by our local representative and transferred by coach to our hotel in Montecatini.
Guided Walking Tour of Florence
Join us for a full day excursion exploring Florence, the birthplace of the Renaissance!
This morning our guide will take us on a walking tour, exploring this fascinating city. We will witness the famous Duomo (cathedral) with its elaborate green and pink façade before moving on to the Piazza della Signoria, which was the centre of the Florentine Republic and remains the political hub of the city. We will discover more as we walk towards the Arno River to see the Ponte Vecchio (Old Bridge) which has shops built along the length of it.
We will have our afternoon free for lunch, sightseeing or perhaps do some shopping at the famous Leather Market.
Puccini Museum & Opera Performance
Visit the Puccini Museum
This morning we will enjoy a visit to the Puccini Museum in Torre del Lago. The Museum Villa Puccini is the former home of the composer, housing photos and relics from Puccini's life including his piano and the chapel with his tomb.
This evening, Marty Whelan will meet us for a small drinks reception and dinner in our hotel, before accompanying you to the Gran Teatro all'Aperto in Torre de Lago for a performance Giacomo Puccini’s Tosca. First performed in 1900, is an Italian tragedy in three acts. Set in Rome during the time of the Napoleonic Wars it is the story of a love triangle focusing on a strong female character.
Free Time in Montecatini
Today, there will be a full day to relax and enjoy the charms of Montecatini. Take a stroll around this welcoming spa town, treat yourself to a coffee in one of the many cafes, or take the cable car to hilltop Montecatini Alto. Our guide will be happy to offer suggestions for activities and places to see.
Lucca & Pisa
This morning let’s join our guide for a full day excursion, discovering more of this delightful region of Italy.
We start with a visit to Lucca, birthplace of the renowned composer Puccini and the only town in Italy entirely surrounded by walls. Our expert local guide will take us on a walk through the streets of this prosperous city, crammed with beautiful Romanesque churches.
After the tour, we can enjoy free time to refuel with some lunch or explore the city further before our afternoon visit to Pisa.
We travel to Pisa where we will visit the Piazza dei Miracoli, home to perhaps the most iconic building in Italy – the Leaning Tower. The famous lean was caused by poor foundations, which could not support the structure’s weight. The tilt continued to increase before the tower was completed and was corrected in the 20th and 21st centuries. During our tour we will also discover Pisa Cathedral and the many baroque buildings which make up the Square of Miracles.
Siena & San Gimignano
Guided Tour of Siena
Let’s see more, as we continue to explore and uncover the beauty of Tuscany !
Our day begins with a guided tour of Siena, a city famous for its art, cuisine, museums and medieval landscape. Here, we will visit the Piazza del Campo, home of the famous Palio horse race held twice a year.
Explore San Gimignano
In the afternoon we continue to the hilltop town of San Gimignano, known as the “Town of Fine Towers”. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is encircled by walls and is famous for its medieval architecture and impressive skyline. We will have free time to explore the history and narrow streets – perhaps take this opportunity to try the local white wine, Vernaccia di San Gimignano, made from grapes grown on the sandstone hillsides of the area.
Explore Montecatini at Your Pace
Enjoy a final day in Montecatini at your own pace. Pick up some last-minute souvenirs, or treat yourself in one of the nine thermal centres, where you can enjoy everything from massages to mud baths, saunas to beauty treatments.
Time to say 'arrivederci' to Tuscany!
We'll check out of our hotel and depart by coach to the airport for our return flight.
Know before you go
Will I be met at the airport?
You will be met on arrival at your destination airport and transferred to your accommodation. You will be accompanied on all included excursions by your Travel Department guide. Your expert local guide is also available to give you tips and advice on any aspect of your holiday.
Do I need a Visa?
Please visit our visa page for information on requirements for each country's entry requirements
What if there is an emergency?
We have local representatives in all of our destinations who are available 24/7 as well as an emergency contact number for our offices in Ireland should you ever need it.