Siena: what to do and where to visit

Famous for its cuisine, medieval cityscape and its horse race held twice every year, known as the Palio, Siena is a must-see for anyone willing to explore what Tuscany has to offer in its different cities and towns. Local legend has it that this medieval hilltop town was founded by Senius and Aschius – which […]

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Bookstores in Florence

Whether it’s to keep you company on a long train ride, or a newly-found interest, or simply token to take back home – shopping for books is part of almost anyone’s itinerary when on holiday. With Italy having culture and the arts so deeply rooted in its daily life, it comes to no surprise that […]

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Vasari Corridor Closing – last chance to experience this unique space in Florence

After much uncertainly about the future of the Vasari Corridor in Florence, it has now been confirmed that access to the passageway as it stands today will only be possible until the end of October 2016. Presently, the Vasari Corridor hosts a unique collection of portraits and self-portraits that has lined the corridor for many decades. With the nature […]

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Top Tuber – Truffle Risotto Recipe

cooking in italy

As avid foodies in Florence, nothing excites us more than finding fresh truffles. In Italy, truffles are regularly sold from fool stalls at markets and fairs. Some grocers will sometimes have them, as may certain delicatessens (“gastronomia” or “alimentari”). If you’re truly lucky, you may have a truffle-hunting friend or neighbour who that can keep […]

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FERRAGAMO: Fashion and Footwear in Florence

  Florence is arguably one of the most fashionable locations in Italy, a hub of artisanship and design that dates back to Renaissance times. One of the biggest names is undoubtedly Ferragamo, who have their store, headquarters and museum in their stunning historical palace in the city centre of Florence. With our ArtViva Tours office […]

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Eating gluten free in Italy

Travelling with a food intolerance (such as gluten) or allergy (like with Celiac disease) is never easy. Visiting Italy and eating gluten-free might seem daunting, almost impossible, to some. The good news is that the prevalence of wheat in the Italian cuisine has made the land of pizza, pasta and bread one of the most […]

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Unique Florence – Laurentian Library

A little gem in Florence, the Laurentian Library (Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana) holds a vast collection of early-edition books, prints and manuscripts, the bulk of which formed the private library of one of Florence’s most important families. Having worked their way up from their merchant beginnings to become rulers and even Popes, the Medici family (specifically […]

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Easter in Italy: what to do, where to be, what to expect

Easter – that time of year during which the faithful and not alike find themselves promising they would eventually get on a diet. Eventually. Naturally here in Italy, Easter, or Pasqua in Italian, comes with its many traditions and celebrations – from foods, to processions, to the most eccentric regional traditions. Whether you’ve planned to […]

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Happy International Women’s Day!

Italy is no exception to celebrating International Women’s Day – that one day during which we look around us to appreciate the women in our lives. Founded in the early 20th century, the 8th of March is a day to celebrate women’s economic, political as well as social achievements. Traditionally, during this day women in […]

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