Hiking the Mountains of Tuscany

Tuscany | Italy
Trip Highlights

Top three reasons to go hiking in Tuscany

  • Trip Highlight

    Hike the Apuan Alps—Italy’s glistening mountains of marble

  • Trip Highlight

    Visit abandoned villages, medieval churches, and WW2 bunkers

  • Trip Highlight

    Enjoy the idyllic comfort of a rustic Tuscan farmhouse

For most, the name Tuscany brings to mind Renaissance art, neat rows of pencil-thin cypress trees and rolling green hills stretching into the horizon, but this historic region in Central Italy has another, more dramatic side. Blessed with over 4,000 mountains—from the rugged Apennines, the backbone of the boot-shaped peninsula, to the Apuan Alps, which abound in world-famous Carrara marble—Tuscany is an undiscovered hiker’s paradise. Venture into the dense chestnut forests, explore the hamlets in the province of Lucca, learn about the plights of local WW2 partisans, and enjoy some of the most awe-inspiring views in all of Italy from the top of Monte Prado, the Roof of Tuscany. Between hikes, your hosts at the organic Lavacchio Farm will fill your heart with warmth and your bellies with the finest wine and cuisine the region has to offer.

Season

Spring and Fall

Nearest city

Florence is 30 minutes away; Pisa is an hour and a half away

Duration

8 days

Skill level

Intermediate

Itineraries

Book this adventure

Secret Gems of Tuscany Hiking Tour

8 days

Embark on a weeklong hiking adventure in the mountains of Tuscany. From your homebase, a beautiful family-owned farmhouse, you’ll travel to the historic Garfagnana Valley and explore the surrounding mountains. The highlights of the tour are the spectacular Apuan Alps and Apennines. Join a local guide who knows the regions inside out and witness a dramatic side of Tuscany you won’t find in tourist brochures.

Trip Highlights

Itinerary

Day 1: Lavacchio Farm

Arrive in Pisa for transfer to the Lavacchio Farm. Have a complimentary aperitif on the terrace and discuss the upcoming adventures with your guide. Enjoy a hearty dinner in a cozy dining room decorated with antiques and old paintings. If the evening is warm, dine on a vine-covered terrace and take in the expansive views of the Serchio Valley and the mountains behind it.

Col di Lavacchio in Tuscany

Day 2: Trails of War

Start off with a visit to the village of Brucciano, then hike up to the summit of Grottorotondo, which houses a reconstructed WW2 bunker.Then pay a visit to Monte Rovaio, where you’ll learn about the history of the Italian Partisans before circumnavigating the mountain to reach the hamlet of Alpi Sant’Antonio.

Summit: 1,065 m (3,495 ft)
Ascent: 950 m (3,116 ft)
Distance: 13 km (8.07 miles)
Duration: 6 hours

Hikers on a meadow in Tuscany

Day 3: Prato Fiorito

Visit the 900 year-old church in the village of San Cassiano. From there you’ll take a shepherd’s path to the top of Monte Prato Fiorito. After lunch, continue your hike across meadows and past monumental chestnut trees. You’ll also get to see the boulders that fell from the mountain in the 18th century, covering two localities of the village of San Cassiano.

Summits: 1,297 m (4,255 ft)
Ascent: 750 m (2,460 ft)
Distance: 13 km (8.07 miles)
Duration: 5 hours

Hikers in Tuscany ascending Monte Prato Fiorito

Day 4: Monte Forato

Head to the cobbled streets of Fornovolasco before taking the old pilgrim trail towards the coast. A steady climb past caves and medieval ruins will take you to a saddle called Foce di Petrosciana. After a short scramble you’ll follow the ridgeline all the way to a huge limestone archway below the summit of Monte Forato. Continue towards Foce di Vagli, a smooth slope on the south side of Mount Pania della Croce.

Summit: 1,301 m (4,268 ft)
Ascent: 855 m (2,805 ft)
Distance: 10 km (6.2 miles)
Duration: 6.5 hours

This shot depicts the town of Fornovolasco. This tiny Tuscan town is located north of Lucca.

Day 5: Puntato (Apuan Alps)

Hike from the turquoise waters of Lake Isola Santa to a dense chestnut forest which hides a small village abandoned during WWII. Continue along the path to reach the pasture of Puntato, one of the most romantic corners of the Apuan Alps. Learn about the area’s mysterious rock carvings and the history of the Apuani, an ancient Ligurian tribe that used to rule northwestern Italy.

Summit: 1,000 m (3,280 ft)
Ascent: 550 m (1,805 ft)
Distance: 8 km (5 miles)
Duration: 4 hours

Hikers ascending the Apuan Alps

Day 6: Monte Prado, the Roof of Tuscany

Hike through stunning beech forests and pastures until you reach the ridgeline separating the regions of Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna. Continue along the ridge to reach the top of Monte Prado, the highest peak in Tuscany. Enjoy the breathtaking views before descending down the east face of the mountain.

Summit: 2,054 m (6,739 ft)
Ascent: 900 m (2,952 ft)
Distance: 16 km (10 miles)
Duration: 7 hours

A hiker sitting on a cliff overlooking the Apuan Alps in Tuscany

Day 7: Pania, the Queen of the Apuan Alps

Start your hike up the western slope of Pania della Croce, which offers fabulous views of Monte Procinto and the sea. Upon reaching the ridge, you’ll get to enjoy a jaw-dropping vista of rolling meadows extending to the Apennines. After a short break at Rifugio Rossi, descend to your car and head back to the Lavacchio Farm.

Summit: 1,858 m (6,095 ft)
Ascent: 940 m (3,083 ft)
Distance: 11.5 km (7.1 miles)
Duration: 7 hours

Two hikers in the Apuan Alps

Day 8: Departure day

After a week of exploring the hidden trails of Tuscany, your Italian adventure has come to an end. Your guide will transfer you to the airport in Pisa after breakfast.

Col di Lavacchio in the spring, Tuscany
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Things to know

Things to know

Covid measures in Tuscany, Italy

57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity. 

We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, their guides, and the communities they’re traveling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in Tuscany, Italy, please refer to Italy’s Ministry of Health Website and the Italian National Tourist Board Website.

Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!

What’s included?

What you get on this adventure:

  • An experienced, local hiking guide with extensive knowledge of the area
  • Seven days of hiking
  • Round-trip transportation
  • Transportation from the Apuan Alps to Pisa on the last day
  • Accommodation for 7 nights on a twin-sharing basis
  • 7 breakfasts, lunches and dinners

What’s not included:

  • Unexpected transfers not planned in the program
  • Visits to particular tourist sites
  • Optional activities and personal expenses
  • Transportation to the destination

How fit do I need to be?

In order to participate in these guided hiking tours, you need to be in very good physical shape. You’ll be hiking anywhere between 4 and 7 hours every day, covering up to 16 km (10 miles) with ascents ranging from 550m / 1800ft to 950m / 3,116ft. Despite the physical requirements, hikers of all experience levels are welcome. Keep in mind, the weather can be very hot and you’ll also be packing a daypack filled with water and other things you’ll need throughout the day.

What do I need to bring?

Here’s a list of the equipment you need to bring:

  • Day pack large enough to carry all the items listed (around a 30L bag)
  • Hiking poles — optional
  • Water bottle or hydration bladder (2-3L capacity)
  • Hat and gloves
  • Walking boots with good ankle support
  • Comfortable padded walking socks
  • Warm fleece jumper
  • Spare clothes for layering
  • Waterproof rain jacket
  • Lightweight hiking pants
  • Hiking shorts
  • Towels
  • Bathing suits
  • Sunhat
  • Toiletries (sunscreen, hand sanitizer, bug spray, toilet paper, etc.)
  • Headlamp or flashlight
  • Sunglasses
  • Binoculars — optional
  • Blister packs — optional 
  • Camera — optional (but recommended)

Dress comfortably and for the weather in clothes you can move in. We suggest bringing clothing appropriate for the season. Layers are best and don’t wear jeans.

Group sizes and age requirements

Group sizes and prices:

  • The group size for these group hiking adventures is 5–11 people with one guide.
  • Cost is per person and it doesn’t decrease as the group grows.

Hiking in Tuscany can be arranged for larger groups. Contact us to make arrangements.

Min. age requirements:

  • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
  • Minors younger than 18 may be permitted to join the hike on a case-by-case basis, but must be in the presence of a parent or legal guardian.

If your group has hikers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

Deposits and cancelation policy

A 30% deposit to secure your place is due upon booking. The remaining amount is paid 3 months (90 days) prior to departure. Once the trip is confirmed by the guide, the cancelation policy stated below applies. In case of cancelation on your part, the cancelation fee will be kept by your guiding service in the following manner:

  • More than 30 days before the departure: $235 (200 €) per person for set-up fees.
  • Between 29 and 16 days before the departure: 50% of the full price of your holiday.
  • Between 15 and 2 days before the departure: 90% of the full price of your holiday.
  • Less than 2 days before the departure: 100% of the full price of your holiday.

Getting there and meeting location

Your guides will pick you up in Pisa, then transfer you to the Lavacchio Farm in Tuscany, which will be your homebase for the remainder of the tour.

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Outdoor adventuring makes us fall in love with our planet and people, it gets our brains rewired differently and forces us to rethink our life priorities.

For years, we’ve dreamt of building a company that can make an impact on things that we deeply care about. Here are some initiatives we are grateful to be contributing to.

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