Thursday, August 1, 2013

Discover the Tuscan Riviera

Discover the Tuscan Riviera
The beach at Forte dei Marmi
The Tuscan coastline offers a string of excellent public and private beaches that lie in front of and between several elegant beach resorts, with the most famous being the fashionable resort of Forte dei Marmi.

Forte dei Marmi is the most exclusive beach resort in northern Tuscany, offering a string of fine dining restaurants, trendy bars, haute couture fashion boutiques and elegant hotels. Relax on one of the wide golden-sand beaches, swim in the certified clean turquoise water and admire the natural beauty – behind the beach and boutiques is a landscape of dense green forest and rugged mountain peaks. This low-key beach resort is marketed to wealthy Italians and was used for the coastal scenes in the film The English Patient.

Forte dei Marmi is also renowned for its weekly Wednesday market, where you can browse for designer labels at reasonable prices or buy cut-price reproductions of expensive designer clothes. It is also well known for its marble fortress, built in 1788. Choose a public section of the beach or stay at a three to five star beachfront hotel that operates its own private beach. Facilities on these fashionable beaches, where you can people-watch the Italian glitterati, include sun umbrellas, deck chairs and peddle boats for hire.
The Viareggio Promenade

Unwind at one of the most famous resorts in the Tuscan Riviera, Viareggio is a tranquil seaside town lined with art nouveau and neo-classical buildings filled with boutiques, bars, restaurants and elegant hotels. Choose a spot to sunbathe on the long sweep of white sand that shelves into clear shallow water perfect for children. Then stroll along the three kilometre long palm-fringed promenade lined with chic cafes, art galleries and restaurants. Or hire a bike and head to scenic Torre del Lago, where you can hire a sailing boat and see the Puccini Museum. Along the way, explore picture-perfect countryside dotted with medieval hilltop villages.

As the largest beach town in Tuscany, Viareggio offers a lively nightlife and is famous for the Carnevale, which attracts a million visitors every February (see article of 5th Feb 2013).
The beach at Torre del Lago

Other great beaches include Marina di Pietrasanta where you can pick your own spot to sunbathe and swim on a gorgeous five kilometre long golden-sand beach backed by sand dunes, pine trees, mountain trails and the lively medieval resort town of Pietrasanta, which is crammed with narrow alleyways and picture-perfect squares lined with charming craft shops. Facilities include sun umbrellas, deck chairs, golf, hiking and horseback riding.

The Lido di Camaiore is a wide golden-sand beach that shelves gently into shallow turquoise waters. Behind the beach stands a lively promenade lined with shops, bars, cafes, restaurants and a range of accommodation options. Facilities include umbrellas, sun loungers and peddle boats for hire.

At Marina di Torre del Lago you can relax on one of the gorgeous golden sand beaches and enjoy the seaside promenade, restaurants and discos during summer. Nearby Torre del Lago is famous for its annual summer festival in July and August, dedicated to the famous opera composer, Puccini, who once lived here, where he composed many of his operas. You can tour his former home, now a museum with a collection of memorabilia. The nearby Oasi di Massaciuccoli is a protected nature area offering boardwalks through the wetlands to spot native bird life.  - Luxury Italian Cashmere, Bedding & Bath Linen

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