Grand Tour

Follow the itineraries of the Grand Tour

A unique way to see Tuscany, through the eyes of the tourists of the 17th-19th centuries

The Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale di Firenze, the central library of Florence, proposes a series of itineraries which recreate the Grand Tour of the poets, painters and thinkers.


The classic tour through Italy has a long history. Since the Middle Ages, a period when the tour was very pleasant, the roads of Italy were traced first by pilgrims, then by merchants, artists, preachers, and scholars, not to mention the bandits and adventurers. Rome was the first destination for religious and lay travellers alike but through the 15th century other cities joined the itinerary including Milan, Venice, Florence and Bologna. These earliest travellers did not leave many records of their explorations, but in the 17th and 18th centuries this changed. The Grand Tour took on its full significance in this years when it became a true fashion and a necessary step in the finishing of European aristocrats, artists, and men of culture.Tuscany became an essential part of this experience and the writers and artists who came here captured the region, creating the immortal myth of “Tuscany” which is still current today.