Expert Advice

5 Excursions We Loved During Our Tuscany Trip With Hilton Grand Vacations

One Member shares the scoop on Tuscany, Italy, including her top travel tips

Laurie L
Aerial view of Borgo alle Vigne, a Hilton Grand Vacations Club in Tuscany, Italy

Our first trip to Italy was so wonderful that it won't be our last.

We stayed at Borgo alle Vigne, a Hilton Grand Vacations Club in Tuscany. Whether you're planning your first trip or returning to Tuscany, you’ll enjoy the property’s proximity to so many incredible things to see and do.

A Hilton Grand Vacations Member in Florence, Italy 

Here are our top five favorite experiences, plus a few things we learned while exploring Tuscany.

1. See The Leaning Tower Of Pisa

We wanted to see the Leaning Tower of Pisa. So, we drove to Pisa and spent the day walking around the site and trying local restaurants

Insider tip: We didn't know this before, but you can go inside the tower. The view from the top was so beautiful. 

2. Visit Florence For A Shopping Trip

Another day, we drove into Florence to enjoy the churches and go shopping. I love street vendors. Though there are still great stores, I prefer the deals on the streets.

Insider tip: Some vendors take credit cards, but they'll charge you more. So pay cash for great deals.

3. Soak In Thermal Hot Springs

If you depart from Rome as we did, consider making the most of the few hours’ drive from Tuscany by visiting the thermal hot springs.

Thermal hot springs near Rome, Italy 

This was on our list, so we researched online and tried one of the free hot springs in the area. I’d never been to one and didn't know what to expect — especially since it was free.

The springs were huge and worth the drive. We'll make another stop the next time we go to Italy.   

Insider tip: Just because you rent a car with a credit card doesn’t mean you’ll be able to use that card to fill it up with gas. We almost learned this lesson the hard way.

Of course, the Hilton Rome Airport hotel and Borgo all Vigne accepted credit cards. However, for most other things, it would've been better to pay cash, especially for gas. So make sure you convert some money to Euros as soon as you arrive in Italy.

A bottle of authentic olive oil being processed in Tuscany, Italy 

4. Tour An Authentic Olive Oil Farm

We visited Italy in June, which is the off-season for the olive oil harvest. So when we asked the concierge about a tour, we found out that there tours weren’t typically available that time of the year.

However, in true Hilton Grand Vacations fashion, the concierge got on the phone and scheduled a private tour for our group. 

Authentic Tuscan olive oil is definitely not something you can buy in the United States. The olive oil farm we toured made specialty oils infused with orange, lemon or peppers. We bought one of each flavor and have since run out — which means it's time to go back to Italy for more. 

5. Enjoy A Culinary Experience At A Winery

The same thing happened for the wine tour. We didn't plan far ahead, so we asked the concierge if we could visit a Tuscan vineyard the next day. Again, the concierge told us that the winery didn't have tours available in June. However, the concierge called to see what they could do, just in case.  

Exterior of Borgo alle Vigne, a Hilton Grand Vacations Club in Tuscany, Italy 

The next day, we were off to our private winery tour.

When we got there, our guide greeted us and asked if we wanted to eat. Little did we know that chefs there from all over the world were there to show off their culinary skills. Of course, we accepted the invitation.

It was the four of us and a room full of international restaurant owners.

Insider tip: Speak with the concierge. We never would've had these experiences if the concierge hadn't organized them for us.

Needless to say, we left Tuscany saying, "Fino alla prossima volta," or “Until next time.”

Read another Member’s 10-day guide to Milan, Verona, Pisa and Tuscany and discover why they enjoyed their stay at Borgo alle Vigne.


Hilton Grand Vacations Explorer, Laurie L.

Laurie L

As an Elite Owner, Laurie has a home-away-from-home at Elara byHilton Grand Vacations, Hilton Grand Vacations on the Boulevard and Kings' Land by Hilton Grand Vacations. She joined in 2013 and says vacations are among the most important things in her life and a big part of her retirement plans. She enjoys traveling with her significant other and friends and is happiest with a bit of adventure (think: helicopter tours and biking trips). 


However, her favorite travel memory is touring an olive oil farm and winery while staying at Hilton Grand Vacations at Borgo alle Vigne in Italy. As a traveler who loves a good deal even more than travel itself, she's your go-to for tips on planning unforgettable trips that won't break the bank. 

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