As the spring dew melts into a summer haze, imagine an expanse of fields and hills exploding with fireworks of wildflowers. From rosy poppies and purple thistles to a white canvas of olive tree buds, the Tuscan countryside in June is an idyllic fantasy. Throughout the month, you can witness the colours heat up under the Tuscan sun as the spring’s vibrant greens melt into a warmer, softer hue of orange that fades into the burnt rooftops of Italy. And this natural masterpiece painting the countryside is just one of the many reasons why you should migrate to Tuscany in June.
Wave goodbye to the chill of spring, and say hello to the warmth of summer from your villa overlooking the Tuscan coast. Replace your jumper for a swimming costume, and lounge to the sound of Grosseto’s lapping shores. And explore the wineries in Chianti or Siena as the grapes begin to ripen with the seasonal changing of the guard.
Or brave the crowds of Florence, where the city comes alive to the sounds and sites of the many festivals and events that parade through the heart of the region.
But most importantly, as restaurants and bars begin to open their windows and decorate the streets with outdoor seating, be sure to indulge in an aperitivo or spritz – it’s only an Italian must during the summer months.
As Tuscany transitions from spring to summer, the month of June brings along perfect weather for your perfect holiday.
Expect cooler mornings, warm days and idyllic evenings. Temperatures vary throughout the day, as the average low sits around 16°C (60°F) and the average high hits around 28°C (82°F). Although as the rain washes away to a rare drizzle throughout June, Tuscany will begin to heat up in preparation for a scorching July and August.
Tuscany gets very dry by the end of June, and the entire month typically averages 50 mm of rain. The beginning of the month often welcomes sporadic thunderstorms, but don’t fret, these occasional storms roll in quickly, paint the landscape in brilliant shades of green and leave before the rest of your day can be spoiled. And the best part about a Tuscan holiday in June? This summer month gives way to the longest days of the year. You will have more than 16 hours of daylight to explore this vast region. The sun rises as early as 5 a.m., and only sets around 9:30 p.m.
June’s forecast makes it hard for anyone to stay away from this already delectable region of Italy.
Where to Go
First time travelers to Tuscany are often surprised by Tuscany’s vastness. And with holidays only lasting a few weeks, it can be stressful for anyone trying to narrow down their bucket lists to just a few destinations. But these are some of the best parts of the region to visit during the summer solstice:
Florence is simply a must no matter when you find yourself in Tuscany, but the capital practically performs under the shining summer sun. It comes out of hibernation with festivals, weekly events and a giddy jubilance that’s really only felt during the month of June.
And speaking of festivals, Pisa shrines bright at this time of year because of events like Luminara di San Ranieri. The Luminara di San Ranieri celebrates the eve of the patron saint’s feast day, and with that comes a skyline completely illuminated by wax candles. And while you’re at it, you might as well check out the Leaning Tower of Pisa too.
Travel to the Chianti region just in time for the grapes to ripen, and for a stroll through the history of centuries-old vineyards and estates.
Or since June welcomes swimming weather, head right for the turquoise waters flirting with the sun and the shores of the Tuscan Archipelago. This 7-island archipelago lies off of the coast of Tuscany, and is home to unique flora and fauna, crystal-clear waters and the myth of Venus that claims the seven Tuscan islands are the seven pearls that fell from Venus’s necklace when she surfaced from the sea. And this area of Tuscany is often overlooked by tourists, so flock here for the weather, views and local experience!
Festivals & Events
Just like with the rest of Italy, Tuscany wears its history with pride and festivals. And some of the country’s most spectacular and flourishing celebrations happen in Tuscany during the month of June.
As one of the most important holidays in the entire country, it would truly be an authentic experience to find yourself in Tuscany for Republic Day. Similar to the foundations of July Fourth or Bastille Day, Republic Day celebrates the day in 1946 when Italians united and voted to transition from a monarchy to a republic thus ending the reign of Fascism. In exchange for parades and concerts throughout the entire country, businesses and attractions close or limit their hours on the 2nd of June to celebrate this day of independence.
Beyond Republic Day captivating the entire Tuscan region, Florence takes the cake. It feels like every week of June the city has something to celebrate. The two biggest attractions for locals and travelers are the Summer Solstice and the Feast of St. John.
The Summer Solstice celebration happens across the northern hemisphere, but in Florence it’s not only an appreciation for lazy days of summer ahead, but also an ode to the sciences and astronomy. During this time, the Santa Maria del Fiore duomo becomes even more busy as people flock to see it’s gnomone, which usually goes overlooked throughout the rest of the year. A gnomone tracks and indicates when the sun has reached its highest peak in the sky, and you can experience this phenomenon in the heart of Florence for free later in June, just make sure to make a reservation through the cathedral!
Feast of St. John
And the Feast of St. John is one of the biggest events in Florence all year. Come the 24th of June, the city’s normal hustle and bustle turns into an extravagant musical where the historic center and fireworks are the main acts. Spend your day parading along with the city, and wind down at the end of the day with a firework display that will paint Florence in a new and incredible light. Try to get a spot at the Santa Trinita Bridge for the best views of a performance that only comes around once a year.
Maggio Musicale Fiorentino
Florence isn’t done yet though, as the month of June also closes the curtains on the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino. This festival is a two-month extravagant showcase for international opera, concerts and ballet. It’s Italy’s oldest music fest, and of course, happens right in the heart of Florence at the Teatro dell’ Opera.
While Florence’s normal hustle and bustle booms during June, the rest of the region also offers must-see events and experiences, including Pisa.
Luminara di San Ranieri
On the 16th of June, Pisa transform into a sultry romantic oasis during the Luminara di San Ranieri. Imagine doorways, windows, bridges, alleys, practically the entire city, ablaze with flickering candles, and no electricity. It’s one of the most beautiful ambiances, displays and attractions any traveler can experience.
Borghi in Festa
Head to Castelmuzio, in the province of Siena, for the first weekend in June for the Borghi in Festa. This wholesome experience of games, concerts and Italian cuisine is a local experience off the beaten path, and well worth the trek.
Things to See & Do
Beyond the plethora of festivals and events for both tourists and locals to celebrate, Tuscany is still the heartthrob of Italy, and offers so many other opportunities for sightseeing.
Parco Regionale della Maremma
Especially as the weather reaches its peak in June, this is the perfect time of the year to explore Tuscany’s more natural expanse, including the Parco Regionale della Maremma. While the entirety of Maremma is a discreet gem along the coast of southern Tuscany, the Natural Park of Maremma is an outdoorsy adventures’s mecca. With an unspoiled landscape of the looming Uccellina Mountains that give way to the rocky beaches of the Tyrrhenian Sea, people flock here to hike, wander through the olive groves, kayak through the waves’ break and relax to the sound of animals celebrating the end of winter.
June marks the first bloom of Tuscany’s sunflower fields. Rent a car, and careen through Tuscany with a rolling sea of sunflowers out your window and warm wind kissing your face. You can find these picturesque scenes throughout the entire region come the end of the month and early July.
Yes, Tuscany has it all, including destinations for the sunkissed holidayers. And one of the best times to frequent this region’s coastal attraction is during the first few weeks of June when the weather is warm, the crowds are few and far between and prices have not reached peak summer expensive. From sand as soft as your villa’s bed to hidden rocky alcoves for the romantics and adventures alike, you can pick and choose exactly what kind of vacation you want from Tuscany. And you can’t go wrong, no matter if you choose to stay in a beach town in Grosseto, Livorno or Lucca.
Much of Italy, including Tuscany, is an ode to the medieval era, whether it be a city’s architecture or a village’s foundation. And the month of June is when most Italians celebrate their roots to the era of the Renaissance, a rebirth of culture that began in 14th-century Tuscany. Reenactments, markets and a jovial spirit await you when you visit places like the quietly nestled hilltop town of San Gimignano and Lucca for their Medieval appreciation.
It doesn’t get more authentic than a food festival in one of Italy’s most delectable regions. And June in Tuscany is like an everyday feast of the country’s finest delicacies. You have options too, as each festival brings something delicious to the table including entire festivals dedicated to just pasta or wine. Quell your pasta cravings at the Du’ Pici sotto le stelle in Chianciano Terme from the 7th of June to the 9th of June. And you can’t miss the Sagra Ciliegia, a Cherry Festival, in Lari that happens the same weekend of Du’ Pici sotto le stelle, but also the 1st and 2nd of June so you can have your pasta and eat it too! Although you will have to choose, as the popular wine festival, Radda nel bicchiere, is held in Chianti’s Radda on the 1st and 2nd of June. But be sure to make room to indulge on traditional Tuscan flatbreads at the Festa della schiacciata on the 16th of June.
Visiting Tuscany in June can be overwhelming as the entire country pulls out all of the stops, eager to shed the last of winter. So, here are some tips of the travel trade to make your Tuscan holiday exactly as it sounds:
First things first, you can lighten your load and open up space for more souvenirs when you know exactly how to prepare for a trip to Tuscany in June. Essentially all you really need is light clothing that are easily layered for cooler mornings, plus a light rain jacket for when those thunderstorms roll in just as you’re posing with the sunflowers. And of course, if you plan to head coastal, then be sure to throw in a swimming costume or two so you can properly explore the idyllic waters lapping at your toes.
Since it’s not peak tourist season and schools are only just beginning to close for the summer, the best times to visit museums and other famous attractions are during the week. There will be far less crowds during June than July or August, plus cheaper prices. And speaking of prices, since June is considered mid-season for most holiday rentals in Tuscany, you will be able to score the best prices, and still experience the quintessential Italian summer. But most importantly, the best way to travel through Tuscany is by renting a car. This way you can celebrate in Florence, adventure in Maremma and relax along the coast of Tuscany.
To discover more about Tuscany and the rest of your Italian holiday, check out Italian Breaks for where to go, where to stay and what to do.