Pistoia, a city of Roman origin, is a real treasure chest for art lovers, and those who enjoy the more authentic traditions of Tuscany.

The town centre has many churches, cloisters, palaces and monuments dating from Medieval times, which revolve around the Duomo square, considered one of the most beautiful Italian squares thanks to its Baptistry of Saint John, Cathedral of Saint Zeno, the Palace of the Bishops and the bell tower called Catilina.

In Pistoia you can discover the history connected to the old Hospital which welcomed the pilgrims who were on their way to Rome along the Via Francigena: a fascinating underground route is open to tourists.

Pistoia is not only a city of the Middle Ages, built on the cult around the reliquary of Saint Josef of Compostela; it is also home to contemporary artists who have left visible traces of their works of art. The extraordinary figure of Marino Marini and also Iorio Vivarelli are emblamatic. And then there is the beautiful Fabroni Palace, museum of contemporary visual arts, and the works of art that adorn the city.

Around Pistoia, you find medieval villages, churches and castle forts, in addition to one of the world’s most important collections of land art, the Fattoria di Celle.

A visit to Pistoia Zoo, one of the loveliest zoos in Italy, is recommended and not just for children.

Music lovers can’t miss the celebrated Blues Festival that takes place in the Piazza del Duomo, and each summer features stars of the caliber of John Mayall, BB King and Bob Dylan. In July, those who prefer Tuscan traditions can follow the Giostra Dell’Orso (The Bear Game) which recreates the glories of a medieval tournament in costume.

A visit to Pistoia is unmissable for whoever wants to experience authentic Tuscany.

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