Accessibility for the handicapped and coping with allergies

Allergies to pollen and coeliac (celiac) disease or gluten intolerance - what to do?

grilling a steak in a Tuscan kitchen Tuscan fruit


Special provision for the handicapped is becoming much more common in Tuscany than previously, mainly in the form of access to toilets. However, steep and multiple staircases are a feature of almost every house in Tuscany. If you have limited mobility, it will be well worth seeking out an apartment on the ground floor (US first floor). Keep in mind that some museums are not wheelchair friendly and centres of cities may be closed to cars. 

The new fast Flecciarossa trains have special seating and space for wheelchair users at the ends of the carriages. These can be booked along with assistance to board the train. If you travel with a wheelchair, you will be better with a small, portable, folding chair.

Our recommended Tuscan vacation rental for anyone with mobility limitations

Tuscan vacation rental for anyone with mobility limitations

Agriturismo Felciano is a beautiful little place located on the outskirts of Panzano in Chianti, halfway between Florence and Sienna. This is a vacation rental for up to 4(+1) persons on a working winery. It has no steps at the entry (which is very wide) and no internal steps. The bathroom is fully equipped for wheelchair users. You can park right in front of the terrace outside the door and the gazebo is easily reached along flat ground. More about Agriturismo Felciano vacation accommodation in Tuscany.


If you have severe allergies to fungal spores, note that the lower floors of large Italian villas can be damp and subject to mildew. As in other countries, there are periods of the year when the air in the countryside is full of pollen.

Gluten-free products are fairly readily available in supermarkets and restaurants. Gluten intolerance is widespread in Italy and we are quite familiar with the restrictions. Tuscany is admirably suited (as is Umbria) to people who are subject to coeliac disease. It is the home of grilled meat that never goes anywhere near flour. Salads and side dishes (contorni) almost certainly do not to contain flour. Throughout much of spring and summer, there is a huge selection of wonderful fruit to be enjoyed.

If you are gluten intolerant, you might want to prepare a card with this text on it for use in restaurants:

Gentile Ristoratore,
Sono affetto da CELIACHIA (intolleranza al glutine). Devo fare una dieta assolutamente priva di glutine. Qualsiasi cibo contenente farina di grano, orzo segale e avena puo causarmi gravi malori. Se non e sicuro, la prego di dirmelo. Posso mangiare cibi contenenti di carne, pesce, granturco, riso, patate, verdura, frutta, uova, formaggio e latte purche non siano preparate con aggiunta di farina, pane grattugiato, o salsa legata con farina o pastella fatta con farina.

The above message reads: "Dear Restaurateur, I am affected by Coeliac Disease (gluten intolerance). My diet must be completely free of gluten. Any food containing wheat flour, barley rye and oats can cause me serious illness. If you are not sure, please tell me. I can eat foods containing meat, fish, corn, rice, potatoes, vegetables, fruit, eggs, cheese and milk as long as they are not prepared with the addition of flour, breadcrumbs or sauce linked to flour or batter made with flour. Thank you."

Tuscany vacation rentals
What is a "villa" in Tuscany?
Arrival times, duration of stay and departure times.
Telephones and internet connections.
Electricity, water and natural gas supplies.
- Electricity in Italy.
- Air conditioning in Tuscany.
- Heating a vacation rental in Tuscany.
- Water supply in Tuscany.
Cleaning your Tuscan vacation rental.
- Towels and Linen.
Keys and Security.
- Breakage and Damage.
Food and other Supplies in Tuscany.
Insects, mosquitoes and other "bugs" in Tuscany.
Gardens and terraces in Tuscany.
Swimming pools in Tuscany.
Handicapped accessibility.
- Allergies.
Tourist taxes in Tuscany.
Festivals and events in Tuscany.
Roads and driving in Tuscany.

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