Le Marche (pronounced Le Mar-kay) is a relatively unknown destination in Italy. Whilst everyone may have heard of its more famous neighbours – Tuscany and Umbria – Marche has pretty much managed to escape the radar of British holidaymakers…. until now!
So, first thing first, where is it?
Marche sits nestled between the Apennines and the Adriatic sea. To the East is a stunning stretch of coastline measuring around 100 miles, boasting beautiful beaches whilst inland the landscape is incredibly varied…. Golden hills contrast with rugged mountainsides and dotted throughout are beautiful Medieval hilltop towns and villages.
So why are holidaymakers suddenly falling in love with Le Marche? And why is it being compared to Tuscany? Here are some of the top reasons why Le Marche is perfect holiday destination in 2019:
When the Brits first discovered Tuscany en masse, it offered superb value for money. As tourist numbers and demand rose, so Tuscans increased prices according to the normal laws of supply and demand. In contrast, Marche is still a great way to holiday in Italy on a budget. Untouched by mass tourism, you’ll find accommodation, excursions and food all cost less than in more well known regions such as Tuscany.
Put simply, Marche feels like Tuscany felt like 20 or 30 years ago, before it was discovered en masse by holidaymakers who were looking to re-create the experience that they had read about in Frances Mayes’ Under the Tuscan Sun. It’s much more difficult nowadays to enjoy an intimate encounter with Italy in Tuscany. In contrast, Marche still has this intimacy and authenticity. Visit now and you will be ahead of the crowd.
Tuscany may enjoy an array of superb beaches along it’s 250 mile coastline, stretching from the upmarket Forte dei Marmi in the North to Grosseto in the South, but the beaches along Marche’s coast are just as picturesque and far less crowded. In fact, the Marche region boasted an impressive 16 Blue Flag beaches in 2018.
Art and culture
Tuscany is synonymous with art and with the Renaissance artists in particular. People have flocked to see Michelangelo’s David or works by Da Vinci, Botticelli and Raphael in Florence for over a century. And yet, Urbino in Le Marche was just as important an artistic centre in the Renaissance period, particularly under the patronage of Federico da Montefeltro who was Duke of Urbino from 1444 to 1482. Not only that but key figures of the Renaissance such as Raphael were
even born there! Visitors to the town will be able to delight in a plethora of key Renaissance works.
Not surprising perhaps given Marche shares its borders with Tuscany and Umbria, its landscape echoes many of the features of its more famous neighbours. Certainly, the rolling hills and vineyards are similar. It’s just that Marche has a bit more drama and variety. The contrasts between the rugged mountainsides and the gently undulating hillsides add to its character and
Each Italian region is famous for it’s food. Tuscany may boast a plethora of famous and delicious dishes from Pappa al Pomodoro to the more meaty Bistecca Fiorentina but Marche’s Olive all’ Ascolana (huge stuffed fried olives) or its epic version of a lasagne – Vincisgrassi – will rival any dish Tuscany can conjure up. The Marche region can call on a huge array of foodstuffs from the mountains to the fields to the sea and it certainly makes the most of all the
bounty on offer.
Opting for self-catering accommodation in Le Marche is the best way to experience the authenticity, charm and beauty of this region for yourself. If you fancy trying Le Marche, Bookings For You have a launched a range of stunning apartments and villas in Marche for the 2019 season.
Is is easy to see why Marche is the new Tuscany isn’t it?