It is possible to depart from Pistoia and start discovering the most famous touristic sites of Tuscany: these can generally be reached within an hour's distance and longer journeys (more than 3 hours) can take you to the islands. It is worth saying that the beauty of Tuscany is not only to be found in its sight-seeing spots but also, and above all, in its ancient and scenic roads leading to them.
There are three aspects to be taken into consideration while visiting these places so to fully understand them.
On one side, you have to remember that this region is a result of a stratification of civilisation and very different social structures that occurred for thousands of years: Etruscans and Romans, Lombards and Franks, the influence of Christianity, the eras of communes and lordships, the French and Spanish grand duchies up to the unity of Italy and modern times. Such different influences and a great impact and imprint on this territory which is varied just as much: the mountain part stands out with the beauty of the Apennine and Apuan Alps, the cost has long sandy beaches but there are also some stretches with rocks and sea stacks up high overlooking the sea, the hills are perfect and well looked-after (Chianti, Val d'Orcia) but also rough and desolate (Maremma) while the islands of the archipelago are very different one from another.
It is quite curious how the most part of cultural and architectural patrimony arises from a history of wars between those which are today the main cities (Florence and Lucca, Florence and Siena, Lucca and Pisa, Florence and Pisa...).
Finally, it is thanks to the transfers of communities from hills to improved plains if a whole series of medieval and renaissance villages and towns are still preserved in spite of centuries going by.
Tuscany boasts seven sites which are considered by UNESCO the world heritage sites: historical centres of Florence, Siena, San Gimignano and Pienza, Piazza del Duomo in Pisa, Val d'Orcia and 12 Medici villas and gardens.
(under the photos, distance in kilometres and journey time from Pistoia)