This paper proposes and evaluates an adaptive technique and a variable structure control approach for piezoelectric actuation systems to track specified motion trajectories. The proposed control methodologies are formulated to accommodate unknown or uncertain system parameters, nonlinearities including the hysteresis effect, and external disturbances in the piezoelectric actuation systems without any form of feed-forward compensation. In this study, both control methodologies are demonstrated to possess a promising motion tracking ability experimentally. In comparison, the variable structure control approach is evaluated to be superior to the adaptive technique in the motion tracking control. With the ability to track motion trajectories under parametric uncertainties, nonlinearities, and external disturbances, the proposed control methodologies are very attractive in realising the high-precision piezoelectric actuation systems for micro/nano manipulation.