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Florence-Siena bus--website not working?

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Nov 2nd, 2012, 03:10 PM
  #1
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Florence-Siena bus--website not working?

Hi,

I'm trying to find out the schedule for the Florence-Siena route, and have been told to get the SITA express buses. Can't seem to be able to access their website from the links I've found... can someone help please?

Also, does anyone know if they run less frequently during the low season, and what the earliest bus is (Florence to Siena, and also Siena to Florence)? I was initially going to do a day-trip from Florence, but I figured it might be more worth it to spend a night there. I have to get back to Florence the next day for an early train out somewhere else (don't worry about this being rushed, I'm OK with it!). I will be traveling on a Sunday.

Thank you!
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Nov 2nd, 2012, 04:25 PM
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Buses run hourly, but I think there are less rapid buses on Sunday. Are you traveling back to Florence on Sunday? What is your destination after Florence?

It used to be the train to Siena wasn't convenient because the train station is at the edge of town downhill from the historic center. Last year they installed a series of escalators from the train station (and the mall across from the station) up to the hill town.
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Nov 2nd, 2012, 08:17 PM
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Hi

We had the same problem. We tried to get tickets with SITA for Siena to Florence for a Sunday. Their website kept "hiccuping". I rang the company and was informed they do not have a Sunday service. We ended up buying a ticket in Siena. We used Siena Mobilita - http://www.sienamobilita.it/EN/index.html. The ticket was E7.80 for a punctual and event free journey. I think you can purchase via their website. I would not take the train, it's a lengthy walk to town. The bus drops you right in the middle of the old town. Also I found limited baggage room on Italian trains. The buses make storage and removal of luggage easy. But KY's info for the escalators at the train station interesting.
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Nov 3rd, 2012, 02:25 AM
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Hey kybourbon, I'll be coming back to Florence on the Monday, and then straightaway taking the train to Lucca. I'm an early riser so I reckon if I take the 0630 or 0700 bus to Florence, I can catch the 0810 train and arrive in Lucca by 1000. If I take the train route from Siena, it amounts to about the same length of time to get to Lucca, and is probably unnecessarily convoluted with too many connections.

Worldinabag--thank you!! Finally I found a bus site that I could generate Florence-Siena timetables from without trouble Might still opt for the bus as I heard the drive through the countryside is quite scenic... not sure if the train would be the same experience. Kybourbon's right unfortunately that there are fewer direct buses on the day. Did you take the bus that connects in Poggibonsi, or did you take the 9am direct bus? I'm wondering if I should take the Poggibonsi route, which leaves earlier, but the schedule is a bit puzzling in that I'm supposed to "vai a piedi a la fermata è a qualche metro di distanza" in effectively 0 minutes.
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Nov 3rd, 2012, 05:40 AM
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>>>I would not take the train, it's a lengthy walk to town. <<<

There are the escalators and buses from the train station (in the underground parking lot across from the station). I've done both and traveled to and from the center to the train station multiple times as it's the only place to catch some buses to surrounding towns.

The bus that goes to Poggibonsi takes longer and may require a change.

Why not take the bus to Pisa if you are going to Lucca? There is a bus that departs Siena 7:10 am and arrives Pisa airport at 9:00. From the airport you can catch another bus to Lucca or it's also easy to train (train station at the airport and Pisa Centrale station is only 5 minutes away). From Pisa to Lucca by train is about 25 minutes.

http://www.sienamobilita.it/sienapisa.html

FYI - The rapid bus between Siena and Florence is not really scenic. You are on a highway, not really out in the countryside. If you want scenic, take a bus from Florence to Panzano or a bus from Siena to Montalcino or Pienza.

The Siena/Firenze bus that connects in Poggibonsi isn't much more scenic either as it's still on the highway much of the time. I have not used the Siena/Pisa so am not familiar with the route. From their list of stops, it appears they do travel through the countryside a bit. Check and make sure this is not a seasonal bus.

http://www.pisa-airport.com/aeroporto_di_pisa_197.html

>>>vai a piedi a la fermata è a qualche metro di distanza<<<

Translation - you walk to the bus stop a few meters away. At Poggibonsi, the bus from Siena would drop you right in front of the train station and there is another stop across the street on the right. You may or may not have to walk over there to board the other bus (I've experienced both).

Is your final destination Lucca?
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Nov 3rd, 2012, 05:49 AM
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The Siena/Pisa bus appears to be a double-decker with ticket purchase online. 14€

http://www.busweb.it/partners_14_TIEMME-Spa.html
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Nov 4th, 2012, 03:56 PM
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Hi kybourbon--thank you!!! You're a star!! I had been looking for a bus route out of Siena to Lucca; this is going to save me a lot more time compared to backtracking through Florence, as I was going to do a short day trip to Pisa from Lucca anyway. This is absolutely perfect.

I've been looking at the Florence-Siena bus, however, and am still a little disappointed that there isn't an earlier direct bus. Arrival in Siena around 9am would suit me perfectly. With the route that connects through Poggibonsi, did you find that there was enough time to make the connection when you had to? I guess what I'm asking is if they are aware that some passengers (with luggage) may need to connect and if the second bus will wait. Let me know what you think!

Siena is actually a side-trip that a friend recommended out of the blue. Originally I wanted to do a day trip from Florence, but I thought I didn't need the extra night in Florence so might as well overnight in Siena.
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Nov 4th, 2012, 04:42 PM
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There is a train that departs Florence at 6:25 and arrives Siena at 7:52 (no changes - 8€). Also one that departs at 8:10 that doesn't have changes. What do you plan to do with your luggage when you arrive? Will your hotel allow you to drop it before check in? Where are you staying?

Most buses are scheduled to meet arriving buses. In Poggibonsi, you can see one loading area from the other so I don't think it would be a problem, but you may only have a couple of minutes. You are responsible for your own luggage (opening the luggage bay,loading/unloading). Make sure you tell the driver when you are getting off that you are getting luggage out so he doesn't pull off.

For your Siena/Pisa/Lucca day, I would take the bus as it does go through some of the scenic countryside. At the Pisa airport, switch to the train to Pisa Centrale (only 5 minutes away - 1.50€). Store your luggage at Pisa Centrale and catch a shuttle bus to the tower out front (about 1€ and they run often). If you plan to climb the tower, you should book in advance or it might be sold out. Shuttle bus back to Centrale for luggage and catch a train to Lucca. Be sure to book one that doesn't require any changes (2 per hour and 3.30€).

FYI - These are all slow R trains. You must validate each ticket in the yellow machine before boarding. All bus tickets must be validated on board.
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Nov 4th, 2012, 05:42 PM
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Thanks to all for such great info. I will be in Florence next Spring and planning similar side trips.
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Nov 4th, 2012, 08:51 PM
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Sweet Thanks alot for the help, kybourbon! I found your Siennese escalators on Youtube too; it ends up at Porta Camollia, close to the bus station, so I wouldn't be worse off for taking the train after all.

I'm booking the tower climb at the moment--do you (or anyone else) reckon one full hour is enough to drop luggage at Pisa Centrale and make it to the tower for the scheduled climb? The tower isn't far from the station and I plan to walk (and at least get a feel for 1.5km of Pisa ha). That said, 15 Euro is a bit pricey for a 20-minute hike. I wonder if anyone's had any experience with the climb...
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Nov 4th, 2012, 09:49 PM
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There can sometimes be a line for luggage storage (you may have to show your passport). I would allow some time in case the bus is late. If you walk, I would think 20-25 minutes.

I've seen that youtube of the escalators. I think the bus from the train station to Piazza Gramsci is closer to the center than the where the escalators end. You catch the bus in the underground garage of the mall. There is a ticket machine down there (make sure to have some euro coins). Last time I was there (last year), they were just connecting the underground train station area to that area.
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Nov 5th, 2012, 02:12 AM
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Hi Oliver. Can you post that Youtube link? Cheers
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Nov 5th, 2012, 06:36 AM
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It doesn't show the connection from the train station over to the mall. It takes about 10 minutes.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cNKWTkjj2RQ

If you haven't been to that mall before, there is a big grocery and a big electronics store if you need any of those things.
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Nov 5th, 2012, 07:55 AM
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Thanks KyBourbon for that info about the escalator in Sienna.

I would tell anyone not to hesitate to take the bus though. They were very clean and safe.
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Nov 5th, 2012, 08:02 AM
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Oliveroliver, I agree with long lines at baggage check in Pisa. Also, the walk takes a good 15 or so minutes one way. I think one hour is not enough time.
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Nov 5th, 2012, 08:22 AM
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The tower isn't far from the station and I plan to walk (and at least get a feel for 1.5km of Pisa ha). That said, 15 Euro is a bit pricey for a 20-minute hike. I wonder if anyone's had any experience with the climb...>>

we went up the tower a few years ago - it takes a good 30 mins to climb up and then come down again, as they only let you up one bit at a time. but there are also the baptistry and the cathedral to see - essentials IMO. THey do not call it the "field of miracles" for nothing.

you can book your "slot" to climb the tower here - www.opapisa.it. there are lockers at the ticket office to leave large bags which are not allowed. i haven't walked ifrom Pisa Centrale to the campo dei miracoli so i can't help you there.

overall, i think that your plan to do it as a side trip from Lucca is still a better one.
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Nov 5th, 2012, 09:22 AM
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>>>>I would tell anyone not to hesitate to take the bus though. They were very clean and safe.<<<<

I agree. I think the bus to Piazzi Gramsci is more convenient to most sites/hotels than the escalator to Porta Camollia.

>>>overall, i think that your plan to do it as a side trip from Lucca is still a better one.<<<<

I disagree because I don't like backtracking. If you decide to visit from Lucca, take the train to Pisa S. Rossore station, not Centrale. S. Rossore is only a couple of minutes walk to the tower. There is no luggage storage at that station so that's why it won't work if stopping on the way to Lucca.
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Nov 5th, 2012, 07:21 PM
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Thanks for the link KY....
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