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Florence: Stay in the city or outside?...

Florence: Stay in the city or outside?...

Dec 15th, 2005, 12:03 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 267
Florence: Stay in the city or outside?...

I am driving through Tuscany in late March. I am planning on spending three nights in Florence. Friends have recommended two hotels which both look good to me; one is in the heart of the city (The Lungarno), and the other is outside the city (Villa Fiesole)....My inclination is to stay in Florence, rather than outside.

Another thought is to do two nights in Florence and one night in Siena.

Any thoughts? Thank you.
fishskis is offline  
Dec 15th, 2005, 03:40 AM
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I would stay in the city and park the car somewhere..you won;t need it for touring around the city's major sites.
You could either drive to Siena for a daytrip or take the train or bus.
Intrepid1 is offline  
Dec 15th, 2005, 04:09 AM
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Hi fish,

Fiesole is <20 min by bus from the Florence SMN station.

It is in the hlls above the city, and the view over the valley is quite lovely.

If the Villa Fiesole has parking, that would be a major plus.

>... two nights in Florence and one night in Siena [?]

If you don't mind the packing and unpacking, many people have recommended a night in Siena.

ira is offline  
Dec 15th, 2005, 04:33 AM
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Hi there!
I am not sure if you will be able to take a car into the centre of the city -- check with your rental agency, as there are serious traffic restrictions with respect to access.
Personally, I would stay in Florence for the two nights and then the one night in Siena. There is something magical about the evenings here in Florence, and it is REALLY nice to stroll through the historic centre after having dinner at a nice restaurant without worrying about bus schedules, etc. Fiesole is nice, too, and is a short bus ride away, but again you will be out of the main part of the city, and even though it is accessible by bus, for the two nights, you might just prefer the city scenes. Just a thought!
Dec 15th, 2005, 04:36 AM
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If it's your first time, I'd suggest staying IN the city. But do visit Fiesole.
cmt is offline  
Dec 15th, 2005, 05:09 AM
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Stay in the city. Check with your hotel about the car. Our hotel arranged for our car to be taken away within a couple minutes of our arrival and it was returned quickly when we requested this. I believe the cost was about 25 euros a day.
SusanMargaret is offline  
Dec 15th, 2005, 06:01 PM
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If it weren't late March, I would have told you to stay outside the city, but at that time of year I think you want to be in the city. It will be quite cool and a bit misty and rainy so outdoor activities like walks in the countryside will be limited, plus crowds will be few in Florence so staying in Florence is pleasant. The views from Fiesole are lovely, but as nothing will be in bloom in March, the countryside is a bit brown.

I think 2 nights Florence and 1 Siena is a great idea.

The Lungarno is quite nice. I actually prefer the Lungarno Suites, across the river and also owned and operated by the Ferrogamo family, as the hotel is new, the rooms are all suites and are much larger, but the Lungarno is certainly very nice. Even their largest rooms are small, IMO, only 32 square meters, so make sure you ask for the largest room (junior suite) if that is important to you and try to get a river view of course. If you haven't seen it already, take a look at Lungarnohotels.com for info on both the Lugarno and the Lungarno Suites. The Ferrogamo family has several other hotels in town.

Cicerone is offline  
Dec 17th, 2005, 04:50 PM
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Last year I stayed at a great place in Fiesole called Pensione Bencista. The views from the terrace of Florence are magnificent. We liked getting out of the city to relax at the Bencista. Tbe room was large, simple and clean and the bed had Frette sheets! I am very particular with where I stay, and I loved the Bencista. We had an armoire and a small table and chairs in our room. The hotel is decorated with antiques, but is not very formal. It is family owned for generations, even with two pet dogs. The only thing I would recommend is not taking the full board with dinner, as I would have liked to have eaten in the restaurants in Florence. If you do stay there, I suggest going for drinks at the San Michelle, which is down the road, just for the experience.
Oldmyst is offline  
Dec 17th, 2005, 04:55 PM
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Here's another vote for staying in the city for convenience sake, but visiting Fiesole on your trip. It's a gem.
Statia is online now  
Dec 17th, 2005, 07:02 PM
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And one more vote for staying in Florence, especially in March. Last March was quite cold in Florence at the beginning of the month. We went to Fiesole for lunch and it was frozen and deserted. Fiesole is great, but winter doesn't bring out the best this little town.

It will also be dark early, and walking through Florence at night is a much more pleasant experience than making your way back and forth to Fiesole.
tuscanlifeedit is online now  
Dec 17th, 2005, 08:17 PM
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My take: Without a car - stay in the center, dine late, walk around, fall into bed.

With a car to worry about: Stay in Fiesole (if you're assured that there will be space for your car, of course).

Later in the year I'd say dine up in Fiesole, the late sunsets make that a great outdoor experience. In late March (still daylight saving) it gets dark too early - take the bus down into Florence, stroll, have dinner, stroll, take the bus back up.

Siena is a daytrip, no need to stay the night - you'd have to park outside the city anyway.

WallyKringen is offline  
Dec 18th, 2005, 04:00 PM
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Thanks for the replies. I will be staying in Florence. According to my hotel, they have safe, secure valet parking in a private garage nearby.
fishskis is offline  

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