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Florence-time for one day's excursion out of town

Florence-time for one day's excursion out of town

Jan 13th, 2011, 12:56 AM
  #1  
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Florence-time for one day's excursion out of town

We will be in Florence a few days, and want to venture out into the countryside one of those days. We will be leaving Florence and heading to Siena (yes, I know it's not too far away, but we are meeting people), so the towns closer to Siena are probably better visited when we're down there. We're 4 middle aged American women, 3 of whom are experiencing our FIRST TRIP TO ITALY? WHERE WOULD YOU GO? We can take a small tour or perhaps hire a private driver. RECOMMENDATIONS? And if you could, please tell me WHY you say that's WHERE YOU'D GO. I've planned so many vacations with the informed assistance of these boards, and need your help now. Many thanks.
NativeNewYorker is offline  
Jan 13th, 2011, 01:08 AM
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Well firstly, we don't need the capital letters. I don't know if you realise but that indicates that you are SHOUTING at us which I'm sure isn't your intention!!

Fiesole is near Florence and offers lovely views over Florence. Other posters may be able to help with suggestions for a wine/cooking tour. I hope you love Florence, I think it's beautiful. Make sure you head out for a walk in the evenings, as it is almost an entirely different city once the day trippers have gone for the day. Also, if you are going to see the very divine David at The Accademia, then wait until about 5pm. All the tour groups will be gone and you will only queue for about 10 minutes to get entry.
cathies is online now  
Jan 13th, 2011, 01:49 AM
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Two of the top reasons we enjoy Italy are food and wine so one day of every trip that includes Florence is spent exploring the smaller vineyards in the countryside and stopping in a small village or two. We have had wonderful experiences with Luca Garapa over the years and he tailors our day to meet our preferences (smaller vineyards, towns less overrun with tourists).

It is also quite simple to take the train and head to Bologna for a day. The trip is under an hour and there is no need for a driver or tour. Bologna is a lovely city and very easy to explore.
kfusto is offline  
Jan 13th, 2011, 02:12 AM
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I would definitely take the train to Luca. It is such a charming walled city, small, walkable and easy to get to by train from Florence. The oval piazza is based on the original Roman arena. It is beautiful and interesting. Check market days or the days they have the antique market. It is fun.

Of course, there is also Pisa, if you had not already planned on that. The cathedral is beautiful as well as the tower.

Fiesole could be visited late one afternoon or early evening, no need for a day for that, imo. It would be a nice ending to a day of sight seeing in Florence.
Sassafrass is online now  
Jan 13th, 2011, 03:22 AM
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What about day spa in Montecatini terme which you can take train from Florence (same line to Lucca). part from Spa they have beautiful park or get funicular up to the old town.

If it on Wed or Sat you can stop in Pistoia( about 45 mins from Florence) for morning market before heading to Montecatini terme.
Ratiphan is offline  
Jan 13th, 2011, 01:09 PM
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How easy is it to take the trains? Expensive?
Noriboating is offline  
Jan 13th, 2011, 01:37 PM
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Siena. Gorgeous. Bus gets you closer than train.
bachslunch is offline  
Jan 13th, 2011, 02:09 PM
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Trains in Italy work pretty much like trains elsewhere, if you are familiar with riding trains at all. Prices are based on the class level and the speed of the train. For a daytrip to Pisa or Lucca, chances are you would be riding the slowest local train designated "R" for "regionale."A ticket each way to Pisa or Lucca would cost less than 10 euros. As bachslunch mentioned, go to Siena by bus since the train station is well outside town while the bus stops in the center of town.

Check train schedules and prices here, but no need to purchase these daytrip tickets ahead:

http://www.trenitalia.com/cms/v/inde...0080a3e90aRCRD

To learn about how the train system works, you might appreciate these articles:

http://www.slowtrav.com/italy/trains/index.htm
ellenem is offline  
Jan 13th, 2011, 02:56 PM
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Check out the executive wine tour for Castello di Verrazzano in Greve in Chianti. www.verrazzano.com
They will pick you up and drop you off in Florence.

My friend's parents were in Florence for 3 weeks visiting her while she studied there for a semester and said this day trip was the highlight of their trip. DH and I will be doing a tour there in May based on their strong recommendation.

Check out all of the positive reviews on TripAdvisor as well.
abenedek is offline  
Jan 13th, 2011, 03:07 PM
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definitely Fiesole. you can catch the bus from the square just round the corner from the Accademia, and be up in the hills about Florence enjoying the view over the city 30 minutes or so later.

things to see/do include the Cathedral, the monstastery of San Francesco, the roman amphitheatre, the museum, and lunch! we spent a leisurely morning wandering round the town and floowed it up with a meal under the trees in the central square, surrounded by other tourists and locals, including some workmen who are normally pretty discerning.

alternatively, if you decide to follow one of the other excellent suggestions, you could go up there for supper or a drink one evening and watch the sunset over Florence.

have a great trip!
annhig is offline  
Jan 14th, 2011, 01:17 AM
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save and print. Thank you, all. (And, sorry, I merely CAPITALIZE for EMPHASIS. No shouting intended! I'm an oldster and forget the protocol @ times.....)
NativeNewYorker is offline  
Jan 14th, 2011, 05:23 AM
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And I thank you,too!
Noriboating is offline  
Jan 14th, 2011, 06:55 AM
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Will you visit San Gimignano from Siena ? If not, I'd recommend going there.
caroline_edinburgh is offline  
Jan 14th, 2011, 07:02 AM
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I can recommend a guide who's been used by a lot of people here: Luca at hillsandroads.com. Nice guy, speaks excellent English, very knowledgeable and reliable.
k9korps is offline  
Jan 17th, 2011, 04:43 AM
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Thanks. We plan to do day tours to San Gimignano, Siena, et. Wondering if we should take the day tour to Cinque Terre. Maybe we should overnight in wine country? We know we had better pack light!
Noriboating is offline  
Jan 17th, 2011, 05:40 AM
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a day trip to the CT would be very long - better an overnight, I think.
annhig is offline  

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