Tuscany Day Trips w/ no car?

Old May 6th, 2002, 11:57 AM
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Tuscany Day Trips w/ no car?

Husband and I will be in Florence in July and are wanting to do several day trips (Siena, San G, Pisa, Greve?). Curious if a car rental is necessary - have heard all the towns are accessible by bus/train. Is it just more difficult to visit w/o a car - needing to adhere to transport schedules? Any advice would be greatly appreciated, along with any suggestions on specific areas, restaurants, or sites not to miss! Thanks!
Old May 6th, 2002, 12:54 PM
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There is nothing tricky about getting around Tuscany without a car except planning in advance. I like buses best as they are less expensive and more flexible than trains and you meeet real Italians which can be fun. But bus information is hard to get unless you are on site.

Here is what to do when you first arrive "carless" in Florence:
In central Florence just between Via Faenza and the train station is a bus staion that services most of the tourist towns in the area (and many of the others which are just as interesting and without the crowds). Go there and check the schedules personally and plan your daytrips using what is available. Have fun!
Old May 6th, 2002, 01:40 PM
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Thought about doing this without a car, but ended up renting one for a few days. Part of what we enjoyed the most was stopping and looking at fields of cypress trees, buying olive oil from the producers' farms, visiting the abbey at Monte Olivetto Maggiore, etc--things impossible without a car. If you plan to spend a whole day or more in specific town, e.g. Siena, by all means skip the car rental and go by bus, especially if you're economizing. Schedule permitting, I would try to rent a car even for a day or two and stay overnight somewhere other than Florence for those days
Old May 6th, 2002, 05:20 PM
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CHIANTI: the drive thru the CHIANTI region (the area between FLORENCE and SIENA) on the VIA CHIANTIGIANA (by car or bus)is beautiful, peaceful & delightful!

in CASTELLINA in CHIANTI stop at ALBERGACCIO DI CASTELLINA for a gourmet lunch or dinner (0577-741042). they're closed sundays. try to sign up for one of Franco Lombardi's olive oil seminars each wednesday. he also produces one of the finest extra-virgin, hand pressed olive oils in the world (listen to him and he'll tell you it's the BEST!) he's a dynamic and funny speaker. contact his daughter, Francesca: [email protected] to sign up. the class is taught on his farm, which is just south of C in Chianti. i'll be attending one of his classes in june while renting a villa in GREVE for awhile. If you want a sample of Tuscan home cooking, LE VIGNE in RADDA IN CHIANTI is a good choice - closed on mondays (sometimes the closed day can change so check it out). fairly expensive, BUT well-worth the expense!
(0577-738094). as you probably know, for a less expensive dining adventure, do "lunch" rather than dinner - more time to relax.....looking forward to our central tuscany adventure & the best to you! by the way, we rent a car so we can jaunt off to some of the non-touristy sites.


Old May 7th, 2002, 09:42 AM
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Thanks so much for everyone's tips! Looking forward to checking out your suggestions, samm. Have a great trip!
Old May 7th, 2002, 10:22 AM
Louis Parent
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Part of the beauty of Tuscany is the country side. It is very difficult to truly enjoy it without a car.
The drive from village to village in the Chianti is fabulous. Stopping for a latte here and there is part of the experience.
We were in Florence for 4 days last month and we rented a car for 2 out of these 4. Never regretted it. Roads and road signs are excellent.
Old May 8th, 2002, 03:05 PM
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Just a note of caution with bus travel in Tuscana. We were on our way to Pienza from Florence last month. The rapid bus from Florence to Siena was easy, however much to our surprise, we found that the bus from Siena to Pienza left from the train station which was across town from the bus station where we arrived from Florence. A very helpful older Italian gentleman overheard my questions to the bus station attendant, who did not understand either my english or limited Italian, and showed us where to catch the bus #9 or #10) to the train station. It appeared to me that a number buses to other small towns in tuscany also left from the train station. As an aside, we generally found the italians to be very friendly and helpful. John
Old May 8th, 2002, 03:10 PM
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Traveling by car in Tuscany is not necessary. But without a car, you won't have as much flexibility, to go wherever you want to go, and to arrive and depart whenever you want to. If those things aren't that important to you, then you'd probably do fine with buses and trains.
Old Jun 23rd, 2011, 10:45 PM
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It's possible to get quite a good taste of Tuscany in the course of 3-4 days without a car as long as you do your homework beforehand, notably working out the bus routes. There's a good starter web page specifically directed at visiting Chianti without a car, here: http://www.chianti.info/chianti_without_car.htm

To really explore Tuscany at length you can see much more and above all save a lot of time if you have your own car.
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