Tuscany, Florence & Pisa in 5 days flat

Old Aug 15th, 2011, 02:55 AM
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Tuscany, Florence & Pisa in 5 days flat

Hi,

My wife and I are travelling to Italy and we plan to spend 5 days in Tuscany and 4 days in Rome. The trouble is that we plan to arrive in Tuscany in exactly a week!!! We have had no time to plan and prepare an itinerary. The only thing that we have done is book our flight to Florence (arriving on August 21) and flying out of Rome on August 30.

Ideally, we would like our Tuscan holiday to centre around food and wine. We will rent a car from the Florence airport and use it to travel around Tuscany (which for us, would mean Siena, Florence, Chianti and Pisa). I would assume that since we will have a car, we can have the liberty of staying in one of the smaller towns (or larger villages) than staying in the heart of Florence or Siena. We are not really history fans (read museums, churches, castles etc.), but are ardent fans of good things in life (food, wine, lazing around, strolls etc.).

In view of this, we would like your suggestion on the following:

1. Should we have two bases (3 days and 2 days)? If so, where? We would definitely want to have a taste of the countryside (with extra special emphasis on wine and food).
2. Is one day trip each good enough for Florence and Siena ?
3. Should we budget half a day for Pisa or should that be one entire day? If it needs one entire day, we are ready to skip Pisa.

PS: The very idea of hiring a car for our Tuscan holiday is to give us flexibility to explore the countryside. Let me further add that I have an Indian driving license (printed in English), I hope this is good enough to hire cars.

We are really eager for your suggestions.

Ciao,

Nabeel
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Old Aug 15th, 2011, 03:40 AM
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www.lucca.info my fav best food wine vibe

Pisa too touristic

Do Florence and Lucca a couple of night each

Train a tonne better city centre to city centre

Car is a nightmare in the cities Florence one giant speed trap

if you do that wait till you get out of Florence to do it

tigercarrentals.com my fave there... car nice in rural areas

but VERY costly compared to train.

Congrats! booking.com otel.com for hotels
qwovadis is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2011, 03:55 AM
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You will probably need an International Driving Permit to drive in Italy so research this point immediately if you want to hire a car.

Also would add that driving is a very bad idea if you want to visit Florence, or any large city or town in Tuscany because of the ZTLs (areas where cars are banned without a special permit).
mjdh1957 is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2011, 04:12 AM
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I think one day in Florence is too little time, but there are threads you can research on how to do this. Here is a thread with links to suggested one day itineraries
http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...tineraries.cfm

I agree with others that you should try to take the train into Florence if at all possible to avoid driving and parking hassles.
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Old Aug 15th, 2011, 06:00 AM
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Personally, I'd not get a car and would rely on public transport. I also think that I would stay in a single location (probably Florence). Tuscany itslf is easy to drive in, but the parking and trying to avoid the restricted parts of the city is horrible.

Siena can be done as a day trip, as can Lucca/Pisa as a combination. I do not agree that Pisa is too touristy. The area around the Duomo is rightly a world heritage site, the Duomo itself is stunning. If anything, the tower does a disservice to Pisa as people go see see the quirky leaning building and ignore the other treasures.
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Old Aug 15th, 2011, 07:53 AM
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I have a great list of restaurants. Wines and drives. Email me and I'll send it to you. [email protected]
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Old Aug 15th, 2011, 09:17 AM
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Five days isn't really enough time for everything you want to do. Do you really have 5 days (not including travel) or 5 nights (which could mean only 3 full sightseeing days)?

I would stay in Florence a day or two (make a quick run by train to Pisa if it's a must)and pick up a car as you are leaving Florence. Drive south on the Chianti Road (222) to Siena (spend night along the way or in Siena). From Siena head further south to Montalcino if you are really interested in wine (Brunellos). From Montalcino drive towards Pienza (quick visit as it's tiny) and on to Montepulciano (more wine). From Montepulciano, you can head towards Chiusi, turn your car in and train to Rome.

I don't think you can pick one or two places to stay and do what's on your list in such a short time.
kybourbon is offline  
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