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DAX Aug 25th, 2011 02:01 PM

Where to park overnight in Montepulciano?
Last minute trip change and booking lead us to try a somewhat new but " highly rated" hotel in Montepulciano center in early October. I hope some of you can recommend specific parking areas where we may have better luck in overnight parking space as close to the town center as possible.

bobthenavigator Aug 25th, 2011 02:12 PM

What hotel, and what do they say. Parking in that town is complex---they can tell you.

DAX Aug 26th, 2011 08:48 PM

Bob, can you explain what you mean by complex? Are we allowed to park inside the city? Is there no public parking in the town center? I will bring coins to park, but I home there are better alternatives.

I booked the hotel through so I haven't had any communication with the hotel directly.
The hotel is called Vicolo dell'Oste on Vicolo dell'Oste 1, cross street of the main corso just a short block from the Ministerio Giudizia, I read in one of the reviews that the hotel is a block or two from the central piazza. They clearly state that they ave no parking facility whatsoever.

macanimals Aug 26th, 2011 10:29 PM

I don't believe there is any public parking in the center of Montepulciano, certainly not without some sort of affiliation with a hotel. Your residence may have a space or two available for transfer of luggage but driving within the walls is a large challenge--it has very strict and not always obvious traffic patterns.

Parking is available on the outskirts of the walls as well as both the top of the town and the bottom. It is difficult to advise you without knowing exactly where your lodging is located. I wouldn't worry too much about coins or fees, most spaces are free but limited--not a problem overnight. Definitely rely on your hotel's advice.

kybourbon Aug 26th, 2011 10:32 PM

>>Are we allowed to park inside the city?<<

Not in most areas, nor are you allowed to drive in the centers of most hill towns (learn the ZTL signs). In many hill towns (and cities) driving is restricted to residents only. Montepucliano has several large parking lots around the edges. You will need to park in on of them. Download this map and zoom in a few times to see the various parking lots. Pick one closest to your hotel.

DAX Aug 27th, 2011 06:32 AM

Thanks for the map link, it clearly shows where the public parking lots are inside the walls. In the past we drove through the Resident only restricted zones even in Siena and have been lucky to not get any ticket, probably because there was no traffic camera in the small hill towns. I realize we can't do that in Florence. I read somewhere that we pre-notify the Florence downtown hotel/police that we are staying inside downtown, but I'm not sure I can trust/risk that pre-notification system to risk the expensive ticket. Any thoughts?

bobthenavigator Aug 27th, 2011 07:08 AM

OK--let me try--it is not easy.
Pull up the map on their site and a map of Montepulcinao on Goggle maps. There is parking along some streets but not very near your B&B. Coming in from the south see the curved street named Via Filosofi--it makes a big loop at the south end of town and then dips down to the Santa Maria church. That is where it meets via San Donato, which then runs uphill to Piazza Grande---the heart of town. There is parking along this route, just on the side of the road---the further you can go the better until you reach the arched gate into town. The arch is about 100 yards from Piazza Grande. I would park anywhere along this route. Your B&B is another 5 minte walk from the Piazza, but it changes elevation down to the "Corso" shopping street--lots of steps. It is not easy---I would ask them for more detail.

kybourbon Aug 27th, 2011 07:23 AM

Notification in Florence is usually done by your hotel and it's only good for check-in to drop your luggage, not for other days you might want to drive your car.

nytraveler Aug 27th, 2011 10:46 AM

You do not "prenotify" a hotel in central florence that you will be bringing a car. If you have a car you contact the hotel and ask what their arrangements are for parking. If they have a garage available (assume $40 to $50 per night) they will tell you exactly how to get there and provide a pass for you to use in doing so. (Using any other route or not having a pass will subject you to the multi hundred euro fines.) (We always get a hotel with parking n Florence for this reason.)

If they don;t have parking they will tell you so - and if they can arrange parking nearby - again with a specific rout and pass provided. If they don;t you may have to park on the outskirts.

Cathinjoetown Aug 27th, 2011 11:48 AM


Although you didn't book directly and despite what they say on their web site, I wold email the hotel for advice on parking and whether or not you can drop off bags. Although they provide no parking, they should know the best options. Also, try to arrive around 4 or later, after the day trippers leave but before dark. Have fun, great place.

Day-tripper only

annhig Aug 27th, 2011 12:10 PM

what Cath said.

hotels are used to people booking through these sites and shouldn't treat you differently to guests who book directly.

in fact, a hotel i booked with through late rooms phoned me within hours to ask if I wanted to up-grade my room. which i did for £10 per night, and it still cost a great deal less than if I'd booked direct. they shouldn't have any problems telling you best parking places.

DAX Aug 27th, 2011 04:18 PM

Thanks everyone for all your good advice, I am supposed to return our car at the Florence Hertz agency on Via Maso Finiguerra 33 (cross street V. Palazzuolo), just 3 blocks north of the Ponte A. Vespucci where the restricted zone entry is. Maybe I should ask Hertz on how I can return the car without getting a ticket. Alternatively I can change the drop off location to a south bank location.
I imagine that a taxi can still drive us all the way to our hotel near the Duomo. Any other good idea?

Bob, I appreciate tour detailed instructions, it's just what I was hoping for.

mom83 Aug 27th, 2011 05:56 PM

That is a great map! Bob - a question for you (or anyone who knows). We will be driving from Terre di Nano to visit Montepulciano. What would be the best route to take and what parking lot would be the closest to the center? We will be with my 84 year old in-laws who are mobile, but limited.

tuscanlifeedit Aug 27th, 2011 06:12 PM

I'm not an expert on Montepulciano, but often use taxis in small towns in Europe, especially where there are hills. At times, taxis are parked at parking areas, and at other times they can be called.

I would not make 84 year olds walk uphill into Montepulciano. I would never consider walking into Montepulciano with even light luggage. If the hotel won't help, ask them for a taxi that they or you can call when you get to town.

bobthenavigator Aug 28th, 2011 07:17 AM

That town is hard to walk, but they do have a local bus that makes a loop every :45 or so. If you drive to the far end of town[north], near the bus station, there is a parking lot that is well marked. From there you can catch the local bus that makes several stops---including Piazza Grande. I made the entire loop the first time just to learn the stops. They call them hill towns for a good reason. Try to have lunch at Caffe Poliziano on the main shopping street---the Corso.

kybourbon Aug 28th, 2011 08:10 AM

With 84 year olds, I would take the bus to the top of the town and get off there to walk down. It's much easier going down, than up. If they get tired, you can always catch another bus.

Here's the bus schedule:

And bus map:

mom83 Aug 28th, 2011 08:25 AM

We are only visiting for the day, as we are staying for 8 days at Terre di Nano in Montichiello. We will have no luggage. Let's see if I have this right. Rather than driving close to Piazza Grande from the south along Via San Donato and parking as close to the arch as possible, we should drive north of town and park there? My inlaws are actually quite mobile and able to walk uphill with no problem. Just trying to find the best way to get close to town with the least amount of walking. We would rather walk than take the bus, if possible.

bobthenavigator Aug 28th, 2011 08:45 AM

Good point !
If they are mobile I would try to drive as close as possible.
Just keep going uphill until you find a spot. You may end up near the Santa Maria church. FYI, the bus does stop near there, but it is only 300 meter walk uphill to Piazza Grande.

Heer are some pics from last May:

mom83 Aug 28th, 2011 09:11 AM

Thanks so much, Bob. I am assuming you mean drive uphill on Via San Donato, as you recommended to another poster? I think that is what we will do. I see a parking lot near the Fortezza - is that a possibility for us? There is also one up closer to the Duomo - another possiblity? Where exactly is the gate?
A second question for you (I have printed out so much information from you in the past - you should write a book!) We are driving from FCO to Terre di Nano on a Monday. Where would be the best place to grocery shop for the week? Breakfast things mostly. A Coop or a Conad nearby?

kybourbon Aug 28th, 2011 09:12 AM

>>>We would rather walk than take the bus, if possible.<<<

If you haven't been to any hill towns before, you may not realize how steep some of them are.

Last year, I parked (free) in the lot beside the tourist office, but we were just lucky to find a spot.

mom83 Aug 28th, 2011 10:05 AM

This is our 5th trip to Italy including many of the hill towns. We have never been to Montepulciano before, so hence the question.

bobthenavigator Aug 28th, 2011 10:15 AM

For groceries I would look in Chinchiano Terme for a market---the town just prior on S-168. It is flat and will be easier to access and shop.

mom83 Aug 28th, 2011 11:18 AM

Bob - excellent idea. Giorgio at Terre di Nano just recommended the same thing. He says there is a good sized COOP there, so will pick up a few things on our way to Terre di Nano.

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