April 25, 2011, 01:16 PM
accommodation in Tuscany
Hi, to everyone,
I am visiting Tuscany with my family from 6 th June to 15 th June. My husband is a wine lover, my 16 year old son is a history buff, my 21 year daughter loves to eat and chill in beautiful places and I like to soak in the culture of the country. We would be spending the night of 6 th and 7 th in florence and than move to country side. In florence we would like to stay in the historic center. So please provide me information regarding the exact area/address we should be looking for the hotel/apartment. My family loves to buy produce from markets and cook(we are vegetarians, so choices outside are pretty limited). Based on the above information can someone suggest best place to stay after the two nights in florence. We would like to visit Pisa, Chianti, Siena and many more interesting places in Tuscany.
April 26, 2011, 06:38 PM
apartment in Florence and in Tuscan countryside
Ciao Tuscan lover!
Tuscany seems the ideal location for all your family given it offers wine, history, great food and beautiful landscapes in which to relax and absorb Italian culture.
Since you want to be in the historic center in Florence, I'd recommend a B&B such as one of the Johanna properties or Casa di Tintori near Santa Croce.
Many restaurants offer vegetarian dishes, although as you've said, some places can have very limited choices. Some very good Tuscan vegetarian dishes to try at a local trattoria: pappa al pomodoro (bread soup with tomatoes, onions and very good basil and olive oil) and ribollita (vegetable soup with bread, "reboiled") as well as pasta with truffles and tortelli with ricotta and spinach in tomato sauce. That combination is very popular: Florentine "crepes" (crespelle in Italian) are filled with ricotta and spinach and covered in a smooth, velvety bechamel sauce. So take a look at the menus generally located outside the restaurants, you'll find several offerings for vegetarians, generally among the "primi" or first courses.
If you want the comfort of an apartment so that you can cook for yourselves for some if not all of your meals, I'd recommend either of the two apartments here: An apartment in Florence - one is closer to the Sant' Ambrogio market, the other to the San Lorenzo market.
This one on Via Tornabuoni, not far from the San Lorenzo market: Casa Tornabuoni
Some additional apartments through agency: [MerryGoRound.org.
--> As for precise location within Florence, take a look on this page of Florence Accommodation.com. See the map to the right below the picture? As long as you stay within the reddish borders, you are within the historical center. In Florence, it is quite small and all within walking distance so as long as your apartment or B&B is within this area, you'll be fine.
In Tuscany, there are many apartments that are part of restored farmhouses or villas that will offer the comfort of a kitchen for preparing your own meals as well as having the added convenience of a garden and pool where you can rest and relax in/by.
First, once you leave Florence a car is highly recommended regardless of what area you head to. Read more tips here about renting a car in Tuscany, then you can search for car rental through this search engine - it compares through various companies to offer the best rates.
Second, since you're interested in a many of the most visited destinations in Tuscany (Pisa, Siena, Chianti), I highly recommend you stay around the area from San Gimignano to Greve in Chianti and Castellina in Chianti from where it will be easy to move about with about the same driving time to your various destinations.
For apartments, look into these:
You can see further recommendations for apartments in Tuscany here.
April 28, 2011, 11:26 AM
Thank you so much Lourdes ! I will surely come back for more help !
April 29, 2011, 05:59 AM
Good morning Lourdes,
what is the atmosphere like in santo spirito, across the river? I have found a beautiful apartment there but not sure.
Other choices are Piazza dells Signoria and jacopo.
which one would you choose?
Just trying to make most of florence and Tuscany.
April 29, 2011, 09:17 AM
The entire area of Santo Spirito and Oltrarno is generally very nice, it is the area where there are still many artisan workshops instead of just solely shops - so as you stroll through the area, make sure to look into the shops and see the people at work binding books, creating shoes, carving frames and more. There are some streets that are poorly lit at night but stick with the main streets and you'll be fine. There are also a lot of restaurants to eat in the area, just spaced further apart. If you like the apartment there, by all means take it!
On the other hand, can't complain about staying in Piazza della Signoria - really at the center of the city with Palazzo Vecchio and the Uffizi right in front of you, the Duomo just a few streets away. You can't go wrong with either of the two choices (not sure where "jacopo" is as that is surely just part of the name you had, is it is a borgo, via or piazza?)
April 29, 2011, 09:20 AM
We have managed to bookings for Florence and Rome but unable to find something suitable in Chianti or san Gimingano. After our four night in florence we have about 5 days to explore tuscany country side and relish the farm living/agrotourismo but still havent been able to finalise a place. Chianti seems a bit less central than San GImignano ans Gimingnano seems a bit touristy. Anything else around this area from where travelling in surrounding area becomes easier? I checked the sites you mentioned to me but could not find something suitable.
Waiting for your response.
its all good
Hi Tuscan Lover,
San Gimignano is beautiful but you really must time your visit- try having an hour or two first thing in the morning as the town wakes up, or last thing at night when the tourist coachloads have left. It really is on the "tourist map" and from now til November will be crowded.
Most people give Pisa a couple of hours-I tend to agree.
The villages in Chianti - Greve-in-chianti, Castellina etc- are all good for a break from the city.
Enjoy your trip.
stay near San Gimignano or Castellina to be central and close to main roads
Are you finding it hard to find a farmhouse/agriturismo for 5 days? Most of them rent by the week so if you're set on a farmhouse, you might have to shift some days from Florence to Tuscany....
On the other hand, there are also farmhouses that are set up as B&Bs that allow stays by the night where you might not have that limitation aside from finding availability. Take a look at Casolare di Libbiano, a beautiful farmhouse B&B near San Gimignano or at Tenuta Quadrifoglio, which offers both rooms and apartments within a farm estate.
As Alice said, San Gimignano is pretty crowded during the day but if you time your visit to early in the day or later around dinner, most of the coach buses have left and you'll get to enjoy the magic of the small medieval town.
Since you do plan to move around a bit, Chianti is actually very central but it is wide..... so I suggest you stay closer to the main Firenze-Siena road which is one you will often take as you move around. For this, I recommend Castellina in Chianti. The following farmhouses rent by the week though... so if you like them, you might have to do some shifting in the days... just contact them to ask and see about availability in any case, you never know!
- Romitorio di Serelle
- Il Cellese
- Rocca di Cispiano
May 9, 2011, 05:12 PM
IN Tuscany we are spoilt for choices and i think that is the reason we are so confused!