March 11, 2013, 09:31 PM
Is Barga a good base for exploring Tuscany by car?
I just booked a honeymoon for Oct 2013, part of which we plan to spend in Tuscany. We are booked at Renaissance Tuscany in Barga (part of Lucca). Is this a good base point to explore the villages, or is this too far away from where all the action is? Do you think we can fill 4 days worth of activities and wine-tasting near that area? After doing some research, I am realizing that many of the day-trips we wanted to take are all south of Florence and our hotel is north of florence.
Thanks for any help of suggestions!
April 3, 2013, 12:05 PM
Barga is a great base to see Garfagnana and Apuan Alps in Tuscany
First of all, congrats Lindsay!
We've actually stayed at Il Ciocco Resort ourselves (guess it has changed name since then) and it was a lovely place! It is a sort of world by itself (not in Barga itself) as it has lots of facilities to do stuff on the estate without having to go far or out at all. It also requires a car to get up there, so make sure to book a car rental as well (start your search here: http://www.discovertuscany.com/tuscany-car-rental/).
Barga is one of the charming medieval towns that dot the area of the Garfagnana valley where the hotel is located, right under the Tuscan Apuan Alps. This is a great base from which to see this corner of Tuscany: the mountains on the one hand, and if you go over or around them, the Tuscan sea along the "Versilia" coast line. You definitely want to head down to Lucca too as well as explore the towns in the Garfagnana and Pisa is also pretty close. Stop at the Ponte del Diavolo along the way down to Lucca, it is a beautiful medieval bridge over the Serchio river.
As far as other places in Tuscany, the drive will be long... you are about 3 hours from Florence so you are away from "central" Tuscany. Which day trips did you have in mind?
I think this is a great location to see this area of Tuscany, which is beautiful itself and which actually many people ignore because of limited time. I think you will still have a beautiful honeymoon - a bit off the beaten track but romantic and with great views of the Alps as your backdrop. You can do lots of nice day trips and wine tasting, eat great food in the area. Your 4 days will fly fast so enjoy!