June 18, 2013, 12:37 PM
Walking in Tuscany
We are staying 3 nts Lucca and 3 nights Sienna in the hottest month but we have no choice. However we want to do some rural scenic walks from both towns of up to 15km. Happy also to take a train or bus to start a good walk as we have decided we don't want a car. Has anyone ideas with clear instructions. Many thanks, Ian
June 20, 2013, 04:56 PM
lots of walks - but how strenuous?? ;)
You mean July/August right? Well, it is hot and walks will have to be in the mornings but they are doable.
How strenuous can these walks be?
For moderately strenuous, I'd recommend heading toward the Apuan Alps from Lucca... higher elevations means less heat. If these are the types of hikes you had in mind, there are several you can do where you can get to the trailhead with bus service. I have a book called "50 hikes in and around tuscany" by Jeff taylor which I recommend for these in particular (not much around Siena in that book).... it has 3 hikes in the Alpi Apuane with all trailheads reachable by bus (check timetables here) - to Stazzema for the first, Palagnana for the second and Fornovolasco for the third. We've done this last one - you can see details here: Monte Forato hike.
All are from 4 to 6 hours, plus time to get there. If you're interested in these, let me know.... I could scan the 2-3 pages for a hike to share with you since the rest of the book would be mostly not much use to you.
Otherwise, for easier walks, I'd suggest taking a look at the itineraries both in Lucca and outside from the Comune di Lucca website: http://www.comune.lucca.it/flex/cm/p...N/IDPagina/496
I though of the villas nearby, I've heard they are beautiful... the other possibility is to follow pieces of the Via Francigena.
From Siena, I'd head to Monteriggioni and participate in their organized walk to Abbadia Isola, great short walk in the countryside - we did a blog post recently about them here - and take the walk around the castle walls too! This area of Tuscany will definitely be warmer for walks as the tree cover is limited or almost non-existent.
Another direction from Siena is either north into Chianti or south in the Crete Senesi.... the terre di siena website offers some itineraries here - look for "circuits" as they tend to be rings and won't requite retracing your steps. From Siena you can also follow parts of the Via Francigena. For bus schedules, you need to use this site: http://www.busfox.com/timetable/