August 3, 2013, 08:52 PM
Should we drive to Florence from Livorno (off cruise ship)?
Is it feasible to drive into Florence without too much hassle? This will save the high cost of a cruise excursion. But we need to make sure it is practical - we understand we cannot drive into the centre.
Look forward to your replies.
August 5, 2013, 12:39 PM
Once you arrive in Livorno, you have several options beyond the excursions offered by the cruise company (which do tend to be ridiculously expensive!).
1. rent a car and drive yourselves to Florence
2. rent a car with driver - driver at your beck and call
3. take the train into Florence - you do have to follow timetables to you're back on ship on time
4. take a tour from Livorno but with local companies (not the ones offered by the cruise ship) which are cheaper - they also make sure you're back in time for your ship at the end of the day.
For this last one, here's a list which includes tours to other parts of Tuscany: http://www.partner.viator.com/en/835...y-Florence/ttd --- there are also private shuttles to Florence in a minivan (so similar to #2 above but shared with others, a cheaper option)
As far as your question - which pertains to #1 above - you cannot drive into the center of Florence but you can get pretty close and park and then walk. I just think the bigger hassle of picking up the rental and driving, figuring out parking might be too much for a day trip. Many of the cruises only give you something like 8 hrs at the very most to do everything! Even the train option makes it a little harder, just because there are specific timetables to wait for (and ride takes longer than by car).
So if I was in your shoes, I'd go with a private shuttle if you just want to come in Florence and do your own thing OR a tour such as this one:
Hope this helps!