May 30, 2010, 04:10 AM
Hello! I notice that there is no link to the bike itineraries mentioned in the site's article and my partner and I are looking for bike routes around Lucca and Sienna.
We are also considering buying road bikes for our four-week stay in Tuscany. Any advice? Is it difficult to take trains & buses with bicycles?
June 2, 2010, 09:10 PM
Ciao Marietta, and welcome to our Forum!
I apologize for the missing bike itineraries, my bad, I still need to find some time to publish them!
The routes that I usually do with my road bike are all in the Chianti/Mugello/Casentino areas, so mainly around Florence.
Chianti is great for biking: wonderful roads, usually with gentle uphills and beautiful landscapes to admire while riding. Since the Chianti area is between Florence and Siena, maybe you can find some inspiration in a long trip that I took from Florence to Siena and back. I'm attaching here the Gps track (gpx format) and the Google Earth file, along with the altitude profile. It's about 150 km, and it took me around 8 hours. I try to do it every year when the days are longer, it is hard but very rewarding if you love road biking.
I took the beautiful via Chiantigiana from Florence (SR 222), passing through Greve and Castellina in Chianti and reaching Siena in about 4 hours. After a short visit and lunch in Siena I returned to Florence through the via Cassia (SR2), passing near Monteriggioni, and through Poggibonsi, Barberino Val d'Elsa, San Casciano.
You can of course decide to break it up to best meet your plans but hopefully it can be an inspiration for your biking plans. You could for example start from Siena and take the Cassia to Poggibonsi and from there take the SR429 (another really nice road to bike) to Castellina in Chianti, where you can then head back to Siena through the Chiantigiana.
I think you'll find useful info on the Terra di Siena website: they suggest several routes with a detailed description and map.
I personally don't know much about bike routes around Lucca, but you can take a look at this post where Vongoren suggests two classic itineraries.
The Comune di Lucca also proposes a couple of itineraries with downloadable gps tracks: you found them here.
The Province of Lucca has also this website dedicated to bike routes in the Lucca area: not much on the website, but maybe you can contact them and see if they can email some hi-res maps with itineraries.
Some limited hints to build your itineraries can be also found here .
In the email you wrote to me you mentioned that you will be staying in Florence too, so maybe you can be interested in some bike itineraries in Mugello proposed by the official tourism board.
You might also be interested in guided bike tours in Tuscany, in that case take a look at IBikeTuscany.com for single-day tours and WeBikeTuscany.com for multi-day tours.
If you want to buy (or rent) a bike, I can suggest two good shops in Florence: www.florencebybike.it AND www.probike.it. The first one is closer to city center, a lot of tourists rent their bikes there. Probike is my favorite bike shop, they're really nice and professional, you can ask for Piero or Gianni.
Finally: I wouldn't rely on buses to move around with your bike but most trains have the "treno+bici" (bicycle transportation service) option, so that you can go on the train with your bike paying just an extra fee for the bike. Just search on www.trenitalia.com for trains that have the little bike symbol on their detailed description.
I hope I've been of some help and hope you'll have a great biking vacation in Tuscany!
It would be great if you can return to this thread after your vacation and tell us how everything goes, what itineraries you followed and any tips you can share with everyone else!
June 28, 2010, 04:12 PM
Stefano - very helpful post.
My wife and I are planning a bike trip to the area (did Bavaria last year). Is September a good time to do this? Very crowded? Weather I assume is good then.
June 28, 2010, 05:27 PM
September is actually my favourite month for biking in Tuscany: days are long so you can afford long rides, but it's not as hot as in august (when usually biking is possibile only early in the morning or evening).
It is of course a touristic season but Chianti doesn't get too crowded, so I wouldn't worry about that, just be sure to book ahead your accommodation (you may take a look at our Chianti accommodation guide ).
I hope that by september I will have posted some other bike itinerary in Chianti, it would also be great if you could share yours with us, and maybe post some pictures too
have a great ride!
January 7, 2014, 04:53 PM
I agree that September is a good month for biking in Tuscany, expecially because of the weather which will not be so hot as August and July. The more you come close to fall the better is in any case.
So don't be afraid to come on Otcober or November too.Will be great as the same.