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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Posts
    5

    Default 5 days in October - last minute trip to Italy

    Hi,

    I am new to this forum and in need of urgent help, since I would like to plan a last minute trip to Italy. I have always wanted to visit Tuscany specifically and figured that I have 5 days between 23-Oct-16 and 28-Oct-16. I will be traveling solo from India.

    I am looking for advice on how to plan a wholesome vacation in these 5 days with Hands On Cooking Experience, visits to winery, cheese tasting, olive oil or salami tasting experiences.

    I am not looking at traveling widely, but would like to cover some of these on cycle if possible. Finally, budget would be a consideration, since I would be working on a medium budget.

    I need to work on my Visa application and am therefore trying to get to a decision on a location at the soonest, to help with my air tickets and visa.

    Appreciate the help.

    Mohit

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    948

    Default Traveling for 5 days

    Buongiorno,

    How exciting, Tuscany in October is awesomely beautiful!

    I suggest you check out this article about a bike tour, which I believe to be a great opportunity and cost efficient since it incorporates several other activities you want to do. (PS. I did this tour - and I do not receive any commission on eventual sales )
    https://www.discovertuscany.com/tusc...any-tours.html

    I also suggest that you look into staying in a city center (Florence, Pisa or Siena) - and avoid renting a car. This will help you keep costs down.

    Possible Itin:

    1st day: Florence - city visit & Museum visit
    2nd day: Bike tour to Chianti and vineyards back in the evening to enjoy more Florence
    3rd day: Day trip (via public transport Siena)
    4th day: Day Trip (via public transport) there are so many places to choose from Arezzo, San Gimignano, or you could opt for an organized tour which will combine some great places.
    5th day: Pisa (half day) - Leaning tower & Piazza dei Miracoli then Lucca (half day) - city visit

    Buon Viaggio,

    Donna Denise Scharnagl

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Posts
    5

    Default Traveling for 5 days - Include Hands On Cooking Classes

    Thanks a lot for your response Donna, the biking tours look extremely exciting. I will need to decide between the Chianti or Siena bike ride.

    As an option to the day trips or as a add on to the day trips, are there any Cooking Classes that you would suggest as well. I am an avid amateur cook and would love to try and bake in a couple of hands on full cooking sessions if possible.

    Also, any suggestions on accommodation? I assume I should look at a base in Florence. I would ideally like to stay in a farmhouse or a villa that would have the cooking classes nearby if possible.

    Thanks again.

    Regards,
    Mohit

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    948

    Default where to stay

    Hi -

    though I would suggest in the city center to make travel easier - but if you want a farmhouse (and a cooking opportunity) check out this link. I have visited with them and they have both a cooking lesson - and easy access to public transport so ou can get back and forth into the city:

    https://www.discovertuscany.com/tusc...a-palmira.html

    Donna

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Posts
    5

    Default Staying in City Centre with Access to Cooking Classes

    Thanks Donna,

    As you said, would you alternatively then, recommend staying in the City Center and enrolling for a Cooking Class either in the City (in Florence) or on one of the Day trips to Siena or Sam Gimignano or any other options, instead?

    Would there be a pastry class on the similar lines that you could recommend also.

    Thanks,
    Mohit

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Florence, Italy
    Posts
    2,778

    Default

    Ciao Mohit,

    I would also second the suggestion of staying in Florence, it would just save time for you getting to places -- and 5 days will fly by!

    I would suggest you take a look at Mariangela's B&B just off Santa Croce square - she does cooking lessons just for guests: http://www.visitflorence.com/florenc...nta-croce.html

    Another option is to stay wherever you want, then book a cooking lesson with Fiamma from Kitchen Chez Nous: http://www.discovertuscany.com/tusca...chez-nous.html
    You do the cooking classes here in Florence -- and can request special menus (like pastry and baking) if you want.
    What to see in Tuscany? Check out ideas on our main website DiscoverTuscany.com!!

    Stay updated: FOLLOW us on Facebook!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Posts
    5

    Default Accommodation in Florence City

    Hi Luordes,

    Thanks a lot for your response. I am working on my visa.

    In the meantime I did take a look at the link for Tuscany Cooking and was in fact eyeing the Kitchen Chez Nous classes

    A couple of the Cooking Classes - Pastry, Desserts and a Full Meal - along with the Chianti Wine Tasting Bike Ride is definitely on my itinerary.

    I will work on booking those in the next few days. Also looking at a couple of the day trips that Donna suggested.

    Will appreciate any specific suggestions on good mid budget accommodation in Florence City Center.

    Might reach out for more help to review my itinerary once I finalize the same.

    Thanks again.

    Regards,
    Mohit

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Florence, Italy
    Posts
    2,778

    Default

    Take a look here:
    http://www.florenceaccommodation.com...orical-center/

    Don't just go for those labeled "budget" as there are many small B&Bs, hotels and even apartments that might work into your budget, regardless of how they are classified.
    What to see in Tuscany? Check out ideas on our main website DiscoverTuscany.com!!

    Stay updated: FOLLOW us on Facebook!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Posts
    5

    Default Cooking Classes for One

    Hi Lourdes,

    Thanks for the tips on researching the apartments.

    As advised by you in an earlier response, I was trying to go with Kitchen Chez Nous for the Cooking Classes, unfortunately they need a minimum of 2 persons, and since I am doing this solo, it is a little expensive for me to book their class by myself

    While I am looking at the Cooking Classes link, I was wondering if you had any preferred recommendations for Cooking Classes that you can advise me on.

    I am sure I will have more questions for you as I work on finalizing my itinerary for the trip. Appreciate all your help.

    Thanks.

    Regards,
    Mohit

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