November 20, 2010, 01:52 AM
Tuscany without a car this May
I would like to know if the following itinerary sounds do-able without a car and relying on public transportation. We are thinking of staying in Florence for about 4 days and taking a couple of day trips to Cinque Terre and Sienna. Then we would like to stay in a small town in Tuscany as a base and where there is public transportation to other small towns. Could you please suggest a base and if this plan is feasible? thank you.
November 22, 2010, 03:40 PM
Moving around by public transports
I have to say that the best way to move around Tuscany, and Italy in general, is by car. Moving around by public transports can be a real challenge, especially from and to small places.
The best base is certainly Florence that is well connected to other main destinations from where you can move to smaller towns and villages. If you really want to stay in a smaller village, since Tuscany it's a pretty big region, what would you like to visit? What are your interests? Are you interesting in a classic tour of Tuscany or do you want something different? As soon as I'll have your answer I would be able to suggest you a different base from Florence.
In the meantime I suggest yo read this article about spending 7 days in Tuscany.
Regarding day trips from Florence to Siena and Cinque Terre. I suggest you think about spending at least a night in Cinque Terre, because it can be really tiring to do it in a day. Read this thread about Cinque Terre to have a better idea.
I look forward to hearing from you soon
November 23, 2010, 12:47 AM
Actually, I'd say if you're staying in the main towns in Tuscany, from Florence to Siena to Pisa, Lucca, Arezzo or any of the other main towns - the best way to move around is with the train. You avoid having to deal with limited traffic areas where only residents can drive in and not have to worry about parking which is generally difficult to find and expensive.
Having said that, if you want to explore the smaller towns, such as the hill towns in Chianti, a car is definitely useful because there is no train that connects them and buses are very limited.
Your itinerary so far includes Florence, Siena and Cinque Terre - all doable without a car. Have you been to Tuscany before? You would like us to recommend a base for a smaller village but what I'd recommend totally depends on whether you've been here before or not, since if it is your first trip I'd recommend different areas to stay in and explore.
November 26, 2010, 01:01 AM
Tuscany without a car
Thanks for your messages. This is our first visit to Italy. We do not like rushing around and would prefer taking things at a slower pace. We enjoy culture eg. art, theatre, museums but hope to focus part of our trip on nature, hiking, and seeing beautiful countryside. Unfortunately, we are not comfortable renting a car so we were thinking of using one or two places as a base eg. Florence and or Sienna and taking day trips from there. My question is this: If Florence and Sienna are close to each other, is it preferable to simply stay in Florence or would a combination of Florence 5 days, Sienna 4 days be preferable? I have heard wonderful things about Cinque Terre and would love to go there as well.
November 26, 2010, 02:52 AM
more info from my last message
Sorry, just wanted to let you know that we are hoping to take day trips to the following: Lucca, Chianti ( we may get a private driver for a day ), San Gimignano, Sienna, and Monteriggioni. thanks