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Tuscany in September/October

Maine, USA
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Tuscany in September/October

I am planning our first ever trip to Italy and want to spend about 5 days (out of nine) in Tuscany. I am looking at dates between Sept 16-Oct 6. Although there can never be guarantees, what is the weather like then, generally? Is Sept very hot or October typically chilly? Any other advantage or disadvantage to choosing one week over another within that range?

My game plan is to spend 2 days in Florence, one in a smaller Chianti town (Greve?) and two in Siena. I'd like to rent an apartment, not so much because I would cook at home but just for the slightly more authentic feel of living in a neighborhood among locals. I know one generally cannot do that for two days at a time, so I am thinking B&B's as being the next best thing. Any comments?

Thanks.

Amsterdam, The...
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1. Re: Tuscany in September/October

I spent a week in Tuscany in late September this year and the weather was brilliant: no rain and 25 deg C during the day and cooling to around 18 at night. No need for air-conditioning but warm enough for pool and beach.

An excellent time to be in Tuscany. We stayed here: http://www.tuscanbreaks.com/ and we avoided Florence as being too busy and frenetic.

San Francisco...
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2. Re: Tuscany in September/October

Generally speaking, the weather is usually very nice during this whole period...and we are going to be in Italy during those same dates. However...one never knows! We were there in May of this year and it rained each and everyday...which was rare. How are you getting around the area...auto, train, bus? Moving to 3 different spots is not a great idea. Staying in Florence, and making day trips to Siena, Greve, etc. would be better...I think. That way you would be able to get to know at least one hotel, b&b, or apartment area for that 'feel' you're after. Also, some b&b's are larger than small hotels...but both generally serve breakfast. Fixing your own meals in an apartment doesn't say 'vacation' for me...gets to be rather a hassle after a long day of sight-seeing. We love to shop and get salami/ham, cheese, bread, olives, fruit, and wine though! If your renting a car...driving in and into Florence and Siena can be a pain. The train is fast and easy! Have a great trip, and let's hope the weather is balmy.

Saint Marys, Ohio
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3. Re: Tuscany in September/October

Our last 3 trips to Italy were about the same dates that you have chosen. All 3 have been glorious. The weather was 70-80 during the day, high 50's to mid 60's at night, low humidity, and very little rain. During our 2009 trip we saw NO RAIN for the entire 3 weeks we were there!!!

Greve isn't all that far from Siena. You might consider venturing a little further south to the Val d'Orcia area around Montalcino and Montepulciano. I think this area has a different character and is some of the most beautiful scenery in Tuscany. In Montalcino, should you decide to look there. take a look at Palazzina Cesira, right in the center of the town. Many fine wineries are close by also featuring the famous Brunello. www.montalcinoitaly.com/eng/home_cesira.htm

We've stayed there twice and the owners are wonderful and helpful.

italyboundfrontier.com

Hong Kong, China
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4. Re: Tuscany in September/October

I have spent a week in Tuscany in October before and the weather is absolutely lovely. You should have a lovely time.

Pittsburgh...
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5. Re: Tuscany in September/October

Fall is a fantastic time to be in Tuscany! The weather is usually good and the crowds are down somewhat from their summer time levels.

It's personal preference of course, and all depends on your style of travel, but I like the idea of dividing your time in Tuscany between different towns. Making day trips doubles both your transportation time and your fuel costs as you have to both get to your destination in the morning and then return back to your base at night. I like to spend as little of my limited vacation time as possible in transit so I can maximize my sightseeing time. Some people don't like the idea of packing up and checking into hotels, but in my experience these things take far less time than traveling back and forth does. Also, I've found that day-tripping doesn't allow me to get to know a town the way spending even one night in a location does.

My only concern is that 2 days might not be enough time in Florence. Again, it all depends on your interests, but we spent a week in Florence our first time there and that wasn't enough!

Tuscany is amazing. You're going to have a great time!

Maine, USA
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6. Re: Tuscany in September/October

Thanks for your replies. It looks like it doesn't matter when in September I go in terms of weather, festivals or what have you so it will probably be Sept 16-21, give or take.

I tend to agree with bkb regarding staying in several towns, instead of just one and making day trips. Each day trip means a trip each way, and I like the idea of spending the afternoon and dinner and evening on foot, and returning to our room when we feel like it. Plus, just like nearby towns can be different experiences, different rooms can be as well.

BTW the plan is to take the train to Florence, and when we are about to leave rent a car and drive to the next town. I thought it would be nice to visit the Chianti Classico region which is I was thinking of Greve, but I will look into the other towns suggested. I understand that we will get only a sample of each place we visit this vacation, but that is always the dilemma when funds and time are limited. We'll return the car when we get to Rome. I see no advantage to having a car in either Florence or Rome. :^)

Pittsburgh...
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7. Re: Tuscany in September/October

Just a thought. Your proposed dates are pretty close to Lucca's Festival of the Volto Santo. Each September 13th the town begins this celebration with an impressive night time parade called La Luminaria. The churches, piazzas, shops and homes turn off electric lights and are lit only by countless candles which outline the buildings. Flaming torches light the Cathedral. The parade which passes through these candle lit streets is huge. It consists, among other things, of groups representing each parish in the town and surrounding area. Some groups carry religious banners and one carries a huge floral cross. There are also groups of children holding candles and singing, priests swinging incense holders, nuns singing and chanting prayers, Cardinals in their red ecclesiastical robes, and lay delegations from all corners of the globe.

It's been years since we attended this festival, but I'll never forget the experience. The sight of the candles illuminating the medieval streets was magical. When you combine that with the smells of the incense and the sounds of the singing you truly feel transported to another time and place. After the parade we sat on the banks of the river to watch a fireworks display over the candle lit town.

If you happen to be in Tuscany on September 13th you might want to consider working Lucca into your schedule. I know that may not be possible, but thought it was something you might want to know about, just in case!

Montepulciano
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8. Re: Tuscany in September/October

Just a tip. In our (short) experience we noticed that the week before and the one after September 15 are amongts the most requested of the season , at least in our area, so maybe you could find more interesting hotel/apartments rates on Sept. 30-Oct. 6...Usually there are no singifincat difference in the temperature between the first and the second week of your interest.

9. Re: Tuscany in September/October

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