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I'm back - 1st clueless post!

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I'm back - 1st clueless post!

Hi everybody, we are considering returning for 11 days or so late summer. Got nothing booked so far except thoughts. We've been to Rome and Florence on day trips via cruise and 3 years ago toured the north. 2 adults, 2 girls age 13, 11

My initial thinking is 4 days Rome, pick up car and 7 days Tuscany? with a day trip or 2 to Florence. Want to do the usual touristy stuff but without any sort of running around. Although I always say it at first and we wound up running around. Main aspect is always Food.

So I can use some initial guidance..

Itinerary ideas? At this point I'm open to anything. Does mine make sense? Is it hard to get in/out of Florence. Where should I base?

Villas in Tuscany ideas. Preferably with other guests staying, I guess, not sure. Did I miss the boat already on the popular villas for this summer.

Did I mention that I like to eat. Oh ye looks like I did.

http://eatingwithziggy.com/about/

Thanks in advance,

Clueless in NYC

Seattle, Washington
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1. Re: I'm back - 1st clueless post!

There's this cool place on the border between Tuscany and Umbria.

http://www.anticavetreria.net/

Gets great reviews on the SlowTravel website, and the owner is an acquaintance of mine. More gracious hosts you could not find.

New York City, New...
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2. Re: I'm back - 1st clueless post!

Hey, it's our Ziggy - weird - I almost feel like I'm actually running into you in Italy; weirder even because we don't even know each other.

Here's a place I have stayed - that has a pool - it's own restaurant (wonderful) and close to Montepulciano and all the surrounding towns - I've stayed here twice. They also make terrific wine:

http://www.villadinottola.com/eng/

It was easy to reach and a great spot to explore from as well as return to after a long day and enjoy a nice meal.

It will be hot/humid (I am assuming by late summer, you mean August?) - if so, do check re: efficacy of air conditioning in any place you might stay - I don't know about Villa Nottola because I never stayed when it was hot.

Maybe a seaside area? Take boat rides, jump in and swim in the sea to cool off on a long hot afternoon?

Kansas
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3. Re: I'm back - 1st clueless post!

Ziggy,

This may help slowtrav.com/italy/tuscany/hs_planning.htm

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4. Re: I'm back - 1st clueless post!

Momcat, I got so excited when I saw your post I missed my bus stop LOL.

We are thinking late August beginning September.

I will take all suggestions into consideration thanks. Already got a reply from Relais San Bruno in Montepulciano which I sent earlier.

Ok need to start reading slotrav again.

Why am I humming the godfather theme song all day...

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5. Re: I'm back - 1st clueless post!

Well, Sicily would be an option....history, sea, ancient sites....

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6. Re: I'm back - 1st clueless post!

This is a great agriturismo in Tuscany with a pool that your kids will love. It is 15 minutes away from Arrezzo, where you can catch a train into Florence.

http://www.foresteria.it/eng/index.html

Norwich, Norfolk, Uk
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7. Re: I'm back - 1st clueless post!

Try www.agriturismo.it and www.agrituismo.net if you want to stay somewhere with other guests a few will have onsite restaurants, more will offer the odd home cooked meal. It will still be very hot in late August so do choose somewhere with a pool for your kids sake. A/C can be hard to find in the countryside, but a place with a ceiling fan or mosi nets so you can sleep with the windows open is good enough, I find.

The area around Montepulciano is drop dead gorgeous and you won't have a problem finding decent restaurants to eat. However, I find it to be quite pricey and getting to Florence is quite a trek from there. Somewhere in Chianti, while probably not much cheaper, would certainly place you closer to Florence. Both Montepulciano area and Chianti area will give you plenty of lovely places to visit and eat right on your doorstep.

If you do hire a car, make sure you know all about ZTLs and plan to visit Florence by public transport even if that means driving to a train station and catching a train in and out.

I wouldn't hang around booking accommodation, the really good places will be getting very booked up for August.

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8. Re: I'm back - 1st clueless post!

Thanks for the replies.

So how difficult is it to day trip from Montepulciano to Florence and other regional highlights. Is it considered a decent base? I see mixed feelings about it in other threads

Can I still drive to Florence and park somewhere outside the city or is it recommended to drive to a train station?

Should I perhaps break it down into 2 stays in Tuscany of 4 nights each?

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9. Re: I'm back - 1st clueless post!

Hey ziggy! Like Momcat (who was a great help to us planning our Amalfi Coast trip a few years ago and our Rome trip last year) I feel like I know you having run into you on the New York forum where you are a great help (and lots of fun).

We did a similar trip last fall. We spent 4 nights in Rome, then took the train to Florence for 1 night (should have spent 2) and then picked up a car and spent 4 nights in Chianti, just outside Radda in Chianti and another 4 just outside Montelpulciano, near Chianciano Terme. We stayed at a lovely spot which has a separate house which might suit. There is a lovely pool and the cutest dog Luna and a cat Cippolini.

Agriturismo Fonteleccino

www.fonteleccino.com

It was an easy drive from here to the Rome airport.

Loved our time last year so much, we are returning again this fall. Going back to our spot near Radda in Chianti and then another 4 nights in Todi, Umbria.

Enjoy!

Edited: 02 March 2013, 15:01
Staten Island, New...
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10. Re: I'm back - 1st clueless post!

I guess the Florence question is a sensitive one ;)

Ok, moving on, I have a first itinerary in mind so let me know what you think. I will include exact dates just in case anything going on on those dates...

Sunday 25/8 - Fly to Rome. Take train to Florence

Florence 3 nights

Wednesday 28/8 - Pick up car from Florence

Stay in Pienza/montepulciano area for 5 nights.

Monday 2/9 return car somewhere in Rome

Rome 4 nights

Fly back from Rome

Is this doable? What would you change if anything

Edited: Oh hey TravelBug, cool seeing you here as well. Ok, reading your post...

Edited: 02 March 2013, 15:20