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Florence as a base for a week in September

wales
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Florence as a base for a week in September

We intend to visit Florence, Bologna and Milan over 10 days. Is it possible to stay outside of Florence in a typical residential area and take a bus or train into the city centre daily, then later in the week take the train to Bologna ? I believe it's less than an hour away. Ideally we could rent a flat for a week before moving off to an hotel in Milan. Any ideas appreciated!

Norwich, Norfolk, Uk
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1. Re: Florence as a base for a week in September

It is certainly possible, but I'm not sure why you would want to stay in the less attractive outskirts of Florence and have to travel in and out of the city when there are so many options in the centre itself.

wales
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2. Re: Florence as a base for a week in September

Ah..... I was hoping for the more local experience.... May be it's a bad idea. I will reconsider my options. Best start looking at central hotels then! Thank you for your response.

Norwich, Norfolk, Uk
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3. Re: Florence as a base for a week in September

There are lots of apartments available in the centre if that is what you are looking for and they can be much more affordable than a hotel. If you are looking for a less touristy, more local feel take a look at the Oltrarno or Sant' Ambrogio areas

NM
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4. Re: Florence as a base for a week in September

i recommend staying inside Florence for the week, just because everything is THERE, and you should be, too! Places like Hotel Silla are pleasantly removed so that you have a greater sense of peace and quiet, and I think there is a hotel della ville on the river about a 40 minute walk from the centro (NOT the Hotel de Ville on Via Turnabuoni, which is a lovely place but definitely IN THE MIDDLE OF THINGS!)(also Villa Carlotta a past the Boboli Gardens and is lovely, but I got a blood blister the time I stayed there and had to walk 45 minutes into town every day!) Why waste time on the bus when FLorence is jam packed full of places to see, things to do, food to eat.

Bologna is undeservedly overlooked, and I can recommend a couple of great places to eat--not that you need any recommendations in such a foodie town! Try Corona d'Oro as a place to stay for a night or two. And you're right; it is a quick non-stop train ride from Florence I will be in Florence for a month in Sept/Octo and plan to go to Bologna by train, even if just for a lunch. Anyone who has not had tortellini bolognese in Bologna is denying himself a great pleasure, and you will never be able to eat the ground beef "bolognese" in America again once you have experienced the real thing.

Milano? I fly into Malpensa and get out f town as quickly as I can, either to Florence or Lake Como. Yes, there is much to commend Milano, I suppose, but I have yet to find it, and I have been going for over 15 years!

Cambridgeshire...
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5. Re: Florence as a base for a week in September

I don't know if you're still looking.

I can't say that I know very much about rentals as I mostly stay by myself, at least, for the greater part of my stay and it's far cheaper to have a single room than rent an apartment. I would imagine, though, that the majority of short term holiday lets would be in the centre. As peggypatch suggested, the Oltrarno and Sant'Ambrogio areas are less touristy and have a more local atmosphere.

I've stayed at the Hotel Annalena in Via Romana which is not far from the old city walls, I walked to and from the centre, but there are buses. It's more like an old fashioned pensione than a modern hotel and I loved it, but it's not for everyone, there are a number of stairs to climb to reach it and it's not for anyone looking for anything glitzy. Read the reviews and see what you think.

Another area that might interest you is around Via Gioberti which is to the east of the city leading from Piazza Beccaria. The shops and restaurants are definitely "local" and the language you hear all the time is Italian, which is so refreshing. Off the top of my head, I can think of two hotels nearby ; Orcagna and Jane on Via Orcagna - I know nothing of these hotels, so I'm not in a position to recommend them or otherwise, if you're interested, read the reviews. Many years ago, in another life, I stayed for six months in an apartment close by. I worked in a leather goods shop in the centre, and in good weather, I used to walk to work; if it rained, I took the bus. I still like that part very much; it doesn't have the historic atmosphere of the city centre but it does have a vibrant, local feel.

If you find something which you like the look of, I'm sure people will be happy to pass an opinion!

Cairns
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6. Re: Florence as a base for a week in September

Hi

We booked a room in a villa in the hills on the outskirts of Florence for three weeks back in September 2010

Enjoyed walking down the hill to the cafe where we got the bus into town. We would shop in the central market and in the evening sit in the garden overlooking the city eating and drinking what we had bought.

Florence is a great place in itself and a good base to get out to see so many other places by bus or train - Lucca, Venice, Arezzo, San Gimignano, Siena etc etc etc.

Enjoy

7. Re: Florence as a base for a week in September

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