Bike Across Tuscany - Guided
Among the dreamed destinations in the historic Grand Tour of Europe, Tuscany still today evokes romance, art, culture, wine, cuisine and quintessential scenery. Pedal through art cities, medieval villages, scenic vineyards and olive groves on this 8-day bike tour through the heart of Italy. We’ll traverse the region from north to south, hitting UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Renaissance and Medieval towns like Lucca, Vinci, San Gimignano and Siena. Staying in local three-star hotels in smaller and charming towns, you will delight in Tuscan delicacies and the famous red Chianti wine. Our tour ends in the Tuscan capital, the majestic and inspiring Florence. Through it all, you will relish in the camaraderie of your cycling companions while our top-notch guides help make this a memorable experience.
Arrive in Lucca
Highlights: Test ride on Renaissance walls
Meet in Renaissance Lucca, a short train or bus ride from Florence or Pisa airports. We’ll fit bicycles and enjoy a fun 4 km test ride around the most well-preserved fortified walls in Italy. If you arrive early, make sure to stroll through the city center, visiting the amphitheater (originally built by the Romans and transformed over the ages), the unique Torre Guinigi (with a tree growing on top of the medieval tower), and the marble-faced majestic Duomo. A welcome dinner tonight in a local trattoria starts off our tour together.
Daily distance: 4 km (or more!)
Accommodation: Hotel La Luna
Bike to Pisa
Highlights: The Leaning Tower and “Square of Miracles”
A roundtrip ride to Pisa following the nearby river takes us into the center of this fascinating city to visit the impressive medieval "Square of Miracles", which was built to represent everything a human would need: the Romanesque Baptistery, the Cathedral, the "'civic" bell tower (which began to lean and now is the most famous building here!), and, at life's end, the Monumental Cemetery. We’ll explore Pisa before a delightful return ride to Lucca.
Daily distance: 65 km (41 miles), 330 ms total elevation gain (1080 ft)
Accommodation: Hotel La Luna
Ride to Vinci
Highlights: Leonardo’s birthplace; Night in a Tuscan farmhouse
Leave Lucca for the small village of Vinci, birthplace and home to the world-famous genius Leonardo da Vinci. A highlight here is a visit to the small town centre, including the town's museum with wooden models of many of Leonardo’s inventions (many of which were never built in his lifetime). Not only a painter, Da Vinci was also an engineer, creating hydraulic machines, war machines and several other fascinating artifacts (like the bicycle!) that show how ahead of his time he was.
Tonight's lodging is another tour highlight - the chance to sleep in a Tuscan farmhouse (called an "agriturismo" in Italy), set on the Montalbano hills in the Chianti wine region, surrounded by vines, cypresses and olive groves. The farm produces extra virgin olive oil, Chianti DOCG wine as well as white wine and the local vin santo (a sweet wine enjoyed with dessert).
Daily distance: 60km (38 miles), 500 m climbing (1640 ft)
Accommodation: Hotel Monna Lisa
Ride through Classic Tuscany
Highlights: Picture Perfect Tuscany
We’ll leave the province of Florence to enter its historic rival's territory: Siena, on the way passing through the charming ceramics town of Montelupo Fiorentino. A climb takes us up to a ridge road which we’ll follow to tonight's destination. We are in quintessential Tuscany here, with cypress trees, olive groves and vineyards spread out across the surrounding landscape. This evening’s destination, Colle di Val d’Elsa, is a classic walled medieval Tuscan town on a hill, still full of charm and history. You’ll enjoy exploring its cobble-stoned streets and alleyways.
Daily distance: 72 km (45 miles), 1030 m climbing (3300 ft)
Accommodation: Palazzo Renieri
Ride to San Gimignano
Highlights: Optional loop ride
An optional loop ride to the nearby town of towers - San Gimignano. Once home to dozens of tower-homes, the twelve or so that have remained are still striking to the eye as we approach. Enjoy a stroll through the center of this compact, walled medieval town and perhaps a taste of its signature wine, Vernaccia. We'll point out a few of our favorite osterie, or local restaurants, before we return to our own medieval town of Colle di Val d'Elsa.
Daily distance: 36 km (22.5 miles), 580 m climbing (1900 ft)
Accommodation: Palazzo Renieri
Bike to Siena
Highlights: Postcard Tuscany landscapes; Siena
We continue pedaling south to reach Siena, considered by many to be the most striking Tuscan city (even more so than the Renaissance capital, Florence). After cycling through classic Tuscan scenery and plenty of rolling hills, we’ll settle into our hotel and then enjoy some of the famous sights – like the Romanesque-Gothic Cathedral and the unique shell-shaped Piazza del Campo, which twice a year becomes a tightly-packed horse race field for the annual "Palio". You’ll want to explore the countless alleys and tight streets that bring surprises at every turn. If you prefer to take a break from the bike today, transfer by public bus directly to Siena.
Daily distance: 48 km (30 miles), 843 m climbing (2760 ft)
Accommodation: Hotel Italia
Siena and Florence
Highlights: Rest day - exploring Siena and Florence
After a few morning hours exploring the marvelous alleys and piazzas of Siena, we will travel to its historic rival city and today’s Tuscan capital, the mighty Florence (traveling together by public bus, with the option for an organized private transfer). An informal walking tour in the city centre will take us through some of the landmark sights, such as the Piazza Santa Croce, the Palazzo della Signoria, and the stately and jaw-dropping Duomo. You can spend more time exploring on your own, or even visit some of the world-famous museums nearby.
Accommodation: Villa Royal
Tour ends in Florence
We say goodbye this morning. For those wishing to continue their time in Tuscany, Florence provides a great base for further exploration, as well as the perfect place to close your dream Italian holiday. If your travels end today, we will provide suggestions for arriving to the nearby Florence airport.
Breakfast at the hotel this morning
|Includes||High quality hybrid touring bike; 7 nights lodging in 3-star or equivalent hotels and inns, with breakfast and tax; a welcome dinner with local wine; GPS navigation tracks provided via Ride With GPS (which you can upload to your personal navigation device); Bilingual English-Italian cycling guide, support vehicle and driver on most days; Transportation from Florence to Siena by public bus; Informal walking tour of Florence; Pre-tour travel and sales assistance available (our pre-travel documentation will help you prepare your arrival and departure travel logistics, as well as prepare for your participation on tour).
Not included Airfare or travel to tour starting point; Airport transfers (available for an additional fee - please inquire); Optional private transfer from Siena to Florence on Day 7 (can be arranged at additional cost); Any meals not listed in itinerary; Helmets can be requested prior to tour start; Clipless / SPD pedals are not included; Travel insurance; Tips for support staff and guide
|Begin/End||Lucca / Florence|
|Arrive/Depart||Pisa Galileo Galilei Airport (PSA) or Florence Airport (FLR) / Florence Airport (FLR), Leonardo da Vinci International Airport in Rome (FCO), or Pisa Galileo Galilei Airport (PSA).|
|Total Distance||275 km (170 miles)|
|Daily Distance||52 km (33 miles)|
About Tour Ratings »
|Notes||This is a great tour for active people (who regularly run, bike, or work out) without much bicycle touring experience. Also great for intermediate to advanced cyclists who want a fun vacation, enjoying some hills every day. You will ride 35-68 km per day, on rolling to hilly terrain, with a few steeper or longer climbs. We will cycle on paved backroads with little traffic (on some shorter stretches we share the roads with cars), as well as on hard-packed gravel roads with very little traffic. Experienced cyclists who want longer, optional rides at the end of the programmed ride will have these available.
The tour will depart with a minimum of 5 participants, and a maximum of 16.
|Terms||Terms & Conditions|
Oct 19 - 26
€1295 per person
May 30-Jun 6
Aug 29-Sept 5
Bike Upgrade Options:
|Next Step||Request space on this Bicycle Tour »|
We had fantastic experiences at Ride Across Tuscany. The knowledge and experience that the company has in this territory is an incredible differential. Not to mention the equipment available and all the service before, during and after the service. I recommend it!
Nilo S. (Brazil) Sept 2019