Rolling hills, enchanting villages with beautifully decorated houses, artsy towns, sunshine, wine and delicious food, these are the reasons why travelers fall in love with Tuscany so deeply. Because the nature’s stunning, it’s a great region for bike-lovers. There are many ways to explore Tuscany, but cycling is probably the best. The whole region’s full of hidden gems: architectonic, natural, cultural, social. Locals are warm and smiley, buildings incredibly beautiful, gardens flowery, cuisine delightful. When you travel by bike, you get more time to see it all. That’s why here’s some info about organizing the best bike trips in Tuscany.
What kind of cyclists is Tuscany for?
No matter what level you represent, Tuscany should suit you; it’s perfect for both experienced cyclists and enthusiastic beginners. Yes, you need to be ready to ride up and down the hills sometimes, but no worries. Even if you aren’t the fittest person in the world, you’ll quickly adjust. Besides, the beauty of landscapes will reward all your efforts. You can ride between picturesque villages, across lower hills, through olive groves and vineyards or up to the tops of Tuscany’s highest hills. There’s a variety of routes for all sorts of cyclists.
The best time to go
The best bike trips in Tuscany are usually organized between March and June or September and October. Summer’s very hot, so it might be hard to cycle during the day and those who hit the road in July or August usually bike only in the early mornings, late afternoons and evenings. As for the winter, it might get rainy or cold. If you’re going to travel between November and February, better stay away from mountain passes.
Guided tours or travelling independently?
Both options have their advantages and disadvantages. Guided tours make travelling easier. The organizers book your accommodation, sightseeing, wine tastings, dinners and other activities. You don’t have to worry about the luggage, because it’s going to be transported from one point to another. All you need to do is relaxing, cycling and enjoying the sun. A major drawback is the lack of flexibility. If you’re an independent traveler who likes to be spontaneous, it might be slightly annoying. To keep the route flexible and do whatever you fancy in a given moment, you should cycle on your own. You’ll have to carry your luggage though and spend some time organizing the trip.
There’s not a worse or better option – everything depends on your personal preferences. Think a bit and decide what suits you more.
Since the sport’s extremely popular in Tuscany, many companies organize cycling tours. They’re adjusted to various cyclists, from beginners to those who’ve already travelled thousands of kilometers by bikes and feel perfectly comfortable on difficult routes. Some of the tours are self-guided, which means the company only prepare some things for you, but you travel on your own. Other tours are fully guided: accommodation’s booked, route planned and support vehicle available. Here’s a list of several examples:
I Bike Tuscany
I Bike Tuscany is a company based in Florence. They organize a variety of excursions for solo travelers and small groups (up to 7 people). With I Bike Tuscany, you can explore the areas surrounding Florence, Siena, Val d’Orcia and the Chianti. The organizers’ goal is to take travelers off the beaten track and introduce them to the authentic, rural Tuscany. They offer both single and multiday tours. Many of them include wine tastings and other attractions.
Bike Florence & Tuscany
Organized by locals, the tours with Bike Florence & Tuscany can lead you through Tuscany’s most beautiful sceneries. Before booking a tour, you must claim whether you’re an “occasional rider”, “weekend rider” or “active rider”, so the company organizes various kind of tours. Not only the levels vary, but routes as well, of course. You can travel around the magical city of Florence, cross the region of Chianti and get to Siena or explore Tuscany’s villages and taste wines on the way.
Bike Tour Tuscany
The company organizes one-day tours only, but this one day’s eventful. It’s a great option if you’re spending holidays in Florence and feel like to do something physically active after visiting all the museums. You can either cycle across the city or into the Chianti region south of Florence. A visit in medieval castle, tasting wine and excellent oils plus an Italian lunch in a family-owned restaurant – that’s the basic program.
Do it yourself trips
So organized tours don’t really appeal to you? Tuscany’s not a difficult region to explore by yourself. You can get the Bicycle Touring in Tuscany guidebook written by David Cleveland and take it with you; it’ll surely come in handy. There are lots of routes to choose from. Just remember to pack light and be realistic about your capacities.
Are you ready to organize one of the best bike trips in Tuscany? Let us know where you’re heading to! And share this article with your friends, perhaps some of them will join your cycling adventures.