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5 best day trips from Florence
1. Day trip to Siena
For travelers looking to experience the charm of Tuscany, nothing beats a day in Siena. The UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of the most common day trip destinations from Florence, and for good reason. The hub of the town is the Piazza del Campo, with the looming Torre de Mangia — which provides magnificent views for those who dare make the climb to the top. Other popular activities include visiting the marble Siena Cathedral and simply wandering the enchanting streets of the city.
How far is Siena from Florence?
However you travel, the 80 kilometer (49 mile) journey from Florence to Siena usually takes around 90 minutes. Depending on which train you take, the trip can take up to an hour and 45 minutes by rail.
2. Day trip to Cortona
Taking a day trip to Cortona from Florence is a sublime way to escape the city. Best known these days as the setting for the book and film “Under the Tuscan Sun," this gorgeous hillside locale is a great place to slow down the pace of your trip. Visitors exploring the charming town can learn about the local history at the Etruscan Academy Museum, admire the church of Santa Margherita, and soak up the city’s atmosphere in the Piazza della Repubblica.
How far is Cortona from Florence?
The trip to Cortona measures just around 120 kilometers (74 miles). By train, you should reach your destination in one hour and 20 minutes, while driving takes about an hour and a half.
3. Day trip to Bologna
The unofficial food capital of Italy, Bologna — or “la grassa" (“the fat") is a gourmet’s dream. As the home to the oldest university in the world, a trip to Bologna is much more than just a chance to fill up on fine foods. Travelers can check out the Piazza Maggiore, wonder at the strange yet fascinating 17th-century anatomical theater, and eat to their heart’s content in the massive FICO World Eataly. Of course, make sure to taste the local specialties of ragu, prosciutto, and parmigiano reggiano.
How far is Bologna from Florence?
Just over 100 kilometers north of Florence, Bologna is an easy day trip from Florence. By train, the journey only takes 35 minutes, while by car it takes around 80 minutes. Allow for a little more time if traveling by bus, as the trip takes around two hours.
4. Day trip to the Val d’Orcia
When you dream of the picture-perfect Tuscan countryside, the Val d’Orcia is likely what comes to mind. Rolling hills, cypress-dotted roads, and storybook villages await travelers who make their way here. Wine lovers can visit the famous towns of Montepulciano and Montalcino for local tastings, while the gorgeous town of Pienza offers samples of locally-made pecorino cheese. For some extra relaxation, take a soak in the thermal baths at Bagno Vignoni.
How far is the Val d’Orcia from Florence?
From Florence to the heart of the Val d’Orcia is about 120 kilometers (74 miles), though this distance changes depending on your specific destination. Train and drive times depend greatly on which route you take, but a direct trip should be around two hours.
5. Day trip to Pisa
As home to one of the most famous landmarks in the world, a day trip to Pisa is on almost everyone’s travel radar. Legend has it that the Leaning Tower of Pisa — actually the belltower of the Pisa Cathedral — was once the site of some experiments by none other than Galileo himself. There is much more to this city than just the famous tower, however. Counted among Pisa’s other attractions are the Piazza dei Cavaliere, the Campo Santo, and the Palazzo della Carovana.
How far is Pisa from Florence?
Only 85 kilometers (52 miles) away, the trip from Pisa to Florence is an easy one. By car, the trip is only around an hour and 15 minutes, while the train will get you there a bit quicker, at just one hour. Bus service takes around one hour and 35 minutes.
Florence day trip FAQ
What transportation options are best for my day trip?
• Florence day trips by train
The train is frequently the simplest and most affordable mode of transportation for traveling from Florence. Most of the popular destinations from Florence have train stations nearby, and the train cuts down on travel time from to traffic, road work, or navigation issues.
• Florence day trips by car
Though many people will advise against driving in cities in Italy, a car can be a great option for trips out to the countryside. Some rural destinations can be very difficult to reach by public transportation, and a car allows you to get out and see these Tuscan gems.
• Florence day trips by bus
The bus is an economical option for day trips from Florence, and allows you to reach some lesser visited places with no train access. While the most affordable travel option, the bus will often take the longest, so make sure to allow plenty of time if making your journey by bus.
Should I take a guided tour for my day trip?
A guided tour is a great choice for many popular day trips out of Florence. Guided tours allow you to discover incredible local places that may never appear in any guide book. Tours also save the hassle of booking wine tasting reservations or navigating the Italian countryside.
What should I pack for my day trip?
What you choose to pack for your day trip will vary depending on the activity and the time of year. Some tours from Florence already include everything you’ll need, from entry tickets to lunch and dinner. An umbrella in the winter months can be a good idea, while planning ahead for intense heat in the middle of summer is crucial.
Top Attractions in Florence
Things to Do in Florence
- 10 Florence Art
Other Sightseeing Options in Florence
Want to discover all there is to do in Florence? Click here for a full list.
What people are saying about Florence
recommended to all girls who want to do a solo tour in tuscany. This tour was very interesting, comfortable and safe. The weather was perfect for take some shots and the wine tastings in the cellars created a film-like atmosphere. Thank you for this veeery on-a-budget experience
wine tasting with visit to a village in the countryside. Really appreciated the explanation of the lady in the first vineyard you can see that she loves her job. We bought a bottle as a souvenir
I got really excited! It was a beautiful sunny day in Tuscany. Not only the leaning tower, there is so much to discover and I was very surprised by Saint Gimigagno!
Everything was perfect, really enjoyed the tour. Beautiful Sienna I hope to be able to visit it again
Great day out. Really knowledgeable and engaging tour guide
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