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Biking Vacation The Tuscan Coast​

Activity Level: Easy / Moderate  |  Daily Mileage: 18 – 45 mi  |  Daily Biking: 2 – 5 hr
Air package plus
10 days from only
$3895
Price includes roundtrip airfare.
Land only
7 days from only
$2495
Pre-trip Extension:
Florence · 2 nights $345*

Post-trip Extension:
Rome · 2 nights $345*
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Detailed Itinerary

Please note: For those traveling in 2015, your itinerary may vary slightly from what is presented below. 

Day 1 - Depart U.S. / Fly overnight to Florence

Depart the U.S. for Italy. The particulars of your arrival overseas are detailed with your flight itinerary.

Day 2 - Arrive in Florence

VBT Air Package guests: Upon arrival at the Florence airport, claim your luggage and clear customs. VBT's local representative will meet you outside the customs area in your arrival terminal and will be holding a VBT sign. Your representative will help you transfer (approximately 30 minutes) to your hotel.

If you are going to be delayed meeting our transfer representative for more than 15 minutes due to delayed or lost luggage, please have airport staff page our driver with your last name so they may be notified of your delay. You may also contact our One Call travel assistance to advise of your delay and they will contact our transfer service. Our drivers are only able to wait for up to 45 minutes from the time your flight lands after which you would be responsible for your own transfer. 

Please note: If you arrive early, your hotel room may not be available until 1:00 pm. You may store your luggage with the reception desk.

You have the rest of the day free to explore the historic city of Florence and enjoy its Renaissance architecture and famous museums with VBT's City Information included in your Final Travel Booklet as your guide. In the evening, relax in one of the city's restaurants and sample the local cuisine.

Day 3 - Meet Trip Leaders in Florence / Transfer to Collemezzano

VBT No-Air Package guests: Your tour starts at 12:00 pm at our Florence hotel (Hotel Tornabuoni Beacci, via de' Tornabuoni 3, Firenze, phone +39 055 212645). Your Leaders will be in the lobby wearing VBT staff garments. We will transfer by private coach to Collemezzano. During our transfer, the coach will stop and you will have the opportunity to buy lunch. If your arrival at our Florence hotel is later than 12:00 pm or if you are delayed, you must take a taxi (approximately 60 minutes) at your own expense (approximately €100/$130 USD) to the Agrihotel Elisabetta. Contact the Agrihotel Elisabetta to advise of any travel delays or changes, and ask the front desk to pass the message on to your VBT Trip Leaders. Please note: If you are arriving from the city center, you must transfer at your own expense to the meeting point, which is centrally located.

VBT Air Package & Pre-Trip Extension guests: This morning, spend more free time exploring Florence's wonderful museums, shops and cafés. Discover the 14th-century Duomo, which serves as the focal point of Florence. Its structure and facade are symbolic of the Renaissance. Take a walk across the Arno River on the famous Ponte Vecchio and browse the shops of the goldsmiths and silversmiths who have replaced the butchers and grocers of centuries gone by. See works by Caravaggio, Botticelli, Raffaello and Rembrandt at the Uffizi Gallery. Or just relax and enjoy a cappuccino or espresso in the Piazza del Signoria and Piazza del Duomo, where Florence's art and history surround you.

At 12:00 pm, meet your VBT Trip Leaders in the hotel lobby. They will be easy to recognize as they will be wearing VBT staff garments.  Once the entire group is assembled, we transfer by private motorcoach (approximately 1 hour) to Collemezzano. During our transfer, the coach will stop, and you will have the opportunity to buy lunch.

On arrival in Collemezzano, we proceed to the Agrihotel Elisabetta. This inviting accommodation and its smiling owner, Luigi, will surely enchant you. After settling in, meet your Trip Leaders for a safety and bike-fitting session before a short warm-up ride over gentle hills and past old farmhouses shaded by cypress trees. Later this afternoon, our gregarious host Luigi takes us on a guided tour of his wine cantina. Here, sample some of Luigi's varietals while sharing the day's stories with your small group. Dinner is at the hotel restaurant.

Day 4 - Explore Cecina and Costa degli Etruschi

Following breakfast, begin cycling in Cecina, a tiny village nestled between the sea and the mountains, in the region called Costa degli Etruschi—the Etruscan Coast. Ride through the rolling countryside, flanked by cypress trees and fertile vineyards, as you head to Casale Marittimo, one of several medieval hilltop towns. Once there, admire the medieval castle and the 12th-century Sant'Andrea Church before enjoying a delicious picnic prepared by your Trip Leaders.

Afterward, continue cycling downhill through the charming village of Bibbona, entering the fragrant Cecina pine forest as you head back to the hotel. This evening, gather with your fellow travelers for a reception featuring regional wine and bruschette, and later, dinner at the hotel.

Day 5 - Cycle Cecina Mare and the Strada del Vino

Begin your day by pedaling the Cecina Mare promenade en route to the Strada del Vino, one of the most beautiful of Italy's wine roads. Your route traces the Ornellaia vineyard to Bolgheri along gently rolling hills. Bolgheri is known for its Viale dei Cipressi, a cypress-lined avenue immortalized in the poem “San Guido” by Giosuè Carducci. You may want to stroll along this boulevard after enjoying lunch on your own.

This afternoon, shuttle to the Tombolo Talasso Resort, your deluxe hotel right on the Tyrrhenian Sea, or continue cycling on easy back roads. Whichever you choose, we gather together a bit later for a brief Italian language workshop with your VBT Trip Leaders. In the evening, enjoy a home-hosted experience in a typical Tuscan countryside house. Our host, Chicca, will cook dinner for us, and you are welcome to help and learn from her before enjoying the meal at sunset under the pergola. Chicca is the founder of Cooking in Tuscany, a culinary-gastronomic association that spreads traditional Italian and Tuscan cuisine in Italy and abroad. The goals of the association are to experiment with and research old traditional recipes, to use and emphasize typical products of the season, and to promote the culture and tradition of the region through the knowledge of local products. And, of course, to share the sense of hospitality of an Italian family! Chicca will present a one-hour, hands-on cooking class, after which we will have the chance to dine on our own creations.

Day 6 - Visit an olive oil mill

After breakfast, continue riding along the historic Strada del Vino to the family-owned and operated Fonte di Foiano olive oil mill. During our visit, we meet the Di Gaetano family, who lead a private tour of the press and workshop. Taste the oil during a degustazione (sampling) on the terrace. During your tasting, Michael Di Gaetano explains the differences among regions and how varied the flavors can be. Afterward, enjoy an included lunch—prepared by Michael himself, using organic and fragrant vegetables—on the farm grounds.

We will cycle on to our hotel, stopping at Daniela's great bicycle shop. Once you've returned, take free time to stretch out in the sand at the hotel's private beach or take a respite in one of the five thermal swimming pools at the Wellness Center. Tonight, your Trip Leaders can suggest a restaurant to try in the lovely seaside village of Marina di Castagneto. Dinner is on your own.

Day 7 - Cycle Sassetta, Suvereto and Maremma

Today's adventure from Sassetta takes you along one of the most picturesque routes in Europe. Cycling past cork and pine trees, medieval estates and fields of sunflowers, you arrive in Suvereto, an ancient village whose origins date to the year 1000. Situated on the slopes of hills overlooking the Costa degli Etruschi, it is a true jewel, rich in history and art, set in the green valley of the river Cornia. The town displays architectural harmony: Its ancient walls enclose paved streets lined with stone houses, historical buildings, impressive churches and shadowy cloisters. Continue on a thrilling downhill ride to Montioni. From here, relax and shuttle through the Maremma, a beautiful area of flat grazing lands, or continue riding. Then it's on to our welcoming country retreat at Agriturismo Montebelli.

Situated on immaculately maintained grounds with olive trees, vineyards and wildflowers, the Agriturismo Montebelli has tennis courts, an outdoor pool and a small spa and sauna. There is also a stable with horseback riding facilities. After (or instead of) biking, explore the grounds, go horseback riding, or take a dip in the hotel pool. Dinner tonight is at the hotel.

Day 8 - Explore Castiglione della Pescaia

After breakfast, cross the soft foothills of the high Maremma, a scenic, lush landscape traversed mostly by locals. 

Later in the morning, we arrive in the lovely seaside resort of Castiglione della Pescaia. This city's many layers of history extend from Roman occupation through its many subsequent rulers—the Marquis of Tuscany, the Abbey of San Germano, Perugia, the Duke Della Corgna, the Grand Duke of Tuscany and, in the 18th century, the Papal State. Inside the urban center, fortified by 15th-century walls, the town and the palace of Della Corgna Dukes remain well preserved. The four towers rising out of the Castle of Buriano are certain to be a highlight of your day. Known as one of the most remarkable examples of military art in Tuscany, this tenth-century castle once belonged to the powerful Lambardi family.

Here, do some last-minute gift shopping or sunbathing on the beach. If you prefer not to cycle, you can enjoy leisurely pursuits at the Agriturismo Montebelli, such as a walk through the vineyards or relaxing at the intimate spa.

Tonight we enjoy a memorable farewell dinner together.

Day 9 - Transfer to Rome / Free time / VBT No-Air Package ends

VBT No-Air Package guests: Your trip ends at the Rome hotel at approximately 11:30 am-12:00 pm. You are responsible for your own transfer to the airport for your flight home.

VBT Air Package guests: After breakfast, transfer to your central Rome hotel for your final overnight stay. Your hotel room may not be available until 1:00 pm. You may store your luggage with the reception desk.

If you have chosen the independent Post-Trip Extension to Rome, you will remain at this hotel for three nights. When you arrive today, VBT's Rome representative can answer your questions and offer optional city walks to help you make the most of Rome. VBT's City Information in your Final Travel Booklet includes recommendations for restaurants, museums and transportation in Rome, and will help you explore on your own.

Day 10 - Depart for U.S.

After breakfast* this morning, you will transfer to the Rome airport (approximately 40-60 minutes, depending upon traffic) for your departing flight. Please ensure you are ready in the hotel reception area at the designated transfer time**.

*Please note: For guests with early-morning departures, breakfast at the hotel may not be available. Please check with the front desk to verify the times that breakfast is served.

**Please note: VBT recommends that you check your transfer time in your “Transfer Reminder.” VBT transfer times and departure points are finalized in advance and cannot be modified for individual guests. If you extend your stay beyond the scheduled program dates, return transportation to the airport will be at your own expense.
 

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