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Blogger Ina on Tour in Tuscany

Sporty cycling between picturesque landscapes, idyllic villages and beautiful cities
Cyclist enjoying the view.

Travel blogger Ina Ludwig shares her passion for outdoor activities and active travel on her blog Sport, Tours & Travels. She is on the road with us again this year and reports on her experiences on the beautiful round trip through Tuscany:

In the last two years, I have done two great cycling trips with Eurobike: the Majorca Loop Tour and the cycling tour from Bolzano to Venice. On both tours, I was thrilled by the beautiful routes on quiet roads, the comfortable hotels, the convenient luggage transfer and the perfect organization by Eurobike. This year I wanted to start in spring and decided on the Tuscany roundtrip. The Italian region is particularly attractive at this time of year, when everything is in bloom, and the weather in Tuscany at the end of April is inviting for cycling.

Cyclist enjoying the view.

Environmentally friendly and stress-free journey by train

Tuscany is about 700 kilometres from Munich. It's a long drive by car, and if you're travelling alone, it's definitely worth taking the train. The train from Munich to Florence takes only eight hours. If you live further north, the easiest way to reach Tuscany is by plane (Florence airport).

Cycling between hilly landscapes

The Italian province of Tuscany offers a varied mix of rolling hills, picturesque vineyards, olive groves, cypress avenues, medieval towns and villages. Each stage of the Tour in Tuscany leads through these dreamlike landscapes; there are also some highlights.

On the Vinci circuit, you cycle south of Montecatini Terme through the idyllic nature reserve Area Righetti with many small ponds. In spring, the fields there blossomed yellow, and small mountain ranges could be seen in the background. On the Montecatini Terme - Pisa stretch, I was thrilled by the viewpoint of Lago di Massaciuccoli. I first had to overcome a small pass, but my efforts were rewarded. The magnificent view 150 metres above the large lake of the picturesque village of Massaciuccoli and all the way to the Mediterranean Sea was breathtaking.

The last stage from Siena to Greve in Chianti leads through the Monti del Chianti chain of hills, through countless wine-growing areas and the villages of Castellina, Panzano and Greve. For me, it was the most beautiful stretch on my Tuscany tour.

However, cycling through the hilly landscapes, you have to climb 400 to 1000 metres in altitude on each stage. That's why Eurobike recommends an e-bike for the Tour of Tuscany. For sporty cyclists who like to conquer metres of altitude, the hilly routes are no problem. Although I like to cycle sportily, a few routes were quite challenging for me, so I shortened them a bit to have enough time for the beautiful Tuscan towns.

The beautiful Tuscan towns and villages

On the Tuscany tour, similar to the Bolzano - Venice cycling tour, you cycle from one city worth seeing to the next. Therefore, it is important to reach the hotel in time to be able to visit the towns at leisure.

Lucca san Michele

Montecatini Terme and Vinci

The Tuscany tour begins in the town of Montecatini Terme. For organisational reasons, I spent three nights here. Montecatini Terme is famous for its thermal baths and is one of the most important spa towns in Europe. 200 metres above the town is the mountain village of Montecatini Alto. I had enough time for a short hike on the first day, but you can reach the mountain village even faster with a historic rack railway. In any case, it is worth coming here to enjoy the magnificent view of Montecatini Terme and the surrounding area and to take a walk through the pretty old town.

Buildings in Tuscany

The destination of the first stage of the Tour of Tuscany is Vinci, the birthplace of Leonardo da Vinci. The most important sights of the town are the historic old town, the Museo Leonardiano and the artist's birthplace.

The trip to the sea and Lucca

The second stage of the cycle tour leads from Montecatini Terme to Lucca and Pisa. If you want to make a detour to the sea, you have to cover 100 kilometres. For me, the route was too long, as I wanted to have enough time for all the places. Therefore, on the second day, I took a trip by train to Viareggio. I enjoyed the long sandy beach and coffee and cake in a beach bar. On the way back, I got off the train in Lucca and took an extended walk through the beautiful old town and along the 4-kilometre-long city wall. On the famous oval Piazza dell' Anfiteatro, I treated myself to a cold Aperol Spritz in the late afternoon before continuing on to Montecatini.

Beach stroll

Pisa and the Leaning Tower

The Leaning Tower of Pisa is one of the most popular sights in Italy. I saw it several years ago on a road bike tour Viareggio - Lucca - Pisa, but only briefly. The atmosphere just before sunset was particularly beautiful this time. In the evening, the old town was quiet. After the sightseeing, I ended the evening with delicious pizza and wine with a view of the cathedral.

Selfie in front of the Leaning Tower of Pisa

Casciana Terme - a spa town off the beaten track

The third stage of the Tour of Tuscany leads from Pisa to Casciana Terme. The small town offers an excellent thermal bath with hot springs and treatments, yet it is very quiet here. I stayed at the country hotel Albergo Stella, which is housed in a historic house. Unfortunately, it was already too late to visit the outdoor pool of the thermal bath. Instead, I relaxed by the hotel pool and took a short walk through the idyllic village.

Rental bike in front of the Tuscan landscape

San Gimignano and its many towers

The destination of the fourth stage of the cycle tour was San Gimignano. The small Tuscan town is famous for its medieval old town. Because of its many towers, it is often called "Medieval Manhattan". There used to be 72 towers in San Gimignano, but today there are only 15. Two of the towers are more than 50 metres high. Before visiting the old town, I relaxed at the pool of my hotel San Michele. The wide view of the Tuscan countryside was very appealing.

Two other participants of the Tour of Tuscany jumped into the water and encouraged me to swim a few laps as well. The water was cold, but the great view was worth it. The old town of San Gimignano impressed me a lot. From a tower, I could even enjoy a beautiful view of the old town and the surrounding area. After the tour, we had delicious ravioli in a beautiful square in the old town.

Siena - one of the most beautiful cities in Tuscany

On the penultimate day, I cycled from San Gimignano to Siena. The imposing Piazza del Campo and the Siena Cathedral are among the most important sights of the city. The dominant feature of the huge square is the Palazzo Comunale, whose tower is 102 metres high. I ended the evening with delicious pizza in the restaurant on the Piazza del Campo.

The Old Town of Siena

By bike and bus through the hilly Chianti region to Florence

The finish of the last stage of the Tour of Tuscany is Florence. The bike route Siena - Greve in Chianti leads through the hilly Monti del Chianti area. In Greve I handed over the rental bike plus to the friendly Eurobike employee and boarded the bus to Florence.

Cyclist in front of a beautiful panoramic view.

Arrival in Florence

Tuscany's largest city is known for its historic centre with countless magnificent buildings and squares and attracts millions of tourists every year. Florence's most famous sights include the Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral and the Piazza della Signoria. As I checked into the hotel at around 2pm, I still had plenty of time to explore the beautiful old town. In the evening, I said goodbye to beautiful Tuscany on Piazzale Michelangelo, which is above Florence and offers a wonderful view of the old town and the mountains in the background. The sunset was so beautiful - perfect for the end of a dream cycling trip through Tuscany.

You want to read an even more comprehensive blog post about our Tuscany tour? Then you should definitely check out the travel report on the Tuscany roundtrip with Eurobike Cycling Holidays on Ina Ludwig's blog Sport, Tours und Travels.

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