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Florence as base to see Lucca

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Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
806 posts
28 reviews
Florence as base to see Lucca

We'll be travelling by train around Italy in April/May for 2 to 3 weeks. At the moment our possible itinerary is Cinque Terre - Rome - Sorrento - Florence - Venice - Milan.

I would love to see some of the small Tuscan hill towns like Lucca. Would it be a good idea to use Florence as a base for about 6 nights and visit these towns as day trips, or better to spend 2 nights each at ,say, Lucca, Siena and Florence?

United States
Destination Expert
for Cinque Terre, Lucca
Level Contributor
9,402 posts
14 reviews
1. Re: Florence as base to see Lucca

You get a better feel for a place if you spend the night but if you don't want to pack and unpack often, then Florence would be a good base for trips to Lucca and Siena.

Note that Lucca is not a hill town.

TAB

Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
806 posts
28 reviews
2. Re: Florence as base to see Lucca

Oh, what would you call it then? I know it's a walled town. I don't mind unpacking every 2 or 3 nights. I was last in Venice 35 years ago and I'm sure it's more crowded now. I hate crowds - I much prefer small towns. So I wonder if we'd be better staying in the smaller towns and travelling to Florence for a day trip.

United States
Destination Expert
for Cinque Terre, Lucca
Level Contributor
9,402 posts
14 reviews
3. Re: Florence as base to see Lucca

I'd call it a town. It's definitely not on a hill.

Florence is not one of my favorites. I am usually based in Lucca and do Florence as a day trip when there's something I want to see there. You could see Florence easily from either Lucca or Siena if you wanted to split your time between those two smaller towns.

TAB

Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
806 posts
28 reviews
4. Re: Florence as base to see Lucca

Thanks TAB

My favourite towns anywhere in the world are always small. My husband will be on this holiday with me, however, and wants to spend a fair bit of time in Rome and see Pompei etc as he's an Roman history fanatic.

I'm having trouble fitting in all the places we both want to see on this trip. I'd like to spend the whole time in small towns but he has to be kept happy too. I think we could probably just do a day trip to Florence though as he hasn't shown much interest in going there.

Bunbury, Western...
Level Contributor
226 posts
11 reviews
5. Re: Florence as base to see Lucca

What about 3 or 4 nights in Lucca with day trips to Florence/Pisa.

Then hire a car from Lucca and visit the hill towns of central and southern Tuscany for 3 nights and drop the car off in Chiusi to catch a train to Rome or Venice. Probably base in one small town (Siena, Montepulciano or a lesser known one with accessible parking) and do day trips from there.

Lucca is a fantastic town to stay...bicycle friendly, great restaurants, small and walkable, walk or bicycle on the wall and only 1 hour bus or train to Florence and 30 minutes to Pisa.

Just a thought

Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
806 posts
28 reviews
6. Re: Florence as base to see Lucca

Thanks ga505

That sounds good but neither of wants to drive. I am definitely thinking of Lucca as a base though, especially as my other half hasn't shown a lot of interest in Florence - he's just obsessed with Rome, which is the city I liked least when I was there 35 years ago. I'd never get out of visiting Rome.

Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
806 posts
28 reviews
7. Re: Florence as base to see Lucca

In post #2 I meant to say Florence, not Venice.

8. Re: Florence as base to see Lucca

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