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“Highly recommend tour 3 with Ciaoflorence tours & travel”

Ciao Florence Tours and Travels
Ranked #103 of 382 Tours in Florence
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Owner description: Ciao Florence organize tours from Venice, Rome, Naples and of course Florence: we can guarantee the best value thanks to our experience, and to our professional and multilingual staff, together with a careful selection of our suppliers. Enjoy an unforgettable experience in Italy choosing from our wide range of tours, special activities and visit the most famous museums in the world! Otherwise just create with us the private tour that best suites your needs! We guarantee: • specialized multilingual guides • GT Coach;• Quality, professionalism and friendliness;• Emergency Service;• Reservations "last minute" until 22.00.
Reviewed October 29, 2012

My friend and I did the full day Tour 3: Siena,San Gimignano,Monteriggioni & Chianti with CiaoFlorence tours and travel. We wanted to see all 3 towns, which we did, although we would have liked a little longer in San Gimignano. This is an excellent tour, well run and a great way to see the Tuscany country side in a short time.

7  Thank Pamela B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 27, 2012

We just dd the Tuscany day trip yesterday- it was fabulous! Julio, our guide, was excellent and conducted the 12 hour tour in 3 languages! We visited San Gimignano, Siena, Monteriggioni and Chianti. We had a guided tour in Siena and free time in each place. It was a long day but well worth it.

6  Thank Kim L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 7, 2012

Overall I was quite disappointed with this tour. It was advertised as a walking tour but we spent at least the first half an hour on a bus going to sites that actually weren't very interesting (stopping by the side of the road for a view over olive trees wasn't in the write up). The actual part where we did walk around Florence itself was quite good, but overall this formed quite a small portion of the couple of hours (about 30 minutes). The inclusion of the Uffizi sounded good, but after 20 minutes in the first room where our guide was still comparing features of the 3 main paintings in the room, we decided it would be advisable to depart the group early. We only had 45 minutes remaining of the tour when we arrived at the Uffizi so to spend 20 minutes comparing detail of faces and hands in the paintings in only one room was guaranteeing we wouldn't get to see much else.

2  Thank LovedItalyAB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CiaoFlorence, Direttore at Ciao Florence Tours and Travels, responded to this reviewResponded October 10, 2012

Dear costumers,
We analyzed your bad review about our tour and it turned out that all your disappointment came from the fact that you booked a tour you weren’t interested in.
Instead of joining our FLORENCE WALKING TOUR you picked our FLORENCE AFTERNOON CITY TOUR WITH UFFIZI GALLERY . While the Florence walking tour IS a 2 hours walk around Florence, the Florence City tour, as you precisely described, is structured in three different parts: about 1 hour by bus, about 30 minutes walking tour, about 1h30 inside the Uffizi Gallery. Tours itineraries are well specified in our brochure, but according to your review, it is clear you didn’t take the time to give it an eye. I attach both itineraries at the end of this answer, so you can lately check for differences.
Unfortunately we can’t be responsible for your incorrect choice.
Before dealing with what you disliked of the tour, please permit me to remind you that a negative feedback has a heavy resonance on an agency business. Complaints are always taken seriously by the agency itself and by its potential new costumers, and being objective when writing one should be a moral duty.
Concerning your experience, as I have already said, a walking tour is not what you bought. Our Florence city tour starts with a bus drive to Fiesole, a nice town on the hills looking over Florence. What you found not “very interesting” is actually one of the main tourist attraction in Florence nearby, now and in the past (ask Boccaccio, Dante, Lord Byron and many others about it...). Moreover beyond olive trees (that, generally, encounter some tourist likeness here in Tuscany), you should have been able to see an astonish view over Florence. The view is the actual reason why we planned a stop to Fiesole in a tour that concerns Florence.
We are glad to hear that the 30 minutes walking tour was “quite good”!!! Regarding the last part, the Uffizi Gallery, all I can say is that if you judge a 20 minutes explanation of “comparing features” a waste of time, you are probably enough art experts to tour around by yourself, decide how much time it is worth to spend in each room and maybe you do not need to pay someone to let you focus on what’s more or less important to see.
While you found the guide explanations boring and superfluous, in our opinion it only demonstrates our guide’s professionalism, accurancy and passion for her/his job. The tour inside the museum is 1h30, so you would have had another hour and 10 to spend with the guide, not 45 minutes. As a last point, please consider that the tour finishes at 5.30pm while the museum closes at 6.30pm, so you would have had another whole hour to tour around by yourself and enjoy the visit.
I apologize for the length of this answer, but I hope I have clarified what occurred, especially for our future costumers.
Kind regards
Marco

TOUR 2 - FLORENCE AFTERNOON CITY TOUR WITH UFFIZI GALLERY
From Florence we cruise along the tree-lined roads to reach the beautiful Etruscan-Roman village of FIESOLE, with stunning views of Florence and the Arno Valley. Heading back to the city we drive along the famous Lungarni (on the Arno riverbank) to reach the Basilica di SANTA CROCE and its historic Square. After admiring the palaces we walk up to Piazza Signoria, the unique heart of the city’s social life, to admire the architecture of Palazzo Vecchio and the famous statues of Loggia de’ Lanzi. The tour finishes inside the UFFIZI GALLERY, where you can stand and admire the unique Renaissance masterpieces of the great Italian artists: Leonardo, Giotto, Michelangelo, Botticelli and Raphael... (the list is never-ending). You can stay inside the museum for as long as
you please even after the guided tour is over.

INCLUDED
• Professional guide
• Visit to Fiesole by fully-fitted luxury GT Coach
• Uffizi Gallery ticket and reservation
• Walking tour
• Earphones for a minimum of 15 participants in museum
• Free pick up on request (depending on agency availability)

TOUR 1C - FLORENCE WALKING TOUR
This tour lets you stroll for two hours through the most important squares and winding backstreets of Florence. We are offering you the unforgettable experience of seeing the sights of the city through the eyes of a local: you will discover unexpected and unknown secrets.
Starting from PIAZZA SAN FIRENZE we move on to PIAZZA REPUBBLICA with its cafes and bustling life. Then it’s just a short walk to the Square of the DUOMO, where you can admire the world-famous Cathedral, Giotto’s Bell Tower and Baptistery.
Ending up in PIAZZA DELLA SIGNORIA, you can join the film-set of this unique square and feast your eyes on the architecture of Palazzo Vecchio and the famous Loggia de’Lanzi, This is an unforgettable experience! After the sights we stroll alongside the Arno River, where you can see PONTE VECCHIO, with its famous goldsmiths shops. After crossing the Bridge we end the tour by visiting some of the most important Florentine Palaces, like PITTI PALACE and DAVANZATI PALACE.
Included:
Professional guide

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 30, 2012

We recently visited Florence Italy and before we left the United States we contacted the hotel we were to stay at in Florence for their suggestion for some tour companies to choose for private guides to see these 2 art sites. One of their suggestions was Ciao Florence Tour and Travel. We contacted them via email and decided to choose them for their assistance to see these beautiful places of art. We wanted to tour with just the 4 of us so we could hear and learn more what both places had to offer. We were also satisfied with their price. While having a private guide for a few hours cost a bit more than renting the audio guides , it was well worth it. We had great communication before we arrived-a contact number and name of the guides we were to meet. We had the meeting times and places arranged ahead of time. We set up the tours on different days. Both of the guides we met were terrific!! Their names were Fabrizio and Emilliano.They arranged getting the tickets for us and we were able to enter directly with no waiting in line. Both gentlemen seemed to have a wealth of knowledge about not only the art/ artists we saw but also set the scene with the Medici family from many centuries ago. If we are ever fortunate to return to Florence again I would not hesitate to contact Ciao Florence Tours again and will recommend to anyone I know who is visiting this beautiful city in the future.

6  Thank lorainOhio
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 26, 2012

We decided to take the Siena & Chianti dinner tour and it was a big disappointment - so much so that I find myself compelled to write this review. 
We had a almost identical experience to a previous review ... Only worse. Whilst it was good being in a small group of four in total, we were not provided with an experienced English-speaking guide, but rather a driver who didn't speak at all- with the exception of him continually on the phone while driving. We received not one piece of information on the entire trip about Tuscany or the places we visited. 
The tour started being dropped off on the outskirts of Siena city centre for two hours of 'own time' to explore the city. Upon being collected late at the collection point, the driver drove straight to the winery for dinner. We did not stop for any photos of the chianti region, nor San Gimigano, as promised. This part of the trip was missed altogether!  Only when we specifically requested that the driver stop by the road did we finally get a chance to snap a few photos before all afternoon light was totally lost - a major disappointment as seeing the rolling hills and wineries was the main reason for coming on the tour.
Upon arrival at the Casanova  winery, no-one greeted us for dinner and we were left to wander aimless for 5 minutes until the owner turned up talking on his phone. Again I had to find someone to attend us. After a brief overview of his wines (and more interruptions on his phone) we were ushered into the main building for dinner. 
The dinner itself was the only saving grace of the tour with the 4 courses showcasing the wineries own produce - a pity as my girlfriend is lactose intolerant and this was never considered by the tour group, so she was unable to eat two of the courses. 
We then returned to Florence thoroughly disappointed with this experience. Avoid this tour and operator as they clearly have no interest in providing any form of a tuscan experience, only the 70 euros a piece. 

1  Thank Chris R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CiaoFlorence, Direttore at Ciao Florence Tours and Travels, responded to this reviewResponded October 8, 2012

Dear Chris,
Thank you for your feedback, it helps us a lot improving the quality of our tours. Could you please specify the date you joined our tour, so that we can check who your tour leader and driver was?

We already spoke with the winery regarding their not welcoming attitude, we really hope this will not happen again. Anyway, as it is a family business, the owner is the same person that manages the wine tours and dinners with his wife Rita, and that’s why he had to answer his job calls, though I am sure he spent less than 1 minute in each one.

We are really disappointed about your bad experience with us, this is our first complaint for this tour.

Nevertheless please just let me clarify some points:

1. Any stop during the drive to the winery is scheduled for this tour, our brochure states: ”1 hour driving through the Chianti scenery”. This is because the winery is actually in the Chianti area and you do not need to stop, you can take beautiful pictures right at the winery before dinner. If the driver stopped to let you take some pics, this has been his courtesy.

2. Any stop to San Gimignano is scheduled, so this is not a missed part of the tour!

3. We have many costumers with special needs concerning food and we always take care of them without any problem. Any intolerance/preference regarding food must be communicated at the moment of the reservation, in order to give us the possibility to advise restaurants/wineries in time to prepare an alternative. Unfortunately Tuscan cusine makes large use of milk and cheese in dish preparations, and we are sorry for your girlfriend’s incomplete meal.

We will appreciate any further information and suggestion you may give us about your bad experience with us, here on tripadvisor or at our email ciaoflorence@gmail.com
Best regards,

Marco

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