Day Trips from Florence, Italy – Episode 242

categories: europe travel


The Amateur Traveler talks to Italophile Ira Bernstein who returns to the show to talk about day trips in Tuscany that you can take from Florence.

We talk about visiting the walled city of Siena and its famous bareback horse race the Palio, viewing the many towers of San Gimignano, climbing the leaning tower of Pisa (after you take the obligatory picture of someone holding it up), and walking on the walls of Lucca.

Each town has its own character and attractions. Arezzo has a jewelry museum and the home of the “Father of Humanism” Petrarch.

Fiesole is a rich enclave, a suburb of Florence with views of the city and a Roman theatre.

Montepulciano and Montalcino are both known for their wines. Ira talks about some of the events that the locals enjoy like the Palio, flea markets, and flag throwing competitions.

So even if you just get as far out of Florence as Piazzale Michelangelo there are many places to explore in Tuscany.

Whether you are looking for tips for your first trip to Florence or are looking to see more the second time around, give this show a listen before you book your trip.

right click here to download (mp3)
right click here to download (iTunes version with pictures)

Show Notes

Travel to Venice and the Veneto – Episode 182
Travel to Turin and Bologna (or eating our way through Italy) – Episode 208
Travel to Siena, Italy – Episode 30
Tea With Mussolini
Stabilizing the Leaning Tower of Pisa


Congress OKs overhaul of airline pilot rules
Keep Track of Those Kids!

Villa San Michele hotel in Fiesole


Paul comments on Travel to New Zealand’s North Island – Episode 240 that he would rather repel than go through a small cave

Coleclan added some errata on the same episode

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Chris Christensen

by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast. He has been a travel creator since 2005 and has won awards including being named the "Best Independent Travel Journalist" by Travel+Leisure Magazine.

5 Responses to “Day Trips from Florence, Italy – Episode 242”



Thanks for posting about day trips from Florence! I found the podcast really helpful.

Adolfo Salgueiro


I just set up a last minute week-long trip to Italy with my wife for a second honeymoon. The first thing I did was to check out Amateur Traveler for ideas on how to maximize my trip… Thanks for your efforts. I really appreciate it. As I was looking for Italy options iTunes downloaded your last podcast, Miami. Funny, that’s where I have lived for the last 18 years. We’ll see what your guest has to say about my hometown.



Thanks, and congratulations on making it to a second honeymoon.



I loved that the guest, Italophile Ira Bernstein, says if he had to suggest one place to go, it would be Siena. I was happy to hear this due to the fact that I actually got to visit there myself. I would have been disappointed had he said his one recommended area was somewhere that I missed out on. However, as beautiful as Siena was, I’m not sure it would be the top Tuscan destination (aside from Florence) that I would recommend. I would maybe suggest Fiesole, a destination right outside of Florence with ancient ruins, a beautiful city view from this hill town, an old Franciscan church and museum, an outdoor market area, and more. I did really enjoy the chit-chat about Florence and Tuscany, since I have been missing the place since I came home from my study abroad trip. The talk of gelato especially made me yearn to be back!



Interesting, I have been to Siena but not to Fiesole. From your description, that sounds like a place I would really enjoy.

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