Bright green vineyards in the Tuscan countryside. There are also forested parts and cypress trees in the background.

25 Worthwhile Day Trips from Florence + Map and Tips

Florence is amazing and has plenty to keep us enthralled – we all know that.  But sometimes we need to escape the heat and incredible museums and head to the countryside or another Italian city. 

By car, train, or bus, you can make your way to destinations within Tuscany or even further away.  Our family even makes day trips by train to Venice and Rome.  They’re long days, but totally doable and a lot of fun!

I’m a mamma of three and I’ve been working, traveling, and living in Italy for over two decades. Based in Tuscany, our family loves spending time in Florence and exploring the rest of Italy.

Here are our 25 favorite day trips from Florence.  I’ve listed them by how they’re best reached – by train, car, or bus.  I’ve included why you should go, how far away they are, and some things you can do while you’re there.  Buon viaggio!

Don’t want to read through the entire post and just want to know which of these day trips we think are the best?  Our favorites are:

  • By Car: Val d’Orcia
  • By Bus: Siena
  • By Train: Lucca

Visiting Florence? You may want to read:
Where to Stay in Florence
Florence with Kids – Complete Guide
Florence with Teens

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25 Best Day Trips from Florence

DestinationBest Reached ByTravel TimeType of Day Trip*
PisaTrain1 hrSightseeing
BolognaTrain40 minFood/Sightseeing
LuccaTrain1 hr 15 minRelaxing
ViareggioTrain1 hr 25 minBeach
VeronaTrain1 hr 30 minSightseeing/Relaxing
FerraraTrain1 hr 10 minSightseeing/Relaxing
PistoiaTrain40 minSightseeing/Relaxing
VeniceTrain2 hr 15 minSightseeing
RomeTrain1 hr 30 minSightseeing
OrvietoTrain2 hrSightseeing/Wine
ArezzoTrain55 minRelaxing
San GimignanoCar1 hrSightseeing/Wine
MonteriggioniCar1 hrRelaxing
Val d’OrciaCar1 hr 20 minViews/Relaxing/Wine
CortonaCar1 hr 15 minRelaxing
BeachesCar1 hr 20 minBeach
San MiniatoCar45 minFood/Relaxing
VolterraCar1 hr 15 minSightseeing
AssisiCar2 hrReligious/Sightseeing
ChiantiCar40 minWine/Views/Relaxing
CollodiCar1 hrKids
VinciCar1 hrViews/Sightseeing
SienaBus1 hr 15 minSightseeing/Relaxing
FiesoleBus20 minRelaxing
The Mall OutletBus50 minShopping

* Type of Florence Day Trip

I’ve classified these Florence Day Trips into the below categories.  Just because something is listed in one category, doesn’t mean you can’t visit it for another reason! 

  • Beach – Hang out at a public (free) beach or relax at a beach club (private/paid).
  • Kids – The focus of the destination is for children. Also check out Day Trips from Florence with Kids
  • Relaxing – Wander the streets, have a leisurely lunch, see how Italians live their daily lives.  There may be ‘things to see’ in the destination, but I think it’s a great place to slow down and soak up la vita bella (the beautiful life).
  • Religious – The focus of the destination is religious.
  • Shopping – Shop ‘til you drop!
  • Sightseeing – See the sites, do the activities, stay busy and moving in this destination!  But, that doesn’t mean you can’t stop and grab an aperitivo or just hang out.
  • Views – Beautiful vistas await from this destination or on the journey to/from Florence.
  • WineVino is a focus of this destination.

Map of Best Florence Day Trips

Best Day Trips From Florence By Train


The Duomo and Leaning Tower or Pisa in the Campo dei Miracoli in Pisa, Italy.
Pisa’s Piazza dei Miracoli

Seeing the Leaning Tower of Pisa may be on your bucket list, and if you’re staying in Florence, it’s an easy train ride away. 

When you arrive at the train station, you have about a 20-minute walk to the Piazza dei Miracoli (Square of Miracles).

How Far:
1 hour by train

Things to Do:

  • See the Leaning Tower and the other monuments in the Piazza dei Miracoli – the Cathedral, Baptistry, and Cemetery
  • Wander the charming Borgo Stretto
  • Walk along the city walls
  • See Keith Haring’s final mural, Tuttomondo

Other Transport Options:
You can also easily drive to Pisa or take the bus (direct).

You may want to check out
Top 5 Things to Do in Pisa
Leaning Tower of Pisa Facts
Pisa with Kids
Visiting the Leaning Tower of Pisa with Kids


Boy walking in Bologna, Italy.  There are a few others on the street and tall buildings on either side.
My son exploring Bologna

Nicknamed ‘La Grassa,’ or The Fat One, Bologna is a foodie’s dream!  Thanks to the high-speed train, it’s a quick trip from Florence. 

How Far:
40 min by train

Things to Do:

  • Walk the porticoed streets
  • Climb the Torre degli Asinelli (currently closed because it’s leaning too much!)
  • Sample some of the regional specialties – pasta al ragù alla bolognese, prosciutto di Parma, parmigiano reggiano, and aceto balsamico 
  • Visit car museums (Ferrari, Lamborghini, Ducati).  Ducati is the only one in town, and it’s best reached by taxi.

Other Transport Options:
You can arrive by car in 1 hr 30 min or by bus in 1 hr 40 min.  The (quick and easy) train is the best option unless you also want to visit nearby car museums, in which case driving a car would be best.

You may want to check out
Bologna with Kids
How to Spend 2 Days in Bologna


Boys looking out over Lucca from atop a tower.
My boys checking out the views from the Torre Guinigi

Lucca isn’t full of monuments or museums or things to check off your list.  While Lucca is definitely known as a Tuscan gem, it’s not overrun… which can be nice after visiting busy Florence.   It’s also a relaxing place for parents to travel to with kids.

How Far:
1 hr 15 min by train

Things to Do:

  • Relax with a glass of wine in Piazza Anfiteatro, a square built around the old Roman arena
  • Wander the small streets
  • Bike or walk the city walls 

Other Transport Options:
You can also easily reach Lucca by car in 1 hr 10 min.


Craving sun and sand?  Head to Viareggio, a beach town near Lucca!   You won’t find spectacular beaches or crystal-clear water, but it’s a quick day trip from Florence and the easiest beach to reach from Florence with public transport.  Head further north for our family’s favorite beaches in this part of Tuscany (best by car).

How Far:
1 hr 25 min by train

Things to Do:

  • Relax and work on your tan at a beach club
  • Check out the Carnevale Museum, or better yet, visit Viareggio during Carnevale.  It’s one of Italy’s best Carnevale celebrations!
  • Have a beachside aperitivo

Other Transport Options:
It’s also easy to reach Viareggio by car from Florence, in about 1 hr 20 min.


Juliet's balcony in Verona, Italy.

Ah, Verona – the city of love!   Even if you’re not heading to Verona for its romantic vibe, it still makes a great day trip.  Rather than ‘checking things off a list,’ stroll the streets, walk along the river, and enjoy its charming piazzas.

How Far:
1 hr 30 min by train

Things to Do:

  • See a concert in the Roman arena
  • See Juliet’s balcony
  • Wander the streets and browse the shops

Other Transport Options:
You can also drive, but it takes longer – about 2 hr 30 min.


Este castle in Ferrara, Italy.

I avoided Ferrara for years, for no particular reason.  If there was ever a chance to visit, I turned it down.  Finally, I was ‘forced’ to visit for a work trip – and I was pleasantly surprised by the charm of Ferrara.  A UNESCO World Heritage site, the historic center was a thriving European cultural center.  It has a lively, energetic atmosphere, partly thanks to the students of the University of Ferrara. 

This is a great day trip on a return trip to Italy when you’re looking for something a little off the beaten track.

How Far:
1 hr 10 min by train

Things to Do:

  • Explore Este Castle
  • Browse in a bookstore
  • Have aperitivo in a lively piazza

Other Transport Options:
You can also drive, but it will take twice as long.


Boy feeding goats at the Pistoia Zoo in Tuscany, Italy.
My son feeding the goats at the Pistoia Zoo

Pistoia was an Italian capital of culture in 2017, and it’s a well-deserved award.  The city is worth a visit – our friends and family are always happy to spend time in this ‘more intimate version of Florence,’ as one friend put it. 

There’s something for everyone in Pistoia or its surroundings.  If you need a break from the crowds of Florence but still want a city vibe, head to nearby Pistoia!

How Long:
40 min by train

Things to Do:

  • Explore Pistoia Underground
  • Eat outdoors in Piazza della Sala
  • Tour the Vecchio Ospedale del Ceppo
  • Say hi to the animals at the nearby Pistoia Zoo
  • Visit the Pistoia Nursery Park, created by one of Pistoia’s world-famous nurseries, Vannucci Piante

Other Transport Options:
It’s an easy 45 min drive.  You can also bus or tram+bus, but you’ll need to change once. 


A view of St. Mark's Basilica and Venice rooftops from the top of the bell tower.
A view of St. Mark’s Basilica and the rooftops of Venice from our climb up the bell tower

Yes, I’m well aware that Venice warrants more than a day trip.  But, it’s an easy (and fun) day trip from Florence by train, even with kids!

Be sure to read
Taking the Train to Venice from Florence – Step-By-Step
How to Take a Florence to Venice Day Trip
Tips for Your First Visit to Venice

How Long:
2 hr 15 min by train

Things to Do:

  • Ride along the Grand Canal
  • Climb the Church of San Giorgio bell tower for amazing views of Venice
  • See a glass demo in Murano (but don’t feel pressured to buy)
  • Go on a bàcari crawl and nibble on cicchetti
  • Take in the grand Piazza San Marco, the Basilica di San Marco, and the Doge’s Palace
  • Walk to a park to escape the crowds 
  • During the winter, soak up the holiday spirit (holiday lights, Christmas market)

Other Transport Options:
I would not recommend a day trip from Florence by car or bus.  The train is the only way to travel between Florence and Venice quickly. 

Good To Know:  If you can, stay overnight in Venice.  The city is magical at night.


Our visit to the Roman Forum on a spring day

As with Venice, Rome is definitely worth more than a day trip.  But, you can still have a fantastic day traveling from Florence in the early morning and heading back at night.  Our family makes this day trip throughout the year.

How Long:
1 hr 30 min by train

Things to Do:

  • ‘Must Sees’ like the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Trevi Fountain, or Vatican Museums
  • Sit in an outdoor café and soak up the atmosphere of the Eternal City
  • Shop in the charming Monti neighborhood
  • Visit one of the markets, like the one in Campo de’ Fiori
  • Dig into a plate of cacio e pepe pasta in the Trastevere neighborhood

Other Transport Options:
The drive takes at least 2 hr 30 min (but probably more with traffic around Rome). 

Read about Things to Do in Rome With Kids


Duomo in Orvieto, Italy.  Close up of the facade.
Looking up at the Duomo on a quiet day in Orvieto

Set up on a hill between Florence and Rome, Orvieto is often passed by on the journey between the two famous cities.  It’s an excellent destination, especially for kids.

How Long:
2 hr by train

Good To Know:  Catch the train from Florence Campo di Marte station.  It will take two hours to get to the base of Orvieto.  From there, you can bus or funicular up to town.  Choose the funicular of course!

Things to Do:

  • Crane your neck to stare at Luca Signorelli’s frescoes in the Cathedral
  • Grab a gelato and people watch in the Piazza del Duomo
  • Go on a tour of Orvieto Underground
  • Descend into St. Patrick’s Well
  • Sip on Orvieto Classico white wine

Other Transport Options:
It’s 1 hr 40 min by car, but traveling by train is easier. 


Frescoed ceiling of the San Francesco church in Arezzo, Italy.

An easy day trip from Florence for those looking for a ‘real’ Tuscan town.  Arezzo has plenty of incredible art and churches to see, but it’s also a great place to kick up your feet, relax, and watch the Italian world pass by.  A sunny day sitting in a piazza in Arezzo with a cold drink in hand can’t be beat!

How Long:
55 min by train

Things to Do:

  • Shop at the well-known antiques market on the first Sunday of each month (and the Saturday before)
  • Have lunch in Piazza Grande
  • Soak up the countryside views from the Medici Fortress

Other Transport Options:
It’s an easy 1 hr trip by car.

Best Day Trips From Florence By Car

Read our helpful tips for Renting a Car in Florence!

San Gimignano

View of San Gimignano buildings and countryside from tower climb.
Our view from the top of the Torre Grossa in San Gimignano

San Gimignano or ‘San G’ is known as Tuscany’s medieval Manhattan – you can see its 14 towers from a distance as you arrive.  The town has plenty to do to keep you busy for an entire day.

San Gimignano feels a little ‘staged’ to me, but friends and family are always happy after a day or afternoon in San Gimignano.

How Far:
1 hr – 1 hr 15 min by car, depending on the roads you choose.

Things to Do:

  • Climb the Torre Grossa
  • Get gelato at the famous Gelateria Dondoli
  • Soak up the views from the city walls
  • Shop on the main drag
  • Check out the Torture Museum (if you’re not squeamish)
  • Sip on the area’s Vernaccia white wine – cin cin!

Other Transport Options:
You can also take the bus or train+bus, but both require a change in Poggibonsi. 


Boys walking on the walls of Monteriggioni, Italy.
My boys checking out the views from the walls of Monteriggioni

The tiny walled town of Monteriggioni is worth a visit, especially for families.  My kids often ask to return and it’s such an easy and beautiful place to visit, I’m happy to oblige!  It’s such a small town, so you don’t need to spend all day – you could spend a morning, have lunch, and then head back to Florence.

How Far:
1 hr by car

Things to Do:

  • Visit the Armor Museum
  • Climb up the town walls to see the views of the countryside
  • Relax with a gelato in the picture-perfect main piazza

Other Transport Options:
Easiest by car, but if you must, you can take a bus and walk a short distance. 

Val d’Orcia

Green hills and blue sky in the spring in the Val d'Orcia, Italy.
Green hills in the spring in the Val d’Orcia

After Siena, I think this is the best day trip from Florence, both for my family and for when we have visitors. 

You can visit any combo of the small towns, and the drive alone is worth it.  The Val d’Orcia (Orcia Valley) is a UNESCO World Heritage site.  It’s gorgeous in all seasons, but I prefer spring (March – May), when the hills are a vibrant green. 

Good To Know:  My favorite road to drive (or cycle!) in the spring is the section between Taverna d’Arbia and Asciano.  It’s a road that has you stopping every 100 meters to take a photo.  It makes your drive longer (2 hr vs. 1 hr 20 min), but if you have time, take the scenic route!

How Far:
1 hr 20 min to Pienza by car

Things to Do:

Other Transport Options:
Unfortunately, for a day trip, public transport isn’t feasible.  You could hire a private driver (NCC).


People in the main piazza of Cortona, Italy.
With my son in Cortona

If you’ve read the book or seen the movie, Under The Tuscan Sun, you probably want to visit this Southern Tuscan Village. 

How Far:
1 hr 15 min by car

Things to Do:

  • Check out the stunning views of the Val di Chiana
  • Stroll the main street
  • Have a gelato and people-watch on the steps in Piazza della Repubblica

Other Transport Options:
You can take a train+bus.  The station is way below town, and the road up isn’t very pedestrian-friendly.

Beaches Near Florence

Sunny day on the beach in Forte dei Marmi, Italy.  You can see the green beach umbrellas and beach chairs, a red lifeguard boat, an Italian flag, and the Apuan Alps in the background.
The beach at Forte dei Marmi

Viareggio is the easiest beach day trip from Florence by train, but if you have a car, you have many more beach options.  I recommend heading to a beach club (bagno) in Forte dei Marmi (best for families) or Marina di Pietrasanta.  You’ll pay for a days’ use of the bagno facilities (umbrellas, chairs, showers, changing rooms, etc).  You can eat on the beach at restaurant or head into town for shopping, dining, and people-watching.

How Far:
1 hr 20 min by car to Forte dei Marmi

Things To Do:

Other Transport Options:
You can arrive by train+bus combo to Forte dei Marmi, but you’ll need to change at least once at it takes about 2 hr 30 min. 

San Miniato

Three people stand in front of Ristorante Maggese. People are inside dining. Plants decorate one of the windows.

This gem of a town is an ideal outing for the evening.  The hip bars and innovative restaurants are worth the drive from Florence. 

San Miniato is also known for its truffles.  Sample them in a meal, search for them in the forest, or shop for truffle-infused products.

How Far:
45 min by car

Things To Do:

  • Go truffle hunting with a truffle dog
  • Visit during the annual White Truffle Festival
  • Take your pick of trendy bars and order an Aperol spritz

Other Transport Options:
You can take a train+bus combo and arrive in 1 hr 10 min.


O art installation on the road to Volterra, Italy.

To me, the best part of Volterra is the drive out through the Northern Tuscan countryside.  But, the town is worth a quick stop.  I wouldn’t spend more than half a day, so you could combine it with a visit to San Gimignano.

How Far:
1 hr 15 by car

Things To Do:

  • See the Roman Theater
  • Twilight fans will want to visit Piazza dei Priori (even if the movie scenes were shot in Montepulciano)
  • Check out the alabaster products in the town’s shops
  • Take a photo or just admire the view at the ‘O’ sculpture on the way up the hill to Volterra.  Or see the artist Staccioli’s other installations in the area.

Other Transport Options:
It’s not worth visiting Volterra by public transport – it takes too long.


Basilica di San Francesco in Assisi, Italy.

Assisi is the birthplace of St. Francis (San Francesco), one of two patron saints of Italy.  You’ll feel his spirit as you walk through the UNESCO World Heritage site and explore the town along with pilgrims from around the world. 

How Far:
2 hr by car

Things To Do:

  • Visit the upper and lower churches of the Basilica of St. Francis
  • See the sweeping views from the Rocca Maggiore

Other Transport Options:
It’s not worth visiting Assisi by public transport – it takes too long.


Bicycle leaning against wall with road directional signs in Chianti, Italy.

Chianti deserves more than a day, but if that’s what you have, you’ve got plenty of options for how to fill it.  The most famous towns are the 5 ‘in Chianti’ towns:  Greve in Chianti, Gaiole in Chianti, Castellina in Chianti, Panzano in Chianti, and Radda in Chianti.  

How Far:
40 min by car

Things To Do:

  • Visit Chianti’s castles, including Brolio, Albola, and Meleto
  • In Panzano, visit Dario Cecchini, the singing butcher
  • Sip Chianti Classico wine in Radda
  • Take a Tuscan cooking class
  • In Greve, shop in the square, eat lunch at the butcher Falorni, walk up to tiny Montefioralle
  • Find the big bench just outside Gaiole

Other Transport Options:
You can take a 1 hr 5 min bus ride from Florence.

Good To Know:  If you don’t have a car, you can easily reach Chianti’s charming small town of San Casciano in Val di Pesa by bus from Florence in about 40 minutes.  Visit the center, have lunch, take in the views along the walkway, have a glass of wine at Blu Bar, and check out the shops. 

Read more about
Visiting Chianti During the Grape Harvest
Castellina in Chianti


Boy with snake statue at Pinocchio Park in Collodi, Italy.
My son exploring the Pinocchio Park

Collodi is all about Pinocchio, the story of the wooden puppet who wanted to be a real boy.  The town is home to Pinocchio Park, a retro-style theme park dedicated to the legendary puppet. 

How Far:
1 hr by car

Things To Do:

  • Explore Pinocchio Park – watch a puppet show, walk through the Pinocchio forest, see Pinocchio sculptures, zipline across the river
  • Visit the Garzoni Gardens
  • Check out the Butterfly Garden

Other Transport Options:
1 hr 30 min by train+bus combo


Sculpture at the Museo Leonardiano in Vinci, Italy.
The Leonardo da Vinci Museum in… Vinci

Are you a fan of Leonardo da Vinci?  If so, don’t miss the chance to visit Vinci, in the Tuscan countryside.  The drive from Florence is gorgeous, especially in the spring when the hills are full of wildflowers. 

How Far:
1 hr by car

Things To Do:

  • Explore the Museo Leonardiano
  • See Leonardo’s drawings and models
  • Walk the well-marked, picturesque 2 km (30 min) trail to Anchiano, Leonardo’s birthplace

Other Transport Options:
1 hr 10 min by train+bus combo.

If you can’t make it out to Vinci, you can still learn about Leonardo at the Leonardo da Vinci Interactive Museum. Read more about it here!

Best Day Trips From Florence By Bus


Boys playing in Piazza del Campo in Siena, Italy.
My boys playing in Siena’s magical Piazza del Campo

This is one of my favorite day trips from Florence, and I recommend it to friends, family, and clients visiting Florence.  All ages love it – from kids to teens to adults. Siena isn’t on the main train line, but it’s easily reached by bus.   The bus is perfect because it will take you right to the edge of town. 

How Far:
1 hr 15 min

Things to Do:

  • Relax and people-watch in the Piazza del Campo
  • Climb the Torre del Mangia
  • explore Siena’s contrade (neighborhoods), which are pitted against each other for the twice-yearly Palio horse race in the main square, Piazza del Campo.
  • Shop for picnic supplies or food souvenirs at the Consorzio Agrario di Siena
  • Check out the Piccolomini Library’s illuminated manuscripts

Other Transport Options:
Siena is also easily reached by car from Florence, but I will say that I still occasionally get lost on the outskirts.   There are plenty of parking lots outside the town walls. 

You can also take the train, but the station is below town so you’ll want to walk next door to the bus station and catch a bus up to the city center.  Or, cross the street and take the escalators up to town.

Read more about
The Best Way to get to Siena from Florence
Siena With Kids


View of Florence from Fiesole, Italy.
View of Florence from above

Just above and outside the hustle and bustle of Florence, Fiesole makes for an easy day (or half-day) trip. 

How Far:
20 min

Things To Do:

  • Go for a walk or hike from Fiesole
  • Have a cold or warm drink and enjoy the view of Florence
  • Visit the Roman amphitheater

Other Transport Options:
You can actually walk up in about 1 hr.  Or take a quick taxi ride.

The Mall Outlet

We have other outlets in Tuscany, but The Mall in Leccio is the best one-stop-shop for luxury brands in the area.  You can find Italian brands like Gucci, Armani, Fendi, Dolce&Gabbana, Valentino, Versace, and Ferragamo.  International brands include Saint Laurent, Tom Ford, Celine, Chloé, Burberry, Jimmy Choo, and Alexander McQueen.

The prices are good but don’t expect to pay €50 for a Gucci bag.  Some goods come directly from the stores, while other products are made for the outlet stores.

How Far:
50 min by special The Mall bus

Things To Do:

  • Shop, shop, shop Italian and international luxury brands
  • Take a break at the café for coffee or lunch

Other Transport Options:
You can also hire a driver or drive your own car if you want to visit other outlets in the area, like the Prada Outlet.

Destinations I Don’t Recommend For a Day Trip From Florence

  • Cinque Terre – I often see this recommended as a day trip from Florence. I wouldn’t recommend it. The villages of the Cinque Terre are beautiful, and a day trip will feel too rushed.  You won’t have enough time to soak up the area or enjoy the hikes between the villages.  If it’s your only option, the best thing to do is take an organized bus day trip.  Otherwise, try to plan an overnight trip. 
  • Genoa – Too much time to get there and back
  • Portofino – Too much time to get there and back
  • Perugia – Not enough oomph to justify the 4+ hours on the train
  • Saturnia – Too much time to get there and back (but a lot of people do it)
  • Pitigliano – Too much time to get there and back
  • San Galgano – 1 hr 20 min by car, ok if you combine it with another nearby destination (like Siena).  Not worth the drive on its own unless you’re really interested in it.
  • Urbino – 2 hr 45 min by car.  Too far.

Taking a Tour Company Day Trip From Florence

Many companies offer day trips from Florence. These bus (or minivan) tours can be a great way to see a lot in a short period of time.

Everything’s taken care of for youA lot of time sitting on a bus/in a van
Good value for €No flexibility
Meet other travelersUsually just visit main sites

You can also hire a personal guide or NCC (private driver) to take you on your day trip. I recommend Sashia Scalvini (guide) or Simone Consigli (private driver).

Day Trip From Florence Tips

Plan Ahead

Book popular sites ahead of time.  You won’t want to spend your precious time waiting in line and you certainly want to make sure you’re able to enter!

Train Logistics

Red Italo train at the track in Italy. Boy on left walks toward it.
My son getting ready to board our Italo train at Florence’s Santa Maria Novella train station

Where to Catch the Train:  For these day trips, you’ll be departing from Florence’s main station, Firenze Santa Maria Novella.   

Buying Train Tickets:  You can buy your tickets online at Trenitalia (state-owned) or Italo (privately-owned) for longer-distance fast trains.  Both Trenitalia and Italo offer specials and discounts so always check both websites. 

You can also buy regional train tickets at tabacchi, newsstands, ticket counters at stations, and from automated ticket machines.

You can also buy fast train tickets at ticket counters at stations, and from automated ticket machines.

Good to Know:  I do not recommend using a consolidator for train tickets in Italy.  If you need to change or cancel your ticket, it’s much easier to deal with the train companies directly. 

Which Train to Choose:  You’ll sometimes have the choice between a fast train or a regional (regionale) train.  Regional trains take longer but cost less.  Fast trains typically cost more closer to the date of departure (but not always!). 

Good to Know:  You’ll need to punch (validate) your ticket in the machines at the station if you don’t have a seat reservation on your ticket (regional trains) and you purchased your ticket at the station. 

Read more about Train Travel in Italy

Bus Logistics

Where to Catch the Bus: For these day trips, you’ll be catching the bus from the BusItalia station next to the Santa Maria Novella train station. Local buses will take you to Fiesole, and you can catch The Mall bus from its stop next to the station (see The Mall website for more details).

Buying Bus Tickets: You can buy the BusItalia tickets at the station. You can buy local bus tickets at newsstands, tabacchi, or ticket machines. Make sure you validate your ticket by punching it in the machine on the bus.

Read more about Visiting Tuscany Without a Car

Car Logistics

Renting a Car: You won’t need a car for your time in the Florence city center.  You’ll love the freedom of having a rental car outside of Florence and in the Tuscan countryside.

Need to rent a car? I recommend checking out consolidators like and for a round-up of the best deals from Italy’s principal rental car companies.

Good To Know: When renting a car, make sure you check both in-town rental locations as well as the Florence airport.  Although the airport location requires a taxi from the center, it may well be worth the cost for the savings on the rental.

Keep commute times in mind when driving back to Florence in the afternoon/evening.  Schools get out around 4 pm and from then on the roads are crowded. 

Check out
Tuscany Car Rental
Renting a Car at the Florence Airport

I hope this has helped you decide which day trip to take. It’s time to say, ‘Ciao Firenze!’

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