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An Idyllic Villa-Based Learning Adventure for Families and Friends
- Stay in a Tuscan farmhouse with swimming pool, tennis courts, spectacular gardens and horseback riding
- Rides through the Tuscan olive groves and forests
- Learn more about food, wine and olive oil in Tuscany
- Make your own pizza and enjoy your creation!
- Enjoy a multi-activity day with hiking, riding, soccer and more!
- Off-the-beaten-path discovery of Florence and Arezzo
- Children’s activities and cross-cultural exchanges
No region in Italy displays as marvelous a landscape as Tuscany. Renaissance artists were inspired by this region, which has captivated travelers for centuries. Cycling past castle after castle in Tuscany stirs the imagination. Spinning along a cypress-lined road, a cyclist’s mind drifts back to the Middle Ages when elegantly dressed nobles rode horses towards their castle homes. Inspired by this dreamy, culturally rich land, we have designed this unique, eight-day learning adventure in which to immerse you, your family and friends in the magical and thought provoking world of Tuscany. We stay eight days at the lovely Fattoria degli Usignoli (The Farm of the Nightingales), which is perfectly situated to enjoy a multitude of artistic and panoramic itineraries. Perched in the foothills of Pratomagno, a mountain ridge to the east of Florence, the farm is surrounded by breathtaking views of vineyards, olive groves and distant hill towns. The area is a wonderful blend of rich artistic heritage and varied landscapes that quickly change from lush valleys to terraced foothills to Apennine ridges covered with forests and pastoral meadows – all offering vast views of central Italy.
Children aged 8 - 16 less 15%
Children aged 4 - 7 less 25%
Up to 3 years: $750
Total Mileage: 111 Daily Average: 18
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Day 1: Warm up ride to Pieve di Pitiana
Today we meet at the Florence airport at 12pm for a 1-hour transfer to our home base.
At around1pm we meet at the hotel for a light lunch and introductions, then we’ll have a quick bike fitting before taking a warm-up ride. This ride is a short one but serves to acquaint you with your “bicicletta” and to warm-up to riding in Italy. Please try all the gears, test the breaks, and let your guides know if there are any problems. Please don’t try to be too speedy today. Take it easy, and get used to the bicycle and to the gentle rhythm of the Tuscan landscape.
Day 2: Loro Ciuffenna
Today’s loop ride takes us along the panoramic “Strada di Sette Ponti” (road of seven bridges) a Roman road that zigzags through several small medieval villages with a spectacular view of the Arno valley.
We’ll start with a descent to Reggello, known for its delicious olive oil. From Reggello the ride is heavenly & easy curving in and out of the foothills of the “Chianti Colli Aretini” area; in the distance, you’ll see a long mountain range; those are the Chianti hills.
A stroll through the characteristic cobblestone streets of Loro Ciuffenna will introduce our hearty Tuscan lunch; we'll return to the farmhouse by 4:00 PM, so you'll have time to relax by the pool and to nap before dinner.
Day 3: Arezzo
Morning departure for our bike ride to Arezzo. We regroup in Ponte Buriano to see the bridge represented in the famous “Mona Lisa” by Leonardo. From here, we can take the shuttle to Arezzo for lunch and a walking tour.
One of the wealthiest cities in Tuscany, Arezzo has one of the largest jewelry industries in Europe – dozens of small gold shops line the city’s cobblestone streets. Arezzo’s is where “Life is Beautiful” was filmed! We’ll have a walking tour of Arezzo’s many artistic treasures, including the eclectic Piazza Grande and Romanesque Santa Maria della Pieve.
Day 4: Figline
On today’s ride we head down to Figline, where we will walk around the market and buy some food before departing on our bikes a few kilometers ahead to Gaville. We have a beautiful picnic in front of the ancient abbey of Gaville. After lunch, we visit the Museo della Civiltà Contadina. The extra loopers can continue their way onto Greve in Chianti and loop around to the Fattoria by way of S. Polo in Chianti. Others can go back to the Fattoria from the picnic spot for an afternoon by the pool!
Day 5: Activity day
This day is a favorite for those on the trip. Wake up early in the morning, take optional “the coffee ride” to S.Ellero, a real Italian coffee experience! Then play soccer with Italian kids, relax by the pool, play tennis, hike in the sweet Tuscan countryside to the amazing Castello dei Bonsi, and visit the ancient basements and olive press. In late afternoon learn how to make pizza and enjoy for dinner your creation with the rest of the group.
Day 6: Firenze
Shuttle to Firenze for a guided tour to discover the unknown and charming part of the city. Our guide will focus on places and historical facts that kids will also love to hear, immersed in the century-old history of Firenze’s palaces, alleys and churches, and of course, the famous Ponte Vecchio.
Day 7: Vallombrosa
Nestled in a dense forest of oak, pine, beech and chestnut, the Vallombrosa Abbey began as a remote hermitage in 1028. The monastery expanded in the 1500s, and it is considered one of the grandest, most imposing and important Benedictine monasteries in medieval history. After a visit to the arboretum, we’ll have lunch and then you may choose to the medium or long loop. A special challenge awaits those who wish to wind their way up to Monte Secchieta, the highest point in the area at 4,550 ft.
Day 8: Arrivederci!
In the morning, after breakfast at around 9am we will have one shuttle to the Florence train station and airport, so you may make your post tour connections.
Bruce C. from North Easton, MA had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:Trip was called Tuscan Fantasy because it was like Fantasy Island--the guides made all our requests and wishes come true, except extending the tour another week!
Charlene O. from Calgary, AB had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:On the guides: Great sense of humor! They tried to involve everyone in evening activities. Basically, they would do anything for us! Fabulous with kids of all ages.
Stefanie Z. from NY, NY had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:A wonderful experience! This tour had so much flexibility it truly had something for everyone.
Charles S. from Fond du Lac, WI had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:I can't imagine not falling in love with Tuscany and the people here, but it really was the guides who have made this the best vacation. I believe we have made friends.
Andrew Z. from NY, NY had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:The guides were enthusiastic and well-versed in local and regional cultural sights. They were also friendly and all-encompassing vis-à-vis the entire family. In addition, the routes were well thought out and provided options for everyone.
Marla K. from Katonah, NY had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:Our tour guides were wonderful. They were accommodated all of our needs and were extremely attentive to detail. They were also fun, friendly, and knowledgeable regarding Italian history and culture.
Verna M. from Newton, MA had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:What a great job you all have done putting this trip together. From the beginning till the end I was so pleased. We had a great group, lots of laughs, worked hard, and ate well. I loved the language lesson, the wine tasting, the food, the riding, the resting...BRAVO! Molto bene!
Verna M. from Newton, MA had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:I loved that you use Italian guides. It's also clear that the guides really like and respected Ciclismo.
Verna M. from Newton, MA had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:The mix of riding, tasting, eating, and exploring was great!
Jenna K. from Katonah, NY had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:This experience was a once in a lifetime opportunity.
Bruce C. from North Easton, MA had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:The Tuscan Fantasy tour was just like Fantasy Island…whatever our wish, it was granted by the guides…great weather, great riding, great food, great friends.
Carmela C. from North Easton, MA had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:Make it longer so I don't have to go home! The tour was perfect, I wouldn't change a thing.
Marcia L., Lexington, MA had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:We had a fabulous time - the trip was perfect for the whole family regardless of biking abilities.
Molly S., Paris, France had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:I especially appreciated the guides' expertise in history and art and their taking the time to point out tucked away treasures in small towns that I would have never found on my own.
Julie G., Arlington, VA had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:Our Ciclismo Classico vacation was like the Italian dessert tiramisu, a fabulous 'pick-me-up' vacation with people, sights, and skies that you'll remember for a long time!
Nicky S. (age 7), Incline Village, NY had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:It was a lot of fun!
Savanna C., Portsmouth, RI had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:My trip was an amazing experience and a great way to see a country.
Caroline E., NY, NY had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:Fabulous trip for al ages--educational, cultural, historical, and fun.
Ben S., NY, NY had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:This is one of the best vacations I've ever had--sights, food, activities. GREAT!
Katie S., NY, NY had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:Fantastico! I had such a great experience on this trip and would do it again in an instant.
John S., NY, NY had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:Fabulous trip! I would go anywhere with these guides. They are a great team.
Sarah F., Lookout Mountain, TN had this to say about Tuscan Fantasy:Meals and day trips were great and the pool was fantastico!