Driving Tour Tuscany & the Island of Elba - Italy
Short walks of generally 3-4 hours plus optional day excursions; level or slightly hilly terrain using well kept paths.
2. Average/ Moderate
Easy day walks with more strenuous excursions. 4-5 hours per day in hilly to mountainous areas using well kept, sometimes stony paths.
Strenuous day walks or trekking in mountainous areas. 5-7 hours per day, sometimes carrying backpacks with stuff for one night; altitude differences between 1,500-3,000 ft. (500-1,000 m.) per day.
Serious excursions in high mountains, sometimes carrying backpacks with stuff for several nights. 6-8 hours per day; altitude differences up to 3,600 ft. (1,200 m.) per day. Only for those with an excellent condition and without fear of heights.
Easy cycling in nearly flat areas; Little or no experience needed. Approx. 20-50 km daily. Bicycles with up to 3 gears will do.
2. Average / Moderate
Nearly flat to hilly areas with the occasional short climb. Approx. 30-65 km daily. Bicycles with minimum 7 gears will do.
Strenuous cycling with some steeper climbs. Some experience needed. Approx. 30-75 km daily. Bicycles with up to 21 gears needed.
Serious and strenuous in mountainous areas. Slopes are longer and/or steeper. Good physical condition needed. Experience and a mountain bike needed. Approx. 30-80 km daily.
You can choose from 4 different levels of comfort, although most of our trips are rated 2 or 3 (or a combination of the two) on our accommodation scale. We try to provide en-suite rooms where possible but on occasions this may not be possible on some tours.
We are constantly looking for hotels, B&B’s, guesthouses and mountain huts that offer a special location, ambience or atmosphere that fits the trip. Accessibility to the route and personal hospitality of the owners are part of our choice of accommodations.
A hotel, a pension or a mountain hut with all the basic facilities. Most rooms have a shared bathroom.
Fine hotels or B&B’s with basic to moderate facilities. Almost all rooms have a private bathroom.
A 3-star hotel, B&B or guesthouse. Comfortable rooms with private en-suite bathroom and often air conditioning. Some accommodations might have a swimming pool.
A 4-star chateau hotel or guesthouse. The rooms are relatively large with en-suite bathroom and air conditioning. A warm welcome and a high quality are guaranteed. Some hotels have a swimming pool or sauna.
The landscapes to the southeast of Siena are known as the “Crete” and the Val d’Orcia are among the most classic and beautiful, this is why UNESCO has included the whole valley on the Heritage list. Undulating green hills capped by medieval, tile-roofed towns and punctuated by cypresses, churches and stone farmhouses – it is as idyllic as it looks in the photos. In the towns you’ll appreciate the magnificent architecture and find some wonderful treasures, Romanesque churches, Renaissance palaces, Etruscan museums, thermal spring-fed pools, wine cellars and much more.
You will be driving through the typical Tuscan landscapes, across low pale clay ridges, dense forests and famous vineyards, stopping to visit the various famous and less known - but very charming - medieval towns and monasteries, always surrounded by magnificent landscapes. You will continue your trip to Elba island: The legend says that when the Tyrrhenian goddess Venus emerged from the waves of the sea, seven gemstones fell from her tiara, and so the Islands of the Tuscan Archipelago were born, of which Elba is the largest. Its natural beauty and natural resources has long attracted visitors. High granite cliffs and sandy beaches alternate each other along the rugged coastline with each inlet different from the next. Inland there are many small picturesque villages worth discovering. The many footpaths on the island take you through shady forests to high peaks and ridges with 360° views across the island and down to the typical low Mediterranean vegetation and great beaches.
- Stay in a quintessential Tuscan Estate with onsite wellness resort and organic food production. The restaurant serves entrees prepared primarily with their own local produce.
- Visit the natural, artistic and cultural treasures of the Val d’Orcia, on the UNESCO heritage list
- Wonderful varied landscapes, wide open fields, cypress lined hills, vineyards, from lush Mediterranean to Alpine in just a few km
- Incredibly well preserved medieval and renaissance villages and hilltop towns
- Peaceful country roads, friendly Tuscans and delicious regional culinary specialties
- Visit Napoleon’s summer refuge and glorious museum within
- Great beaches for swimming with crystal clear waters
The indicated routes on Google Maps are approximate.
Day 1 Arrive in Buonconvento, Val d’Orcia
Drive to Buonconvento and check in to the fantastic Fattoria Pieve a Salti.
Day 2 Enjoy the estate
Today you will be taken on a English-guided tour of the estate on an 4-wheel drive vehicle and have a house special fixed menu dinner using all home produced products.
Day 3-4 Val D'Orcia round trip
Round walks in Val D’Orcia visiting Montalcino, Montepulciano, Pienza, Bangno Vignoni.
Day 5 Piombino to Portoferraio, Elba
After your last visit in Val d’Orcia, drive to Piombino. Then board a ferry and marvel at the magical emerald blue Mediterranean Sea as you make your way to Portoferraio. At the port, you will drive to the lovely hotel in Marina di Campo, where you stay for three nights.
Day 6-7 Explore Elba
Exploring the island has never been as easy and more pleasant. We provide you with a wide array of marvelous walking tours to choose from, ranging from short and easy to longer and more demanding.
Day 8 Arrivederci Elba
Our services end after breakfast and the ferry ride from Portoferraio to Piombino, unless you have booked other nights or services with us.
- 4 night accommodation on half board basis in Fattoria Pieve a Salti in Buonconvento (for an image selection, please see Flickr)
- 3 night accommodation in 3* hotel in Marina di Campo, Elba on half board basis (drinks excluded)
- Guided tour of Pieve a Salti estate on 4 wheel drive vehicle and traditional Tuscan dinner
- Ferry boat ticket
- 24-hour telephone assistance
- Detailed maps and road book in English
- Flights and public transportation
- Travel insurance
- Rental car
- Admissions and entrance fees of any kind (when not previously agreed upon)
- Personal extras and expenses such as meals, drinks, phone calls, tips, etc.
- Any items not mentioned in the program
Optional services (to be booked in advance):
- Additional night(s) at any of the accommodations along the way, or in any other destination in Italy
- Airport arrival and/or departure transfers
- Single supplement
There is a selection of walks to choose from, short and easy to longer and more demanding on hilly terrain. The walks are along uneven footpaths, mule tracks and strade bianche (small gravel roads) through Mediterranean vegetation or woods.
How to get there:
We suggest flying into one of these three main Italian cities:
- Rome; fly in to one of its two commercial airports: Fiumicino “Leonardo da Vinci”, major international airport; or Ciampino, smaller and serviced more by low-cost European airlines.
There are regular busses and trains which go to Rome’s main Termini train station, from where you take the train to Siena and from Piombino at return.
- Pisa; where there is a train station directly at the airport.
Take the train to Empoli where you change to Siena. From Piombino it is very easy to reach Pisa.
take the bus from the airport to the Santa Maria Novella train station and change trains to Siena. On return, you can take a train to Pisa and then change to Florence or take the terravision shuttle bus to Florence train station.
Tip: For online rail connections and reservations visit Rail Europe.