Topbike Tours - European Cycling Holiday Specialists

David Olle and Emma Colson

An Australian company, Topbike has a fully equipped European base and its own fleet of high quality hire bikes and E-bikes.

We specialise in quality cycling tours with small groups and are famous for looking after our clients.

+61 415 866 061 (mobile)
PO Box 1717 Collingwood VIC 3066 AUSTRALIA
holiday@topbike.com.au
- SINCE 1997 -

Tour of Tuscany 2020
EAT-DRINK-RIDE

PISTOIA to FLORENCE
June 11-21 2020

Ride the rolling Tuscan hills, pick poppies at a lunchtime picnic, sip Chianti in a Piazza overlooking (Chianti) vineyards, chase fireflies as you walk home from dinner, without dropping your gelati.

On this tour we have an excellent mix of quality accommodation,featuring plenty of vineyards, and maybe the opportunity to sample Tuscany’s famous red wine, Brunello di Montalcino, olive groves and swimming pools. Our final location is in a hotel so close to the Duomo in the centre of Florence, you could hit it with a good throw of a champagne flute (or stubby).

Tour of Tuscany - Eat-Drink-Ride with Topbike Tours, Cycling Holiday in Italy June 11-21 2020

2020 Tour Dates

Tour of Tuscany
- 'Eat-Drink-Ride'
--
| June 11-21 2020

We’ll spend the first four nights on the outskirts of the medieval city of Pistoia, three nights in Volterra in the centre of town, two nights on the outskirts of Radda in Chianti, before finishing with the final night in central Florence.

{Places are limited to 13 clients in total (with 3 staff).}

Rides will average 70-90k along with <1000m vertical, per day.

INCLUSIONS:

Included in your tour is all transport from Pistoia to Florence for you, your bike and one bag, accommodation, all breakfasts and all dinners. You will also receive a full 5 piece Topbike kit. Also included are your experienced and knowledgeable guides, maps, training tips, coaching (if required) and mechanical back-up for your bike.
Please also see our recommended list of things to bring.

11 Days/10 Nights
June 11–21 2020+ *
  • Destination

  • Tour Start / Finish

    Pistoia - Florence
  • Pick Up

    June 11 2020 | 11.00am Pistoia Railway Station
  • Drop Off

    June 21 2020 | 11.00am Florence Railway Station SMN
  • Cycling Fitness/Experience

    Any + E-Bikes Available
1

Thursday, June 11: Day 1 | Pistoia

11am: Pick up at Pistoia Railway Station, (Pistoia)
Our 2020 Tour of Tuscany will commence with an 11am pick up at Pistoia railway station. From here it’s just a short transit to our accommodation. The first four nights we’ll spend in a renovated estate, including relaxing pool, located 9 km from the historic town centre.  After lunch, and bike set-up, we will have a lazy afternoon rolling the jetlag out of our legs, covering around 50 ks in the surrounding rolling hills.  Our route taking us through the towns of Monsummano and Serravalle.
Highlights: medieval Serravalle, and taking a coffee at the bar ‘Umberto, the King of Cappuccino’ in Monsummano. Others may choose to laze under an olive tree by the pool, or explore the grounds of the Villa.

Accommodation

Renovated Villa, edge of the hills – 4 night stay

Dining

We will dine in-house tonight, al fresco, if the weather permits.

Ride: 50km, <700m asc

Terrain: Undulating, with a couple of 2k climbs.

2

Friday, June 12: Day 2 | Pistoia to Vinci, return

Heading out of Pistoia today, we’ll be riding due south, over a small range to the town of Vinci. Our route includes the gentle climb to San Baronto which is a famous ‘ciclo amatori’ climb in the area, this is the equivalent to Tuscany’s Beach Road. Hundreds of local riders of all abilities cover this climb daily and the view from the top is across the picturesque Tuscan landscape to the south.
From here we’ll descend into Vinci, visit a museum dedicated to ‘local boy made good’ Leonardo. For those not used to such cultural pursuits there is a standout Enoteca (wine bar/shop) in town, that is sure to keep you entertained.
Next stop is the small town of San Baronto, this time from a different direction and via a gentler climb, past Villas set on the side of the range with spectacular views of the countryside. From here it’s lovely descent and a tour back across the plains to our base, outside Pistoia.

Accommodation

Renovated Villa, edge of the hills – 4 night stay

Dining

Dinner inhouse tonight

Ride: < 80km, < 800m asc.

2 very gentle climbs

3

Saturday, June 13: Day 3 | Loop Ride, Pistoia into the Appennines

The Apennine range runs the almost the full length of the peninsula that makes up the ‘leg’ of Italy. It makes up parts of the border of Tuscany and Emilia Romagna to the north-east and it’s where we’ll be headed today. It’s not a huge range, in height, like the Dolomites. And while we’ll stay under 1000m above sea level, we’ll still do our fair share of climbing, and by the end of the day, we’ll know all about it.
Leaving Pistoia we’ll climb to Le Piastre, then along the ridge and over a smaller saddle, Passo Oppio to San Marcello and then onto Prunetta. There’ll be three peaks, lovely views of the Apennine’s and across to Tuscany’s highest point at Monte Cimone.
Highlights: medieval town of San Marcello, ride through forested mountains, with a picnic lunch along the route..

Accommodation

Renovated Villa, edge of the hills – 4 night stay

Dining

Dinner inhouse tonight

Ride: < 90km, < 1500m asc.

Terrain: climbing & descending all day, not much flat

4

Sunday, June 14: Day 4 | Pistoia – Pracchia – Pistoia

Up into the hills again, riding out of Tuscany into Emilia Romagna. After leaving the hotel, we’ve approx 10k of flattish riding to warm up, before it’s UP for the next 15k, albeit gently. 700m ascent in 14k, makes it at an average of 5%. Now the best part, a 15km gentle downhill to the Tuscan/Emilia Romagna border at Ponte della Venturina. We will then turn to Pracchia, following the river road up the Reno River valley.
Highlights: Foray into Emiilia Romagna! Forested ride along the Reno River, riding through small towns. Lunch at Hotel Melini, Pracchia

Accommodation

Renovated Villa, edge of the hills – 4 night stay

Dining

Lunch at Hotel Melini, Pracchia; Dinner in-house

Ride: < 85km, < 1500m asc.

Terrain:

5

Monday, June 15: Day 5 | Pistoia – Carmignano – Empoli - Volterra

We’re leaving Pistoia and heading south today, through Montemurlo towards Carmignano. We cross Montalbano range and then head south, towards our destination, where we will stop for a picnic along the route. We’ll have a big afternoon, continuing on through the industrial town of Empoli and down the valley road towards Castelfiorentino, before arriving at the ancient hilltop town of Volterra, where we’ll bed down for three nights.
Highlights: Views over Montalbano range

Accommodation

500yo convent renovated into a 4 star hotel, town centre – 3 night stay

Dining

Excellent inhouse Tuscan Ristorante

Ride: < 100km, < 1400m asc.

Terrain: flat for half, undulating to steep over range, flat/rolling to climbing to a hilltop town to finish. Four peaks, three over 400m, including the last at 500m.

6

Tuesday, June 16: Day 6 | “Rest Day”

Here in Volterra we’re located within the old city walls. There are many views looking out over the planes from a multitude of aspects. It’s spectacular just going for a walk, even if it’s just to choose a place for lunch, coffee or pre-dinner drinks. Try not to lose too much altitude though, or you may have a big climb home. And of course, there’s the pool which is compulsory to visit at some stage during the day.
REST DAY Highlights: Finding that place for lunch, coffee or pre-dinner drinks. Visit Museum of Torture, Museum of Religious art, Museum of Etrusca, Teatro Romano or nearby Salt mines/deposits .

Ride: < 0km

Terrain: flat (poolside)

Non Rest-Day Option

Ride Volterra – San Gimignano - Return
Highlights:Starting from a hilltop town means two things. You start with a descent, and finish with a climb. But there’s always a back up vehicle to use, whenever you wish. In between will be spectacular Tuscan countryside all day long, punctuated by small Tuscan towns, with bars that will call to you like the sirens (in Greek mythology) did, to passing sailors.

Ride: < 60km, < 700m asc.

Terrain: Rolling hills with a steep final ascent into Volterra

Accommodation

500yo convent renovated into a 4 star hotel, town centre – 3 night stay

Dining

Excellent inhouse Tuscan Ristorante

7

Wednesday, June 17: Day 7 | Volterra to Pisa, return

We will be heading out from Volterra towards the plains of Pisa. This is as flat a ride as you get in Tuscany, past villages of Peccioli, San Giovanni, La Sterza Cascina amongst others. From there we traverse the plain into Pisa and see the famous leaning tower and have lunch. Back to the hotel pool in the afternoon, before aperitivi and dinner tonight.
Highlights: Leaning Tower of Pisa.

Accommodation

500yo convent renovated into a 4 star hotel, town centre – 3 night stay

Dining

Excellent inhouse Tuscan Ristorante

Ride: 80km, < 800m asc.

Terrain: As flat as is possible in Tuscany.

8

Thursday, June 18: Day 8 | Volterra to Radda in Chianti

Take it as easy as you want today, we’re moving house, due east. Linger over breakfast, enjoy the descent out of town. Have lunch with the locals at industrial town of Poggibonsi (not beautiful to look at but, it’s an authentic local experience) before eventually rolling into Radda in Chianti. We’re staying a little out of town (just 2k) but it’s a good opportunity to roll past our hotel into the centre of town, just to have a look around and orientate ourselves

Accommodation

4 star hotel located in an ancient stone building in the town centre - 2 night stay

Dining

Yet another excellent inhouse Tuscan Ristorante

Ride: 70km, < 1200m asc.

Terrain: Undulating, followed by more undulations.

9

Friday June 19: Day 9 | Bianche Strade, the white roads of Chianti

Today we’ll ride some of the white roads that feature in major events. It is the home of L’Eroica – an historic cycling granfondo, that is a sell out every year, and the pro race ‘Strade Bianche’. The Chianti region offer us an 80k loop, that is very rewarding, along with being steep AND rough. It will take us through the beautiful town of Siena, for a long coffee stop, a walk around the square (arguably the most beautiful town square in the world) where the annual horse race is held (Palio di Siena), along with a little exploration of the said ‘Bellissima’ town. Ensure you pack your sandles in the car. Lunch will be a picnic at the base of the walls of Siena before riding back to our hotel, and the pool.

Accommodation

4 star hotel located in an ancient stone building in the town centre - 2 night stay

Dining

Yet another excellent inhouse Tuscan Ristorante

Ride: < 80km, < 1500m asc

10

Saturday, June 20: Day 10 | Radda into Florence

Il grand finale. Off to Florence today. Heading north towards Florence, we’ll cover 60k and three smallish peaks, the maximum height of which is 500m, via the Strada Chiantigiana. Once in Florence we’ll tackle the 15k 2013 Florence World Championship loop, for our ‘encore’ (ancora, in italian).
Our final night’s accommodation is in central Florence, in a grand Palazzo. Dinner tonight in a centrally located ‘Florentine’ ristorante, within walking distance.
Ride Radda in Chianti – Fiesole– Florence.
Highlights: transfer to our final accommodation in majestic Florence, taking in part of the 2013 World Championship Road Cycling course

Accommodation

Palazzo in the centre of Florence, next to the Duomo - 1 night stay

Dining

Best local Ristorante, walking distance.

Ride: 80km

Terrain: undulating with three small climbs..

11

Sunday, June 21: Day 11 | Florence / Firenze

Florence

Highlights: final breakfast together in a historic palazzo. Enjoy breakfast in the renaissance atmosphere, before saying ‘Arrivederci’. Which is not ‘goodbye’, more correctly, it’s ‘Until we meet again’.
We’ll make sure everyone makes their final connections this morning before our final farewells.
Included in your tour is all transport from Pistoia to Florence for you, your bike and one bag, accommodation, all breakfasts and all dinners. You will also receive a full 5 piece Topbike kit. Also included are your experienced and knowledgeable guides, maps, training tips, coaching (if required) and mechanical back-up for your bike. Please also see our recommended list of things to bring.
NB: The itinerary above is to be used as a guide only, as Topbike Tours are well known for making use of all (and creating some extra) opportunities, expect that variations from the above can happen at any time. Please note all distances are approximate and subject to change.

Tour of Tuscany 2020 | June 11-21 Pistoia - Florence

We’ll spend the first four nights on the outskirts of the medieval city of Pistoia, three nights in Volterra in the centre of town, two nights on the outskirts of Radda in Chianti, before finishing with the final night in central Florence.