I just realised that I got caught in the mundane world so much, I forgot to write on the blog about my experience, Alone, in Tuscany, where I visited 19 cities in 1 month.
A friend of mine asked me, what cities I recommend from here, but I realised it’s very difficult to choose only a few. So, I’ll share my experience and many, many pictures to let your heart and eyes choose.
I was avoiding Tuscany because I was dreaming of visiting it with #TheOne, in a road trip, but after seeing some pictures I said to myself fuck this shit, I’ll go alone, this place is too beautiful to put myself on hold.
The value I give to money is very strange, more precisely “how much time I would stay in Bali with this money” logic. I didn’t get the courage to calculate how much I have spent here, and probably never will because I energetically feel that I would have stayed 3 months or so. But, I’m not sorry, It was worth it.
I paid around 10 – 25 euro for eating out on a meal and between 25 – 40 euros for a night on Airbnb.
Comparing with Istanbul, where I have become a little muffin because the food was amazing, here I have lost weight.
First, because I was walking 25.000 – 30.000 steps/day but also because the vegan/vegetarian options are very sad. You can eat vegetarian pizza and pasta with tomato sauce but after a week it’s not fun anymore and you start missing avocado. The only vegan restaurant I found was in Pisa, and you absolutely have to visit it, the owner is very nice and the menu is delicious.
Other than that, I lost my nerves when the only vegan option in a little city was a strange pizza that was basically onion with bread. I went to the supermarket to buy bread, avocado, cherry tomatoes, salad, avocado and olives (this meal was more expensive than eating out, by the way) but it was the best meal I had in Tuscany.
For everyone knowing me the next situation will be a joke… I used the train most of the times to move and visit and it was really nice and had a lot of fun because I had like 35 kg of luggage with me and also I’m really dizzy, For instance, for the first trip, I got the wrong train, I was supposed to go to Livorno, but got the train for Florence. I realised that after 30 minutes and changed the train at the first train station. Got another ticket, found the machines to stamp the tickets, they are invalid if you don’t do it and can get a fine.
Their train system is very well organised and built to make it easy to visit Tuscany with it, the trains are clean, civilised and also nice guys with suits use them 🙂
If a dizzy blonde like me managed to arrive at the destinations, even during a strike, when some trains got cancelled and I was forced to change busses, trains during the night and to get safe home, the conclusion is absolutely everyone can travel by train in Tuscany.
I will skip the recommendations with what to visit or restaurants because I also used TripAdvisor, and this kind of decision depends on tastes.
Ok, enough with organisations, let’s start with the first city.
To be able to visit the leaning tower and actually see it, I got up at 5 and it was worth it, other than that during the day it is very, very crowded and noisy, but very beautiful, elegant and romantic.
A friend of mine was joking I decided to put the beach in front of culture because I decided to visit Livorno very quickly hoping I will get a little tan, and I really did in October. It was a very good decision because this little port city is really pretty and had the chance to see amazing sunsets by the sea on Mascagni Terrace.
Also, here I had the best pizza in my life. I discovered on a website that Piyyeria di Matilde has the best pizza in Italy, and didn’t believe at first. But, yes, they do!!
I was reading in the touristic guide that some people get depression they don’t have the time to visit all Florence’s wonders because they are too many and it is becoming overwhelming. Yes, this wonderful city has a lot to visit but the lines are way toooo long and I was too lazy to make a research to see how to buy skip the line and I don’t do lines. But, no worries because this is a place I’ll go back for sure.
In Florence, there is a little restaurant, Osteria All’antico Vinaio, where people stay in line even an hour sometimes to buy Panini, I went there at opening hours and in 3 minutes I was ordering, but the vegan option didn’t impress me that much, I don’t do lines but if I would have stayed an hour for this boring sandwich I would have been very disappointed.
4. Foiano Della Chiana
Very useful for me was to find a place as a home base, close to other amazing cities to visit. Here I visited a friend that introduced me to the Montepulciano area. Another life. Next time, I will come back with my The One on that Road trip.
I will share here more pictures with this area because it’s was. Just waw.
As I was saying, on the way to Montepulciano, I had the opportunity to see these wonderful places. I am thinking about putting this image with this road to the castle on my Vision Board, who knows… #fingercrossed
And in Montepulciano, my friend took me to a restaurant with an amazing view, Antico Cafe if I remember well. Here the places and not that crowded and you can really enjoy.
6. Bagni San Filippo
When I was making the research for this trip I saw these termes, but without a car, I knew I have no chance of visiting them. My girlfriend saved me and I managed to see them, you can find even bigger than these ones if you go to the south of Italy.
I saw this wonderful city on Pinterest but didn’t know its name, only after turning my red dress around for few pictures and made people look like at the circus I realised where I was and I turned to my friend and said: Oh, my God!! I saw this place on Pinterest! Can’t believe I made it here!
It was a really nice surprise.
This city is very little, but very beautiful, like a beautiful story, I will for sure come back here.
8. Bagno Vignoni
Another wonderful little city, that was not discovered yet by too many tourists. #Happyme.
10. San Gimignano
I believe my heart knew this will be heaven on earth and this is why I decided to stay here for 5 days. It is the most romantic place of all of them. A little city surrounded by a wall with medieval architecture and 5 towers.
11. I decided one day to take a bus and go visit Siena since it was very close to San Gimignano. I congratulated myself for not deciding to stay here, even if I thought about it when I was booking. This a nice place, but I would say it is not worth more than a day.
The Duomo here is amazing. The pictures are not able to make justice to the beauty of this church.
I decided to stay here because it was very close to Spello, the place that I wanted to visit in this area, but the places to stay were way to expensive.
I realised here it is also the church of Saint Francis de Assisi, where I came to pray almost every day. Anyway, Italy is heaven for catholic people, so I went to confession before coming here and took care to be a nice girl (hah, I always am) to be able to take the Eucharist in all these wonderful churches. Assisi became one of my favourite places that I suggest.
I was supposed to stay here for 4 days but managed to stay 6 because from now on I was spontaneous without any home bookings.
I saw this place at a friend of mine on Instagram and I arranged everything to be very close to it because there was no way I could miss it. Even it is a very small city, it is very beautiful because all the houses have flower arrangements. I discovered later that every year they have a local contest and the most beautiful decorations win. The porcelain plates on the wall represent the years the house won the prize.
Minutes distance with the train from Assisi, I was absolutely amazed by it. I enjoyed the place alone… I mean, not really. During lunchtime, I shared the room with a couple that was fighting, I just couldn’t imagine what was so important to fight in this magical place, because I didn’t understand their language but I was very sorry I didn’t have an English version of my book to offer it as a present.
I knew I would not be fascinated by this place from the pictures, but I believe it is a matter of tastes, for example, I have a friend that dreams to move here.
As I told you I decided to choose home bases close to other beautiful cities Here I decided to stay because I found an amazing Airbnb close to the train station.
16. At the place I was saying in Foligno, I met a single traveller that told me I should visit the beach from Porto Recanati. When I hear about the beach, I don’t think twice. She also said something about a strike, being worried if she will manage to go to the south of Italy, but I don’t know why I said in my head this will not affect me in the area I want to go. So, the next day I was on a train going to Recanati.
The city is super sweet, I got happy instantly when I got out of the train. The streets are very sweet and I had an amazing day by the beach, I had a little picnic and I asked my angels to send me someone to help me with some pictures, and they did, after few minutes a curious lady came to ask me something, she was not speaking English but using hands we managed to understand each other.
Going back home, I was about to find out that that thing with the strike is no joke and I was forced to change some trains and get a bus to another train station. It was later than the hour I decided for myself that it’s safe to stay out alone at night, and I got a little scared when a group 2o noisy and aggressive boys entered the train, but after a toooo long, tiring and cold (I was dressed for the beach) way I manned to go back home safe. I made myself a tea and promised I will never use this “this can’t affect me” card in this kind of situations.
“A hidden gem” was called on the internet. It was one of my favourite places and the description is not lying. I can understand why rich people were using this place for holiday homes. Full of green and undiscovered by tourists yet, this is a very elegant city. I would have loved to stay here for more than one day because I didn’t manage to discover it more than superficial.
I was very tired, after visiting soooo much, I almost wanted to pass this city. But I decided to make an effort when I saw all the people in a train rolling the head to see this little sweet place situated on a hill. (Hill that I was crazy enough to walk it with my two gorgeous legs.)
And, oh God! It was worth all the effort. I found my future garden, I almost entered some people home to take pictures, but I had to take the model.
Other than that, the place is very beautiful but you don’t have to many things to do here, to visit or to go eat. In some places, it is so empty I had to wait for someone to ask them to take me a picture for 30 minutes.
Started walking from here:
After 45 minutes of walking, come one Ana, you can do it!!!
And my future garden:
I made an injustice to this place to let it and the end of my trip when I was tired and my soul was already full of toooo much beauty. I didn’t have the energy anymore to discover it, and also someone told me “you don’t have what to more than a day in Lucca”. Well, depends on your tastes. I will for sure come back here because this place deserves more than a day and it deserves to receive me fresh and full of energy like the begging of my journey. I will not call it a vacation because I still worked a lot from here also.
So, I will come back, especially to the places I loved but I still have more on my list.
Tuscany is a wonderful dream.