Cycle Tuscany – Day 3
Florence to Siena
Cycling out of Florence through the narrow streets is charming, then once you cross the Fiume Arno it feels like you are leaving a fascinating city behind you.
A short time later you are out of the city and into the hills with a lot of climbing ahead. The scenery and villages are lovely, and every other one called ‘something’ in Chianti.
A great place to stop mid-morning is Greve in Chianti, the gateway to the Chianti region. Take photos in the lovely piazza and narrow streets, or pose with statues.
Then it is the steady climb up to Panzano in Chianti then a lovely down hill stretch, cycling through vineyards and woodland all the way down to the River Pesa.
The third big climb takes you through Santa Maria A Grignano, a wonderful little village. Then on up to Castellina In Chianti where you can get some lunch and know that the steepest hills are done for the day.
The excitement builds as you enter Siena through the city walls and into the narrow streets. It is hard to believe that horses could be raced through these streets, but it happens twice a year in the Palio di Siena.
Although the rooms in Albergo Bernini are basic, and you may have to share a bathroom, this place is clean and homely, with the best veranda views you will see of a great city. Buy a bottle of Chianti and take it up to drink on the veranda at night or as the sun goes down.
The restaurant Osteria La Chiacchera is close to the hotel and offers very reasonably priced, authentic, fabulous food, in a lovely atmosphere.