Tuscany Cycle Siena & Chianti

8 days
from
£1,249
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4.8 / 5 from 36 reviews >
Moderate
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Trip code: 
MWI
Way to Travel:
Guided Group
Activity:
Cycling
Min age:
16
Group size:
6–16

Ride along the back roads of classic Tuscany

The Tuscan landscape is one of the most evocative and romantic in Europe with cypress trees lining the roads, olive groves, vineyards, ancient hill-top towns and, of course, classic Renaissance cities. Our group cycling tour is carefully planned to take in the best of Tuscany without feeling rushed: part of the joy of the Italian lifestyle is sitting and watching the world go by with a glass of wine in your hand! During the week we ride through diverse areas of Tuscany, such as the hills of Chianti and the beautiful countryside around Montepulciano. Riding north, we enter 'Le Crete', a wonderfully scenic region that's home to some of Tuscany's best towns and villages. We then enjoy Siena's magnificent Campo before biking past the towers of San Gimignano and onto our final destination in Florence. Following country roads wherever possible, we mix point-to-point and circular rides to make a perfect cycle tour of this region.

Highlights

  • Enjoy famous Tuscan cuisine and wine
  • Explore the cultural cities of Siena and Florence
  • Visit some of Tuscany's most beautiful hilltop towns

Key information

  • 7 nights at 3 star hotels with en suite facilities
  • 5 days cycling with partial vehicle support (limited seats)
  • Group normally 6 to 16, plus leaders. Min age 16 years
  • 95% tarmac, 5% easy gravel roads

What's included

  • All breakfasts
  • All accommodation (see below)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
  • Local bike hire

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request)
  • Visas or vaccinations
  • Local taxes (approx. EUR 10 per person, see Trip Notes)
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Days of Cycling
Day by day breakdown
Day 256.0km/35.0miles
Day 369.0km/43.0miles
Day 551.0km/32.0miles
Day 672.0km/45.0miles
Day 752.0km/32.0miles

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Fly to Pisa; transfer to San Quirico.

    Fly to Pisa; transfer to San Quirico D'Orcia (approx. 2hrs 30 mins).

  • Day 2

    Circular ride through classic Tuscan countryside via Pienza, the wine town of Montepulciano and thermal spa village of Bagno Vignoni.

    Today we head towards Pienza, a charming town full of history and culture. From here we cycle to the beautifully situated wine centre of Montepulciano, famous for its Vino Nobile. We then head towards the mediaeval village of Monticchiello and on to the well known thermal bath of Bagno Vignoni, before making our way back to the hotel.

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 3

    Ride through vineyards and the walled town of Murlo to Siena.

    A classic day's riding, showing Tuscany at its most picturesque. Following back roads, we head out of San Quirico with a first stop at Montalcino. We then descend on the road to Buonconvento and ride back up to Murlo passing by Bibbiano. From here we ascend the short but steep Rospatoio Pass and take a lovely road section via Ville di Corsano, as we approach the splendid gothic city of Siena.

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 4

    Free day in Siena to explore or relax.

    Siena is one of Italy's best-preserved medieval towns with one of the world's most gracious squares, the Campo. There is plenty to see in Siena and its sights are best explored on foot as the town is compact but hilly. There are many museums and buildings of interest to visit, such as the impressive Duomo. Alternatively you may choose to head out for an unguided ride. On the June 30th departure you will get the chance to be in Siena during the 'Palio Horse Race', one of Italy's most famous annual sporting events and experience the thrilling atmosphere around it. Held in honour of the Virgin Mary, ten of the city’s seventeen contrade, or districts, are represented by a horse and jockey in each race and will compete against each other during this event. It has been held in Siena’s civic hub, Piazza del Campo, since 1644 and local people get involved to a level that it is still common for ‘mixed-marriage’ couples to separate for the days leading up to and including the race if the contrada of the husband and wife both have a horse in contention.

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    Ride via Gaiole and Radda to Castellina in Chianti.

    From Siena we head directly into the heart of Chianti. Our picturesque route takes us via some lovely small villages and hamlets, as well as some spectacular vineyards and castles, such as that of Castello di Brolio. Here there is the option to taste some of the area's finest wines. We then cycle on to Gaiole for lunch and after a gelato stop in Radda, we follow our final section to Castellina in Chianti, where we stay for two nights.

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Circular ride through the Chianti hills via towers of San Gimignano and Monteriggioni.

    From Castellina, we ride through rolling countryside before taking an amazingly scenic descent into the lower valley. From Poggibonsi we head towards the distant towers of San Gimignano, nestled between the hills and small hamlets. The Unesco town is one of the most visited and interesting sights in Tuscany; famous for its towers, Vernaccia wine & Safron. We spend a few hours enjoying the atmosphere, walking by the walls and admiring the town's high towers. Our return route involves a long but beautiful climb before reaching Castellina and enjoying a well deserved gelato. 

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 7

    Cycle to Florence via Panzano and Greve in Chianti.

    Our final spectacular ride passes through Panzano in Chianti towards the market town of Greve in Chianti. This is described as one of the most scenic roads which links Florence with Siena through the Chianti hills. Here we have time to admire the triangular piazza which hosts the famous Chianti wine festival before heading towards Strada and Impruneta, known for their local terracotta production. In Impruneta we stop for our lunch. We finish by taking a panoramic road towards Florence, cycling all the way to Piazzale Michelangelo for a final group shot. We will arrive in Florence in the early afternoon, giving you time to start exploring this wonderful city of the Renaissance including the Cathedral and Baptistry – the oldest building in the city. Also see the Ponte Vecchio, the superb bridge over the river Arno, lined with goldsmiths and the most famous symbol of the City.

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 8

    Transfer to Pisa; fly to London.

    Transfer to Pisa; fly to London (approx. 1hr 15 mins).

    Please note that at times, especially during summer months, the inbound flight can be late in the evening. In this instance you will have additional time to spend in Pisa. Leader will take care of all arrangements in terms of transport from/to the airport and the city centre and luggage storage. It may also happen that, for logistical reasons, on return we will have to be at the airport earlier than normally scheduled. This will mean a longer waiting time before checking in. 

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Italy

No visa required for British passport holders.
Please note in Italy it is compulsory to carry ID with you at all times.

Vaccinations

Italy

There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts are included and are Continental in style, consisting of coffee or tea, cereals, cheese and cold meat, bread, pastries, yoghurt, jam and/or honey.

Italy’s cuisine is hearty, satisfying and full of flavour. Inspired by the kitchens of the nonna, Tuscany’s food is authentic and surprising – pizza and pasta are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the diverse array of unforgettable food you’ll find on this trip. Starters include antipasti of cured meats or a crustini di fegato made from toasted slices of bread with a chicken liver pate. Soups options are the zuppa di fagioli, with beans, or ribollita, a deliciously hearty vegetable and bread soup. The tagliatelle al tartufo brings the delicious flavors of truffles into a rich, luscious pasta dish whether the bistecca florentina, a mouth-watering t-bone steak takes centre stage for main course. End your meal with cantucci biscuits, dipped into a glass of vin santo, sweet dessert wine for a true taste of Tuscany. Vegetarians are well catered for in Italy. Please inform us of any dietary requirements at the time of booking.

Weather

Italy has a good all year round climate, with plenty of sunshine and warm temperatures from the spring through to autumn. Summer departures will usually have hot weather, with temperatures reaching the low to mid 30s centigrade. April-June and September-October departures are likely to be cooler with a slightly higher chance of rain. In late summer there is the possibility of heavy thunderstorms (generally in the afternoons), but these are usually short-lived.

Is this trip for you?

This trip is classified Road. 
Activity Level: 3 (Moderate). 
Please see the introductory pages of the cycling holidays brochure or our website for more important information on classification and grading. 

This region is famous for its rolling hills, so be prepared for some climbing in places. This trip will require a moderate to good level of fitness as the area and rides are on undulating roads varying from 2km hills to 9km hill stretches on some days. 
Days 3 and 6 falls into the upper category of moderate grade riding, including some steep sections up to 10-25%.
Distances per day vary from 50-70km. There are no transfers to or from hotels on this trip: all the rides are designed to be door-to-door. 
We aim to use quieter country roads where possible, but sometimes we need to pass busy sections surrounding towns. The most scenic routes are on tarmac, with occasional stretches of dirt/gravel roads (locally known as 'white roads'). 


5 days cycling, average 58km/day (36 miles), full vehicle support.
Terrain: 95% tarmac, 5% easy gravel roads. Approx. 300 km in total.

Most days rides will be broken up by morning coffee, lunch and afternoon gelato stops. Usually section of 5-15 km will be done between re-grouping. The leader will keep the group together during busier/complicated sections, but on straight roads, cyclists are free to ride at their own pace. 

Summer months

Tuscany can be very hot during summer months, especially from June to August but heatwaves can happen also in April and May. During summer months temperatures can possibly reach high 30s (degC). We will try and start our days earlier, when possible, to avoid the hottest hours of the day but please be aware that temperatures and humidity will be high. You should feel comfortable and be used to cycle in the heat. Presence of mosquitos in summer may increase (significantly), we recommend taking mosquito repellent with you.

Please note that at times, especially during summer months, the inbound flight can be late in the evening. In this instance you will have additional time to spend in Pisa. Leader will take care of all arrangements in terms of transport from/to the airport and the city centre and luggage storage. It may also happen that, for logistical reasons, on return we will have to be at the airport earlier than normally scheduled. This will mean a longer waiting time before checking in. 

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Hotels

You will spend 7 nights in family run and comfortable 3-star hotels. All accommodation have been carefully selected for their welcoming atmosphere and all rooms have en suite facilities. Some hotels have a swimming pool where we can relax after the long cycling days.

We can arrange single rooms throughout the trip (subject to availability). Please check with your sales consultant for availability and prices.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

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  • Reviewed October 2018
    Jennifer Ford

    Amazing adventure!

    This was my first cycling tour and tour with Exodus. I had an amazing experience! The trip was well planned and I feel like it had the prefect balance of cycling, exploring towns on foot and good food. The level of difficulty was more than I thought. I trained in advance, which served me well, but I recommend others do the same, especially if this is your first bike tour.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Getting to the top of each hill is so rewarding. You definitely earn the views!
  • Reviewed October 2018
    Kelly Young

    Awesome trip!

    Fantastic trip, with Fantastic people! This was my first Exodus cycle trip, and for a Level 3, not only myself, but many others in the group found it a very challenging trip. The roads in this part of Italy, is either "up" or "down"...so with the weather being over 30C each day, each day was a bit challenging. I would definitely rate this trip higher than "Moderate", but having said that I thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful scenery, Tuscan hills, the food & wine, and all that Tuscany offers! Can't wait to do my next Exodus Cycle tour!!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Our group was so much fun! We all shared similar ages and cycle abilities, some more than others, but getting together each evening for dinner was a highlight! Love to cycle with this group again!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both David & Rebecca (Becks) were awesome leaders! They kept the team together, and always booked some awesome local restaurant for all of us to dine together. They always prepared us for the next 10-15kms, so breaking up the day with stops and lunch breaks along the way, made it for great cycle days.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This cycle trip is not for the "light hearted"! You are climbing many long hills, and cycling down many windy roads. I would say recommend doing long steep hill rides before you venture to Tuscany! Having said that, it is so beautiful and rewarding...so definitely go, but make sure you get those hill cycles in before you go on this trip!
  • Reviewed October 2018
    Peter Howe

    Great trip, difficulty rating a bit misleading

    Our second trip with Exodus. A really good group of cyclists to ride and socialize with. Leaders Becs and David did a great job supporting us and handling both the expected and the unexpected. The scenery was spectacular. Having been on another level 3 tour, I would suggest that this one was significantly more difficult. I think Exodus needs to make some changes in the difficulty ranking system. I would be skeptical about the ranking and would want to talk to someone who had been on the trip I was considering. That said, we would do it again!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Besides making it to the top of some longer hills, as well as one 25% grade, we had one cyclist crash and damage his shoulder and ribs. I was impressed with my fellow travellers who looked after him until the leaders arrived on scene. I was impressed with Becs and David for the way they looked after him, his partner and still managed to look after all of us. Most of all, I was impressed with the injured cyclist and his partner. He stayed with us, rode the van, came out to dinner and kept participating despite what must have been a lot of pain. She rode the rest of the trip with us. I thought they both showed determination and toughness and it was great having them on the trip

    What did you think of your group leader?

    David and Becs did a great job of handling our group and dealing with issues that arose. Lots of energy, a few necessary untruths (undulating), great support and good fun. As did our last trip leader, I think they went above and beyond in supporting our vacation.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be skeptical of the difficulty rankings and try to find someone you can talk to about the trip and the difficulty. This one, Exodus got wrong.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The bikes were adequate for what we were doing. Given the heat we experienced and the fact that we saw the van often, but not always, I would really like to see a second water bottle cage on each bike. The cost is very little, but being able to have a second bottle with you is important anytime, but especially in temps over 30 degrees. On our last trip, each bike had a pannier for carrying small items. These bikes had nothing. I suggest a small handlebar bag to be able to carry, for instance, some sunscreen and a wallet, maybe a few other items. The van was gone one morning for repairs and we carried a knapsack which would not be my choice. We did get frequent meet ups with the van, but sometimes not when it was needed and wanted. All in all, we like this company and the tours we have been on and hope to go on more.
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Simon Office

    Siena cycle trip review

    organised and well supported cycle trip through beautiful tuscan countryside with visits to Florence and siena.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Not one specific thing but generally enjoyed the challenge of the cycling with a nice group of people coupled with the rewards of the beautiful scenery, plus nice food and wine.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both group leaders were professional, organised, and supportive of individuals and the needs of the whole group.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This tour is on the harder side of moderate rating taking in to account the height gain coupled with the heat at certain times of the year. Travellers will need a good level of fitness for this tour to complete the hill sections.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I suffered an injury on this tour and was well supported by the group leaders when I had the accident and afterwards.
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Sam Darby

    Excellent hol

    Great weather. Lovely group of people. Superb tour leaders (Bex and David). Food and wine was great. Ditto scenery. Really sorry to come home. If you are reasonably fit, this would be good trip to do. Highly recommended.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Tjoo many to mention

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Really good

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    No

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    No
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Sam Darby

    Excellent hol

    Great weather. Lovely group of people. Superb tour leaders (Bex and David). Food and wine was great. Ditto scenery. Really sorry to come home. If you are reasonably fit, this would be good trip to do. Highly recommended.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Tjoo many to mention

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Really good

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    No

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    No
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Gill & Sam Darby

    Lovely Hol

    Second trip with Exodus. Lovely holiday cycling through Tuscany, finishing in Florence. Lots of clmb, but not too severe. Great weather, food & wine. Group were great fun. I'll be back next year for another trip.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Hard to say - perhaps the views to the next town, perhaps the food. Perhaps the towns themselves. Maybe an ice cream in Sienna. All were truly impressive.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Get reasonably fit, take plenty of sun tan lotion & insect spray.
  • Reviewed August 2018
    Paul Ellen

    Glorious Countryside

    We rode through glorious towns and countryside with plenty of opportunities to take photographs.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I really enjoyed the company of the other riders. I am so glad I took this trip instead of a self-guided trip.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Jon Hobson is very easy to get along with and to talk about anything we want. He took good care of us, riding at a good pace, stopping frequently for us to regroup and to refill our water bottles. At lunch and dinner time he provided us with great suggestions on places to eat.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I would suggest you have a good fitness level as there are some hills which are hard to ride up.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Martino Falsini, our support person, did a stellar job when one of the other riders came off his bike and broke his collar bone. He arrived very promptly in the support van, took control of the situation, checked the rider for head injuries and took him to hospital. Great work.
  • Reviewed August 2018
    Louise S

    Cycling Siena and Chianti

    Great cycle routes, well planned stops, good climbs and descents.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Reaching the tops of some of the more challenging hills

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Jon was a fabulous group leader, well organised and motivating. Alexis was great fun. Both made the trip really enjoyable
  • Reviewed June 2018
    kyung ha

    Cycling in Tuscany

    Excellent and memorable cycling trip!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    This was my daughter's first cycling trip. She is athletic but not an experienced cyclist. She had a wonderful experience without injury because of the excellent leadership and great bunch of other cyclists in this group. We enjoyed every moment! Kyung and Lea

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Liz the group leader was an excellent person in every way. She is one of the best cycling leaders I ever had. She is very responsible, knowledgeable, and professional. Suzy was also very fun and caring.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Excellent tour company.

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

This trip can be combined with one of our other Tuscany or Veneto itineraries:

With so much to see and do in the world we know how hard it is to settle just on one destination. That's why we have put together a handy guide of trips you are able to do back-to-back (see page 9 of our new Cycling brochure 2016/17).

MWI (Tuscany: Cycle Siena & Chianti) can be combined with MET ( Tuscany: Florence to Lucca Ride), but the MWI must be done first for this to work. 

The following departure dates can be combined:

MWI 14th May with MET 21st May 
MWI 18th June with MET 25th June
MWI 20th August with MET 27th August
MWI 17th September with MET 24th September

MWI (Tuscany: Cycle Siena & Chianti) can also be combined with MWD (Dolomites, Lake Garda & Venice Ride), but the Tuscany trip must be done first for this to work. 

The following departures dates can be combined:

MWI 14th May with MWD 21st May
MWI 18th June with MWD 25th June

If you are interested in combining this trip, please call us, email us or start a Live chat for further details.

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Call us on 020 8772 3936