Driving to Tuscany from UK advice on route


New member
Hi all

This is my first post so please don'y be harsh on me ;)

Me and the wife are driving to Italy in July for a 3 week holiday, i have organised a route / itinery but thought i would ask on here see what people think and i have a question or 2 about the route

The route is

Liverpool to Dover ( overnight stay )
Dover to Koblenz Germany ( 2 night stay )
Koblenz to Fussen ( 2 night stay )
Fussen to Bardolino lake Garda ( 2 night stay )
Bardolino to La Spezia ( 4 night stay )
La Spezia to Sienna ( 2 night stay )
Sienna to Montepeluciano ( 1 night stay )
Montepeluciano to Aosta ( 2 night stay )
Aosta to Djion via the Alps and Chambrey ( 1 night stay )
Djion to calais stop overnight then back home

A few questions

1) which is the most scenic route from Fussen to lake Garda i would rather drive country roads than motorway and see a bit of the countryside

2) is it worth staying in La Spezia for 4 days and visit florence / Pisa by train or is it better to drive to Florence and Pisa and stay there

3) is the route to Djion from Aosta via Chambrey worth doing or is there a more scenic route

4) is the towns i have picked to stay in Tuscany and Lake Garda ok or would you reccmonend anywhere else

thanks in advance for any help

Tony & Dawn


The Tuscan Expert ;-)
Staff member
Ciao Tony and Dawn,

Don't worry, we are never harsh with anyone! ;)

You have a wonderful trip planned - unfortunately I'm not much of an expert on some of the more general parts of the itinerary outside of Tuscany but I'll do my best from my limited experience!

1. Fussen to Bardolino - I've heard that passing through Innsbruck and then the Brennero Pass is really beautiful and a scenic drive. Once you reach Trento you might want to take the smaller SS45 bis road that takes you to Riva del Garda - that way you go down along Lake Garda (east side) and get to enjoy the view of the lake rather than taking the internal motorway.

2. I would recommend just 2 nights in La Spezia as you visit the nearby Cinque Terre, then move down to Pisa and Florence as you visit those two cities. Even though they aren't far, it doesn't make sense to use up your time driving back and forth. You'd have more time at each.

Siena and Montelpulciano are really close - so rather than spliting up 3 nights between the two, I'd combine them staying just outside of Siena and then doing Montepulciano on a day trip, visiting the nearby Pienza, San Quirico on the same day.

3. I think it is really popular to pass through Chamonix-Mont Blanc... there is a tunnel but also incredible views. Then head up to Geneva.... I've also read a lot of people recommending from Dijon to pass through Lausanne to do the St. Bernard pass through Martigny (hope I'm not getting my passes mixed up). This seems to be much longer drive but very scenic.

4. from 2 days in la Spezia (or in nearby Portovenere or Lerici since you'll have a car), like I mentioned above, I'd recommend moving down into Tuscany to visit Pisa. You could stay 1 night near Pisa/Lucca area.... then find a more central place between Siena and Florence for 3-4 nights and spend those in one place. You could visit Florence and Siena on separate day trips, and Montepulciano and the Val d'Orcia area on another. Look through Tuscany Accommodation and through the Chianti area in particular since it is very central for doing the day trips to Florence and Siena for ideas of where you could stay at. This gives you a chance to enjoy the Tuscan countryside while visiting the main sights.

I hope I've been useful - do let me know if there is any other way I can help! :)


New member
Thank you very much for a detailed reply

I have taken your advice about La Spezia and will change that part of the trip

We have also decided to stay at Sienna for 2 nights then instead of going to Montelpulciano we are going to spend 2 nights in Orvieto at this b&b we found Hotel Corso

Have also looked at the routes you mentioned to Lake Garda and to Martigny have planned some routes around that

Again thanks for a brilliant reply



The Tuscan Expert ;-)
Staff member
Glad to be of help! :) If you have any other doubts, post and we'll see if we can be useful again :D