need help- 1 day in tuscany


New member
I will be in Italy on a cruise and we port in Livorno. I would like to rent a car and go into tuscany and stop at vineyards and see the countryside. Im a little worried about getting back in time before the ship leaves. Where can I find a good map of where to drive to? How hard is it to do this in a day? Is traffic really bad? will we get lost? is there a book or something that outlines a trip like this? I don't want to take one of the tours they have because we would do too many touristy things. Thanks!


The Tuscan Expert ;-)
Staff member
don't really recommend a car rental for just one afternoon


Do you already know how many hours you will actually have from the time you leave the ship until you have to be back on board? Have you driven in Italy or Europe before so that at least it won't be new, getting on these roads and driving a stick shift?

I think having to worry about getting to the car rental place, figuring out directions and trying to not get lost - you should have a specific destination in mind before hand - might eat up too much of the time you have. I understand not wanting to do the tour offered by the cruise line, but you could always come into Florence and then "lose" the rest of the group, do your own thing and just be back at the bus on time to be taken back to the ship on time..... or how about looking into hiring a car with driver and you deciding where to be taken and therefore not having to worry about the rental or driving? Search on Google for "private car livorno" or something to that effect, I am sure there are several private drivers in the area offering itineraries to wineries and the countryside. I can't recommend any personally as I've never done it, but I've read that many consider it a better alternative to the tours offered by the cruise lines. Some are interested in shopping, for example, and take a tour to the designer brand outlets ;).

You decide what you want to do, but consider the amount of time you have available overall..... plus, drinking and driving don't mix well, not to mention the narrow, curving roads of Tuscany which take some getting used to.

Do let me know if you have any further questions, I'll try to help out if I can!


New member
1 day car trip in Tuscany (from florence)

I have tried to create new thread that does not seem to show up so I am piggy-backing on this one.

We are picking up car in florence city central at 8 am and will return it by 6:30 (closes at 7).
We want to experience the wonderful Tuscan countryside and scenery rather than spend time at any one destination. We do not mind driving most of the day as long as it is not too congested and there is beautiful scenery and sights to admire.
We will see Sinea using public transport so that does dot need to be part of this itinerary.
So far I am planning -
take SS2 (same as SR222?) through Chianti to Volpaia, asciano, continue to Pienza, montecchielo, san quirico, quirico, montalicino, castello di celsa, monteriggioni and back to Florence.

We will take a picnic along and would like to stop by somewhere scenic for the picnic. Planning to stop at castello di celsa to walk about the castle. Other places mainly for route planning (supposed to be scenic drives??)
Which would be good places for picnic and also to get out and walk about? According to google maps, this is about 360 km and 6 1/2 hrs which would leave us about 4 hours to walk about (car rental time 10 hrs).

Also after much search I found that from Borgo Ognissanti, we make left on via cuartano, left amerigo vespucci, right on Vespucci bridge to avoid getting fine in ZTL.
Similarly when returning car, come on Vespucci bridge, continue on via di melaginano, left on borgo ognissanti.

Does that work?



Well-known member
Private Tour

I believe Lourdes is spot on -

I would suggest getting a private driver & they can normally assist you with this on the cruise ship, they have a list of trusted drivers who know the cruise schedule who they can hook you up with.

Or you could contact one on your own. I haven't used their services but here are two that could give you an idea of price:

There are many historical villas and vineyards around Lucca - which will give you a great taste (literally) of Tuscany and keep you close to the ship while maxing your time in the area. Lots of times the drivers will have suggestions - but don't be afraid to let them know exactly where you want to go.

Buon Viaggio