Biking Trip Through Tuscany

Travel

posted by Rotmilky

For our 10th anniversary, my wife and I decided to take a two week tour through Tuscany on bicycles. The wife is a saint to agree to this–she’s not a big biker. She’s also a saint for staying married to me. :D It didn’t hurt that the luggage was ferried from hotel to hotel while we did nothing but enjoy the riding, the scenery, the wine, and all the other great things of Italy.

We started out in La Ciusa, then we went through Montefollonico, Montepulciano, Pienza, Montalcino, Siena, Radda, and ended up in Florence. There were loads of small towns inbetween those whose name I can’t recall–my italian is absolutely atrocious.

We rode cross bikes and didn’t do any singletrack riding except for one morning when I left at sunrise and scoped out some short singletrack trails. Mostly, we stuck to tiny roads–some ‘paved’ if that’s what you want to call that peculiar state of crumbling disrepaired road, some gravel, and some two-track. I snapped several thousand photos, so posting a selection here was a real challenge.

On the first morning, I got up early to catch a Tuscan sunrise. Here it is rising behind the town of Montefollonico…

As the sun rose over the horizon, I got a great view of what the days riding would hold…

Here’s some of the mornings ride awaiting our passage…

Shortly after starting down that rode, we passed through a field of poppies. Here’s my wife posing in them….

A shot of my wife and some of the other people we rode with as she approaches Pienza

Another photo of my wife (lower right corner) as she passes through yet more scenic Tuscany countryside…

Along one of the routes, we went down this cyprus-lined road. The Tuscans do love their cyprus trees….

My wife riding by an old farmhouse…

A photo of me with the biggest grin thinking “I can’t believe I’m riding through this”…

Where’s Waldo #1: My wife and others heading into Montepulciano…

Where’s Waldo #2: My wife riding toward Siena through more breathtaking countryside…

The trip was a blast…next year we’re hoping to maybe do something similar in France or Germany–if the dollar will ever stop devaluing faster than the Mexican peso.

Here are some non-riding photos that I liked. Hope you enjoy them.

Bikes parked on a vine-covered wall…

Some windows in Rome…

My bike parked on a large wine cask…

Roof tiles with flowers growing on them…

Bike chained to post outside of train station…

Sheep on a hillside….

Bike, bikes and more bikes…

A case of Gelati…

Bicycle parked in front of “Bucca Del Orafo”. Check out that seat!

Towers with crosses on them in Rome…

Bicycles parked in front of picturesque house…

Bottles of wine in Vitner Vittorio Innocenzi’s wine cellar…

(this article original posted in the Passion forum here: http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=420560 Many thanks to Rotmilky for the great contribution!)

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  • adam says:

    super jealous – Italy is rad and the Italians i’ve met there were awesome ppl. great shots and thanks for sharing!

  • Barry says:

    Great fotos, love the focus on the wine bottles.
    For cycling in Italy, also look at the next region down – Umbria. Much like Tuscany, but greener and hillier.

  • Tom says:

    When you say your wife is not an avid cyclist what did you mean? How much cycling did she so before the trip. My wife wants to see Tuscany and I want to ride in Europe, sounds like a great comprimise. Thanks for the terrific pictures.

  • Rotmilky says:

    My wife has gone MTBing with me once on a very smooth trail, and we’ve done road riding less than 10 times together. So, she can ride a bike without falling over, but not much else. She trained mainly on a trainer until the last two months before the trip, then went on 3-4 hour road rides a few times a week.

    Depending on where you live, Tuscany can be a pretty strenuous ride. None of the climbs are more than 1000′ at a time, but it’s constantly either climbing or descending. Over the course of the day, you may climb 6000′.

    Just make sure your wife is comfortable going downhill on a bike and set up a trainer on the most difficult level and I think she’ll be fine.

  • AndersMtb says:

    The Chianti region is absolutely stunning as your pics is clearly proof of. For overseas visitors Chianti is perfect for biking and the “medieval european tour”. I’ve riden the marked route L’EroicaL, The white gravel roads “strada bianca” are pretty smooth and can be done on a road bike. But I would suggest novices to use fatter tires or a cross / mtb.

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