...people to see. Well, not really. More like 'we went to the Umbrella Museum in Ashby de la Zouch and it was GREAT.' If there is such a thing, that is.


Postby issi » 29 Apr 2014, 20:50

We're off to Lucca for a week at the end of May. If anyone has any tips for what to do with kids and how to get around by public transport, that'd be great! So far we're planning to spend a day in Florence (mostly just wandering around, eating and exploring gardens as I don't think art galleries are really doable with my 2!). We also want to explore the Serchio valley so any suggestions for walks in that region would be great. We'd love to go to the Grotta del Vento but it's a bit of a mission by public transport so on the off chance anyone's done it we'd love to hear your experience! Any other ideas? Livorno? Pisa? Cinque Terre? We don't want to wear ourselves out, especially as we're travelling there and back by sleeper train, but I can't help wanting to see All The Things!
DS born March 2009. DS2 born October 2011.
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Re: Tuscany!

Postby mindy » 25 May 2014, 06:52

Oh Issi, you are so lucky, Lucca is one of my favourite places in the world! We spent a fortnight there before we had the children. Sadly I don't really have any tips for you as we were both without children and with car, so it was quite a different experience to your planned trip. However, I just wanted to say that we spent the majority of our time just mooching around Lucca, soaking up the atmosphere and enjoying the many amazing eateries. There is a lovely litle botanical garden within the city walls where we watched frogs hopping on lilly pads, your two would like that.

We did have a day trip to Florence on the train, which was a fairly long journey (I seem to remember almost 2 hours, but it was a long time ago now!). It was easy, very straightforward with no changes, but we actually liked Florence less than Lucca (so big and bustling!), and were relieved to return to Lucca. Our other trips were mostly car-based, exploring olive groves, visiting agritourismos and sampling beautiful olive oil, and exploring the staggering mountain villages (the mountain driving was quite hair-raising!). There were several tour companies based in the town, you may find a local guide who would be able to drive you all out to explore some of the olive farms and vineyards in the area.

I'm getting jealous just thinking about it! I was hoping for a few days in Rome for my Big Birthday in the autumn, but finances are not looking great (husband has just gone self-employed), so I will get my Italy kicks vicariously through you! Have a truly wonderful time, you will simply love it.
Two adorable, headstrong daughters: Roo born Sept 2008, Min born April 2011, and small boy who arrived Summer 2015
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