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Car and driver RT Florence from Livorno plus...


CruisinPashmina
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We think we'd like to abandon ship in Florence while the Wind is docked overnight at the port this October.

Does anyone know a reliable car service we could take in, and the next day, out of the city?

I'm also collecting suggestions for hotels within an easy walk to the major sites...especially the most important churches.

We've visited Florence many times and taken the usual (wonderful) tours, so, this time we'd like to just gently wander.

While I'm at it, how about some restaurant suggestions? Nothing too fancy, please. We will have been on the Wind for 8 days by that point, and simple would be best.

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We think we'd like to abandon ship in Florence while the Wind is docked overnight at the port this October.

Does anyone know a reliable car service we could take in, and the next day, out of the city?

I'm also collecting suggestions for hotels within an easy walk to the major sites...especially the most important churches.

We've visited Florence many times and taken the usual (wonderful) tours, so, this time we'd like to just gently wander.

While I'm at it, how about some restaurant suggestions? Nothing too fancy, please. We will have been on the Wind for 8 days by that point, and simple would be best.

 

I hired one of the private cars Silversea offers. It was pricey but OH SO WORTH IT!!! We had a driver and a guide. The guide was incredible and allowed us to go where we wanted. We did many of the churches. She shared with us information which one would never hear on the normal tours. She was a Michelangelo scholar first and foremost, however was born and raised in Florence. We asked to stop at Pisa, which was brief and used primarily as a potty stop. She took us to a wonderful restaurant in Florence that obviously was known only to the locals, which also allowed for an old friend of mine who lives there to meet us for lunch. It was the highlight of my voyage on the Wind. This was a few years ago, btw.

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We did that recently. Booked a hotel in central Florence (will look it up tomorrow). They arranged the driver and booked time tickets for the sites I had to revisit. It was absolutely perfect. Cantinetta Antinori for dinner. Fab wines available by the glass. Reserve, hotel will also do that. The central tourist area around the Cathedral and Baptistry is now a pedestrian zone. The driver had us back at the ship in perfect time. A wonderful memory. I am also one of Michaelangelo's biggest fans. It doesn't get any better.

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I appreciate all the suggestions. Have decided to book the Helvetia Bristol as it was recommended so highly by several CC contacts...thank you duct tape and rosepark.

Feel uneasy about the transportation issue so we are considering taking our TA's advice and may use his Virtuoso contact at, OMG, 570 Euros for the round trip. Does anyone else think this is crazy expensive? Of course DH and I drive happily around in ancient beat up Jeeps so vehicles mean nothing more to us than a way to get from A to B. Funny how people's priorities about spending $$$ differ. That 570 euros really grates. Was the Bristol's transportation significantly less? And could we make these arrangements over the internet at the time of booking or should we call the hotel directly...and speak to whom? The concierge?

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I appreciate all the suggestions. Have decided to book the Helvetia Bristol as it was recommended so highly by several CC contacts...thank you duct tape and rosepark.

Feel uneasy about the transportation issue so we are considering taking our TA's advice and may use his Virtuoso contact at, OMG, 570 Euros for the round trip. Does anyone else think this is crazy expensive? Of course DH and I drive happily around in ancient beat up Jeeps so vehicles mean nothing more to us than a way to get from A to B. Funny how people's priorities about spending $$$ differ. That 570 euros really grates. Was the Bristol's transportation significantly less? And could we make these arrangements over the internet at the time of booking or should we call the hotel directly...and speak to whom? The concierge?

 

You asked, so...570 Euros is a whole lot of money unless you have no other options. We took the train to Florence and back several years ago while we were on the Cloud and had an overnight in Livorno. We even walked to the train station from the ship which is a bit of a hike. I'm sure you could get a taxi to the train station. We stayed at the Antica Torre de Via Tornabuoni and had a "room with a view" one block away from the Ponte Vecchio. While it is not a traditional hotel, but rather several floors of eclectic hotel rooms in an office building, the honor bar and the included breakfast on the roof were simply fantastic. The views were great. Check it out on tripadvisor if it's not too late.

 

P.S. another thought - what about renting a car?

Edited by Emtbsam
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Driving is very easy in Italy but unless you have a hotel reservation for parking you will need to park on the outskirts in a lot. Also, Fiesole is beautiful, not far from Florence which is easily accessible by city bus. There is a spectacular hotel there and the views are lovely.

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  • 2 years later...

Hello. I'm booked on the Silver Wind next May 31 "Northern Europe and British Isles" cruise. I'm very excited about the newly refurbished ship. Or I did read that she would be refurbished this October. A few shore excursions are listed, but not enough to judge what I might should do. I sailed Silversea in the Med. a few years and the private car rentals struck me as expensive. Can anyone tell me what the rates might be? Thank you!

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I appreciate all the suggestions. Have decided to book the Helvetia Bristol as it was recommended so highly by several CC contacts...thank you duct tape and rosepark.

Feel uneasy about the transportation issue so we are considering taking our TA's advice and may use his Virtuoso contact at, OMG, 570 Euros for the round trip. Does anyone else think this is crazy expensive? Of course DH and I drive happily around in ancient beat up Jeeps so vehicles mean nothing more to us than a way to get from A to B. Funny how people's priorities about spending $$$ differ. That 570 euros really grates. Was the Bristol's transportation significantly less? And could we make these arrangements over the internet at the time of booking or should we call the hotel directly...and speak to whom? The concierge?

 

Make sure exactly what kind of room you are getting at the Helvetia Bristol. They vary wildly from pretty bad to very nice.

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I just spoke with Marco from http://www.toursintuscany.com about driving us to Florence on a different itinerary. They are technically a tour company but they also provide transfers and I believe they are based in the Florence area. He gets great review on TripAdvisor and was very prompt in responding to my questions. Maybe someone to check for a good car service.

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Having this thread "revived" reminds me of what a TERRIFIC time we had. The Helvatia Bristol was perfectly located. Yes, the experience was very expensive, but I will always remember these two special days. Our room was huge,and elegant, albeit quirky.( in that you had to go down a long hall, around corners and down a few steps...an adventure!)

The weather was perfect, the car and driver worth every penny. Having a delicious dinner,with the cathedral right in our faces, was a surprising treat..surprising because the cafe with its outside seating was as touristically situated as it could get.

Sometimes you just have to say what the heck and jump ship on overnights in port. It wasn't an easy decision, but it was such a good one!

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