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Livorno port through Viking

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This cruise line offers this port on many of their itineraries and I imagine the options to be about the same. It is offered on our cruise and I'm trying to figure out the right option so any input would be welcome. Our included excursion takes us to Pisa, we could do that and leave from there to get to Florence and back to port on our own. The ship offers a paid excursion with both and there is the Florence on your own excursion. These would be the three I am discussing. They say the train is easy but I do know that strikes are not uncommon, so there is that to consider on a timeline. Knowing the port is a distance from Florence, the idea of a ship excursion helps ease the stress of getting back to the ship on time. I did "Berlin on your own" and found it to be frustrating and wound up spending 'on your own' time getting lost and trying to find a place to eat. If we did this, I would need to set up a guide for Florence. The same would be true if we left on our own from Pisa. The other excursion might be the best option without being frustration. I am wondering if those who have done any of these through the ships have any feedback. We are not close enough to departure of our excursions to be listed and I am wondering what the costs might be. I am have a difficult time trying to find the right mix that will keep me involved.

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This cruise line offers this port on many of their itineraries and I imagine the options to be about the same. It is offered on our cruise and I'm trying to figure out the right option so any input would be welcome. Our included excursion takes us to Pisa, we could do that and leave from there to get to Florence and back to port on our own. The ship offers a paid excursion with both and there is the Florence on your own excursion. These would be the three I am discussing. They say the train is easy but I do know that strikes are not uncommon, so there is that to consider on a timeline. Knowing the port is a distance from Florence, the idea of a ship excursion helps ease the stress of getting back to the ship on time. I did "Berlin on your own" and found it to be frustrating and wound up spending 'on your own' time getting lost and trying to find a place to eat. If we did this, I would need to set up a guide for Florence. The same would be true if we left on our own from Pisa. The other excursion might be the best option without being frustration. I am wondering if those who have done any of these through the ships have any feedback. We are not close enough to departure of our excursions to be listed and I am wondering what the costs might be. I am have a difficult time trying to find the right mix that will keep me involved.

 

Does your itinerary overnight in Livorno?

 

The Florence OYO bus will drop you and pick you up near Santa Croce. (Last year I was told that it would be "Lungarno Pecori Giraldi (10 minutes walk from Santa Croce Square)" and I assuming that it will be the same for this year). The center of the city is a traffic restricted zone and tour buses are not permitted. All tour buses drop pax on the edge of the restricted zone and everyone proceeds on foot from there.

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Does your itinerary overnight in Livorno?

 

The Florence OYO bus will drop you and pick you up near Santa Croce. (Last year I was told that it would be "Lungarno Pecori Giraldi (10 minutes walk from Santa Croce Square)" and I assuming that it will be the same for this year). The center of the city is a traffic restricted zone and tour buses are not permitted. All tour buses drop pax on the edge of the restricted zone and everyone proceeds on foot from there.

 

I have heard about the time it takes to get to the transports. It is not an overnight. We arrive 8 am and depart 8 pm. The excursions into Florence run 10-10.5 hrs. The longer one takes in Pisa on the return from Florence and is the recommended tour.

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I have heard about the time it takes to get to the transports. It is not an overnight. We arrive 8 am and depart 8 pm. The excursions into Florence run 10-10.5 hrs. The longer one takes in Pisa on the return from Florence and is the recommended tour.

 

When we were scheduled last year for just a day, our plan was to let Viking provide the transportation (OYO). We could have gotten there and back on our own but we would have spent more time dealing with the transportation than we would have spent seeing the city--and the bus drop off was closer to the Uffizzi (where we had tickets) then the train station. In the end, we never got there because we were on the ill-fated sailing that returned to Barcelona for repairs, so I can't tell you how it worked out.

 

This year, when we try again, we have an overnight in Livorno and our plan is to get there and back on our own on day one, knowing that we have plenty of time to get back to to Livorno should there be a train strike. On day two, we want to try to see something we haven't seen before.

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This cruise line offers this port on many of their itineraries and I imagine the options to be about the same. It is offered on our cruise and I'm trying to figure out the right option so any input would be welcome. Our included excursion takes us to Pisa, we could do that and leave from there to get to Florence and back to port on our own. "

 

This port is not close to the train station, so you need a taxi on top of all else. Recommend the ship transport to Florence.

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This port is not close to the train station, so you need a taxi on top of all else. Recommend the ship transport to Florence.

 

Good to know. Experience pays off. Thanks

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This cruise line offers this port on many of their itineraries and I imagine the options to be about the same. It is offered on our cruise and I'm trying to figure out the right option so any input would be welcome. Our included excursion takes us to Pisa, we could do that and leave from there to get to Florence and back to port on our own. "

 

This port is not close to the train station, so you need a taxi on top of all else. Recommend the ship transport to Florence.

 

That's not too bad, unless everybody is trying to get a cab. We are overnighting in Livorno and so we won't have to worry about missing the ship if we take a later train. However, if we were just there for the day, we would definitely depend on Viking's OYO for transportation.

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If you are planning to do Pisa or Florence on your own, bear in mind that many of the taxis at the ship are not keen to do a short journey to the station as they are hoping to take people further afield. You could take the shuttle into town and then the number 1 bus to the station ( bearing in mind that you need to purchase a bus ticket at a tobacconist). This all takes time so a ship's tour may be the best option.

 

For those with two days in Livorno I would suggest visiting the mediaeval and walled city of Lucca. It is charming and there is quite a lot to see there including Puccini's house, a duomo and some very attractive churches. The shopping is pretty good there too and it is much cheaper than Florence.

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We have been to Florence and Pisa and San Gimignano as well as other fabulous places in Tuscany when we spent 3 day in Florence and 3 days in Tuscany. We are sailing May 21, 2018 and I have booked Rome inLimo for 3 ports. Naples, Rome and Livorno. If you can get a group together it's less expensive but you will see MUCH more not on a ship tour. In Livorno we are going to Florence then San Gimignano. Take a look at thei website they are 5 stars on tripadvisor. I am afraid we won't get the tours we want from the ship anyway since they offer to most expensive cabins first and we are in the middle.

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We have been to Florence and Pisa and San Gimignano as well as other fabulous places in Tuscany when we spent 3 day in Florence and 3 days in Tuscany. We are sailing May 21, 2018 and I have booked Rome inLimo for 3 ports. Naples, Rome and Livorno. If you can get a group together it's less expensive but you will see MUCH more not on a ship tour. In Livorno we are going to Florence then San Gimignano. Take a look at thei website they are 5 stars on tripadvisor. I am afraid we won't get the tours we want from the ship anyway since they offer to most expensive cabins first and we are in the middle.

 

I've done two sailings with Viking now, both times in a DV cabin and not once have I not gotten a tour that I wanted. Viking sends multiple buses in each time slot. The only tours that might sell out are the few that have very limited capacities (like some of the culinary tours).

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I've done two sailings with Viking now, both times in a DV cabin and not once have I not gotten a tour that I wanted. Viking sends multiple buses in each time slot. The only tours that might sell out are the few that have very limited capacities (like some of the culinary tours).

 

We have only done one cruise, but that one was in a V2 cabin, and we were able to select every tour we wanted (some optional and some included) except for the one we thought we wanted in Dubrovnik. As it turned out, our second choice there worked every bit as well as the one we had originally wanted. I know many people prefer to book independent tours for a variety of reasons, but the Viking tours worked very well for us.

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Here is the information about the tours that were available to us on January 13, 2017 in Livorno. The ship was supposed to be there 8am-10pm that day. It ended up leaving much later due to heavy winds and seas and we didn't make it to Civitavecchia until around noon the next day.

***Tour of Tuscany to Pisa (Included) 9:15am or 1:30pm - 4 Hours - Moderate - Free

***Florence & the Leaning Tower 8:45am - 10.5 Hours - Demanding - $119

***Florence & the Pitti Palace 8:30am - 10 Hours - Demanding - $159

***Italy's Art & Architecture 8:30am - 10 Hours - Demanding - $159

***The Renaissance Treasures of Florence 8:30am - 10 Hours - Demanding - $209

***A tour of Scenic Lucca & Pisa 8:45am - 8.5 Hours - Demanding - $109

***A day in Tuscany 8:45am - 8.5 Hours - Moderate - $139

***Tuscan Wine & Meranda Tasting 1:15pm - 5 hours - Easy - $109

***Florence On Your Own 8:45am - 9 Hours - Easy - $79

***Cooking in a Tuscan Castle 8:45am - 7 hours - Easy - $249

***Scenic Boat Ride & Villa Puccini 9:30am - 4 Hours - Easy - $59

 

We did the Florence & The Leaning Tower Tour and I really wish that we had skipped the Leaning Tower and spent more time in Florence. The tour ended at Santa Croce and we had time then to shop, eat and even tour Santa Croce before we had to be back at the bus. If I were to do it again I would just do the Florence on Your Own Tour just so I didn't have to worry about the logistics of transportatin as Florence is quite a long ride from the Port. It would require a little bit of research and I would have to come up with a game plan for what I wanted to see when I arrived in Florence but Florence seemed relatively easy to navigate. Florence was probably my favorite city that we visited on the trip. The Leaning Tower was a tourist trap. The bus doesn't park anywhere near it so there is is a bit of a walk from a parking lot to get there and back and there are tons of people trying to sell you umbrellas and other trinkets. Definitely not my idea of fun. But hey, now I've seen The Leaning Tower and I doubt I will ever go back there.

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***Florence & the Leaning Tower 8:45am - 10.5 Hours - Demanding - $119

 

 

We did the Florence & The Leaning Tower Tour and I really wish that we had skipped the Leaning Tower and spent more time in Florence.

 

Thanks for this info. I was wondering ball park cost of the tour. this certainly meets my budget. Our tour says the stop in Pisa on the way back. I'm sure that cut down on the crowds trying to get it done first thing on the morning. We in Livorno, you have to do tower. I haven't wanted to do it my whole life but why not, since you're there? Is this basically a bus tour or do you actually get a chance to go inside buildings? Since none of the things in Florence are really calling my name, it would be nice if someone else did the planning. Where there many bus with this tour?

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Thanks for this info. I was wondering ball park cost of the tour. this certainly meets my budget. Our tour says the stop in Pisa on the way back. I'm sure that cut down on the crowds trying to get it done first thing on the morning. We in Livorno, you have to do tower. I haven't wanted to do it my whole life but why not, since you're there? Is this basically a bus tour or do you actually get a chance to go inside buildings? Since none of the things in Florence are really calling my name, it would be nice if someone else did the planning. Where there many bus with this tour?

 

Just keep in mind that the prices quoted are January 2017 prices and that by the time you sail, they could be different.

 

Also, keep in mind that although the description says that you will stop on the way back, it is also possible that they will start in Pisa, especially if they have multiple buses going (so that you aren't all there at once). Viking is not wed to the order in the descriptions and will try to spread the crowd out as much as possible.

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Thanks for this info. I was wondering ball park cost of the tour. this certainly meets my budget. Our tour says the stop in Pisa on the way back. I'm sure that cut down on the crowds trying to get it done first thing on the morning. We in Livorno, you have to do tower. I haven't wanted to do it my whole life but why not, since you're there? Is this basically a bus tour or do you actually get a chance to go inside buildings? Since none of the things in Florence are really calling my name, it would be nice if someone else did the planning. Where there many bus with this tour?

 

You are right...since you are right there, you should see it. Even though it was really touristy, I'm glad I got to see it. And if your sick of all of that cruise ship food and get a hankering for McDonald's while in Tuscany, there is one conveniently located right near the leaning tower.

 

 

The bus leaves the port and brings you to Pisa where you park in a parking lot and walk about 15-20 minutes to the leaning tower. At the leaning tower, we were given an hour to spend there. There are a few buildings that you can go into. There are a certain number of free tickets early in the day but they go quickly so if you are going on the way back, they will be long gone. It's not likely that you will be able to go into the tower as the tickets for that require advance purchase and are for a specific time which you will probably not be able to coordinate it exactly since you will be there for such a short time. There is a pay toilet there that was 80 cents and the line was pretty long so that ate up 10 minutes just to pee. there is a cathedral and a baptistry there and you should be able to get tickets on site to get in. Some people on our tour did.

 

 

After we left the tower, we walked back to the bus, loaded up and headed to Florence which was around an hour and a half ride. Our tour guide, Laura, was awesome and chatted most of the way. Once in Florence, the bus dropped us off an we walked through the city with our guide. She hit the major attractions and I was simply blown away by the history there. I had no idea so many important historical figures were from Florence. Make sure you have your wireless sound with you (whatever it's called) or you won't be able to hear very well. After seeing a lot of incredible things, we were let loose for a couple hours to tour on our own before we met up and headed to where the bus was picking us up.

 

 

All of the tour was walking. There was certainly a lot of commentary while driving also but it was just pointing out things along the way like the US Military base, olive trees, grape vines, Laura's apartment, and whatever else we happened to be driving by. She had a good grasp of the Patron Saints for every town we went through and told us about the celebrations that they have on that particular Saint's day. There really wasn't much time in Pisa to go into the buildings but in Florence, we had a couple hours of free time and we chose to go into Santa Croce, check out a few leather shops where you really have to haggle for a price, and have a lunch of antipasti and wild boar lasagna washed down with a nice Chianti.

 

 

Laura called this tour the WOW! tour because you would be walking down a very narrow old street and then turn a corner and one of the most incredible buildings would be right there in front of you.

 

I'm not sure how many buses there were. There were probably 20 or so at the ship that morning. I remembering running into other viking groups in Pisa but I don't recall seeing any other Viking groups in Florence until it was time to get back on the bus.

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The bus leaves the port and brings you to Pisa where you park in a parking lot and walk about 15-20 minutes to the leaning tower. At the leaning tower, we were given an hour to spend there. There are a few buildings that you can go into. There are a certain number of free tickets early in the day but they go quickly so if you are going on the way back, they will be long gone. It's not likely that you will be able to go into the tower as the tickets for that require advance purchase and are for a specific time which you will probably not be able to coordinate it exactly since you will be there for such a short time. There is a pay toilet there that was 80 cents and the line was pretty long so that ate up 10 minutes just to pee. there is a cathedral and a baptistry there and you should be able to get tickets on site to get in. Some people on our tour did.

(snip)

 

Laura called this tour the WOW! tour because you would be walking down a very narrow old street and then turn a corner and one of the most incredible buildings would be right there in front of you.

 

I'm not sure how many buses there were. There were probably 20 or so at the ship that morning. I remembering running into other viking groups in Pisa but I don't recall seeing any other Viking groups in Florence until it was time to get back on the bus.

 

WOW! Thank you for the detailed description of the tour. I wish there were more such descriptions written by folks who have actually taken the tour. I posted a link to it in our roll call.

 

It is a shame that the tour buses aren't allowed to drop you off closer to the cathedral but I guess that there are so many tour buses that the best way to manage the traffic is to keep all of the buses away.

 

Florence is always a walking tour because that part of the city is closed to tour buses (and most cars). The buses can drop you at the edge of limited access zone and then proceed to the bus parking area.

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We were in Florence with Viking in April and took the On Your Own excursion and this suited us really well. As well as being taken direct to the outskirts and them walked to the centre (about 10 min walk) we had ample time and opportunity to do what we wished. We saw all the major attractions as well as visiting the Palace and its grounds which was a treat and not many people there. We were able to do everything at our leisure as well as have time for shopping, eating etc. Our guide provided us with a map prior to leaving the bus and gave us a detailed plan of attack so that we covered all the highlights as well as being able to get our bearings and hence not get lost. Definitely consider doing Florence this way.

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Is there anything to do in Livorno after we come back from a half day tour?

 

It's probably fair to say that Livorno is not one of the most beautiful towns in Italy but it's probably worth a wander for an hour or two.

 

Livorno is an industrial port and you require a shuttle bus to get into town. I am not sure if Viking run these but the port authority usually have buses which drop people at Piazza Grande ( the centre of town) at a cost of €5

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we are on the Viking Star in January, we have 2 days in Livorno. One day we are booking the Florence OYO, and the other we are booking the Scenic Lucca and Pisa excursion, my question is, the bus leaves at 8:45, how long does it take to get to Florence ? I want to purchase museum tickets to skip the line and would we arrive and have time for an 11:00 AM entrance

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we are on the Viking Star in January, we have 2 days in Livorno. One day we are booking the Florence OYO, and the other we are booking the Scenic Lucca and Pisa excursion, my question is, the bus leaves at 8:45, how long does it take to get to Florence ? I want to purchase museum tickets to skip the line and would we arrive and have time for an 11:00 AM entrance

 

We are taking the train and I'm thinking of getting early afternoon tickets just to allow for all the moving parts and the walk from the station to the Uffizzi.

 

The bus will drop you on the far side of Santa Croce, near the river. Google says it's a 10 minute walk but I don't walk as fast as Google. (The walk from the train station will be even further but we aren't worried because we have all evening to get back to the ship.)

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We did the Pisa/ Florence combo tour last feb and it was great. The walk from/to the busses in Pisa is long as others have said with pickpockets waiting for you. If you want to go into the tower or other buildings and you see the lines are not long as soon as you arrive, buy the entry ticket on the right side (there is a sign but it does not say tickets). Our guide sent us to the far end and we lost precious time. Even with less then an hour we saw alittle of everything except get into the tower. Look online to see where exactly you can buy the tickets. Florence was great. We enjoyed the trip so much we are doing the similar one this year with Florence on your own tour and second day Luca. We even considered staying overnight in Florence but chose not to.

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We, too, were with Peregrina on the failed cruise, so we weren't able to experience Florence. We had arranged for a private driver to pick us up at the port and take us to the city where we had arranged a number of private tours. I'm just now working on reconstructing that itinerary for the April cruise and will probably do the same type of arrangements. We are interested in the history of the Medici family and their role in the development of the country. Also looking into a some of the tours of the churches, etc. So much to see, so little time! We will take time after the cruise to got to Milan and use that as a base to tour around the lake district.

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We stopped in Livorno on a cruise about 5 years ago-that cruise was there from 8 to 7 or 8. DH refused to consider Florence as he had been there and said you cannot do it justice in one day. Instead we rented a car which was waiting at the dock and returned there. We went to Pisa and saw the tower and the other buildings, church, and museum then went to Lucca with a nice lunch outside en route. It was a good alternative. The only caveat is that in many smaller though popular Italian towns the parking is somewhere on the edge of the town for a few Euros. Also, rent the GPS.

We did go back and go to Florence for 3 days a few years later. It is fabulous but you cannot come close to seeing everything in one day. Unless it is a return trip, do plenty of research to pick and chose what to see in one day. It is pretty easy to walk to most popular sites once you are in town.

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Florence far superior to Pisa, but tour will likely spend 1 hour in Pisa. Just so you can say been there done that. Lucca is and exceptional alternative as well, beautiful Tuscan town to wander about.

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