The Florence historic centre is undoubtedly beautiful, although the busy city life can sometimes prove to be a little stressful. Whether it’s the little Italian grannies with anger management issues pushing in front of you, or the street vendors thrusting toilet-shaped lighters in your face, we all need a little serenity in our lives.
Also, if you are anything like me, then you know more about the dive bars of Florence than anything cultural. This, of course, means I rarely see sunlight at the weekends and that it is exceedingly difficult to fit physical activity into my strict drinking schedule. Yes, that’s me kids. Making Brits abroad look bad since ’92.
But I Bike Italy showed me the light, literally. Sunlight, fresh air, and amazing views left me feeling energised. I Bike is also great as you can go in small groups of 2-15 for the same individual price! This works out perfectly for anyone who is as anti-social as I am. Although, if you don’t have a pack of your own friends to go with, you do have the option of going in an open group if you are friendly and want to meet some new people. Speaking of which, gentlemen, these tours tend to attract a mostly female clientele so get involved, flex those quads, and who knows what might happen.
The cycling aspect of the tour was unexpectedly gratifying. Having not touched a bike in years, I was apprehensive about gasping for air or cracking my beautiful head open. However, the ride was much easier than I had imagined. The top quality bicycles and the mild terrain of Chianti provided a relaxing landscape to peddle around in. Once we were saddled up, we got really into it and started to pump our sexy little legs off. After all, there’s nothing like coming home with a tight set of glutes.
After a few picturesque stops around Chianti, we got the low down on some of the big passions in my life; food and wine. Our tour guide was Bill, who is clearly the original hipster as he rocks a very edgy beard and drives a vintage Fiat 500. He knew all there was to know about the process behind olive oil and wine making, which made me appreciate tasting them so much more.
The winery we visited was impressive to say the least. I felt like I was walking around Don Corleone’s countryside estate. The cellars were packed with a mix of traditional and high tech equipment used to make their signature Chianti wines and olive oils. After the journey through the creation process, we sat down for a beautifully made lunch in the winery’s restaurant and partook in my favourite hobby; drinking wine.
Getting back on a bike with a full belly can seem a little daunting but, on the contrary, it was the perfect antidote for your unwanted food baby. By the time we got back to the villa, everyone had fully digested their meals and felt revitalised after their active day.
All in all, going on the tour was one of the best days I have ever had in Florence and it has spurred me on to be more active. I will definitely be getting involved in another tour with I Bike Italy as soon as I get the chance. For anyone looking for fun things to do in Florence, I suggest you look no further than here.
Check out the video of our bike tour experience to get a real feel of what is in store!