Wednesday 23 May 2012

Bed and Breakfast Accommodations in Chianti

bed and breakfast in chianti
Ancora del Chianti Bed and Breakfast in Chianti
Not everyone realises that there is a plentiful supply of excellent Bed and Breakfast Accommodations in Chianti. These B&Bs are usually rooms but can also be small apartments, and they are located in both towns and villages as well as out in the country. B&Bs in town have the convenience that you can usually walk out your front door into the main piazza or be within a few minutes walk of it. In addition, a town location usually means there is a bus stop nearby linking you easily from rural towns to Florence. Bed and Breakfast accommodations in the countryside usually require a car for access but are also much more likely to have a swimming pool. If they are up in the Chianti hills, they will surely be cooler than average in summer, and of course quieter. Competition and the weakening euro mean that B&B prices are highly competitive and will usually give you much better value than a hotel.

An excellent range of B&Bs in Chianti are listed here.

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Wednesday 16 May 2012

Great vacation accommodation deals in Tuscany, Italy

Now is the moment to take advantage of the excellent range of great vacation accommodation deals in Tuscany, Italy! While tourists still stream into Florence on tour buses, independent travellers have been somewhat shy so far this year in venturing out into the Tuscan countryside, particularly the Chianti Classico wine zone. With the recent rise in the value of the dollar against the euro plus the large number of agriturismi and Bed & Breakfast vacation accommodations available, prices are currently extremely attractive for tourists planning to spend a few days in Tuscany. The old days of having to book Saturday to Saturday are long gone. By going to reputable owner-direct websites, you can rent a traditionally furnished apartment for less than the price of a not very good hotel room in Florence. One of the best of these owner-direct sites is which not only lists all kinds of vacation accommodations in central Chianti Classico, but also contains a huge amount of useful information on what to see in Chianti and elsewhere in Tuscany.

Much additional useful information for tourists visiting Tuscany is provided by:

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Thursday 10 May 2012

Tourist tax in Florence - Tassa di Soggiorno a Firenze

A tourist tax in Florence was introduced on 1 July 2011. This is a tax on any tourist - in fact, any non-resident visitor - sleeping overnight in commercial premises within Florence, including camping grounds. The amount of the tourist tax ranges from 1 euro to 5 euros per person per night, depending on the star rating of the accommodation in the case of hotels, and will range from 1 to 3 euros for other forms of accommodation. The Florence tourist tax maximum is 5 euros per person per night, for five nights maximum. It will be the accommodation that is responsible for collecting the tax. Some hotels are listing the tourist tax as a separate item and adding it to their charges while others are silently swallowing it. A similar tassa di soggiorno was introduced in Venice, and many municipalities throughout Tuscany have followed suit, so that we can now basically think of a tourist tax in Tuscany. The details of the tourism tax for Greve in Chianti can be seen here.

Tourist tax in Tuscany

This is an unfortunate consequence of the widespread tax evasion practised by individuals and small businesses in Italy. The municipal tax take is simply too small to finance the upkeep of the attractions and facilities on which tourist cities such as Florence depend for a significant part of their business. It could also be that Florence and, especially, Venice are less interested in budget tourists. Unjust but understandable.

One of the complaints levelled at this tourist tax by the hotel owners of Florence is that it gave even further advantage to the agriturismi, B&Bs and farmhouse apartments in the countryside that are already able to offer prices with which city hotels have no possibility to compete. This complaint is justified and many if not all rural municipalities have now introduced a similar tax for agriturismi and other rural accommodations. Nevertheless, country accommodations remain one of the great tourist deals in Italy.

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