Out of the box Florence – Trekking & Wine is an Italian tour company that guides travelers to unforgettable places throughout Florence, Tuscany and the Cinque Terre to visit stunning landscapes, local small shops, restaurants and wineries. The goal is to step away from the often over-run, major tourist attractions, in favor of a truly authentic Tuscan experience.
Founded by Stefano Mazzantini, who was raised farming with his grandparents, Out of the box Florence was designed by tour guides with years of experience touring Italy. They will share with you their passion for a kind of tourism that enriches the traveler's experience and is gentle on the cultural and environmental heritage for which this region is famous.
Lead by local, knowledgeable guides dedicated to sustainable travel, you will venture off the beaten path to experience unique, personalized hikes through vigneti toscani (Tuscan vineyards), castelli (castles), and the most beautiful, rolling hilltop views of Firenze.
Pour yourself a glass of wine and visit the Out of the box Florence – Trekking & Wine website to be seduced by the romance of their captivating tours. If you're a fan of Chianti Classico (“wine at its best” claims Stefano) and you love to trek through dreamlike countryside, you will discover a beautiful corner of Tuscany, made for hikers, wine lovers and foodies! Check out The Great Chianti Classico Crossing for instance.
Out of the box founder, Stefano, is an ultra-trail runner and a commercial actor, but his heart's passion is Tuscany. Stefano is a true Toscani, and wants to introduce visitors to the true Italia, to its people and their culture. Sustainable tourism comes naturally to him after years of living on his grandparents' farm and studying ‘Tourism and its social impacts' at university.
In creating Out of the box Florence, Stefano brings together his love of exploring Tuscany's natural environment and sharing it with others. He is keenly aware of the ways in which he does this, and is focused on ensuring that his beloved home is preserved and cherished.
Florence is a major stop for tourists in Italy. Prior to the global pandemic, it is estimated that 18 million tourists per year flooded into the city. This can be unsustainable for historic sites and local cultural environments that are at risk of suffering the negative impacts of excessive visitor volume. Most of this impact is focused on the Historic Centre of Florence, deemed a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1982 for its remarkable Renaissance history and art.
With heavy amounts of tourists concentrated in one or two areas of Florence, smaller artisans, hosts, and restaurateurs, only a short distance from the City Centre, are overlooked. In 2016 the City of Florence strengthened its relationship with UNESCO and renewed its commitment to protect and enhance the city's heritage and cultural treasures. When you travel with a small, locally run tour operator like Out of the box Florence you play a role in contributing to those recovery efforts.
Out of the box Florence – Trekking and Wine hopes to provide positive travel experiences for the tourist AND the destination by creating walking tours that bring individual travelers (and small groups) to meet real people and see charming places that the bigger tour companies don’t go deep enough to see. According to Stefano, the idea is to do good, do less harm, and connect travelers to authentic culture, food, customs and people of Tuscany.
Already set up for small, private tours that take place mainly outdoors, Out of the box Florence – Trekking & Wine is ideally positioned for a post-Covid travel environment. At this time, trekking in Florence and surrounding communities that are deemed to be safe by the Italian government, is allowed. Out of the box Florence takes its safety policies seriously. For the time being, clients must have 2 masks to change during the day, and hand sanitizer. The tour guide does the same, and has extra masks and hand gel to give clients. Groups are set at a maximum of 7 people and only “Florence at your feet ©” and “The Great Chianti Classico ©” are currently available because they are both in the same region of Tuscany. In Italy trekking is considered an outdoor sport, and these tours enable trekkers to keep to the suggested safety distances. During wine tastings, travelers are seated at a safe distance.
Out of the box Florence has been able to navigate complicated restrictions with ease because its focus has always been on being outdoors and in nature! Like all of us, Stefano is looking hopefully to the future of tourism, and sees an opportunity for the travel industry to build back better.
Stefano’s dream is to make his entire process carbon-free, and one day use electric minivans to pick up his groups to take them to the beginning of their hikes. From there they will walk along ancient paths listening to stories of this timeless region as can only be told by the people whose families have lived, worked, and loved here for centuries. If you're visiting Florence or plan on exploring Tuscany, book a tour with Out of the box Florence – Trekking & Wine you'll be giving yourself an unforgettable experience and will be helping to preserve Italy's precious environmental and cultural heritage.