QUOTE(scaffrey @ Nov 18 2010, 01:57 AM)
Need advice!! I've never been to Italy before and I am moving to Florence for 6 months next year with my husband and 2 kids. We want to be close to Firenze, but not in the center of a big city. We'd prefer a smaller renaissance-like town with markets and restaurants and still within a 20 minute drive to Firenze. Any suggestions??
Your question is rather broad but here are a couple ideas.
I have always like the towns north in the Mugello region. Look at San Piero a Sieve, Scarperia. I think it is about 16 miles or so from Florence.
If it is too far . Look at the municipality of Fiesole there are little villages within like Compiobbu also look at Bagno a ripoli to the east.
What do you want to rent ? Are you willing to travel by train into city? What are your expectations?