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Trip Report Gracie04's Trip Report: Milan, Bellagio, and Venice. April 30- May 07, 2008

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Wow, it seems like such a long time ago that I started planning this trip, (back in October) and now it's past and I'm writing up the report. Time really does fly.

This trip went through so many changes before we finaly decided where to go. To make a very long story short, it went back and forth between Greece, Italy, or London/Paris before we decided to go back to Italy. I'm so glad that was the choice, because it really was a wonderful trip. The upside is that I researched all the destinations, so if in the future I want to go to Greece, or back to London, I have very thorough files and can leave at a moments notice. :)

After checking Delta's website almost daily, I was lucky enough to find a FF ticket for 50K miles, open jaw into Milan and home from Venice.

So first, a little info:

People on the trip: Me (Johanna), 38 last month when we went, 39 (ugh)as I write this, and my sister Kathleen.

All costs were split down the middle, from hotels to restaurants. With the exception of one resto in Venice whos name escapes me now, we never had a problem paying with 2 credit cards, having our bills split.

The Euro being at close to $1.60: I'll be honest, it sucked. I really felt the difference from when we were in Europe two years ago. It probably didn't help that we were visiting some of the most expensive cities in Italy. Was it worth it? To me, absolutely. I fell in love with Italy on my first trip to Rome four years ago. This was my third trip back. I just feel happy and at home when I am there, so if things cost a little more, so be it.

Best quote of the trip: Heard at the train station in Venice: A woman with maybe 15 people gathered around her telling them "Just because I planned this trip for you does not mean that I'm in charge of you having fun!" Frankly, I'm considering having this printed on a t-shirt or embroidered on a pillow. I wanted to go up to her and asked if she ever posted on Fodors, but I chickened out.

Thank you's go out to the following, each suggestion made our trip a little better:

*Weadles for suggesting www.bestviaggi.com. Great company to work with, and our driver Antonio was great, too.

*NeoPatrick for suggesting the private boat tour to Villa Balbianello. We really enjoyed this.

*Statia for suggesting both Bancogiro and the Fortuny Terrace at the Hotel Cipriani for drinks in Venice.

*ekscrunchy for posting that Mimi Sheraton review of restaurants in Milan

*Vincenzod for suggesting both Vecio Fritolin and La Zucca-- two of the best meals of the trip.

*Most of all to Tries2packlite because when I saw her photos from Bellagio and Venice, I knew that was where I wanted to go.

Ok-- now that this sounds like an Oscars acceptance speech, I'll get on with the trip report.

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