Planning our first trip as a family to Italy. Traveling with two children aged 12 & 15. The older one is a real history buff and will soak in everything. My younger...well more like your typical kid. If I pack too much in she will rebel. Plan on bribing her with lots gelato. We will be in Italy over Christmas and New Year's. I haven't booked our flights yet, so our exact arrival/departure dates are flexible. We're thinking of arriving on 12/20 or 21 and heading home around 1/1, 2 or3. Planning on flying into Florence and out of Naples (but not staying in Naples) This is what I've planned so far...
Florence - 3-4 days (possible side trip to Pisa/Lucca)
Rome - 4 days
Sorrento/Vico Equense (2 -3 nights)
Here are my questions. First I'm concerned about Christmas. Will anything be open in Florence on 12/25 or 26? I've read that we might be better off finding a mid-evil or renaissance feeling town between Florence & Rome. I saw a few castles that served big christmas dinners...but all were booked. So I welcome any thoughts about Christmas in Florence vs heading out to the countryside. If countryside...any hotel/B&B/castle suggestions?
If we stay in the countryside can we still take the train from Florence to Rome or will we need a car? We were trying to avoid renting a car.
I've booked a hotel for 2 nights in Vico Equense. I've read that the New Year's Eve fireworks over Naples Harbor are the best in the world. I'm hoping we can see from Cubo Apartments in Vico Equense. Has anyone done this?
We were actually thinking 3 nights in Vico Equense and traveling to Pompeii from there. However, I'm concerned that with iffy weather this might be a bad idea and that we should add a day to Rome and travel to Pompeii from there so that we can wait for a nice day. Also concerned that we might get stuck in Vico if weather is bad. Thoughts??
I thought 2 days of relaxation would be a nice way to end the trip and New Year's Eve Fireworks. Hence..Vico Equense.
Just to finalize....looking for suggestions between Florence & Rome for Christmas VS Christmas in Florence? Is there anything outside of Rome that is a better choice for a day or two of relaxation? I'm worried about iffy weather in Sorrento/Vico Equense area. Visiting Pompeii from Rome instead of Vico Equense (due to iffy weather)....of course Pompeii is much closer to Vico than Rome.
Finally....open to any helpful suggestions that I haven't thought of.
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Need help finalizing itinerary for Family Trip to Italy in December