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Rome or Siena for Christmas day? relative benefits of each?

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Christmas 2014 (yes, we plan that far ahead) we hope to go to back to Europe for Christmas. My spouse and I will be traveling with our 2 children - they will be 17 (a huge ancient history fan) and 12 (tolerant of nearly anything). They travel well.

3 years ago we spent part of our Christmas holiday in Venice. After going to midnight mass on Christmas eve at St. Mark's, we woke to a concert of church bells the next morning - it was wonderful and a memory that will last our lifetimes.

This time, after a very short visit to friends near Strasbourg, we will get ourselves to Italy. Then the question - do we spend the days surrounding Christmas in Rome or Siena? My dilemma is that I think I might be able to get tickets to midnight mass at St Peter's - which would be beautiful to see under those circumstances - and what a neat (if long) experience - but I also like the idea of a smaller town atmosphere that we would find in Siena.

The overall scheme includes a week in Rome and about 5 days based in Siena - to tour Florence and the surrounding area. We plan to rent apartments or self catering rooms if possible - so restaurant availability during a holiday is not particularly important. I have read in several posts that Rome is crowded over Christmas - is that over the whole holiday (new years too) period? I would imagine so...

I know I'm splitting hairs here - and both would be lovely. But it would be nice to hear opinions from those who've 'been there-done that' - perhaps there are some factors I have not yet considered.

thanks in advance.

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