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Suggestions for 14 days in Italy

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Hi all,

This is my first post in Fodor's Travel. :)

My husband and I are going to Italy for 16 days, last week of July and first week of August. We would be arriving in Rome and departing from Venice, apart from the travel dates, we have 14 full days to explore Italy.

A little bit about us: I like cities. I like walking/biking around in cities exploring places, observing people, architecture and life. My husband is more drawn to quiet places, he likes relaxing in serene beautiful places, loves to sit and watch the sunset.

I went through some itineraries but found them too centered around art and history and guided tours. While we would love to explore the amazing art and history Italy has to offer, I would like for the trip to be a bit more balanced. We are travelling on a budget, so probably cannot afford luxury resorts and expensive guided tours.

Can someone suggest a 14 days itinerary offering a mixture of experiences starting from Rome and ending in Venice? Also, are there any public beaches, natural excursions that might fit in the itinerary?

I would also welcome suggestions on accommodation and transit from place to place.

Thank you very much.
Raji

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