I was selected as part of my university to go to a conference in Rome for 6 days next April, and as it's my last semester I am planning on taking two weeks off classes afterwards to do some travelling. I have travelled Europe extensively, but have not been to Italy before (and have only been skiing in Austria, and to Belgrade in the Balkans). My original plan was to spend a further week travelling up Italy, and then a week in some of the Balkans, flying straight to Dubrovnik and going down through Montenegro and Albania, but there are unfortunately no flights between Venice and anywhere in Croatia, so I've started trying to amend my itinerary and would love some advice. Just as background, I have travelled very widely and am confident that I can handle long days filled with lots of sightseeing, I will probably be spending most of the two weeks alone (friends might join for a few days), and I have no problem with early morning starts or overnight buses. Also I am 22 and male from Australia, I like going to museums, I love art and architecture and people watching, and seeing cultural sites. Anyway, my current plan is as follows:
Fly to Rome, arriving 6am 11/3 and spend the day sightseeing
12/3-18/3 Conference (I will have most of the 12th to sightsee before having to go to the conference accommodation, and will have a bit of time to see things during the planned excursions, but I won't have much free time between these days)
19-21/3 Rome (is this too much if I also have a day and a half before, and will go to places like the Colosseum during the conference? Are there any day trips I should do?)
22/3 - Take an early train to Florence and stay there 3 days, leaving at night on the 24/3
25/3 - Either spend a day in Bologna (arriving the night before), or go straight to Venice. If I go to Bologna, I'll have two days in Venice, if I don't, I'll have three days.
28/3 - Take the 6:41am train to Trieste and then the tram then the train to Ljubljana, and spend that afternoon and the next day there
30/3-2/4 I have four days that I could either go down to Zagreb and Dubrovnik, before getting the ferry to Bari and then going back to Rome for my flight, or I could get the train up and spend a day in Maribor (Slovenia) or Graz (Austria) and then spend 3 days in Vienna before flying to Rome for my flight home on 3/4
What do you think? I know I'm trying to get a lot in, but I just have this sudden anxiety that once I graduate and have to get a real job I won't be able to take off time and go travelling anymore haha, so I'm trying to do as much as I can. Another, though completely unrelated, option would be to instead fly to Helsinki after Venice, spend a few days there, get the ferry down to Tallinn and then a bus to Vilnius before going back to Rome? (I've already been to Riga). Is that better?
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