Advice for Rome and Florence

Apr 13th, 2008, 09:17 AM
  #1  
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Advice for Rome and Florence

We're going on a Mediterannean cruise next week--anyone got any tips for getting into Rome and Florence/Pisa other than taking the excursions from the ship that are expensive and allow way too much time for shopping which we don't want? Thanks for any tips anyone has.
Raygor is offline  
Apr 13th, 2008, 09:56 AM
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Our very first cruise was the western Med. and we did all the ports on our own. I know this isn't for everyone but many passengers do it. Just look into the ports for major atractions, choose what you want to see the most and when you get off there will be tons of private tour operators/cabs just waiting for your business. This is what we did and we saved alot of $$$, were on our own time and pace and honestly finished much sooner than the ships excursions. bear in mind the USD was much stronger then, way stronger really. To give you an idean the ships excursions for Rome would have cost us $510.00 vs. seeing the same sights w/ a private cab for $200.00. Don't expect that now with the decline of the USD (I assume you are in the US) and the rise in fuel. However you should still be ahead this way. Cheers, Larry.
jacketwatch is offline  
Apr 13th, 2008, 11:11 AM
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You could check prices with some tour operators. and compare with the cruise prices.

The ship usually has a tour that is just transportation and will drop off and pick up at a designated spot.

Those 2 cities were so full of places to see that some women (not me) were complaining that there was not enough time to shop !

BTW, in Florence you can use the restrooms in any restaurant or any facility without paying or buying anything. They are paid by the city for this. Thank you, Mayor of Florence !
maryann is offline  
Apr 13th, 2008, 05:44 PM
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All of those locations are accessible via train from the ports. We did them last year on our own. Get on the Italian train web site and get the timetables. Round trip to Rome is about $10. Don't remember the price for Pisa but it was fairly low.
fmpden is online now  
Apr 14th, 2008, 07:30 AM
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You can catch the train from the port Civitavecchia into Termini Station for 4.5 Euros, takes about an hour.

Train station is 4 blocks from dock gates where courtesy bus drops you off.

You can catch the hop on hop off open top tour bus from Termini station that takes in all the sites.
mickrory is offline  
Apr 14th, 2008, 06:43 PM
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Another point:

There will be taxi driver/guides at the Port where the ship docks.

I had a private guide who met me at the ports, however he was about 15 minutes later at our Florence port..
so I started talking to some of the taxi drivers and took some picture of me with them.

They were so nice and friendly and joking around..if I had not already had a guide I certainly would have snapped one of them up.!!

Percy
Percy is offline  
Apr 15th, 2008, 03:34 AM
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When You are on your cruise you don't have so much time to wait and spend on trains so we suggest you to do how we did hiring a car with guide driver who was waiting for us in front of the ship, he took us everywhere both in Rome and Pisa and Florence explaining us all the most important information of everything.
His name was Carlo and we booked him through drivearounditaly.com
He was worthed every penny we spent!!!
robert22 is offline  
Apr 15th, 2008, 04:04 AM
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I agree w/ the last two posters. There will be drivers at the docks just waiting to make a living. We hired one in Livorno who took us on a nice tour of Pisa and Florence.
jacketwatch is offline  
Apr 15th, 2008, 07:26 AM
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Now I agree with the last two posters.

There is nothing like walking off the cruise ship and having someone waiting for you......
holding up a sign with your name on it.

He is waving and smiling at you as you approach....you hop into his vehicle and off you go...Priceless!

Percy


Percy is offline  
Apr 15th, 2008, 11:18 AM
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It took us an hour and a half to get from the centre of Rome to the ship by taxi, traffic was horrendous.
Trains are frequent, clean, safe and inexpensive - not like the UK
mickrory is offline  
Apr 19th, 2008, 05:47 AM
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Civitavecchia/Rome = www.romecabs.com

Naples/Pompeii/Amalfi Coast = www.driveamalfi.com

Livorno/Florence/Pisa/Tuscany = www.florencetour.com

Messina/Taormina = www.sicilylife.com

Venice = www.aguideinvenice.com

Villefranche/Monaco/Cannes = www.revelation-tours.com

sbx427 is offline  
Apr 20th, 2008, 07:23 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
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Just got back from a Western Med cruise and spending time in Italy. Cruise excursion prices are absolutely horrendous, so we did our own thing using public transportation/taxis and the cost ended up being about 1/5th. Train travel in Italy is quick, cheap and easy. If you do get a taxi or use a guide, barter about the price. In Naples we started with a price of Euro 90 for 2 people to Pompeii and got it down to E50. In Tunisia, we got the taxi ride down from E120 to E40 for 4 people to/from the Kasbah. Train rides in Italy are quite reasonable and a good way to get yourself about if you're fairly independent and don't need to be led by the nose in a group. Another problem - Hop on, Hop off buses: with 3000 passengers from 1 ship and 6000 from 2 ships in ports, it was a nightmare with people not being able to get on the bus after paying at the pier - so beware of this.
wavejourney is offline  

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