10 night itinerary for Italy

May 9th, 2016, 01:57 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: May 2016
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10 night itinerary for Italy

Hi,

I have read quite a few trip itineraries here and so I thought it will be great to post and get your input. My wife and I are going to Italy for 10 nights and 11 days. We will be landing in Rome on 1st Sept AM and flying out of Venice on 11th Sept at around 7pm. We were planning to the following:
1) Rome for 3 nights
2) Amalfi Coast for 2 nights (there is a direct bus from Rome to Amalfi Coast that leaves around 6am and reaches around 10am)
3) Florence for 2 nights (either fly from Naples to Florence or take the train. In Florence we were planning on renting a car to see the vineyards)
4) Venice for 2 nights (Take the train from Florence to Venice)
5) Last 1 night is still open

I was hoping to get your suggestions and input on the above itinerary. Is it too many places? Where should I add that last night? Should I just rent a car after Rome and use that to travel to Amalfi Coast and then Florence and return the rental car in Venice? Or is public transportation the way to go? Also best neighborhood to stay in Rome? Any other suggestions or input on hidden gems to visit along the way, favorite local cafe / restaurant, must see places etc. will be much appreciated.

Please help me out

Cheers,
Roshan
roshanadvani is offline  
May 9th, 2016, 02:02 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 65,987
>>4) Venice for 2 nights (Take the train from Florence to Venice)

5) Last 1 night is still open <<

Not quite sure I understand -- since you are flying out of Venice wouldn't you want to stay in Venice the 3 nights?

>>Or is public transportation the way to go? Also best neighborhood to stay in Rome<<

You don't need or want a car for any of this. If you had more time to add a few days in Tuscany -- then sure rent a car when leaving Florence. But you don't have the time.

>> In Florence we were planning on renting a car to see the vineyards)<<

But you will only be in Florence 1.5 days in total.
janisj is online now  
May 9th, 2016, 02:08 PM
  #3  
 
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Two nights yields only one full day. To any journey you need to add a couple of hours when changing hotels. From Rome I would head to Florence, 1.5 hours on the train. Last night needs to be in Venice since that is the departure city.
RonZ is offline  
May 9th, 2016, 06:04 PM
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You asked, "Is it too many places?" I would say yes. Are the air tickets already purchased? If so, I'd drop the Amalfi Coast.

I wouldn't rent a car for a single day excursion out of Florence. I'd hire a car and driver for the day or take an escorted group tour.
Jean is online now  
May 9th, 2016, 07:00 PM
  #5  
 
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Full days after subtracting the travel days: Rome 3, Florence 2, Venice 3. That's why adding another stop is a problem.
RonZ is offline  
Jun 1st, 2016, 12:55 PM
  #6  
 
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Hi Roshan,

It IS too many places. Cut down on Amalfi, unless there is a special reason to go there. Else, cut Venice, unless flights are booked.

The only place you'd benefit from a car is Tuscany. Gives flexibility to explore smaller villages not on train / frequent bus route.

In Rome, I stayed couple of mins walking distance to Piazza Venezia & Pantheon along via del corso. Excellent location in city center. Plus I caught the bus to Vatican early morning and a bus to the train station by simply crossing the road.

In Florence, stay anywhere in the city center. It's a small city and everywhere is walkable and the walk is super enjoyable.

In Venice, I stayed a minute (max) of walk away from the San Marco square. I got lucky to land a palace hotel stay at a reasonable price because it was a last minute booking. For a first timer to Venice, there is nothing like flitting in and out of San Marco 5 times a day, seeing different ambience through the day, listening to the live music at the legendary cafes and so on. Considering so many of first-timer attractions are around San Marco and getting to and fro train station with luggage is easy at the vaporetto stop, I'd say stay close to San Marco for your first visit.

In Amalfi, we stayed at a lovely HUGE 2 bedroom 2-storey villa with fully furnished kitchen and a cosy living room 50m from the main piazza of Ravello. It was a last minute booking in high season, almost everything was booked in Positano and Amalfi town and luckily we stayed in Ravello, which turned out better because when we visited these popular towns, the throngs of visitors with no space to breathe in the hot and humid weather made it unpleasant (although I am a part of the crowds. I constitute the crowds. So I can't be too critical, can I?). On the other hand, Ravello was gorgeous, with mostly only the residents occupying the piazza and walking around their lives. There was not a soul when we walked around early morning to the monastery and the villa cimbrone gardens. The restaurants and their sea view with towns of maiori and minori were beautiful. I can't get the evening out of my eyes, when we dined at salvatore restaurant in the table with best views of the sea. The super-moon shining a visible beam through the otherwise dark sea and seeing the towns below as dots of golden lights with shadows lightly bathed in the super-moon's aura was priceless. Using Sita buses was a pain though. Took a cab to go to Naples train station on the day of going to Rome.
rtwin80days is offline  
Jun 1st, 2016, 01:12 PM
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roshanadvani posted the questions and then has not returned -- apparently isn't too interested in the responses.
janisj is online now  
Jun 1st, 2016, 01:15 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: May 2012
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Special must-do's:

Venice - go to murano island and watch the artists making glass live. I was so curious and dedicated in my watching it for over an hour in that blistering heat while tourists were flitting in and out with just a photo-op, the guys waved me to cross the barrier and come over to watch closely. They tried to explain the process in highly highly broken English, which was a great gesture. After another hour or so of being hypnotized by how skillfully they were creating masterpieces, I see them wrapping up for lunch, but not before this guy asking me to pay even more attention. He built this small 6-inch horse figurine, let it cool and set and presented to me with a smile. Priceless memory.

Cooking class - see if you can fit in a cooking class in any of the towns. Tons available, specially if you have no dietary constraint. I am a vegetarian and I am passionate about Italian food and ended up doing solo weeklong cooking classes in a lovely villa on a small farm in Umbria quite close to Tuscan border. Unforgettable. At least do one afternoon class in any city.

Florence - visit mercato centrale and go crazy eyeing and buying the most gorgeous Italian foods, fresh and bottled. Upstairs food court, I am told, showcases the best of Italian food. Eat, walk, repeat! The market was getting some renovation and slight change of location of the outside leather market while I was there so info on upstairs food court is second hand.

Gelato - not all gelato is made equal. Do your research, find best places, mark them somewhere closer to where you'd be going in that city, and then devour while there. Eat gelato like the world is ending. I did.

Make time for passeggiata and savor la dolce vita, enjoy street music performances, the cool breeze and the winding down of yet another day.

I should stop. I have my own trip to plan and tons to do and I am a nostalgic person with over-sharing tendencies.
rtwin80days is offline  
Jun 1st, 2016, 01:18 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: May 2012
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janisj- read your post after typing a long second post! Hmmmmphh.

Anyway, hoping that everything we type stays in the world of Internet and will be read by many others, other than the OP, making it (maybe) useful to someone someday. (because I read so many posts on this forum whenever I get time. Just because.)
rtwin80days is offline  
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