11 days, 17 hours and counting to Italy!

Sep 1st, 2009, 12:11 PM
  #1  
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11 days, 17 hours and counting to Italy!

I think I'm prepared; I have clothes laid out, lists checked off, passports, credit cards, ATM cards (copies and phone numbers), lodging confirmations completed. We're leaving at 6:00 am on the 14th and I have convinced everyone to do just carryons! YAY!

A funny thing when I was trying to get our seating assignments. I booked this trip, through Orbitz, way back in January for DH and another couple that will be traveling with us. Four tickets, two credit cards. For some reason Delta (who is operating the US legs from SFO to JFK and back could not see our friends return flight. Lo and behold, litalia had changed them to fly through Chicago/O'Hare!!! It took me a few days but Orbitz was great and we are back on the same flights again, with all of our seating assignments.

We land in Rome for an hour before continuing on to our first destination, Venice, for 3 nights. I have the Alilaguna schedule and the right stop to get off for our B&B, Corte Campana. No tours in Venice, just wandering through the six sestieri and getting lost in Venice. I do want to attend one of the Vivaldi concerts while there, but doubt if my companions will. Should I get my cash in Rome while at the airport? How about the Roma Pass? We won't actually be in Rome until the 20th (4 nights here after 2 in Bevagna). My understanding is that the 3 day time clock does not begin until you have visited your first sight, correct or no? We have our tour of ancient Rome booked with Francesca Caruso all on one ticket for 11E. Do you think the Roma Pass is still worth it if we plan to use it for the Borghese and transportation? I have lists and lists of restaurants in Rome so I think we'll eat lunches in at our apartment (take a quick siesta) and plan for dinners out. Major body clock adjustments since we are up in the states by 5:00 a.m. each day!

I have train schedules and fares thanks to kybourbon and others so when we head out I feel pretty confident. I think it was bobthenav that suggested training all the way to Salerno and taking the ferry back to Positano. I can't wait to see the Amalfi coast (5 nights here) and hike around, see Pompeii and Paestum. Then we head down to Sicily for the final leg of our trip for 6 nights. We will land in Palermo and head west then south around the island (Castelvetrano, Agrigento, Ragusa Ibla, Sircusa/Ortigia and finally Catania.

Does anyone have any final suggestions or tips for anything at all? You have all been so wonderful and I have gleaned so much from this great site, I absolutely promise to do a trip report when we return.

Grazie mille!
galelstorm is offline  
Sep 1st, 2009, 12:49 PM
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I wouldn't buy the Roma Pass until you get back to Rome. They come with a heavy booklet (about the size of a guide book), maps, etc. and I wouldn't want to lug the packet around. I made the mistake of buying mine when I landed in Rome even though I wasn't staying there until 10 days later.
kybourbon is online now  
Sep 1st, 2009, 12:51 PM
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The only suggestion I have it "Have a whole lot of fun"
This sounds like a wonderful trip. PLEASE do a trip report!
bramsole is offline  
Sep 1st, 2009, 12:52 PM
  #4  
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kybourbon-as usual thanks for the sage advice! I certainly don't want to lug more than necessary. I had no idea it was cumbersome, thinking it was just a ticket type of thing.
galelstorm is offline  
Sep 1st, 2009, 01:08 PM
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Remember to smile--it always helps.
Eat gelato and drink limoncello daily--it is required.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Sep 1st, 2009, 01:14 PM
  #6  
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I plan on BIG GRINS from ear to ear and I know I'll keep the Italians smiling while I practice my Italian on them!
Someone, on this site, mentioned a limoncello martini (probably maitaitom) mmmm, how refreshing!
galelstorm is offline  
Sep 1st, 2009, 05:33 PM
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gale, I'm jealous we go in May. Have a fabulous time!
bxl4373 is offline  
Sep 1st, 2009, 05:42 PM
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galestorm,

Have a great time! My husband and I leave for Italy in 34 days, counting the days. Just like you Venice is our first stop.
cafegoddess is offline  
Sep 1st, 2009, 05:55 PM
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Sounds like a fantastic trip -- have a grat time!
yestravel is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2009, 04:59 AM
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Thank you all very much for the well wishes. Patience has never been one of my virtues so this waiting since January has been interesting. It has allowed me to learn more and plan better I believe. The only thing that I have not yet gotten is...the Scavi Tour confirmation...sniff...sniff. But there is still time and you never know. There will be plenty to fill my heart and mind, I know, not to mention my stomach!
galelstorm is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2009, 05:13 AM
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Call the Scavi office when you get to Rome and see if they have any openings. They really don't seem very efficient when it comes to booking those tours. I only got the generic response from them (twice before I left, but was able to get a tour once I was in Italy even on the day I had originally requested online. My tour was not full (8 of us) and three others on the tour had also booked after arriving in Italy.
kybourbon is online now  
Sep 2nd, 2009, 08:40 AM
  #12  
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kybourbon-Wow, thanks for the tip. I know I read here that someone had actually done this but I couldn't remember who and how. I'll try my best persuasive manner since I really want to see the Scavi!
galelstorm is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2009, 09:03 AM
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Hi Gale, I can feel your excitement in this post! It looks like we will miss each other on the Amalfi Coast or I would suggest a gtg. I will be in Positano 11th to 17th and Palermo the evening of the 17th. I am heading to Aeolians for 4 days after that. I join you in your pre-trip countdown!!
JenV is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2009, 09:04 AM
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"The only thing that I have not yet gotten is...the Scavi Tour confirmation."

That happened to me, as well. I know they say not to email again, but I did just that saying "I sent this a couple of months ago and I have not heard back from you. I leave for Rome shortly." Then I copied my first email with all the details. I heard back from them the following day with date and time. Good luck.

maitaitom is online now  
Sep 2nd, 2009, 09:35 AM
  #15  
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JenV - Oh yes, we will just miss each other! We are in Positano the 24th to the 28th then off to Palermo the 29th! I envy your Aeolian journey, be sure to fill us in when you return! Buon viaggio!
maitaitom-Thanks! I'm going to do just that on my lunch hour today and if I don't hear anything then I can call when I get to Rome! I thought you might comment on the limoncello martini comment. Wasn't it you that mentioned one here somewhere? Any particular recipe that you follow?
galelstorm is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2009, 09:51 AM
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"I thought you might comment on the limoncello martini comment."

Equal parts Stoli Lemon Vodka and good Limoncello (2 1/2 ounces each)
Splash of Whiskey Sour Mix (not sweet and sour)
Put ingredients in shaker full of ice
Shake, Shake, Shake
Strain, Pour and Do Not Operate Heavy Machinery!

maitaitom is online now  
Sep 2nd, 2009, 10:00 AM
  #17  
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MTT-You are a love! I can't wait to imbibe whilst relaxing on our balcony in Positano!
galelstorm is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2009, 10:30 AM
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"I can't wait to imbibe whilst relaxing on our balcony in Positano!"

That's what I would call heaven. Have fun!!! Let us know if those Scavi folks get back to you. If not, I'll give those Swiss Guards a talking to when I am in Rome at Christmas!

maitaitom is online now  
Sep 2nd, 2009, 10:53 AM
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You sound so organized galeslstorm. And excited, which I sure can relate too! I get the impression this is your first trip to Italy and if so I have always felt the first visit to Italy is the most exciting trip of all! When in Venice have a glass of Prosseco which is from the Congeliano (one hour north of Venice) area. And enjoy every precious moment!
LoveItaly is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2009, 11:49 AM
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I am leaving for Italy in 9 days (a similar itinerary - Venice, Positano, Rome) and I am not NEARLY as ready as you!
JenD1018 is offline  

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