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1st Trip to Florence/Tuscany Christmas 2009

1st Trip to Florence/Tuscany Christmas 2009

Jan 2nd, 2009, 12:16 PM
  #1  
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1st Trip to Florence/Tuscany Christmas 2009

Hello, I am starting to plan a trip to Florence & Tuscany for our 5th wedding anniversary. Neither my wife or I have visited Italy before bu have travelled fairly extensively in other European countries. I had a few general questions -
1. Best airport to fly to price-wise (we will be flying from Boston)
2. We have 17 nights, so I wondered if a week in an apartment in Florence, followed by 10 days in Southern Tuscany, renting a car and touring around, would be a good agenda?
3. does anyone have a small-apartment recommendation in Florence and
4. a recommendation for a small house or apartment in Southern Tuscany to use as a base to tour the area via car? We'd like to stay in a small town with some good restaurants and reasonable amenities.

5. With 17 days, should we try and squeeze in 2 or 3 days in Venice or Rome?

Our vacation would be scheduled arriving in Italy on December 20th flying back January 5, 2010.
Thank you. Graeme
graemecosh is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 07:21 PM
  #2  
 
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What's your budget? Pienza might be a good location as it has several restaurants. I stayed in an apartment there in September.
http://www.nautilus-mp.com/tuscany/a.../indexing.html
kybourbon is online now  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 07:55 PM
  #3  
 
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You actually have 16 nights in Italy. I think you can do more than "squeeze in" Venice and Rome. I'm not sure that's the best time of year to spend a lot of time in Tuscany. While I wouldn't expect a lot of snow, you could certainly have some. However, it's a good time of year for the cities. On the other hand, you apparently want time in Tuscany, so I would:

Fly into Venice, spend 3 nights there.
Train to Florence, spend 4 nights there.
Rent a car and spend 4 nights in Tuscany (Pienza/Montalcino/Montepulicano area is good).
Drop the car in Orvieto, see the Duomo, and train to Rome for the remaining 5 nights, fly home from Rome.
SusanP is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 08:55 PM
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I agree with SusanP that late December is not the best time to tour Tuscany in depth (which is not to say you can't have a very nice few days there).

I would add another city, but I'd only stay in three hotels/apartments over 17 nights. You're going to "lose" a sightseeing day or two to holiday closures. Museums are closed at least one day a week, and not all the same day. You may have a couple of touring days shortened by bad weather. I just think it's a little harder to cover a lot of ground quickly in the winter and especially during the Christmas/New Year's holiday period.

And, yes, there could be snow.
Jean is online now  
Jan 3rd, 2009, 02:33 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
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Hi

My wife and I went to Florence and Tuscany a couple of years back and I hope that you can find some useful info in my trip report with pictures and links http://gardkarlsen.com/florence_italy_travelogue.htm . With 17 days I think there will be room for a couple of days in Rome Get in touch if you have any questions.

Regards
Gard
http://gardkarlsen.com - trip reports and pictures
gard is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2009, 05:58 AM
  #6  
 
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This is a good website for apartments/B&B's in southern Tuscany.
http://www.cretedisiena.com/english/
kybourbon is online now  
Jan 3rd, 2009, 06:41 PM
  #7  
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Thanks everyone, I agree that it may be better to stay in the cities at that time of year. Graeme
graemecosh is offline  
Jan 4th, 2009, 02:21 PM
  #8  
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Does anyone have a recommendation for a small apartment in Florence? Thanks. Graeme
graemecosh is offline  
Jan 4th, 2009, 06:42 PM
  #9  
 
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http://www.venere.com/cgi/hotel/?htid=222112&ref=

We stayed there for a week and it was great. When I save up enough scratch to do Florence again, we'd happily stay there again.
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