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6 days in Italy: Perugia to Venice, with Florence on the way?

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Apr 13th, 2012, 12:19 PM
  #1
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6 days in Italy: Perugia to Venice, with Florence on the way?

My husband and I have 6 days in Italy to plan. In this time we'll be visiting Perugia and Venice, and possibly Florence as well. On the first day, we'll be travelling from Rome (where we will have been previously for 5 days) to Perugia. This is firm. I want to go to Perugia, as I lived there in college. On day 7 we fly out of Venice. This is also firm.

In between, we are trying to decide if we can fit Florence into the plan, or if that will be too much. It seems doable, especially, as the train from Perugia to Venice goes through Florence anyway.

We're young and don't travel often, and I tend to feel the need to see as much as possible on this trip. I've been to all of these cities before, so don't need an extensive visit at any one. My husband has never been to Italy, but he doesn't have strong opinions on seeing art vs local culture etc. He has left planning the itinerary completely up to me, bless him.

I love Perugia and Venice. From past experience, I wasn't crazy about Florence, feeling it seemed very touristy. I think I should give it another shot, and also would like to take my husband there to see some of the Renaissance masterpieces. At least this way we'll know how we feel about each of the 3 major cities in Italy to inform future trips. But I don't want to make these 6 days unpleasant by cramming too much in.

The 2 itineraries we're deciding between are:

Day 1: Rome to Perugia, arriving in Perugia around dinner time
Day 2: Perugia
Day 3: Day trip in Umbria, sleep in Perugia
Day 4: Perugia in the morning; 5 hour train to Venice in the afternoon arriving in Venice late that night
Day 5: Venice
Day 6: Murano / Burano / Torcello / Venice
Day 7: fly home

OR

Day 1: train from Rome to Perugia, arriving in Perugia around dinner time
Day 2: Perugia
Day 3: Perugia in the morning; 2.5 hour train to Florence in the afternoon arriving around dinner time
Day 4: Florence
Day 5: 2.5 hour train from Florence to Venice arriving arond 10 AM
Day 6: Venice
Day 7: fly home

Any help with this would be much appreciated!
jules10 is offline  
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Apr 13th, 2012, 12:30 PM
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Based on the time you want to spend in and around Perugia you can;t also do both Venice and florence. Your plans give very short shrift to both. Pick one - Venice if you haven;t been there before - and spend more than one day - so you can get at least a little feel for the city.
nytraveler is offline  
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Apr 13th, 2012, 12:46 PM
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If you want to give Florence "another shot", you should do it during the off-season. You don't say when this trip is, but if it is between May and the middle of November, expect mobs in Florence -- tourist mobs.

There are more Michaelangelos in Rome than in Florence, and plenty of Renaissance masterworks of painting and architecture.

Take your husband to the National Gallery of Umbrian Art to see great masterpieces and the Accademia in Venice.

Visit Florence some future Thanksgiving -- I'm serious! Or maybe you are not American. Anyway, late November can be pleasant, and you can always hedge your bets by staying in Siena or Arezzo or Lucca or even some of the less famous towns along the train line -- or try Bologna if you like pasta.
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Apr 13th, 2012, 05:29 PM
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Thank you for the input. I guess we'll skip Florence this time around, especially as we're travelling in early June. We have a low tolerance for tourist-y-ness (being New Yorkers, we fancy ourselves above this). We'll instead take some time to enjoy Perugia and Umbria and Venice, and consider a future trip to Florence in the off season. Bologna is definitely on our list for next time too. Thanks again.
jules10 is offline  
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Apr 13th, 2012, 06:18 PM
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Here is another option, which would give you a taste of Florence:

Day 1: train from Rome to Perugia
Day 2: Perugia
Day 3: Perugia
Day 4: in the morning, train from Perugia to Florence (for example: dep 10:01, arr 11:57); check luggage at Deposito Baggagli at the train station; have lunch and afternoon wandering Florence; train to Venice arriving that night (dep 19:00, arr 21:03)
Day 5: Venice
Day 6: Venice
Day 7: fly home
ellenem is offline  
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Apr 13th, 2012, 08:04 PM
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I was thinking about that too - spending just the day in transit in Florence. Something to consider. Thanks.
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Apr 14th, 2012, 03:08 AM
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I think the taste of Florence you will get by waiting in line to stow your luggage and tromping into the center of town to have a lunch in one of Florence's typically not-so-good-touristy restaurants won't be a nice one.

If you opt for this plan, do a lot of research about finding an excellent restaurant without the toruist vibe (very hard to locate in the centro storico) and don't go if the temps have climbed high.

My own view is that is also not easy to find a place to "wander" in the centro storico in Florence once the tourist season starts. Go-with-the-tide would be my description. I fear you will take one look around and want to flee, especially if you have found most corners of Perugia and Umbria to be relatively free of mass tourism and cruise-shippers (and delicious).
zeppole is offline  
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Apr 14th, 2012, 09:48 AM
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I did Florence as a day trip in June several years ago and did not like it. We hit the Accademia and Uffizi and were so overwhelmed by the crowds we headed over to the Oltrarno and then out of town. It was our least fav of the big 3.

Went back 2 years ago in early May and stayed 4 nights. Had a chance to see the Bargello, Santa Croce, San Marco, etc. Much more enjoyable--I would happily return.

Let your husband fall in love with Italy this trip--so you can return for Florence and Bologna.
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Apr 17th, 2012, 07:44 AM
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Good advice, Mama Mia and Zeppole. We'll save Florence and Bologna for another less rushed, potentially off-season trip.
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