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After Rome for Thanksgiving, drive north, or south?

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Apr 20th, 2012, 04:04 PM
  #1
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After Rome for Thanksgiving, drive north, or south?

I've rented an apartment in Rome over Thanksgiving, with DH, DS, DDIL; and DGD, who will be two years old. For our second week, 7-days, we'll rent a car and leave Rome. I'm undecided whether to go north or south.

South: Naples, Pompeii, Sorrento, Positano.
North: Siena, side trip to a hill town or two, Florence.
(Totally different experiences, but both include something of specific interest for all.)

Air travel isn't booked yet (please, make the prices come down!), so we can fly into Rome and home from anywhere. Will December weather be a consideration for not travelling down the coast road? Any thoughts that could help me make a decision would be much appreciated.
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Apr 20th, 2012, 05:56 PM
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That is definitely off season on the Amalfi Coast. A number of hotels and restaurants will be closed. Some of the ferries will have stopped for the season and those left amy or may not run due to high seas. If you like a beach resort out of season that's fine - but I would think there is more to do in florence and the hill towns - especially if you get chilly rain.
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Apr 20th, 2012, 06:32 PM
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That is the wettest time of year in Italy. I would not count on much outdoor activity.
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Apr 20th, 2012, 06:34 PM
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You don't want a car in Naples, and you do not need a car to get from Naples to Pompeii and Herculaneum. From what others say, you do not want to drive on the Amalfi coast. So if you want to drive to see small towns, Tuscany and Umbria would probably be a better choice.
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Apr 20th, 2012, 06:59 PM
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Go north, but dress for it to be windy, cold and wet. Having said that, this can be an outstanding time with rain on cobblestones, mists on mountain tops or seen in the valley for hilltop towns. A warm cappuccino or a cold gelato works for me. PS: Don't be embarassed to wear gloves, cold is cold whether its Siena or Boston. Have a great trip and a gelato on me.
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Apr 21st, 2012, 01:17 PM
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North it is! Thanks for the nudge. We usually travel in November and March when there are less we-the-tourists in Europe. We pack layers, and an LLBean or REI hooded raincoat.

Now, I'm wondering whether we actually need to rent a car. If we're heading to Siena and Florence, we could take the bus. (I think there are also busses that go from Siena to some of the hill towns.) Bus travel with a toddler ... hmm ... sounds like another post!
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Apr 21st, 2012, 02:15 PM
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After Rome you might want to leave out Florence and spend time in smaller towns and the countryside. At which point a car would be a more efficient use of your time.
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Apr 21st, 2012, 02:16 PM
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Just take the train out of Rome's Termini station to Florence and bus to Sienna.
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Apr 21st, 2012, 02:32 PM
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Michael: Smaller towns are very appealing, especially after a week in intense Rome. But, DS and DDIL haven't been to Florence, and would like to.

dutyfree: are you suggesting a train from Rome to Florence; then a bus daytrip to Siena from Florence? I've heard there's a new super-fast train that began service this year, between Rome and Florence.
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Apr 21st, 2012, 04:56 PM
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You could always send them off via public transportation for a day in Florence while you do something else. Or drop them off close to Florence if you are passing by to visit another location.
I admire the art of Florence, but I did not regret by-passing it when we spent three weeks touring Tuscany and Umbria quite a few years ago. Then last year we decided that we really should renew our acquaintance, especially since we were staying very close by.
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