Alone in Italy- need help!

Feb 14th, 2004, 11:22 AM
  #1  
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Alone in Italy- need help!

I am traveling to Italy next month and need help. I have reservations to fly into Naples with a five night stay in Sorrento for a conference (yes- a business trip to Italy, can you beat that?!?)

1) What is the best way to get from the Naples airport to Sorrento? If I take the train, how do I get from the airport to the train station?

2) How should I plan to dress for mid-March?

3) Any must-sees in the Sorrento area? I only have one day to sightsee and plan to go to Pompeii at a minimum.

4) How much cash (Euros) should I try to have on hand? Should I get this at the airport or before I leave home?

5) Any watchouts for the Naples/Sorrento/Pompeii area for a female traveling alone?

6) Any other travel-savy advice? I've only been to Italy once (Rome, Florence, Venice) 10 years ago with a tour group.

Thanks in advance for all of your help!
mama_bear is offline  
Feb 14th, 2004, 11:47 AM
  #2  
rex
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,194
1. Don't know.

2. Like San Francisco or Annapolis in March - - moderate, not hot. See www.weatherbase.com or www.worldclimate.com for detailed statistics

3. The coast and Pompeii seems as much as you can accomplish in one day.

4. Either none - - or the higher of 50-100 euros or half of your daily income (i.e., Donald Trump would carry more). Use as little cash as you can. Your credit cards will get a better exchange rate, but check with your credit card(s) issuer(s) before you go, regarding nasty surcharge points. Use an ATM just as you would in the US, typically not more than 100 euro, and repeat as necessary.

5. I'll let a woman answer this.

6. Use a money belt, under your clothes. Pack light in lightweight luggage. Test yourself - - can you carry every bit of your luggage (ideally,one "rollaboard" and one carry-on +/- a purse) - - up and down a flight of steps, BRISKLY? If not, start reducing what you are taking.

Have fun.

Best wishes,

Rex
rex is offline  
Feb 14th, 2004, 12:07 PM
  #3  
yk
 
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Hi mama bear-

I'll try to answer some questions for you:

1. Though I've never done that, from what I've read on this board, the easiest way is to take the Curreri bus which goes directly from Naples airport to Sorrento. If you type "Naples Airport" in the search box here, you should be able to pull up old threads that mention about transportation.

http://www.curreriviaggi.it

2. Rex already answered that.

3. Pompeii can easily take up the whole day. Train schedules at:
http://www.curreriviaggi.it

4. Rex answered that as well.

5. I felt safe in Sorrento & Pompeii. I was only at the train station in Naples, and definitely "dodgy-looking" hanging around. Also, be careful on the CV train as I've heard they are pickpockets (but I never saw any).

6. Money belt is a must.
yk is offline  
Feb 14th, 2004, 12:11 PM
  #4  
 
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mama bear, there is a bus from Naples airport to Sorrento (the bus stop is across the street from the airport, about 20 meters, and is posted.) There is an ATM in the airport at one end (to the right as you face the airport)it is not well marked.
Henry is offline  
Feb 14th, 2004, 12:17 PM
  #5  
 
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Pompeii is practically a day all by itself. (We were just there on January 17.) But a piece of advice: BEFORE you get your ticket, go into the bookstore. Look through the books and maps and try to get the one that is MOST current and MOST directly KEYED to the signage. You may be disappointed that you can't get into some buildings (we couldn't visit Julia Felix) and navigating the town and figuring out how to get around road closures can be frustrating and timeconsuming.

The book we had matched the physical reality hardly at all.

You may wish to get the audio tour. The headset comes with a map. We didn't and I wonder if that was a mistake.

But we LOVED it!!! Have a ball and wave away, just ignore all those guys standing around offering to be a "tour guide."
ebcutler is offline  
Feb 14th, 2004, 01:38 PM
  #6  
ira
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Hi mama

4) I change about $100 at the departure airport, paying an additional few dollars, and then use ATMs in Italy.

5) "Keep your nose up and your skirts down".

6) See Helpful Information: Italy http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...2&tid=34443340
ira is offline  
Feb 14th, 2004, 01:44 PM
  #7  
 
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Ooooo, you'll have such fun! I've been to sorrento several times by myself without any major problems -- aside from getting my butt pinched once!
sera is offline  
Feb 14th, 2004, 01:45 PM
  #8  
 
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Forgot to ask where you're staying.
sera is offline  
Feb 14th, 2004, 02:21 PM
  #9  
 
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Well, if this is a business trip don't they take care of transport from the aiport to the hotel? I would assume this arrangement would be part of the conference package. As far as luggage is concerned it depends on what type of a conference and what your role is. If you can afford to be casual the whole time that's fine and you may get by with a carry-on. But I have done a lot of business travel to Europe and one of the dangers for a woman is trying to pack like a man. A guy can get away with wearing the same suit a couple of times - a woman can't. And few hotels in europe have the 4 hour dry-cleaning you can get in US hotels. I have found I need a medium size wheeled bag for clothes (suits, silk shirts, matching pumps and evening clothes etc.as well as my "real" clothes) and that my carry-on is just enough for my computer, files/documents, toiletries and one emergency change of clothes.

In any case, I wuld look into what arrangements the conference has for transfers. Even if not provided free they may have some sort of shuttle service or a service matching arrivees in sets to share a car.

For sightseeing definitely do Pompeii - it's unforgettable. Capri is the other classic trip but I'm not sure about boats/hovercraft in March. Sorrento itself is a charming town - often overlooked vs the smaller and harder to reach towns further down the coast. But we spent an afternoon roaming the town and browsing the shops quite happily.
nytraveler is offline  
Feb 14th, 2004, 02:54 PM
  #10  
 
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Make time to see Positano late afternoon or evening. Try to see the museum in Naples as well as Pompeii. On my day of sightseeing, I would spend 2-4 hrs. at Pompeii, 2 at the Museum, then to Positano to see the view and have dinner there. You can catch a bus or cab back to Sorrento. If you have late afternoons and evenings free, you could do Positano another day. If you find you have a little more time, go see Ravello and the Villa Cimbrone gardens. You are going to love it!

You can also hire a driver to pick you up in Naples and take you to Sorrento, but it is expensive.

WanderingTexan is offline  
Feb 14th, 2004, 03:03 PM
  #11  
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Thanks for the quick response and tons of great information!!!

In response to Sera's question, I'm staying at the Hilton (Via S. Antonio). That's where the conference is located. As a tourist, it would not be my first choice, but it will be convenient for the conference sessions.

NYtraveler, thanks for the advice about checking with the conference organizers. I doubt they provide transportation, but it doesn't hurt to check.

Thank you for all the links- especially the previous Italy FAQ thread!
mama_bear is offline  
Feb 16th, 2004, 05:20 PM
  #12  
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