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Any suggestions on how to spend 3 weeks in Italy?

Any suggestions on how to spend 3 weeks in Italy?

Apr 26th, 2008, 04:17 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2004
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Any suggestions on how to spend 3 weeks in Italy?

I am ready to start planning a 3 week trip to Italy for June, 2009. I am very undecided on where to spend our time and would love to hear your suggestions. Here is where we've already been:

Venice 4 times
Rome 2 times
Florence 2 times
Montepulciano 2 times
Porto Santo Stefano
Sorrento/Amalfi Coast

These are places where we've actually spent time, not just driving through. I would like to find a place to "settle in" and really get to know. We are flexible on when we go and how much time we spend. We loved Rome, Venice, and Florence but prefer smaller towns. I have looked at Spoleto, Orvieto, and Lake Bolsena. We will have a car but would like to be either in a town or just outside town. I speak a little Italian (minimal) but have managed to get by so far. Would really appreciate any suggestions or ideas.
granbury is offline  
Apr 26th, 2008, 04:45 PM
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It appears that you've not been to northern Italy, so I suggest focusing on that area: The Lakes, Tirol, the Dolomites, etc. Verona, Vicenza, Mantua, Padua, etc too.
TuckH is offline  
Apr 26th, 2008, 10:32 PM
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What about Sardinia or Sicily?

dina4 is offline  
Apr 26th, 2008, 10:49 PM
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Hello granbury, my first thought is since you are comfortable driving in Italy is that you research going to the Region of Piedmont. It is so wonderful, the food and wine are excellent, the scenery is so beautiful and it is not as crowded as some parts of Italy. Just one thought. And of course in that it is in the north (northwest) you could also enjoy other spots in the north of Italy. It sounds to me from what you have said that Piedmont might really be an ideal location for you. And Turin would be a fun and interesting city for you to explore.
LoveItaly is offline  
Apr 27th, 2008, 07:33 AM
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Your void in Italy is obvious to me. The lakes are still my favorite destination after 14 trips to Italy. I would combine that with 2 other northern destinations---Piemonte and the Dolomites. The lakes are actually 3 destinations if you see it all. It is also easy to add a Swiss destination to the above---Luzern comes to mind.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Apr 27th, 2008, 10:16 AM
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It was our third trip to Italy and we wanted to see/experience something different. We chose Le Marche and came away in love with it. I'm not sure about three weeks there but a location in northern Umbria, such as Citta' di Castello, would give you an opportunity to go to areas new to you, north, south, east, west. Even the Adriatic coast wouldn't be terribly far. Check out this website for more info http://www.le-marche.com/

We only spent an afternoon in Citta di Castello so I can't give you much info on that but we did have a pleasant time and delicious lunch there and the central location might be worth exploring further.
toni_g_b is offline  
Apr 27th, 2008, 10:39 AM
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If you loved Rome, Venice and Florence, you might be bored floating around the Lakes for three weeks.

In three weeks, you could see almost everything that Sicily has to offer: Phoenician settlements, Greek temples and theaters, Roman archeological sites, medieval Arab-Norman cathedrals, Baroque cities. You could spend a week each in eastern, central and western Sicily.

The only caveat is that Sicily can be very hot in June; May is a lovely month in Sicily.
Zerlina is offline  
Apr 27th, 2008, 10:45 AM
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Siena, Radda, Spaltena are all musts! Castella d Spaltena offers magnificent views, fabulous food, and a well preserved glimpse of ancient history.
tandem4us is offline  
Apr 27th, 2008, 11:00 AM
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>> The only caveat is that Sicily can be very hot in June <<

...which is why I suggested The Lakes. True, 3 weeks would be a bit much - we combined our visit there (also in 3 weeks) with the Val Bregaglia and the Engadin in Switzerland and also the towns I mentioned.
TuckH is offline  
Apr 27th, 2008, 12:07 PM
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I want to second the recommendations for Piedmont. We absolutely loved our stay there, you could easily combine it with time at the Lakes. We really loved staying at Baur B&B in Acqui Terme (www.baurbb.com)
jgg is offline  
Apr 27th, 2008, 12:29 PM
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I would second Sicily. I've been to most of Italy at this point, but Sicily remains my favorite just because there is so much vareity. You can see Greek Temples, Norman towns, go to the beach, see volcanos, Roman Mosaics, etc. It looks like you have been to the Aeolion islands, but if you did not do a few days there, you might want to go back. I love the Aeolion islands. There is also Malta and Panrealla (sp) to go visit.

galaxygrrl200 is offline  
Apr 28th, 2008, 11:02 AM
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What great suggestions!

Sicily...hmmmm...sounds interesting. Hot does not bother me...I'm from Texas. I LOVE hot!

LoveItaly - I've driven through parts of Piedmont but never really visited any one place. I believe I'll put it into my research.

Tuck - The Dolomites sound interesting.

bobthenavigator - as always, you intrigue me. I looked at your Lake Orta photos from 2007. I don't know a thing about The Lakes but it looks like Orta might be a good place to start learning.

granbury is offline  
Apr 28th, 2008, 11:27 AM
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Hmmm ! Interesting.
You need to decide north or south. I said north before because of hot in Sicily, but if you can handle that then here is your sneak preview. You can find my trip report as well under " Navigating in Sicily".
bobthenavigator is offline  
Apr 28th, 2008, 12:00 PM
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We did a 2 week trip last September as follows: 3 nights venice (one due to jetlag), drove to Cortina for 2-3 nights, drove through the dolomites to bolzano and merano for 2-3 nights, down to Lake Garda for 3 nights, on to Milan for 3 nights, to verona for 1 night and back to Venice to fly home. We'd also been to venice before so used this trip more to explore small neighborhoods, etc. We did go into St Marks but spent more time on the balcony outside; did not go to the Doge Palace, wandered to many small churches in dursoduro and the jewish ghetto instead. Cortina was lovely with the nearby lakes and hiking. We watched a lot of parasailers talking off from the peaks; while we spent several nights in riva del garda, i might change that next time and spend at least 2 around Como instead. The small villages north of lake garda are very cool and one of the smaller lakes has literally the most vivid aqua blue water I've ever seen. Milan was ok - the cathedral, la scala, ferrari store and of course, the Last Supper are must sees. We also took a day and drove down to the piedmont area for wine tasting. 2 days/one night in Verona was adequate. We did this as a last minute adjustment to our itinerary and ended up being there the night Romeo and Juliet was performed...they only do it once a year. Cittebella was also on our list but we ran out of time!
cmeyer54 is offline  
Apr 30th, 2008, 12:25 PM
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bobthenavigator - thanks for the link to your Sicily photos. I also read your trip report on your 15 days in Sicily. Your statement that Sicily was "intense" might be an understatement. Your photo gallery was wonderful!

cmeyer - sounds like you really made your way around northern Italy! Thanks for the input.

I'm realy leaning towards the Lakes area. I'm a sucker for anything around the water. I've been researching Menaggio at Lake Como and Lake Orta. We are thinking we may spend a week at one or the other. We will probable then head south. I haven't been to Orvieto and would like to spend some time there. And the drive between the Lakes and Orvieto should be interesting.
granbury is offline  
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