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Scottstig Aug 17th, 2005 07:01 AM

Arriving Rome " how far could you drive"
For those that read my earlier thread, I guess you will understand where this is going! We arrive Rome 8am on the 2nd Sept. Coming from western states. Hopefully we will get some sleep. We have hotel reservations 2 nights in Rapallo Sept. 3 and 4. Though I didn't want to make reservations for the 2nd being that I am not sure I could make the complete drive to Rapallo. We were thinking of driving as far as Livorno or Pisa somewhere in that facinity. We would appreciate any ideas where we could enjoy a relaxing late afternoon good food and sights. What town would you stay in that we could get back on the road in the morning. To all the planners and nay-sayers (sp?) We have found some wonderful hotels available in every destination we may or may not go to. 3to4 stars and highly recommended on fodors and frommers! Maybe a lot of people chose to stay home this late summer or hotels are doing some major expansions! don't take me too serious !!!!
Thank You

sandi_travelnut Aug 17th, 2005 07:09 AM

Looking on, they show the route taking you through Florence. What about a day there?

Patrick Aug 17th, 2005 07:20 AM

Or how about a short drive to Orvieto? A great place for a wonderful meal and an overnight, with some interesting things to do in the afternoon? Then get an early start out in the morning. More power to you if you really want to drive further the first day after that flight. I wouldn't!

rex Aug 17th, 2005 07:34 AM

If you want support in taking on the naysayers... I submit that you can make it all the way to Rapallo - - assuming that "you" are a "two" (or more)... drivers.

Best wishes,


ira Aug 17th, 2005 08:27 AM

Hi Scott,

Another vote for Orvieto.

Pisa is 4- 5 hr.

If you want to drive that far, I suggest staying in Lucca.


Wayne Aug 17th, 2005 09:20 AM

You can be assured that with that early an arrival, getting all the way to Rapallo is pretty easy. You've had some nice stopovers recommended, so now you have to decide. If you can sleep on the plane and adapt readily to the jet lag, I'd say go all the way.

suze Aug 17th, 2005 11:26 AM

Since I can't sleep on a plane, come from west coast USA on an overnight flight, and am extremely effected by jet lag... I wouldn't drive two feet.

Seriously, I'd maybe pick up the car and drive to the outskirts of the city somewhere. I always allow myself a day at the beginning of a trip to get myself pulled together before doing anything challenging (like I would consider driving in Rome to be!).

But I know jet lag and the effects of time-change are individual and hopefully you are not as severely effected as I am.

Scottstig Aug 17th, 2005 02:18 PM

Thanks all, Orvieto looks interesting and I have read some good reviews about this quaint town. What is a realistic time line to drive directly to Rapallo. The hotel we are staying at said it was only a four hour drive to Rome is that the case. The other thought is are we going to miss some special places just driving directly to Rapallo. Also I would really appreciate if someone could tell me a nice hotel to stay at near Rome (FCO) We have an early flight out. What would you recommend.

Scottstig Aug 17th, 2005 02:27 PM

I guess I should also ask i.e. Rex and Ira what you feel about making Rapallo our stay for visiting Portofino and Cinque Terre. I hope this is good base.

rex Aug 17th, 2005 02:30 PM

The website says 4 hrs 34 minutes, and I think that that is likely to be typical for Italians who face no city-slower traffic to get started. I think you can make it from FCO to Orvieto in 90 minutes or thereabouts, and from Orvieto to Rapallo in under 5 hours, I would comforrtably estimate (stopping for gas or bathroom breaks included, meals not).

rex Aug 17th, 2005 02:33 PM

Just now saw your most recent question; I have no personal experience with Rapallo, Portofino nor the Cinque Terre. The closest I have been is to make the drive (twice, once each direction) between Florence and Nice, and one overnight at San Remo.

Steve_James Aug 18th, 2005 04:00 AM

Scott - Rapallo is a good base for that area - as is nearby Santa Margherita.

Here's a view:




ira Aug 18th, 2005 04:09 AM

Hi Scott,

>..a nice hotel to stay at near Rome (FCO) We have an early flight out.<

We stayed at the Holiday Inn EUR Parc Medici. Nice hotel popular with tour groups. About 115E dbl w/bkfst. They have a free shuttle to the airport.

Next time we will stay in the City and have a cab take us to FCO.


caroline_edinburgh Aug 18th, 2005 04:53 AM

What time are you arriving and might it coincide with the morning or evening rush hour ? We arrived at FCO last year just in time for the evening rush hour and it took an age (maybe anout 1.5 hours ?) to crawl round the Rome ring road. Once we got on the main motorway north it was very empty & easy driving.

tcreath Aug 18th, 2005 05:06 AM

I think that how far you can or should be willing to drive depends on your tolerance to jet lag and long flights. My husband and I have picked up cars at the airport and driven for about four hours to our first destination without any problems. We usually arrive in Europe excited about our trip and able to make the journey just fine and without any problems, although we are usually ready for a small nap when we get to our hotel. Others, as Suze mentioned, aren't as tolerant and just cannot do this. If you aren't sure or want to play it safe, I too would suggest staying in Orvieto. Its a great town with enough to do to fill up an afternoon/evening, and its an easy 1.5 hour drive from Rome.


rex Aug 18th, 2005 05:23 AM

<<What time are you arriving and might it coincide with the morning or evening rush hour?>>

<<We arrive Rome 8am on the 2nd Sept.>>

I think that they will not hit the GRA much before 9:30. Morning congestion should be reduced by then.

caroline_edinburgh Aug 18th, 2005 07:20 AM

Oh right, Sorry Rex, I overlooked the time there.

Scottstig Aug 18th, 2005 07:39 AM

Thank you all for the great info.
Has anyone stayed at the Italia e lido hotel in Rapallo? All the feedback on Venere rates it high any personal opinions from fodors.
Thanks again,

Michael Aug 18th, 2005 09:12 AM

When we arrived in Rome, we picked up the car at the airport and drove to Tarquinia. The town has an Etruscan museum and tombs that are worth seeing, and you are not pushing yourself too much. You also avoid Rome completely because you are going up the coast.

Mincepie Aug 18th, 2005 09:42 AM

Portovenere IMO is a great choice. Royal Sporting is a very good hotel...make sure you get a room with a view. Some really excellent restaurants in town..will have to go back to my journal to get the names if you want them. Orvieto is a great choice for a first stop, but I would not chose Lucca. Although this is a beautiful is hard to find your way in if you are stressed and tired...however a bicycle ride around the walls the next day would be a great way to get over jet lag.

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