Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Falling in love with Italy again! Lake Como, Cinque Terre and Tuscany

Falling in love with Italy again! Lake Como, Cinque Terre and Tuscany

Old Apr 6th, 2024, 02:49 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 704
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Falling in love with Italy again! Lake Como, Cinque Terre and Tuscany

We had a delightful trip to Italy in October 2023 and am finally writing this report!

After a wonderful trip to Ireland in 2022, we were eager to plan our next adventure. However, our son was about to propose to his girlfriend and we had to wait on their date selection to move forward with our plans. Our ideal time would have been the last 2 weeks of September, but they chose the end of September for the wedding so we moved it back to October 8.

We have friends that we travelled with right before Covid. That was their first trip to Europe and they were willing to let us take the lead in the planning. It was really nice trip, and after Covid, they went on another trip with another couple and now with some experience under their belt, that wanted to be involved with the planning.

They had planned at one point to go to Tuscany and stay a week in a villa, but that trip was cancelled due to health issues.They were eager to try that again. I don't know why I have had an aversion to going to Italy lately. Venice is absolutely one of my favorite places, and we have been to Florence a couple of times and been lucky enough to go to Rome 3 times. But maybe the memory of the heat when we were in Rome once with our kids in July or the hustle and bustle and chaos in Positano on our last trip to Italy was sticking with me. And lately, France has been a positive experience. But let give it a try!

They only had 12 days to work with so a villa for a week wasn't going to happen. DH has been in love with that idea for 20 years, when some friends went with 3 other couples and had a great time. But, I know him well enough to know that the vague dreamy notion of sitting and viewing the rolling hills, and cooking in would not work. He has to be on the go, learning something new constantly and he doesn't cook! Our friends had the same dream, being somewhere remote and having chefs come in to cook for us. We have gotten to the point where we enjoy staying in a place with walkable restaurants so we can wander the shops before dinner and then walk home after dinner , and not drive in the dark and after having cocktails. I knew this group well enough to know this concept wouldn't work, we would be stir crazy at night and I don't think they had put a pen to the cost of having a chef come in every night.

So with that off the table, we had the first of our few meetings to go over our itinerary, flights and dates. This is always a delicate meeting and differences in the goals were immediately obvious. One wanted to go to Pisa and 3 of us didn't, I didn't necessarily want to go to CT, they didn't want to spend time in Milan or Florence, and I love wine but they don't drink that much wine and my husband doesn't like dry Italian wines, so no wineries. At one point I was reminded of the joke, What is the definition of a camel? It is a horse that was designed by a committee! I was starting to wonder if anyone would get the trip they wanted. But we did get there and we came up with:
Houston-Newark-Milan
3 nights Varenna-Hotel Royal Victoria
2 nights Manarola-Marina Piccolo
3 nights Montalcino-Porto Castellana
2 nights Florence-Hotel Cerratani
Florence-Paris
2 nights Paris-Hotel Clement
Paris-Houston

Off we go!

coral22 is online now  
Old Apr 6th, 2024, 03:07 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 4,695
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I am so looking forward to your report as you know we plan on visiting Northern Italy next year, to include CT, Lake Como and Florence, amongst other places.
KarenWoo is offline  
Old Apr 7th, 2024, 08:31 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 29,801
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Sign me up, coral22!
TDudette is online now  
Old Apr 7th, 2024, 09:38 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 7,332
Received 6 Likes on 1 Post
I’m also along for the ride….except for the Newark part, haha.
🍷 🍕 🍨 🇮🇹
TPAYT is offline  
Old Apr 7th, 2024, 10:41 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 6
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by coral22
We had a delightful trip to Italy in October 2023 and am finally writing this report!

After a wonderful trip to Ireland in 2022, we were eager to plan our next adventure. However, our son was about to propose to his girlfriend and we had to wait on their date selection to move forward with our plans. Our ideal time would have been the last 2 weeks of September, but they chose the end of September for the wedding so we moved it back to October 8.

We have friends that we travelled with right before Covid. That was their first trip to Europe and they were willing to let us take the lead in the planning. It was really nice trip, and after Covid, they went on another trip with another couple and now with some experience under their belt, that wanted to be involved with the planning.

They had planned at one point to go to Tuscany and stay a week in a villa, but that trip was cancelled due to health issues.They were eager to try that again. I don't know why I have had an aversion to going to Italy lately. Venice is absolutely one of my favorite places, and we have been to Florence a couple of times and been lucky enough to go to Rome 3 times. But maybe the memory of the heat when we were in Rome once with our kids in July or the hustle and bustle and chaos in Positano on our last trip to Italy was sticking with me. And lately, France has been a positive experience. But let give it a try!

They only had 12 days to work with so a villa for a week wasn't going to happen. DH has been in love with that idea for 20 years, when some friends went with 3 other couples and had a great time. But, I know him well enough to know that the vague dreamy notion of sitting and viewing the rolling hills, and cooking in would not work. He has to be on the go, learning something new constantly and he doesn't cook! Our friends had the same dream, being somewhere remote and having chefs come in to cook for us. We have gotten to the point where we enjoy staying in a place with walkable restaurants so we can wander the shops before dinner and then walk home after dinner , and not drive in the dark and after having cocktails. I knew this group well enough to know this concept wouldn't work, we would be stir crazy at night and I don't think they had put a pen to the cost of having a chef come in every night.

So with that off the table, we had the first of our few meetings to go over our itinerary, flights and dates. This is always a delicate meeting and differences in the goals were immediately obvious. One wanted to go to Pisa and 3 of us didn't, I didn't necessarily want to go to CT, they didn't want to spend time in Milan or Florence, and I love wine but they don't drink that much wine and my husband doesn't like dry Italian wines, so no wineries. At one point I was reminded of the joke, What is the definition of a camel? It is a horse that was designed by a committee! I was starting to wonder if anyone would get the trip they wanted. But we did get there and we came up with:
Houston-Newark-Milan
3 nights Varenna-Hotel Royal Victoria
2 nights Manarola-Marina Piccolo
3 nights Montalcino-Porto Castellana
2 nights Florence-Hotel Cerratani
Florence-Paris
2 nights Paris-Hotel Clement
Paris-Houston

Off we go!
I can't wait to hear how this goes! Already enjoy your writing style.
Grace4 is offline  
Old Apr 7th, 2024, 02:43 PM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 704
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks, all! I have benefitted from so many reports, I am happy to do it!
Karen, I am thinking of your fabulous trip, you will love it! I am envious of your 30 days!
TPAYT, you are not kidding about Newark! What a frenetic, crowded international experience.
Thanks, Grace4, that is kind

When looking at flights, we had already missed that sweet window of about 11 months out to use our mileage and United has been ridiculous with their mileage amounts needed for anything above economy. We were very spoiled by going in business class to Dublin, but I think getting those low mileage deals are gone. So we paid for premium economy going over and that wasn't too painful. To return, we have used the wonderful Air France Paris-Houston flight a few times. We don't have many nonstops from Europe to Houston, so we have flown to Paris and spent a 2 nights there to get another welcome visit. We transferred in mileage from Chase Sapphire to Air France and used 25,000 miles in coach. With a $30 upgrade fee we moved to the back 4 rows where are only 2 seats across on each side and have better legroom. We like that we are close to the bathrooms (but not too close!) and the flight attendants, that are not working the carts, serve dinner from the back. They are very attentive and there is also a little buffet of snacks set up back there. It is quite the deal and flying coach home never bothers me.

The best deal we could find was United's connection through Newark. We had a choice of 1:20 or 4:30 on the ground, neither ideal. I was afraid if we had a delay, we would at least lose a day of our trip and really pushed for the longer time, even though everyone wasn't thrilled with the decision. We pulled out from the gate in Houston, and immediately went to a holding area and then returned to the gate with an electrical panel issue. We ended up leaving 1:30 later. Of, course, the other shorter ground time flight, ended up getting in early! But we had a chance to relax in the lounge, enjoy a cocktail and use a real bathroom. The time went by fast and worked out well. The flight was fine and the food was decent and we landed on time.

Another discussion was when to rent a car. We knew we wanted one in Tuscany and our friends really thought we would be fine renting in the Milan airport and driving to Varenna. I was adamant about not driving after an overnight international flight. As we dragged out of baggage claim, our friends commented that they were so happy, we didn't have to go pick up a car and drive. Our driver was cheerfully waiting for us and loaded us in a big van. At $110 a couple, it was a good investment in ourselves. If there is just 2 of you, the smaller car is also, $110. It is normally a 1:15 drive but there was a major wreck so we sat without moving for an hour. It was so nice to close our eyes and wake up when we arrived at the beautiful Royal Victoria.

This was our splurge hotel at $430 a night and the room was big, with a large bathroom, and a big balcony with gorgeous views of the lake. This is why you come to Lake Como! We tried to get reservations at the much recommended, Hotel Du Lac but it was booked. When we first tried to get reservations, at Royal Victoria, on their website, it said they were unavailable, also. So, we emailed them and got the room of our choice. It was bigger than a lot of the places we stay, but it was not huge or crowded. There is, a beautiful bar, a small pool and poolside bar, a spa, several seating areas and a fantastic breakfast room with beautiful views and an extensive buffet which was included in the price.
https://www.royalvictoria.com/en/4-s...-views-varenna

We had decided to just grab something quick for dinner, since we didn't know how tired we would be, so after a shower and a short nap, we headed out to explore the town. We didn't want to stay right by ferry or the train station because of the noise factor and so we just looked at the shops on our side of the promenade. We found a delightful restaurant, Nilus Bar, with a very reasonably priced menu with pasta, chicken and seafood. Everyone was pleased with their dinner and the view.
https://varennaitaly.it/en/tours/bar-nilus/

It was an easy walk back to our hotel and a great night of sleep. A perfect first day!

coral22 is online now  
Old Apr 7th, 2024, 05:21 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 4,695
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Coral22, what is the name of the private car service you used?
KarenWoo is offline  
Old Apr 9th, 2024, 01:52 PM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 704
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Karen, we used City Airport Taxis. There were quite a few options, I would imagine that is a popular route. Our friends were nice enough to arrange that so I don't know who else they contacted. It wasn't the newest van and our driver had limited English. but he was punctual at both ends and drove safely.

The morning view was breathtaking, it is really impossible to explain how you feel in this serenity. DH was sweet to get me coffee from the dining room to enjoy on our balcony and took it all in. We met our friends in the dining room and had a leisurely full breakfast which was included. The views were stunning and the service was very cordial and attentive.

When we had to push our schedule back into October, we were concerned that we could be facing some rain and evening temperatures in the high 40s, which would hurt our ability to dine outside for dinner. Not to worry! Our daytime temperatures were about 85 all 3 days and the nights were perfect. This did mean I didn't pack well, the last predictions hadn't been as cold, but still not what we experienced. I am sure everyone got tired of seeing my one linen shirt. All around us was white linen, dresses, skirts, shorts, sandals and stylish white sneakers. I should have bought a few extra tops while there, but I didn't think it would last, WRONG!

I found an outing which looked different and very promising. It left from Varenna at 11:00 and got back at 3:00. It was a picnic with charcuterie items and wine. The views on the website were fantastic, I thought this seems to good to be true. We all were in! I assumed we would be going in a van because the tour could take 8. We met Maria and Yuri near the ferry and were surprised when we were taken over to 2 small cars. Each car could hold 3 guests and our tour also had a woman from Australia and her son, who she was treating to a trip to Europe for his 21st birthday. This created an awkward situation with who had to ride with them. One of our friends quickly volunteered and we were on our way.

We headed up north, through some charming towns and stopped at a beautiful church along the way. A funeral was just ending and the parishioners were walking across the street to the cemetery. We didn't want to intrude but after they left, the staff enthusiastically welcomed us in and more importantly, offered us the use of their bathroom. There wasn't one where we were heading. We zigzagged up the hilly terrain and had amazing views along the way. We parked and Maria walked with us about 30 minutes to our destination. The walk was nice and had many lovely vistas. We arrived and Yuri who had driven ahead, had our picnic set up. It was extensive, delicious and filling, and we were lucky that the other guests were charming and interesting and a pleasure to share this with. The views of the Alps and the lake were magical! It was just the right amount of time and both of the cars were waiting for us right there upon the completion. If someone could't walk, I would think they could ride up with Yuri, but wheelchairs or strollers could not be accommodated. This was the perfect experience for us but maybe we caught lightening in a bottle. The problems could be the size of your group, who else would be on the tour with you and no restrooms. I wondered if a private driver could put together something similar, maybe stop in some of the towns and head up even further north.

https://www.viator.com/tours/Bergamo...5-f2cd3beb5932

It had been a long day, we enjoyed some of the shops on the way back and I found a wonderful Christmas ornament in a beautiful artisan's gallery. DH had a nap and I relaxed on the balcony and enjoyed the view! Perfection!

We walked to dinner and had a fantastic meal and another spectacular view at La Vista. We were still adjusting to the time, so we were ready to call it a night, which was good because they really do roll up the streets, this is not a late night town. It was a really great day!

https://www.albergomilanovarenna.com...ante-la-vista/
coral22 is online now  
Old Apr 9th, 2024, 02:39 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,066
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Great! Keep it coming. 😀
SusanP is offline  
Old Apr 9th, 2024, 10:27 PM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 704
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We had another wonderful breakfast and headed out to the nearby Hotel Villa Cipressi. It is a sister hotel to the Royal Victoria and has a beautiful garden that we received a pass to enter. It was lovely, right on the water and they were setting up for a wedding and there were the most gorgeous floral arrangements everywhere. We continued on to Villa Monastero which we toured and enjoyed their beautiful gardens, also.

On to the ferry where we purchased a day pass and headed over to Mennagio. Coming off the ferry, there was a gas station and a laundromat, which made it feel like a more real life town. We passed the lovely harbor and stopped in an appealing spot for a quick lunch, and wandered the charming streets and enjoyed their shops. Then it was definitely time to enjoy a gelato in the town square and relax by the water. It seemed like there were a lot of families there and college students, so I wonder if it is a more affordable town to stay in. We headed back to Varenna to enjoy the balcony and freshen up for dinner.

We headed back to the ferry and aimed for Bellagio. Oh my! This is a much bigger, more bustling place with a lot more lux shops. I got a beautiful scarf there and if you enjoy shopping, you will be thrilled. We had seen a fantastic bar that we were hopeful we could get into, Terrazzo Darsena at Hotel Villa Serbelloni. It doesn't take reservations and you can only enter if there is a seat available, and they call from the guard station to check. We were in luck and were pointed in the right direction and it was fantastic. If you go, head into the hotel to use the restroom, you will pass by their huge pool and get to see the ornate, opulent lobby. This was so worth it!
https://www.villaserbelloni.com/en/o...html#image_968

We headed on to our restaurant, Bilacus. It was very good any everyone enjoyed their meal. It has a pretty garden setting and wonderful friendly service.It was a leisurely evening and we felt very pampered in our experience in Bellagio. The ferry ride home was so pretty in the dark, another great day!
https://www.bilacusbellagio.it

There seems to be a lot of inquiries on where to stay. I think Bellagio is bigger and has more to do, but also seems like a bigger crowd magnet. I thought Varenna was more charming and sedate. It depends on what kind of energy you enjoy more. We ended up being very happy we stayed in Varenna, it was more our vibe. I think if you are taking the train in, Varenna is an easier landing because it has a station in town. There were a lot of people getting off the train and hopping on the ferry with their luggage to their final destination, which would not be for me. We liked the area we stayed in because it was away from the crowds of the train and ferry, but if I arrived on either with my luggage, I would want to stay right there.

I think 3 nights was great for us. This was a great place to start, in a beautiful, restful, easy to navigate location. I know water sports are popular there, and there are some small pretty beaches and this is a place for relaxation and to soak in the beauty. It really restores your soul. But there is not a lot to do there and not that much inside. I wondered what you would do here if it was rainy or really cold. DH is not a chill kind of personality, so he was ready to move on. But we were so appreciative of this wonderful spot, it really was a dreamy experience.
coral22 is online now  
Old Apr 10th, 2024, 04:45 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 7,332
Received 6 Likes on 1 Post
I am so enjoying going back to Lake Como through your trip report.
We spent over a week at Grand Hotel Tremezzo and loved every day. It was so easy to take the boats to all the different towns around the lake.
Varenna and it’s beautiful gardens was a favorite town and you made a good choice staying there.
Thanks for all the details.
TPAYT is offline  
Old Apr 10th, 2024, 07:53 AM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 704
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Wow, TPAYT! That hotel looks fantastic!
How did you enjoy staying in that area and how did you spend your time there?
coral22 is online now  
Old Apr 10th, 2024, 10:38 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 4,695
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
coral22, I am enjoying your daily descriptions of what you did in Lake Como, and especially appreciate your descriptions of the various towns, such as Varenna, Bellagio, and Mennagio. We are planning on staying in Varenna.

TPAYT, I appreciate your comments about Lake Como, too. Nice to know it is easy to visit all the different towns by boat. We are currently thinking of staying 4 nights.
KarenWoo is offline  
Old Apr 10th, 2024, 04:59 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 7,332
Received 6 Likes on 1 Post
We loved the area and one of my favorite birthday dinners was in the hills above the hotel at Al Veluu….gorgeous views of the lake.
Villa Carlotta and the boat dock was close by. We did have a car but most of the time took the boats to the island and different towns. Our days were spent exploring at a slow pace each town. The only town we were not fond of was Como itself.
There were plenty of places close by for dinner.

Probably TMI but here’s a funny story. We left our last open thinking we’d find a picturesque small inn somewhere. When we didn’t come up with anything we asked at the Grand Tremezzo desk for some help or another night there. The gal laughed out loud, spoke fast Italian to her co-workers and they all laughed.
Turns out it was Monza weekend. Not a hotel room within 300 miles. We now are F1 fans but at that time of our lives knew nothing about it.
She made some phone calls and asked if we had ever been to Bergamo. So off we drove to Bergamo for the night. Turned out to be a charming experience.

Anyway, carry on. I am looking forward to more of your Lake Como adventures.
TPAYT is offline  
Old Apr 10th, 2024, 07:02 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Feb 2024
Posts: 55
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Varenna is such a beautiful town, as are any of the towns and villages overlooking Lago Di Como. I’ve been dozens of times but have never stayed in a hotel in the area as family lives in the Lecco area, also another very overlooked city.
happy_traveler_too is offline  
Old Apr 10th, 2024, 09:05 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 761
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Love this report! And really appreciate your opinions of towns, crowds, hotels, etc. Can't wait for more.
lrice is offline  
Old Apr 11th, 2024, 04:26 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 4,695
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
coral22, did you have to wait in long lines to get the passes for the ferries? I know we don't want a car while at Lake Como, and we are planning on taking the ferries, which I think would be enjoyable. However, my Lonely Planet guidebook says there can be hour-long waits in line to get the passes. Did you encounter this? I wonder if they are talking about July and August specifically. We would be there either the last week of May or first week of June.
KarenWoo is offline  
Old Apr 11th, 2024, 08:40 AM
  #18  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 704
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
TPAYT, what a fabulous birthday and a happy accident to get to stay in Bergamo!

Karen, in our line for the ferry, we waited for about 10 minutes but that in the morning in the middle of October. We did notice longer lines later in the day. Maybe when you arrive, you can check the schedule and go after a few of the boats have left to buy your pass, or run over before breakfast. I think 4 days would be great, I would have liked to explore across the lake, or head up north on the ferry, and fit in another villa or 2. We only had 10 days in Italy, so I think 3 nights was a good choice for us.

We hate to leave this wonderful slice of heaven. We enjoyed another fantastic breakfast and our driver is promptly there for our 9:30 departure. We loved this hotel, even though it had a lot of amenities, it did not feel too expansive or formal. It is an easy, uneventful drive to the Alamo car rental facility. We got a really fantastic rate, and after checking in, were lead to the back corner of the lot to get our car. I don't know what this car was, it resembled an old school station wagon and was LONG. This not the car we would want in tight spots as we continued on. Our friends liked the extra space, but we settled on the equivalent of a really small SUV, seating 5 so that gave us a little extra space in the back seat and covered space in the back, that barely fit our luggage.

We had debated whether to take the train to Manarola, but it looked like 6 hours, 3 trains, finishing on the Cinque Terre express, which after being on it, would not be fun. Even though our car would sit in a parking lot for 2 days, we could just zip out of there to our next destination and not have to hop on the train again to La Spezia to get the rental car. Paying for those extra days for the car really wasn't much more and we saved time and the train fare, I would definitely recommend that.

We plotted our 3 hour route through Parma, where we envisioned a gourmet lunch. Unfortunately, our timing wasn't good, and I am not naming names, but someone was getting hangry! We googled sandwiches and stopped somewhere along the way and were directed to a grocery store. They had a great deli counter and custom made some good sandwiches that did the trick. They were baffled by us and why we were there. I couldn't even tell you what town it was. We approached Parma and were getting our first exposure to the dreaded ZTL zones. It had taken longer at the car rental place than we had planned, so we decided to skip it and continue on, to make sure we had time that afternoon to see Manorola.

The drive was easy, our directions to the parking lot were spot on, and we called our hotel so they could notify the luggage service to meet us there. There were 3 of these VERY small pickup trucks in the lot, and a driver came rushing from the town to load us up. It was $6 a bag and there was room for 1 passenger to ride with him, I was chosen. A gate had to opened to proceed, and we headed through town. This is a rough, stone road. We alternated between driving at break neck speed (with the windows open) and stopping to visit everyone he had ever met. Maybe this vehicle had shock absorbers at one point, but they were long gone. I felt like was living in a cartoon! But he was so enthusiastic and we were thrilled to not pull our bags the 1/2 mile through town, it was worth it.

We entered Marina Piccola and we greeted by the young couple running it. This hotel had been in their family forever and now it was their baby. They were so friendly and helpful. Everything in Cinque Terre seems vertical, it does not have the sprawl of Lake Como. We had to walk up 2 flights of stairs to our room but they handled the luggage. We have a half view of the water and it was enchanting! We had a view of the "marina" which held about 8 tiny fishing boats, I felt like I was peeking out into an another time. It is a totally different feel from Lake Como.
We headed down and got the tour of the place. The breakfast room is one long table that accommodates everyone family style. They leave out beverages, coffee and fruit all day. We enjoyed wandering the town, and finding the train station, and stopping in some shops. Fantastic energy and excitement was all around us, it was very invigorating. Lake Como was friendly but had more of a cool professionalism, this seemed more passionate and proud. I love it!

At the grocery store stop, we had grabbed some wine and snacks and the set up for gin and tonics, DH had brought a small gin from home. We returned to freshen up and enjoy Happy Hour before dinner. We had booked Trattoria dal Billy and it was a good thing because it was packed. I think if you want a higher end restaurant you need to book ahead, you can always cancel. We really enjoyed our meal, and even though it was seafood heavy, which I can't eat, I found a pasta which was delicious. Everyone was thrilled with their meal, and the fun, energetic ambiance was great. It was an easy walk home, somewhat hilly and definitely some steps, but nothing challenging. Another delightful day and perfect weather!
coral22 is online now  
Old Apr 11th, 2024, 09:53 AM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 4,695
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
coral22, thanks for the information about the lines to buy the ferry passes. Can you buy 1, 2, or 3 day passes? Depending on how long you are staying?

I love your detailed descriptions of what you did and the logistics. It's so helpful when planning a trip. Who gave you the directions to the parking lot in Manarola? The hotel? I know I don't want to handle our luggage on the Cinque Terre Express train. Hopefully, my husband will be willing to drive from Milan to CT. I am also thinking of looking into hiring a private driver to drive us from Lucca to Manarola if we decide to visit Lucca/Tuscany before CT. But that means we would need the driver to return us to Lucca so we can catch the train to Florence. All depends on costs!

Last edited by KarenWoo; Apr 11th, 2024 at 09:56 AM.
KarenWoo is offline  
Old Apr 11th, 2024, 10:02 AM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 7,332
Received 6 Likes on 1 Post
What fun! You had me laughing out loud at your interesting luggage ride to your hotel….”stopping to visit with everyone he had ever met” 😂 😂. Makes for good memories.
TPAYT is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Manage Preferences Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Your Privacy Choices -