Florence vs. Venice

Sep 19th, 2005, 12:05 PM
  #1  
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Florence vs. Venice

I am planning my first trip to Italy (first trip to Europe, in fact). I'll be there for 8 days and plan to spend half the week in Rome and the other half in Florence or Venice. As a first time tourist to Italy, I am sure either city is wonderful with tons to offer. Still, I'd like to limit the trip to two cities...if you had to choose, Florence or Venice? Thanks for your input!!
girl410 is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 12:09 PM
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On our first trip to Italy, my wife and I spent three nights in Rome and three nights in Florence (~3 hr train ride from Rome). That should give you plenty of time to wander the streets of both Rome and Florence at a relaxed paced and give you a good feel for city life in both areas. Taking a train from Rome to Venice would be a waste of half of a day of potential exploring if this is your first time in Italy.
plwoo is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 12:22 PM
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Actually, with a fast Eurostar train, Rome to Florence takes approx. 1.5 hours each way.

Rome to Venice by Eurostar is about 5 hours. From the point of view of using your time wisely, I agree with plwoo.

My personal preference would still be Venice, even if it meant getting up very early in order to lose as little of the day as possible.
Eloise is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 12:30 PM
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I really love the Uffizi and all the various churches in Florence, but I think I'd pick Venice. Venice itself has more wow factor.

On the other hand, I've never had a bad meal in Florence.

They're both great choices. But Rome is my favorite.
Leely is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 12:33 PM
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Venice is to me the world's most beautiful city - i love Florence and it may have more to do for 4 days but Venice is so exceptional - i'd stay 2 days in each or do Florence as a day trip from Rome and stay 4 days in Venice.
PalenqueBob is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 12:39 PM
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I'll put my two Euro cents on Venice as well. Florence is wonderful but Venice is magic - it is a bit further but I would take Eloise's advice - take an early train.
wombat7 is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 12:41 PM
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I agree with Bob. Personally, I didn't care for Florence as a city. Venice and Rome, to me, are life-changing.
Mary_Fran is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 12:58 PM
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Although you say you would like to limit the trip to two cities, I would encourage you to consider including all three. If you have 8 days you could do 3 days in two and two days in the last. Four days is not enough to really get to know any city in depth, yet two or three days is enough to get a taste of each. If you take early morning trains (you can nap on the train) you'll stretch the amount of time in each city.

If you decide to just do the two, then I'd pick Venice. I really love Florence but Venice is just so special, so unique.

Another possibility, if what you don't want is too much switching of hotels, would be to do Venice as a day trip from Florence. It's about two and a half hours trainvride and there are so many each day you could get a very early and a very late train. You wouldn't have luggage to bother with. There are plenty of hotels near the train station in Florence, and since you'd be returning to a hotel you were already checked into, returning very late shouldn't be a problem. Venice is certainly "worth" more than a day trip but a day would be better than nothing at all.
isabel is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 01:20 PM
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I have to throw in another vote for Venice! We went to Italy last fall, and Venice was the favorite place. My parents think Florence is beautiful, but I think it's over-rated. A trip to Venice is truly a unique experience.
beachysis is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 02:54 PM
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I vote for Venice!! Because it is magical and absolutely unique.

Unless you have a strong interest in the art of Florence which might swing your decision that way.

I can't compare the two cities since I've only been to Venice (twice!) and would return again in a heartbeat (I'm not in a rush to see Rome or Florence myself).
suze is online now  
Sep 19th, 2005, 02:58 PM
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Hate to say it, but I think this "girl" is another troll entry. Wow, they are coming fast today.
Wayne is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 03:00 PM
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Both cities ARE "wonderful with tons to offer."

Unfortunately, you don't tell us what KINDS of things you might be most interested in.

I agree that Venice really is magical, especially places like San Marco in the evening after most of the tourists are gone or early in the morning..just one of many "magical" examples.

But, if you find major Renaissance art collections, including sculpture, jsut as, if not more, "magical" then you'd find Florence more to your liking than Venice.
Intrepid1 is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 03:59 PM
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Your first trip should take your breath away and change the way you see the world. Venice can do that.

DejaVu is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 04:06 PM
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We did all three in 8 days!! Rome, Florence and Venice are all wonderful. It's a very tough choice but if I had to choose I think it would be Venice.
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