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Help Plan My First Italy Trip

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Hello All,

New to the forum and looking for your sage advice.

In September of 2012 my siblings, spouses and I plan two weeks in Europe.

Everyone but me will probably spend the first week in France before joining me in Italy so I'd like to spend that first week in the Dolomites (I think) if the weather's relatively decent. I'm neither skier nor mountain climber, but am a big nature photo buff, so spectacular scenery tops my agenda.

Any suggestions where I should base myself in the Dolomites for a week's worth of relatively easy-on-the-knees hiking and great scenery? An out of the way quiet spot is preferred over a busy tourist/skier hotel location. Or is September in the Dolomites guaranteed to be snowbound - and should I just head to Tuscany?

The second week we'll all meet somewhere in Tuscany. Florence is currently our only must-see city. I'm guessing that once they've done their research, they'll settle for the Amalfi Coast, rather than the Cinque Terre region. Since there will be about a dozen of us, I expect we'll rent a villa for the week. Question is what town would you chose as base camp in both AC and CT?

Thanks,

Dan

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