Help! Rome in January

Sep 12th, 2008, 08:23 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 137
Help! Rome in January

My husband and I will travel to Rome for 14 days in January.
I would love to combine it with Florence. We have been in Venice, would love to go back...
We are flying into and out of Rome.
I do not know where to begin!
How is January weather?
How do we get to Florence? How long is the trip there? rent a car or take a train?
Is Venice a good idea? What's it like in January?
Ideas for great and well located hotels?
Any suggestions/advice are most welcome! Thank you!

Venezuela is offline  
Sep 12th, 2008, 09:25 AM
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The weather in Rome should be very good in January, or at least I have always had good weather there during that month. It can be nice in Venice and Florence, or it can also be cold and damp, so it is a risk, weather-wise in both of those cities. That said, we have traveled to all three cities during January and like that time of year very much due to the lack of crowds, and the sales.. Be aware that many restaurants, in Venice, especially, will take a break between Epiphany and Carnival.

With 14 days, you can easily take the train from Rome to Florence and spend a few days there.

In order to recommend hotels I need to know your price range.

ekscrunchy is online now  
Sep 12th, 2008, 09:43 AM
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Take the train to Florence from Rome Termini station. it's 1.5 hours each way. With 14 days you could do a few days in both Venice and Florence. My preference would be to go directly to Venice upon arrival. Try to get an inexpensive flight from Rome to Venice. Then work your way back to Rome via Florence on the train.

There's tons of posts on this board about accommodations in all three cities. Do a search on Venice, Florence, and Rome for lots of suggestions.
adrienne is offline  
Sep 12th, 2008, 10:52 AM
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Eveytime of the year is the right time of year for Italy!

The train time Rome to Florence depends on which train you take. To go in 1.5 hours you may pay 100 euros on the ES train versus three or four hours for 15 euros on Tren Italia. Here's a little video about riding the trains in Italy:

I suggest buying the ticket in Italy rather than online before. This allows for maximum flexibilty and change of plans should a strike occur (which is not uncommon).

Rome weather may be nice - about 50 degrees or Warmer. Florence can feel colder because it may be damp during Janaury and February. Bring a nice scarf, or buy one in Italy, and keep the neck and chest warm at all times.

Here's a little video about Rome's Campo di Fiori area - that's where I would stay:

At the time of year I might skip Florence and Venice for Parma, where the weather may be sunnier and warmer. Here's a little viedo about Parma:

Then again, I always love Parma.

If you are going in early january the Christmas fair will be happening in Rome in Piazza Navona in Rome. It's lots of fun and I think rome around Christmas time is an excellent time to enjoy the city with Romans.

Plenty more video on to wet your appetite. Naples around Janaury can have nice weatehr and the city is excellent for all things Italian:

WebVisionItaly is offline  
Sep 12th, 2008, 11:37 AM
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WebVision Italy:

Isn't EuroStar part of the Trenitalia network?

Why would Parma be warmer and sunnier in January than Florence?

You really plug your website quite a bit..
ekscrunchy is online now  
Sep 12th, 2008, 12:20 PM
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ek, I am a sucker for those videos, though. Any vicarious travel to Italia is better than none for me.

Which reminds me, I have had Divorce, Italian Style sitting here from netflix for the past several weeks. Tonight I'm going to watch it!

One thing about Rome in January, it won't be hot.

I'd normally say just bracket your 3 days in Florence with 10 in Rome. But perhaps in colder weather, when just soaking up street life may be less appetizing, a week in Rome and a split-week between Florence and another city might be called for.

tomassocroccante is offline  
Sep 12th, 2008, 01:30 PM
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Hi EK,

Parma is drier than Florence and Rome so, IMO, the cold doesn't penetrate the bones as much.

Parma has some very nice weather due to its location between mountain and sea. Same reason Prosciutto di Parma and Parmigiano Reggiano are cured there. It is a place unlike no other in the world.

EK, you can see some video or the Parmigiano process here:

and the prosciutto process here:

Tomasso, glad you are enjoying the video. I think a lot of people feel like you, something is better than nothing ;-) I know I do.

Enjoy the movie. BTW, we have a bunch of Italian movies posted by "theme" in the right column here:
WebVisionItaly is offline  
Sep 12th, 2008, 03:53 PM
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Ok, ok!!

HI TC! You need to watch that so you can order "Bread and Tulips" next!!
ekscrunchy is online now  
Sep 12th, 2008, 04:01 PM
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I'm a Pane e Tulipani fan - saw it first in the theater and a couple of times since. Love Bruno Ganz and Licia Maglietta both. Just a real charmer of a movie.
tomassocroccante is offline  
Sep 13th, 2008, 01:18 AM
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For weather you should check weather stats on .

For train info check out

Here is my Florence trip report from last year and this is my Rome trip report from a couple of years back . I hope that they can give you an idea of what to expect

Gard - trip reports and pictures
gard is offline  
Sep 13th, 2008, 11:54 PM
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Thank you all for your very helpful replies!
So I bit the bullet and changed my flight back home. We will arrive in Rome and fly back home from Venice to avoid the flight back to Rome and waste 24 precious hours of our vacation.So this is what I have for now:
Rome: 5 nights
We will take the fast train (thanks Motorino!)into Florence for a three night stay.
We will rent a car and drive to Perugia for two nights and visit some small towns.
Then we'll drive to Venice for three nights.
Any thoughts on Perugia? The chocolate factory is a must! And maybe a day trip to Assisi.
We'll definitely bring our jackets and scarves, hats, mittens...
And please!! What are your favorite(and reasonable)restaurants in all these cities?
Thanks again!
Venezuela is offline  
Sep 14th, 2008, 07:36 AM
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Here's another thread going with suggestions for moderately priced restaurants.

For your 5 day stay in Rome I would recommend getting an apartment for more space/better value. There are lots of threads with suggestions for agencies and specific apartments. As noted you will get better responses on lodging if you specify how much you want to (are willing to?) spend
Vttraveler is online now  
Sep 14th, 2008, 08:17 AM
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check out

current calendar for music events and more. Interesting suggestions for meals.

The event pages are updated weekly, so be sure to check it jsut before your trip.
tomassocroccante is offline  
Sep 14th, 2008, 10:09 AM
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We are willing to spend $400/night. I love smaller boutique hotels but my husband is a stickler for larger and better known chains. Sometimes we are lucky and we get the best of both. A warm environment with all the comforts that larger chains provide...Any suggestions? Thanks!
Venezuela is offline  
Sep 14th, 2008, 03:41 PM
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Venezuela, my favorite hotels in Roma are the Piroli group on the Aventine. I like the location, but many people don't. And in winter, the appeal of being on the hill in a pretty residential neighborhood is less motivating. But you can see their three properties (san anselmo, villa san pio, aventinto) at

the fourth hotel is near termini station, not on the Aventine.

Do a Fodor's Forum search for San Anselmo Hotel to find many comments.

If you want to be quite central, it's not the choice for you.!
tomassocroccante is offline  
Sep 14th, 2008, 04:02 PM
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We were there in January last year. Rome was moderate some days. But when the wind blew it was cold and raw. All the nights were cold. This shouldn't discourage you. Dress didn't deter us at all.

Florence was so bitterly cold we left early and added time to Venice. Venice was much milder, though it did snow on us one day (totally charming!).

You'll get great rates on hotels in Venice. Do look at Foscari Palace...lovely old palazzo, thoroughly modernized. We got a superior double with canal view for 130 euro/night. I wouldn't start booking til early December to snag the best rates.

I don't know that you'll get much of a discount in Rome. But with what you save in the others you can pay more than your average in Rome.
Don't dismiss apartments. At your budget you could get a very nice place in January.
JeanneB is offline  
Sep 14th, 2008, 04:35 PM
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Thanks Tomasso! Lovely hotels but we really want to be in the middle of everything...
Thanks Jeanne! We'll make sure to bundle up. I'll keep my fingers crossed for Florence weather.
And I'm guessing that the weather in Perugia will be similar to Florence, no?
Also Jeanne, where did you eat in Venice? We did not have much luck in the food dept. last time we were there. Thanks!
Venezuela is offline  
Sep 14th, 2008, 05:06 PM
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DH & I are definitely not foodies, & we therefore do not like to spend much money on food. But we have 2 places in Venice that we like.

1. Don't know the name but it is the only restaurant in Campo San Zulian. Campo San Zulian is just a few blocks north of S.Marco. Easy to find on a map. We liked the lasagna, spagetti with meat sauce, & the pizza. All of those were about 10 euros each in Nov.'07.

2. Osteria de la Tana behind the Naval Museum. Again, we like the pizza (7 euros for a American medium size) & spagetti with meat sauce (9-10 euros & a lot of food!). When facing the Naval Museum, walk along the left side of the museum building (this is along the canal). I think it is the 1st street, turn Right (L is in the canal!). The osteria is there on the right.

JulieAgain is offline  
Sep 14th, 2008, 06:10 PM
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I'm no help on Venice restaurants. By the time we got there I was nursing a cold and sore throat. All I wanted was soup. The soups were good!

As mentioned, several recommended restaurants were closed. But there were plenty that were open.
JeanneB is offline  
Sep 14th, 2008, 06:29 PM
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TC: Would you mind explaining a bit about what draws you to the Aventine? Thanks!!
ekscrunchy is online now  

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