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Help with itinerary to Italy and France honeymoon in July!!

Help with itinerary to Italy and France honeymoon in July!!

May 15th, 2002, 02:29 PM
  #1  
Heather
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Help with itinerary to Italy and France honeymoon in July!!

I have been racking my brain for weeks about my honeymoon in July and asking lots of questions on this board trying to get more ideas. So, here it is.... Is this itinerary possible???

July 11- a.m.--Arrive in Rome, see sights, stay night

July 12-continue touring the city, stay the night

July 13- rent car, head to Orvieto to tour caves and Duomo, then on to a winery or two near Siena, stay the night in Siena

July 14- drive around Tuscany area, Chianti district, San G.etc..., spend second night in Siena-leave car

July 15- a.m. train on to Pisa for sightseeing, continue to Cinque Terra for the day, stay night in CT

July 16-a.m. continue CT working way toward Santa Mirgharita Ligure by p.m.- catch train to Genoa (10:00 p.m.) then sleeper train on to Dijon

July 17- a.m. switch trains in Dijon to Beuane, spend day touring Burgandy area and wineries (can this be done by train?) stay night in Beaune.

July 18- a.m. day in Beaune late afternoon train to Paris, night in Paris

July 19- sights in Paris, second night Paris

July 20-possibly train to Reims, Epernay or Chateau-Thierry for the day, Paris p.m.

July 21- a.m. chunnel to London, train to Brighton for the day and night (have to visit the relatives here, plus free bed!)

July 22- London for late afternoon and night
(unless we can squeeze another night out of the relatives!)

July 23- sights in London, night

July 24- early flight out of Gatwick

We already have the tickets to Rome and out of London, so that's set in stone. However, we are flexible with the rest. We have both traveled in Europe and both have spent time in Paris and I lived briefly in London/Brighton so we are revisiting together.

My husband (we got married in April)thinks we can wing it and not make reservations for rooms or trains, not wanting to be restricted to stay in any one place. But, I'm a little more skeptical about availability in July. Also, neither of us have ever rented cars in Europe. I'm really hoping someone out there can advise us on our itinerary, etc...

Soon I'll be bugging everyone for places to stay in our destination areas (if my husband agrees to making reservations!!)
 
May 15th, 2002, 03:01 PM
  #2  
xxx
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topper
 
May 15th, 2002, 04:07 PM
  #3  
liz
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I like to stay loose, linger or go on depending where, but you have to be the lucky type when it comes to showing up late and getting a great hotel room or a great table in a restaurant. Some people just aren't the lucky type. If you are contemplating this, you probably will be okay, this indicates you have had good fortune in travel. I think some places you will move thru fast, like Siena which is terrific, and the whole Pisa-Genoa corner of Italy which is pretty blah....I would recommend the French Riviera instead except for the season....why not head directly from Siena to Hotel Crillon le Brave in Provence for four or five days, do bike trips from there, then Burgundy and Paris with an amazing hotel at the end to really finish with a bang, and be sure no matter how lucky you are to book your Paris reservations for hotels and restaurants RIGHT NOW, tomorrow, by phone!!!! And get someone's name........also you will need at least one more day in Rome, really you can cut Pisa, Genoa, etc., dullsville, and by the way if you can stay with relatives in London then you stay the wholetime but on your honeymoon why would you want to.....how much is money an object, can you give a target per night....my tendency would be to cut London for this trip and spend more time in Italy and France though I love England but that is an easy trip from anywhere on the East Coast of the US and I think you need a hotel there for privacy and a good one because the less than terrific ones are really pretty miserable....write back with some feedback....
 
May 15th, 2002, 04:09 PM
  #4  
liz
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PS just reread and saw London is set in stone....is it really....what about the Cotswolds instead since you are locked in, like Buckland Manor which is amazing, a Jane Austen fantasy....
 
May 15th, 2002, 04:45 PM
  #5  
Paule
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Dear Heather,
My own feeling about your trip is that you're covering much too much ground in that short a time; though you're locked into the beginning and the end, I would try to focus the trip a little more around sections, rather than darting form one place to the next.
The biggest problem I have is the dashing off to Pisa and the Cinque Terre; though the C.T. is a beautiful spot to visit, it seems way too rushed to even get a chance to enjoy it. I'd skip Pisa altogether and even consider dropping the C.T. from the trip. You're spending most of your time in transit, and won't have any time to really enjoy the stop.

Again, in the Tuscany region, it takes a lot longer than you expect to get from place to place; don't try to rush around too much, and you'll find it a lot more enjoyable.

My own approach would be to choose a few regions/cities to explore: ie:
Rome - 3 nights
Tuscany - 3/4 nights -- Since you have a car, I'd consider staying in one of the places in the countryside as a nice contrast to being in the city
Paris OR Dijon area, but not both.
London/Brighton (since you're locked in to that spot).

Though if you really need to see both spots in France, how about:
Rome/2 nights; Tuscany/3-4 nights; Dijon/3 nights; Paris/3 nights; London-Brighton/3 nights.

I don't see the stop in C.T./Pisa as one that makes sense. I'd also look into flying from Italy to France, though it may not work out so easily.

Perhaps identify what your specific interests are, and then focus the trip on your interests.

In answer to your original question, your itinerary is possible, but exhausting. You'll be spending so much time in transit, that you won't have time to actually be there!!

And once you identify where you're going, MAKE RESERVATIONS!!! In July, you'll be spending the rest of your spare minutes looking for a place to stay!
 
May 16th, 2002, 07:26 AM
  #6  
Heather
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Miss seeing CT? I thought it would be a great area to see. Miss the Tower in Pisa? We weren't planning on wasting more than 2 hours there anyway. I thought the French Riviera would be way too expensive (trying to stay under $100 US a night). Where is the Hotel Crillon le Brave anyway? So Provence is worth giving up CT? What towns specifically? Would we need to rent a car to get around Provence?
Also, one of you mentioned more time in Tuscany, missing CT, then on to Burgundy region. Would Siena be a good place to stay to see most of that area? I feel like I'm going around in circles on where to go and what to see. Time is the biggest factor. I don't want to be rushed but don't want to miss too much either.

Anyone else want to put their 2 cents in on my honeymoon itinerary??? Other ideas are welcomed and appreciated!!
 
May 16th, 2002, 10:25 AM
  #7  
lisa
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You have 13 days and more than 13 places listed. That's a major problem.

Have you and your fiance been to Rome, Paris, and London before? If not, I would recommend dividing your time between the three places: 5 days in Rome, 5 days in Paris, and 3 in London. Otherwise it's just way too much moving around, packing and unpacking, all logistics and never actually having any time to see the places you're taking all that time to travel to. Plus, there is so much to see in each of those places that even that amount of time isn't enough. You can use those three cities as bases and take daytrips. For example, Orvieto can be seen as a daytrip from Rome.

And absolutely, absolutely, whatever you do, reserve now. Otherwise you will be spending your honeymoon in tourist information offices calling hotels asking if they've had any cancellations, and odds are that the places you do find won't necessarily have air conditioning or much in the way of amenities. I doubt that's how you want to spend your honeymoon. July is high tourist season. In fact, it is already pretty late to be reserving for July.
 
May 16th, 2002, 11:59 AM
  #8  
Heather
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We have never been to Rome, but not into the museum thing so don't think we need more than 2 days there. Would rather spend in smaller towns exploring and wineries. We have both been to Paris.Probably do the usually sights we have seen before but will spend more time in the cafes soaking in the culture, strolling in the parks, etc... I've been to London and want to go for the day only. Just another big city to me. See the typical tourists sights for my husbands enjoyment. Is Beaune to far from Paris for a day trip? Other Burgundy areas/wineries? Just thought it would be nicer to stay outside of the big cities a few days/nights and cheaper too.Especially since we have spent time in Paris and London before.
 
May 16th, 2002, 12:46 PM
  #9  
xxx
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tt
 
May 16th, 2002, 12:55 PM
  #10  
Rex
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Two days in Rome - - especially after an all-night transatlantic flight - - is like two minute sex - - better than no sex I guess, but you may find yourself asking "why do people like this?"

Rome has its own pace, sounds and rhythms - - and you might just be getting over "dislike" and then it's time to leave.

I urge you: eliminate one whole country. You don't want your marriage to get off onto this bad start.

Congratulations - - all the same - - for your new life in marriage.

Best wishes,

Rex
 
May 16th, 2002, 02:43 PM
  #11  
Paule
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Dear Heather,
I'm with Rex; eliminate a country! Since you're flying into Rome, why don't you enjoy yourself in Italy, seeing the various locations-- Tuscany, the Italian Riviera, and whichever "big" city you like at a more comfortable pace. Why not just visit the Italian wineries? Then, when you need to go to London, fly. The trains, especially through France, are not cheap, and the intra-European flights are really pretty inexpensive. If you stay in Italy, I'd add Venice-- definitely one of the most romantic places I've ever been.

I've been plugging in your itinerary, and the day you go from Siena to the Cinque Terre, you end up on 4 trains in one day! And I'm not sure that there really is a night train from Genoa to Dijon; at least, not a direct train. You'll have to change along the way, and you'll be anything but rested the next morning.

I think we're all for you having a wonderful honeymoon, but are trying to encourage you to create a more manageable itinerary so that you'll have a fun and romantic time!

 
May 16th, 2002, 04:19 PM
  #12  
mac
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just got back from 2 weeks in italy (ravello and tuscany was enough for us) on honeymoon and can't imagine trying to cover all the territory that you have outlined. i'd take advice above and elim one country..or at least limit to last 2 or 3 nights in one spot there (sounds like uk is your best bet since you are flying out of there). tuscany was great - siena is beautiful but try locanda della amorosa in sinalunga if it is available! romantic b&b that is actually an old village that has been converted...at the very least, try and eat there (may be tough to get in if you are going in july). good luck.
 
May 18th, 2002, 04:41 AM
  #13  
Heather
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Thanks for all the advice. Need to discuss with the husband. Back to the drawing board I guess.
 
May 18th, 2002, 05:38 AM
  #14  
Sue
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Heather - just thought I'd add my 2 cents; if you're doing the 'Rome-to-London' thing in 2 weeks then you have some hard choices to make about how much regional stuff you can do.

If you're determined to wing it, then you need to build in a little more time to allow for, well, winging it. Also, Murphy's law states that with a schedule this tight, a) your flight will be late; b) There will be a traffic jam or rail glitch that will add delays. Prepare for delays, on the other hand, then you won't get them.

Rome 2 nights;
Orvieto 1 night; take the train, easier and faster than by car;
Florence 2 nights - you didn't mention it, but it's an easier transportation hub than Siena; easy day trip to Siena area;
Florence to C.T. via Pisa (quick look in between changing trains) - C.T. 1 night;
Hike in C.T., then Genoa 1 night - (you didn't mention it, but it's a reasonably good transportation hub, but 8.5 hours by train to Paris)
use the night train as a back-up plan only, decent sleep accomodation on a train is tricky on a last minute basis.
Paris 3 nights - you need to allow an extra night, to rest up from long train ride or to allow for any problems;
London - 4 nights

This would still be too fast for me, but you know best what kind of pace you can sustain. However, trying to fit in Beaune-Dijon as well as C.T/Pisa is going to be too tricky, in my opinion.
 
May 18th, 2002, 05:58 AM
  #15  
Marla
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That's really ambitious! I would recommend from my travels to go to Rome, Capri, Pompeii, Amalfi Coast (absolutely beautiful), Lucca, French Riviera (Cannes) and Monaco ending in Paris. Fly from Pisa to Nice if possible to save time. Maybe omit Lucca and fly from Rome to Nice. Don't stay in Nice, Cannes is nicer. Good luck!
 
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