Honeymoon Italy - December 2012

Aug 10th, 2012, 03:35 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2012
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Honeymoon Italy - December 2012

Hi All,

I am planning my honeymoon to Italy in the first week of december 2012. My budget is 1200-1500 USD per head excluding international flights. I am planning to fly in to Rome on the 1st and spend 6-7 nights in Italy. Have a couple of questions regarding this
1) is this budget sufficient? I have heard december is usually off season and I can expect good deals on bookings. I am planning a mix of B&B's and hotels during the trip.
2) Would it make sense to go for a package with one of the travel agents operating out of Italy for the entire trip including transfers or make bookings for accommodation in the cities I would be visiting and figure out transportation on my own?? This is my first trip to Italy and I am not familiar with the public transport and ease of car rentals etc.
3) I am planning to visit Rome, Florence and Tuscan countryside. Can i include one more destination along with this? I want the trip to be a leisurely paced one.

I would appreciate any other pointers from the members which will help me plan my trip better.
Thanks in advance,
milanabraham is offline  
Aug 10th, 2012, 05:26 AM
Join Date: Sep 2004
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I am afraid that anything more than 1 or 2 destinations for your 6 or 7 nights (meaning 5 or 6 full days on the ground) will ruin any chance of your trip being a "leisurely paced one".

Seriously consider spending your 6 or 7 nights in Rome. You can get a Studio or 1 BR apartment rental in a fairly decent location for around $1000/week in early December.

Florence CAN be done as a day trip from Rome but you might want to stay there two nights. If you chose to do that, then I suggest to take a train to Florence immediately after landing in Rome in the morning (this involves a train from the airport to central Rome and then transferring to your train to Florence).

After 2 nights in Florence, train back to Rome for your final 4 or 5 nights.
bardo1 is offline  
Aug 10th, 2012, 05:29 AM
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I would plan on $400/day for both of you for food, lodging and tourism. Dec will be chilly and perhaps rainy---I would stick to the 2 cites.

Land at Rome and train to Florence day one--3 nites
Train back to Rome for last 4 nites---fly home.

Search here for hotel/B&B suggestions--enter " Rome hotels".
bobthenavigator is offline  
Aug 10th, 2012, 08:56 AM
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December is not the time to visit the Tuscan countryside. And if you are looking for a leisurely paced trip, you can realistically only see 2 places at most in your very short time period, especially since the days are very short in December. You don't need any sort of travel agent or tour for this trip - just follow bobthenavigator's advice.
StCirq is online now  
Aug 10th, 2012, 09:14 AM
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You are getting great advice. We taught and lived in Italy recently and December is damp, but not dreadful in Rome and can be great fun as it is not too crowded.

But you don't need the chill of the Tuscan hills in December-there can be slush/snow and the region is really not at its best for touring. Even Florence can be dreary if you get bad weather and I would seriously consider giving it a miss for this trip of 6/7 days.

In your shoes, I would take advantage of the savings afforded by the apartment option in Rome-and just stay there where there is SO much to do and see, splurge on good dinners out in the Eternal City and see Florence next time-you did say it is your honeymoon(!)implying years of Second Honeymoon's to catch up.
LJ is offline  
Aug 10th, 2012, 09:17 AM
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Hi M,

I would fly into Venice - 3 nights, train to Florence 3 nights, fly home from FLR or PSA.

If Rome is a must, I suggest you spend your time there.

You can visit Ostia Antica and Orvieto as daytrips.

Do you wish to splurge on hotels for your honeymoon or are inexpensive accommodations sufficient?

ira is offline  
Aug 10th, 2012, 10:50 AM
Join Date: Oct 2003
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In 6 or 7 days leisurely would be to stay in one place with 1 or 2 day trips. Two major cities and a whole province is bouncing around like a ping pong ball - more is just silly.

Remember in Dec days are short and some sights are open only from 9 am to 1 or 2 pm - not all day.
nytraveler is offline  
Aug 13th, 2012, 08:13 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2012
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Thanks everyone for replying..

Going by your advice I think I'll stick to Rome and do a short trip to florence to start with. However, going by some of the replies I am a little worried. Is the weather in December that bad? Going by the earlier reviews/reports I was under the impression Rome and Florence wont be too wet.

Also, does the whole city shut down early during winters? Can I expect a little bit of evening/night life during this time?
milanabraham is offline  
Aug 14th, 2012, 12:14 PM
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 45
agree with advise here that December is not a great time to visit Tuscana countryside region, light snow possible, damp, not much going on. forget about sitting outside. and its dark at 5:30PM, that will cut into your site seeing.
Venezia in December: the streets are all but deserted. i do not think you will appreciate it that time of year, unless you are into Opera.
i would stick to Roma and a 1 or 2 night trip to Florence via train to save money.
with all this said and the advise by others and not to be negative, i think you can do 7 days for $3000 usd, but IMO that's still a lot of money to spend and not get the full pleasure of Italy as in the summer and early fall.
UmoDiViaggio is offline  
Aug 14th, 2012, 12:44 PM
Join Date: Aug 2012
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I spent a week in Rome in January of last year and the weather was perfectly nice for walking around. It was dry and not chilly at all. I have also spent a week in Tuscany in the first week in December, and the weather was very pleasant. Sunny every day. You never need to worry about nightlife shutting down in Rome.

You can get snow in Tuscany at any time from the first week of November onward. Some years there can be a light dusting in hilltowns. Other years can get a real dump of snow. Two years ago I traveled from Florence to Napoli on Dec 17, and it snowed the entire way until I got to Naples. (It hailed there.) Two days later, it was lovely.

Most people have an erroneous idea that Tuscany is unattractive in early December. But it is not. It is green and beautiful. But you have to be very flexible about your plans and watch the weather. For your honeymoon, you might prefer to book everything in advance.

My favorite time of year to go Venice and Florence is after the middle of November, because otherwise it is terribly crowded. Siena can be at its best when the crowds aren't there. It can make a good base for a Tuscan stay.

You should try posting on other message boards to get a wider range of opinion and experience. Many, many people travel on a budget to Italy in the first week of December and have a beautiful time. Try posting on Slow Travel, Tripadvisor and Frommer's.
matera2019 is offline  
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