Italy 10 days/5 cities....Car or Train?

Old Oct 9th, 2004, 11:00 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 2
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Italy 10 days/5 cities....Car or Train?

We leave on 10/14 for 10 days and 5-6 cities. I have been reading some of the threads and I am now questioning my original all-train plan. I welcome advice.

Arrive Friday am Milan MXP,train to Varenna, 2 nights
Depart Varenna Sunday am, train to Venice, 2 nights
Depart Venice Tuesday am, train to Florence, 2 nights
Depart Florence Thursday am, train to Cinque Terre, 1 night
Depart CT Friday afternoon, train to Rome in time for late dinner, 1 night
Depart Rome Saturday night late, if possible, night sleeper train to Milan

Depart Milan MXP Sunday morning 10:30am

Should we be renting a car for some of these legs? I have never driven in Europe before, and I love to drive.

How bad are the penalites w/ AlItalia if I wanted to switch my return flight to Rome instead of Milan? I still have 14 days from the return flight.

Thank you!

PS Next trip is going to be the rented villa for 2 weeks.

VAgypsy1 is offline  
Old Oct 9th, 2004, 11:43 AM
  #2  
ira
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 74,700
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Hi VA,

Why are you questioning your train trip?

>How bad are the penalites w/ AlItalia if I wanted to switch my return flight to Rome instead of Milan? <

Have you called Alitalia?
ira is offline  
Old Oct 9th, 2004, 11:52 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 364
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts

For a self-guided trip, you are trying to pack far too much into your time. You will be spending a lot of time driving or on trains, checking in/checking out, etc.

Why not skip something, or, if you really want to get an overview/highlight tour, go on a guided tour, such as Insight Vacations

http://www.insightvacations.com/us/

--Marv

Infotrack is offline  
Old Oct 9th, 2004, 12:18 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,020
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Marc is right. You will be spending more time traveling from one destination to another than sightseeing and enjoying a city. You probably are making the mistake of trying to see a lot on a single trip, but IMHO you will be seeing less because of the short amount of time you have schedule in each destination.

I have no idea what Alitalia's penalties are, but perhaps rather than trying to arrange an open jaw now, you would be better off to spend your 10 days in Milan and nearby locations, and save Rome and Florence for another trip.
Giovanna is offline  
Old Oct 10th, 2004, 04:42 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 1,126
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
It may be too late, but I do wish you had found this site (Slow Talk as well) before now.
The schedule you have planned will not be as rewarding as many others. Even if you travel by private jet.
Arrive late to Rome check-in have dinner and then pack to leave on a slleper back to Milan to catch a flight?
If your schedule is set let us know.
If not, there is great advice here and with some work (hectic because of timeframe) you can have a great trip not just an okay one.
jabez is offline  
Old Oct 10th, 2004, 04:51 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 13,323
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
That road-runner plan is a disaster waiting to happen. Pick three places and go enjoy yourself. What you missed will be there when you return.
degas is offline  
Old Oct 10th, 2004, 05:17 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,934
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have to disagree with most of the advice you've gotten so far. The only part of your plan that seems really wrong to me is the Rome part. I don't think that would be worth it, certainly not worth it if you have to get back to MXP. But everything else looks OK.

And I think train does make the most sense given where you are going. You won't want a car in any of those places and they are all well serviced by trains. None of those legs is more than 3 hours (assuming to ditch the Rome part). And if you don't go to Rome then you can add an extra night each to Florence and Venice.

Then you'd have what is actually a very nice trip: 2 nights Lake Como, 3 Venice, 3 Florence and 2 CT. Extremely doable.

I don't usually tell people to ignore other posters advice (after all, most of this is just opinion) - but taking a guided tour or sticking to only Milan are just really bad ideas. Really, the Rome for 1 night and sleeper train back are the only part that makes no sense. Even if you could change your departure city to Rome I still wouldn't bother. The rest of it will be a lovely trip.
isabel is offline  
Old Oct 10th, 2004, 07:40 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,119
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Isabel,
You've gotten an extra day in there somehow. Gypsy only has NINE days "in country".

I agree about dropping Rome. As for CT, they have to be at the Milan airport early on the 10th day (Sunday). In order to spend the last night in CT and be at the airport for check in, they would have to rent a car just for a VERY early morning trip. Or take a train from La Spezia at 4:12 AM to get to the Milan airport on time. Neither fits my idea of the way to end a vacation.

I'm not going to take more of my time to make suggestions until we hear back from gypsy. It's awfully late to be rearranging itinerary.

JeanneB is offline  
Old Oct 10th, 2004, 08:07 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,525
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I see a max of 3 destinations here. I would do Varenna, Venice, and Florence only, and then the last nite in Milan.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Old Oct 10th, 2004, 09:18 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,119
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
z,

I'm beginning to wonder if this thread's for real. You're leaving in 4 days. Have you locked in your reservations? Have you checked w/ the airline about making changes?

Lastly, you say the next trip will be a villa for 2 wks. Do you know where you want to rent? If not, wouldn't it make sense to tour an area (say, Tuscany?) in order to get some idea where you want to spend more time?

If you want people's help, come back here and give us more to work with. Good luck.
JeanneB is offline  
Old Oct 11th, 2004, 05:55 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 1,126
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Whether this poster,or others, it's important for those wanting to travel by train consider the TOTAL time involved. A 3 hour train ride really takes much more time because of wait time, time to get to station, etc.
Another factor with multiple destinations in a short time period is the time packing, unpacking, checking in, waiting to check in etc.
Since this poster has not returned here with so few days to go, it will be difficult to change many reservations at the last minute.
I would recommend skipping Rome (I hate saying that) and do the rest of itinerary in reverse.
Florence, Venice, Varenna and then Milan.
jabez is offline  
Old Oct 14th, 2004, 09:16 AM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 2
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
All great feedback. Thank you.

My work schedule prevents me from checking more frequently.

It would have been nice to know of this great resource earlier in my planning process but I am thankful that I found it.

I will keep the train plan and drop Rome.

Thanks!
VAgypsy1 is offline  
Old Oct 14th, 2004, 09:27 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 94,768
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Well you all beat me to it & glad to see Gypsy already checked back in. I'd drop Rome and maybe even the Cinque Terre. Putting extra time into Venice would be my personal preference because I love it so. And I would do it all by train. Have a great trip, Gypsy.
suze is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
SME86
Europe
7
Mar 26th, 2015 10:29 AM
Jeremy_Lee
Europe
14
Aug 28th, 2012 02:32 PM
nneo
Europe
9
Mar 29th, 2011 10:08 AM
smallworld
Europe
35
Jun 7th, 2004 09:59 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 12:05 PM.