Old May 17th, 2010, 09:29 AM
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Hello All!

Going to Italy in October for my husband's is a surprise and the first time to Europe for the both of us.
Right now our schedule is Rome for 2 nights, Positano or Capri for 2 nights, Tuscan Region 2 nights then Florence.
Not sure if we should do Positano or Capri for 2 nights? My main concern is logistics and enjoyment. I want to make sure we can get to the train station early enough on day 4 so that we can make it to Siena before night.
What do you recommend for a quick trip with a long train ride on the way out of Naples.....Capri or Positano??

Thanks so much for your help!
Donanne2 is offline  
Old May 17th, 2010, 09:46 AM
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Keep in mind that with only two nights per destination, you only have one full day in each place. It's very common for new travelers to Europe to cram a lot in. I understand that this is a major undertaking and you want to fit in as much as possible - I tend to travel a lot more quickly than a lot of others on these forums. BUT if you keep this current plan (as I understand it), you will literally be spending half your trip on trains, finding hotels, and doing all the "logistical" things that come with moving to a different place.

Do you have a week? Have you already booked your flights? If you do have a week, I would pick two or at the most three places (if two are close together). If you want to see Rome, Florence and Tuscany, for example, you could fly into Rome, spend 3 full days there, train to Florence and spend 3 full days there (and one or two of those days could be day trips to other towns in Tuscany, depending on how much you want to see in Florence), and then fly out of Florence or Pisa. Just a suggestion.
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Old May 17th, 2010, 09:47 AM
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Assume you have 7 nights from the 2-2-2-1. Really spreading yourself thin. I would focus on Rome 3 nights and Florence / Tuscany 4 nights or 4 Rome / 3 F-T. Just so much to do and see, especially for a 1st trip. Going south to Naples / Capri and then back north you are going to spend more time traveling than experiencing. Just my opinion having been to Italy a number of times.
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Old May 17th, 2010, 09:51 AM
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For a 1st trip to Italy I would skip any points south of Rome - (Positano & Capri). You'll burn a lot of your vacation just getting to/from either place.

There is so much to see and enjoy in Rome itself, including time to simply sit at an outdoor cafe and soak in the atmosphere.

Siena is best reached by bus from Florence or Rome. You can even visit Siena as a day trip from Florence. Ditto for Tuscan towns like Pisa and Lucca.

I really don't like to move around as much as you are planning - you lose 1/2 a day every time you change hotels.

How many night total in Italy do you have? My recommendation is Rome for 3-4 nights, then shift to Florence, and use that as a base for 3-4 nights as well. You could stay 2 nights in Siena - but I'd do that AFTER Florence for ease of travel.

for train schedules check
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Old May 17th, 2010, 06:03 PM
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When we travel, we usually have a three night minimum. Occasionally we break the rule and regret it. It would be easy to spend a week in Rome- easy to do day trips on the train. Three days in rome and three days in Florence would be fine as well. Can't see/do it all in one trip. Consider this trip as an introduction. Leave yourself time to just walk down the street.
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Old May 18th, 2010, 07:01 AM
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I agree with everyone else that your current itinerary leaves little time to actually experience anything as you will waste so much time traveling and checking in and out of hotels.

Leave Positano and Capri for another trip and focus on Rome and Florence. From Rome you can easily visit Umbria should you want a day in out of the city and from Florence Siena is a lovely day trip by bus. You can also take a nice trip into the wine areas of Chianti if that is ok interest, getting a nice mix of city and countryside without moving around.

October is a really nice month to visit - enjoy!
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Old May 18th, 2010, 09:19 AM
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For everybody posting in thread:

Florence and Siena are in Tuscany. They are part of Tuscany. They are Tuscan towns.


I think your husband is going to be surprised he traveled all that way and only got a flash glimpse of 6 places.

May I suggest you not surprise him with a completely pre-planned first time trip to Italy, and instead ask what he would most like to see? Might he want to see Pompeii? Stay at a winery? Not switch hotels so many times? Rent a car and drive?
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Old May 18th, 2010, 09:51 AM
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I agree with the wise Zeppole!

If this were my own trip, I would limit myself to two destinations. Your plan as it stands is pretty crazy.

Do you know that there is no train to either Positano or Capri? (Capri is an island).
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Old May 18th, 2010, 11:03 AM
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I agree with the above, with your time constraints I would personally spend them all in Rome, but if you wanted variety pick 1 other destination.

Have fun!
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Old May 18th, 2010, 11:36 AM
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Logistics and enjoyment considerations depends on your value placements. You do not have to match anyone else's value expectations. You need to compute the time you spend moving around to find out what is left behind. If it does not match your expectations, then reduce the transportation content of your journey. You should have all the info within your reach.

I just went to the places you mentioned last months, but I had more than twice the time to do it. While I like Rome, it is the city I get hit most with "Spaghetti, Pizza, we have English menu" blah, blah, blah, of all the cities I have visited in Italy.
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Old May 18th, 2010, 12:51 PM
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Donanne 2, how lovely that you want to surprise your husband. And in my humble opinion, you've picked the perfect country for a first visit to Europe.

That being said, please-please-please listen to the majority here. You have too much on your itinerary, especially if you only have one week.

Having just returned from my second trip to Italy, I would recommend 4 days Rome and 3 in Florence. If you want romance with your art/history, then Venice/Florence instead.

As noted by others, you can take the 75-minute bus ride from Florence to Siena for one day, if you must. But, trust me, there is many more than 3 days worth to see in Florence alone.

So, my suggestion sticks. No day trips. Four days Rome/three in Florence (bullet train gets you from Rome-Florence in 90 mts.)

Have a wonderful time!

PS If you have not purchased tickets yet, see if you can swing 10-11 days instead of just 7. Going all that way, seven days will fly by. If you're going, try to go for as long as you can.
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Old May 18th, 2010, 02:02 PM
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But I'd go to Positano rather than Capri....
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