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Italy in December: southern Italy vs. Bologna

Italy in December: southern Italy vs. Bologna

Old Aug 29th, 2009, 10:21 AM
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Italy in December: southern Italy vs. Bologna

Friend and I have our airline tickets already booked into and out of Rome 1-10 December. Now, what to do??? Originally I wanted to see southern Italy: down to Sicily and work ourselves back up to Rome while visiting the Greek ruins along the way......OR.....head up north to Bologna to see the town and have a gastronomic/culinary adventure (cooking classes).

We've been to Italy before and have seen the north many times, but we are concerned that southern Italy is just not quite worth it in December (should be saved for spring/summer??)
: ) Decisions, decisions.....any advice would be greatly appreciated!

msfaz
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Old Aug 29th, 2009, 10:29 AM
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I think it's a close call. If part of your southern itinerary was the Amalfi and island hopping, plainly you are off-season weather wise! You can luck out with pure sunshine at that time of year, and even get a few lunches and coffees outdoors if you are dressed warmly, but it would be wrong to tell you to fly ahead without acknowledging you could see a lot of rain. (I seriously doubt snow).

BUT: If much of your Sicilian and southern adventure is centered around cultural sightseeing in Palermo, Agrigento, Siracusa, market going, eating in Ragusa, etc.,, and catching Paestum, Pompeii and Napoli (don't you want to learn to cook like that?) you might find the brisk weather an actual boon, rather than tromping around in the hot sun. Also, heading in Christmas, you have all the liveliness of Napoli's Christmas crafts, nativity scenes, etc.

Bologna will be COLD and maybe foggy, rainy -- I tend to doubt snow that early. The porticoes help. I would stick to trains for daytripping, as the fogs are notoriously thick, and you really don't need a car. The possibilities for sightseeing around Bologna are endless -- including the spectacular Byzantine mosaics of Ravenna. But there are so many towns with marvels just a train ride away.

Doubt I've helped you at all!
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Old Aug 29th, 2009, 06:05 PM
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Zeppole,
Thanks for the info. We are at a quandary...Choice! choices!....We are probably leaning toward Bologna..The fog will add to the allure..I fancy...
Thanks again for the advice especially the rental car and the fog.. We will take a train.
Best!!
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Old Aug 30th, 2009, 04:45 AM
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It is a difficult choice, and as a native Chicagoan, I would almost say GO SOUTH, BE WARMER.....but I keep meaning to spend more time in the South and end up North, so I know how that is....and I've spent some really lovely winters in and around Bologna, so enjoy the cooking!
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Old Sep 6th, 2009, 06:19 PM
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Thanks Dobermina..We are really looking forward to the trip and will truly enjoy the adventure and what it will bring!
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Old Sep 6th, 2009, 08:30 PM
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Although I love Bologna (and you certainly can't go wrong with cooking classes), I do love spending time in the South. Here are two links to Google maps highlighting our favorite places:

1) Romanesque churches in Puglia - http://bit.ly/OwbPg

2) tour of Sicily, which includes Greek, Norman and Baroque architecture and fantastic outdoors activities http://bit.ly/TBSgp

I know its a tough choice, but you will have a great time no matter what you choose!
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