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Italy Itinerary! Comments and Suggestions Please

Italy Itinerary! Comments and Suggestions Please

Old Jun 24th, 2013, 12:43 PM
  #1  
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Italy Itinerary! Comments and Suggestions Please

This is my first post in the forum, but I have done plenty of reading prior to this! My fiance and I are going to Italy for our honeymoon. We are going for 10 days and have basically pinned down where we want to visit and for how long, but now must fill our days! We are not very well versed in art, so we don't want to spend a whole day at museums, we would rather walk and really feel each city, but short visits for specific reasons would be fine. Also, any restaurant recommendations would be appreciated!

Friday, Oct. 25th - Arrive in Milan at 8AM, Take train to Lake Como
Saturday, Oct. 26th - Lake Como
Sunday, Oct. 27th - Leave in AM from Como to Florence by Train
Monday, Oct. 28th - Florence
Tuesday, Oct. 29th - Florence / Leave whenever depending on what we want to do for our Villa in Tuscany (very close to Siena). We will have a rental car leaving Florence and will have it for the remainder of the Tuscany portion of the trip.
Wednesday, Oct. 30th - Tuscany
Thursday, Oct. 31st - Tuscany
Friday, Nov. 1st - Leave Am from Villa in Tuscany to Rome (by car, will return upon arrival in Rome).
Saturday, Nov. 2nd - Rome
Sunday, Nov. 3rd - Rome until 6PM Flight back to Milan
Monday, Nov. 4th - Leave early in AM from Milan back home

It is quite a packed trip, but we are happy with the itinerary and have a bit of an idea of what we want to get done in each place, but your opinions are welcome!

Lake Como
*Taxi Boat
*Perhaps some light hiking if it isn't too cold
*Silk Factory
*Duomo
*Eat, Drink, and Rest!

Florence
*Galleria Dell'Accademia
*Duomo-Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore
*Piazza della Signoria
*Ponte Vecchio
*Uffizi Gallery?

Tuscany (I would especially love tour information for this part of the trip! We know we want to see the countryside and everything it has to offer!)
*Best of Tuscany Tour
*Wine Tour
*Relaxing

Rome
*Ancient Rome (Colosseum, etc.)
*Vatican
*Trevi Fountain
andreah3 is offline  
Old Jun 24th, 2013, 01:51 PM
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You have a good itinerary if you only had an additional week to travel. With 10 days, I would limit my trip to 3 stops at most. Since you are not too interested in museums and, while it pains me to suggest it, you might skip Florence. Or, stop for the day on your way from Lake Como to Tuscany and see the Duomo and the Accademia.

You could spend an extra day in the Lake Como area to recover from your jetlag and maybe an extra day in either Rome or Tuscany.

Happy planning and enjoy your trip.
mamcalice is offline  
Old Jun 24th, 2013, 04:35 PM
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Nice trip, but I agree with a max of 3 destinations in 10 days. Do not try to drive into Rome---drop the car in Orvieto and train into Rome.

What a shame to have to go back to Milano--did you look at open jaw from Rome?
bobthenavigator is offline  
Old Jun 24th, 2013, 06:04 PM
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Unfortunately our whole trip was based around our AA skymiles. Without them the trip would probably not have been in budget. The flights were free, so that's what we have to go with.

Not sure if we will keep the itinerary how it is currently now, but we really don't want to have to leave Milan directly and head down to Florence right after the flight, I just think we will be too tired and want to relax. Some big decisions to make! Thanks for your input, would love to hear of some restaurant recommendations if you have any!
andreah3 is offline  
Old Jun 24th, 2013, 06:08 PM
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Unfortunately our whole trip was based around our AA skymiles. Without them the trip would probably not have been in budget. The flights were free, so that's what we have to go with.

Not sure if we will keep the itinerary how it is currently now, but we really don't want to have to leave Milan directly and head down to Florence right after the flight, I just think we will be too tired and want to relax. Some big decisions to make! Thanks for your input, would love to hear of some restaurant recommendations if you have any!
andreah3 is offline  
Old Jun 24th, 2013, 07:36 PM
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We flew into Milan a couple of years ago and spent our first night there because it allowed us to see both the amazing cathedral and also the Last Supper (must arrange tickets in advance - takes about a half an hour to see - very special). We were sorry that we didn't stay another day for some window shopping and get a sense for the fashion. Perhaps you should skip Como and go straight to Florence/Tuscany and Rome after spending 24 hours in Milan (which isn't industrial and ugly as I had once believed). We spent a day on Como and it is lovely, but it is a huge lake and hard to see in a day other than on a ferry boat trip.
LCPDFP is offline  
Old Jun 24th, 2013, 09:33 PM
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Spending a day and a half in the town of Como at the end of October may leave you wondering why people swoon over the mention of Lake Como. You'll be staying in what I think is the least attractive part of the lake, it might be raining, and the off-season ferry schedule will not allow you to explore very much in your one full day.

I like Milan, so I would skip Lake Como on this trip and spend the first day and night there. The Milan Duomo is spectacular, and you could see The Last Supper (reservations strongly recommended). The second night that you would have spent in Como could be added to Florence. (Or move things up a day and add the night to Rome at the end.)

I wouldn't leave Florence very late on Oct. 29th. Sunset will be at about 5:00p, and I doubt you'd want to be looking for your Tuscany villa in the dark. If you're picking up the rental car IN Florence, you should learn all about the city's limited traffic zone and how to avoid it. If you violate the zone as you're leaving Florence, you'll probably get a ticket in the mail after you get home.

http://en.comune.fi.it/mobility/driving.html

FYI, most of the towns you're likely to be driving to in Tuscany (incl. Siena) also have these zones, so, before you go, Google the "ZTL" of each town you're hoping to see and try to figure out where you're going to park outside each town's limited traffic zone. GPS in your rental car can't be trusted to keep you out of any ZTL, so I always like to have a paper map, either Touring Club Italiano or Michelin.

Since your time in Florence is limited, you should make reservations for the Accademia and the Uffizi. Try to include the Baptistery and the Basilica di Santa Croce to your sightseeing list.

I agree with bobthenavigator about returning the car before arriving in Rome; however, Nov. 1st is a national holiday and I think the Orvieto offices will be closed that day. You could inquire about dropping the car in the town of Chiusi which is also an easy train ride to Rome. Since the holiday falls on a Friday this year, there may be lots of Italians making a weekend getaway so I would allow a little extra time for getting around, turning in the car, etc.
Jean is offline  
Old Jun 24th, 2013, 11:27 PM
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Less is more, especially in Italy. The Italian lakes are wonderful but perhaps not in October. I would skip
Como and go to Florence. Walk the streets and be very selective about museums if you are not so interested in art and sculpture. The Duomo from the outside is really magnificent but the inside is disappointing as most of the art works are in the Duomo museum. The copy of David is outside the Palazzo Vecchio and you can walk over to the Ufizi and see the Botticellis . The frescoes in Santa Croce and San Marco are wonderful. Eat gelato and go to the local markets
Enjoy Rome where you should book for the Vatican and a Coliseum tour ( we used Select Italy ) in advance but most of all enjoy your Tuscan Villa, the small villages and squares , the countryside, the food, the wine. If you are south of Siena go to Montalcino , Pienza and Montepulciano, home of great wines. If you are north of Siena go to Greve and Montefiorelle and Panzano. In Siena do go to he Duomo , and sit in that wonderful square. You will become an Italian driver, especially if you drive the small roads. Wherever you go the landscape is beautiful so spend lots of time drinking coffee and wine and soaking up the Italian ability to enjoy life.
lovetravel45 is offline  
Old Jun 25th, 2013, 12:22 AM
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If you look at your itinerary, you will be spending one unproductive night on Nov 3rd in Milan. Your trip is really ending before 4pm on Nov 3rd in Rome order to make it to the Rome airport to catch your flight only to arrive late in the evening in Milan only to have a snack and go sleep. If you make it back early to Milan on ground, you can extend the useful part of your trip by spending an afternoon+evening in Milan before your return trip.

Have you computed when you can actually relax after traveling from the Milan (Malpensa?) to Lake Como? If you arrive too early, you might not be able to check in and you will not be able to relax, but have to kill time until your room is ready. It is the same time you could have spent traveling south. As others said, you are visiting Como at the end of the season.

Just for you reference, is going straight to Florence that tiring? Look at the train schedule

Malpensa-Milano Centrale 9:22-10:07
Milano Centrale-Firenze 10:15-11:55 (too tight), 11:15-12:55

You will be likely to be at your Florence hotel around 13:20 where your room is more likely to be ready.

If you stay further on the same train to Rome:
Milano Centrale-Rome 11:15-14:35

You will be at your Rome hotel around 15:00 where you room will be ready to check in and relax without a need to kill time.
greg is offline  
Old Jun 25th, 2013, 05:07 AM
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Thank you all so much! This is all great advice and we are considering our options now. I will let everyone know what we decide!
andreah3 is offline  
Old Jun 25th, 2013, 07:22 AM
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Glad you are reconsidering. I agree with the above advice that 3 destinations are more than enough for 10 days. Otherwise you will feel like you are spending more time traveling than enjoying. Those train and plane tickets start adding up, so staying put saves money too. If you can fly home out of Rome, you will save yourself both time and money. Italy is wonderful and I'm sure you will have a fantastic trip. Enjoy!
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Old Jun 25th, 2013, 07:29 AM
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From another person's perspective, I would say skip milan, go directly to the lakes! We thought the lakes were beautiful. Now, we went in May,not october so that may make a difference in weather conditions and we stayed up in lugano and also saw lake maggiore, but that was our favorite part of our trip to Switzerland and Italy. It is just beautiful and a perfect place to relax. Milan is a city and we found not a very pretty one.
We also loved Florence. It is a very walkable city and we had some great food. We are also not into all the art museums. We did a cooking class which was lots of fun. Will post that when I go back and see the name of it. It was 5 hours long and had a variety of ages. I think we had 20 in our group.
We found Rome very touristy. We saw everything we needed to and that was it. I would probably never go back. But I would go back to the lakes and Florence area.
Since it is your honeymoon, I would think the lake region would be a great place to stay for a few days and relax and just take in the scenery. We did not stay on Lake como, but there are several lakes in the area. I am sure they are all beautiful.
We also looked at the first day of travel as a day when you are half asleep, you may as well travel to your destination you will be for a few days rather than waste the first two days of your trip traveling.
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Old Jun 25th, 2013, 07:31 AM
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http://www.florencetown.com/eng/flor...-florence.html the cooking class we took!
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Old Jun 25th, 2013, 09:31 AM
  #14  
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All great suggestions! I am filling up my itinerary with all of this as we speak.

We are changing to go straight to Florence, Stay from 25th-28th, then Tuscany for 3 days still, and then adding another day onto Rome. That should give us more time to relax in each destination! Can't wait to eat, drink, and relax!
andreah3 is offline  
Old Jun 25th, 2013, 07:01 PM
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Much better! Have a wonderful trip!
msteacher is offline  
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