Italy: Rome and one more city

Dec 30th, 2009, 02:35 PM
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Italy: Rome and one more city

Hi Everyone,

So we need your help. This is our first visit to Italy in June. We have a week. We land in Rome and we want to at least visit one other city (i.e. Naples, Florence and/or Venice, etc.).

I was wondering if you could help us plan this trip. We would like to take public transits, and we would love to walk and explore. We would like to visit the historic places and enjoy local food.

Also, we usually stay at a Marriot Chain Hotel. Do you recommend any particular Marriott in Rome and in any of the other cities that you recommend us to visit. We would also like to hear about recommended hotels/B&B (preferably close to historic places).

Looking forward to hearing from you.
SAUR is offline  
Dec 30th, 2009, 02:50 PM
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You need a week just to see Rome. But, if you want a day trip, take the train from Termini to Orvieto.

If you can afford it, you should stay at the Hassler in Rome. Very old school.

ThinGorjus is offline  
Dec 30th, 2009, 02:52 PM
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It would be easy to combine Rome with any of the cities you mention using the excellent italin train system.

Do you have any specific interests that might help us (and you) narrow your decision? For example, all of the places you mention are of historic interest. Florence is full to brimming with Renaissance art, so if you're not particularly interested in such art, it may not interest you as much. From Naples, it is easy to visit Pompeii.
ellenem is offline  
Dec 30th, 2009, 04:58 PM
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Although there are some Marriott hotels in Europe they are not nearly as popular - or as ubiquitous - as they are here. The only one in Rome is the Grand Hotel Flora. There is none in Florence and the only one near Venice is at the airport - where you definitely do not want to stay.

I think you will find the Flora very expensive (in terms of points or euros - a basic double room is about $450US per night) and suggest that unless you have a ton of points to blow you look at local hotels rather than an american chain.

How many people is we? And what hotel budget are you looking at?
nytraveler is offline  
Dec 30th, 2009, 05:45 PM
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brando is offline  
Dec 30th, 2009, 07:28 PM
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I would forget chain hotels as they usually aren't well located. What is your hotel budget? How many days (or hotel nights would be better) do you have?
kybourbon is online now  
Dec 30th, 2009, 08:05 PM
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This is reaally helpful!
We= 2
Hotel Budget= 150 (US)per night. We are open to B&B's.
Thank you!
SAUR is offline  
Dec 30th, 2009, 08:15 PM
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Also, do we need to carry cash? Can we use credit cards (i.e. visa/master) in most place (cafes, shops, restaurants, hotels, transits)?
SAUR is offline  
Dec 31st, 2009, 10:22 AM
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I think for a first trip I would recommend Rome and Venice, just because they are so different. Florence can be done later and makes a good combo trip with the Tuscan countryside.

You might want to look at the Hotel Giardino Rome **. I was very happy there. Book early to get a room. Great location, lovely helpful owner (Katy), quiet rooms, usual breakfast.

Buon viaggio!
Dayle is offline  
Dec 31st, 2009, 10:28 AM
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I can't reco hotel since that isn't our price point. But you should know that is quite a low budget (only about 100 euros) and for that you will get quite a simple place - probably no air conditioning, possibly stairs versus an elevator and a shared bath.

Have a look at to see what is available in your price range.
nytraveler is offline  
Dec 31st, 2009, 10:39 AM
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hi saur,

as you are flying into Rome, and a week is only enough to begin to scratch the surface of the city, I too would suggest staying in rome, and making one or two day trips if you feel like it.

however, if you feel that you really do want more variety, I woudl strongly suugest that you combine Rome with Venice - it is sufficiently different to Rome so that you won't get what you have seen mixed up - it's very easy to suffer from culture overload!

as your flight is likely to arrive in the early mornnig, and you are probably going to have to use th train to get to central Rome, I suggest that you go straight from Rome to Venice, from termini station which is where your train from the airport will end up.

this will get you to Venice in mid-afternoon, nicely in time to check into your hotel and go for a wander round before supper.

stay 3 nights, then get the train back to Rome for the rest of your stay.

I can't recommend a hotel either in Rome or Venice as we have only stayed in apartments recently.

good luck,

regards, ann
annhig is offline  
Dec 31st, 2009, 11:05 AM
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June is high season. Even two-star hotels in the historic center charge 130-150 Euro for a double. The Albergo Lucia near Termini station is a two-star that charges 70 Euro for a double with private bath and without breakfast.
Zerlina is offline  
Dec 31st, 2009, 12:59 PM
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Your lodging budget will be a challenge, less so in Rome but definitely in Venice. For that reason, I probably wouldn't choose Venice as your second destination on this trip.

Do you need to return to Rome to fly home? That would also make a big difference in such a short trip.

FYI, the fastest train Rome to Venice takes almost 4 hours plus time to get to your hotel. The fare is 73 euros per person in 2nd class, not counting any possible discounts, so that's almost another night's lodging.

I agree that you could easily spend the entire week in Rome, and there are many interesting day trips that are a short and cheap train or bus ride away. The train to Orvieto takes a little over an hour, and the lowest 2nd class fare is only 7.10 euros. A more pricey option is Caserta and its Versailles-like Royal Palace. Just over an hour on the train, 28 euros per person one way in 2nd class, plus entry fees.
Jean is online now  
Jan 1st, 2010, 01:50 PM
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Wow...I just picked the price range, but I'll spend more if needed to get a decent lodging place (definitely AC and private bath are a must)

We get into Rome late in the evening on the 5th (Saturday) and then we fly to Paris on the 11th from Rome early we really have 5 full days

So based on this, we would like to to maximize our time in Rome (3 days) and maybe go to one or two other cities on a day trip. We can leave early morning (via train or bus) and hoping it'll be a scenic ride.
Is it possible to visit Naples for a day trip? What other city would you recommend for a day trip?
SAUR is offline  
Jan 1st, 2010, 02:03 PM
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You sure can take a day trip via the train to Naples, SAUR. And if you wish to visit Florence for the day take an early train, the trip will take about 90 minutes and the train station is right in the center of Florence so it would give you a day to explore that city and if you enjoy it you could stay in Florence the next time you return to Italy. Florence is a very walkable city by the way.

You could make your decisions after arriving in Rome and buy your train tickets at that point when you know for sure what you feel up to doing. Best wishes and enjoy your time in Rome and whereever else you visit.
LoveItaly is offline  
Jan 1st, 2010, 02:29 PM
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For a day trip from Rome, I highly recommend Orvieto.
(Unless it's a weekend.)
If possible -- if even remotely possible! -- try to stay overnight in Orvieto. Totally different (and much richer) experience than just daytripping in and out.

Re: your hotel budget for Rome. You will not have much luck finding AC and private bath for $150/night. Not in any area that is worth staying in, imo. (A night in Orvieto, otoh, can be relatively inexpensive.)

On our last two trips we stayed very happily in Arco del Lauro (in Trastevere) and Residenza Canali (in the historic center). Neither is terribly expensive, and both are lovely, spotless, friendly and comfortable.
I prefer the historic center, but Trastevere is interesting, fun, and trippy.
LucieV is offline  
Jan 1st, 2010, 08:51 PM
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LucieV - Both the links above look very nice. Which one would you recommend among the two? Also, which one is more centrally located within and close to public transit?

If I reserve at one of the two places, am I able to cancel it without any penalty?
SAUR is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2010, 04:54 AM
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If you find the B&B's already booked, there are quite a few convents in the area with private bath and AC. The cheapest in the historic center with AC is probably Fraterna Domus near Piazza Navona which is about 80€ per night. Near the Colosseum is Domus Nova Bethlem. Their website is Italian only even though there is an English selection.

In Trastevere is Santa Francesca Romana.
kybourbon is online now  
Jan 2nd, 2010, 07:17 AM
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Nobody answered your question about cash vs. credit cards. Use credit cards for larger purchases: hotels, nicer restaurants. But you will need some cash, which you should get from an ATM. Smaller hotels will give you a discount if you pay with cash.

Do not bring travelers' checks; they're hard to cash (only at certain banks) and cost extra to cash. Likewise, you don't want to bring a lot of cash to exchange. Once again you lose in the exchange.

Now's the time to check your existing credit cards and ATM cards. Some banks add an extra 3% on foreign charges, and the 3% plus a fee for ATM withdrawals. If you're in the US, credit unions only charge the system 1% on foreign charges and withdrawals. And Capitol One eats the 1%; no extra charge.
Mimar is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2010, 08:57 AM
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Thanks Mimar. I'll look into my CC and check what they would charge me. When I was in Dubai recently, I was getting hit with a 3% charge for every transaction.

On a different note, just out of curiosity, how long will it take to drive from Rome to Paris?

kybourbon - the rate is very nice, but I wish the website was in English and I was able to e-mail them to get some information on the rates
SAUR is offline  

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