Itinerary Help, Please!!!

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Nov 5th, 2017, 08:42 AM
  #1
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Itinerary Help, Please!!!

My husband and I, and our 11-year old son will be traveling to Europe June 2018. Because my husband cannot take three weeks off from work, we are trying to fit as much as possible in our itinerary for the time we have. Please note because we are taking our 11-year old, we are trying to limit our stays in each location to no more than three nights. This is my plan so far but I'm trying to figure out the most efficient way to accomplish each destination.

Arrving Venice early a.m. - two nights there. Flight to Rome for 3 nights. Rent a car and drive to Positano for 3 nights. Return car in Naples for flight to Vienna (I have considered taking a train). Vienna back home after three nights.

My question is would where would be the best destination to return the car for flight to Vienna? Is Naples the only place or would another location be better?
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Nov 5th, 2017, 09:10 AM
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Venice to Rome is just 3.5 hours by train - why fly? Could easily rent car at Rome Termini station. And yes there is an overnight train Rome-Vienna that could be an experience for you all. airport would be best place to return car in Naples or Rome. For lots on trains check www.seat61.com; www.budgeteuropetravel.com and www.ricksteves.com.

Well off topic for you but just to consider trains and that experience of bullet trains Venice-Rome.
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Nov 5th, 2017, 09:26 AM
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Translating your plan into realistic travel talk:

Arrive Venice, that's the first day.
Second day: Tour Venice
Third day: Leave vence, get to airport security etc. fly to Rome airport get to Rome.
Fourth day: Rome
Fifth day: Rome
Sixth day: Leave Rome, rent car, drive to Positano, fighting impossible traffic and search for parking. Pay a fortune to park and realize you can't reasonably drive anywhere.
Seventh day: Positano, the coast
Eighth day: Positano, coast
Ninth day: Fight impossible traffic, get to Naples airport, fly to Vienna
Tenth day: Vienna
Eleventh day: Pack and return home.

As you can see, the time lost for city to city transfers cuts into your vacation to an extreme. Driving as you plan is not advisable. And your kid will go crazy.

Suggest: Fly into Venice, add another night there.
Train to Rome, add two nights there.
Train to Naples, then get a driver/car service to your choice of Amalfi area places.
Car service to Naples airport and home. Ditch Vienna.
There are other methods for Rome to Positano, including ferry from Naples instead of car service, staying in Sorrento instead of Positano, and other train/ferry combinations.
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Nov 5th, 2017, 09:46 AM
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Thank you AJPeabody for your response and for the breakdown. Unfortunately, it doesn't work for me. i don't want to spend another night in Venice as we have been there and are only visiting to show our son a few sights. Ditching Vienna is not an option as we are going to visit family so I am considering adding a few days on to the back end to accommodate some extra time. Taking the train from Venice to Rome does sound like a more plausible idea considering by the time we get through airport security, etc. we really are not saving any time by flying. I really wanted to drive to Positano for the experience...carsickness and all! Would I get close to the same experience by taking train to Naples and then car service from there?
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Nov 5th, 2017, 09:56 AM
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June is crazy on the Amalfi Coast, you can sit for hours in traffic on the coastal road.

I would suggest taking the train from Rome to Salerno and then taking a ferry to Positano which is such a nice way to see the villages

The ferry schedule for next year should come out around mid March as they begin on the first of April.

It is a nice way to make this trip given how stressful the drive is with all the traffic
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Nov 5th, 2017, 11:48 AM
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Yes, train plus ferry converts part of your travel time into vacation.

Did you consider reversing italy going south to north, avoiding the backtrack to Vienna?
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Nov 5th, 2017, 01:09 PM
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I really wanted to drive to Positano for the experience...carsickness and all! Would I get close to the same experience by taking train to Naples and then car service from>

then why not drive from Naples or Rome? A car service has to go over the same roads so why not drive yourself - though the Salerno/ferry option makes sense too.

Cars are useless however once on the Amalfi due to heavy traffic.
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Nov 5th, 2017, 01:14 PM
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<>

I don't understand the logic here. Were it me, I would be thinking the opposite, but you know your kid.
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Nov 5th, 2017, 03:48 PM
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I was thinking the same thing as StCirq... Do you know how energetic your son will be on arrival in Venice? If he's 'wasted' for 12-24 hours, your one+ day in Venice will be forgettable.

And I don't think Positano would be particularly memorable to an 11 y.o. boy. I would think he'd find Rome much more interesting, but, as was mentioned, you know your son. I'd suggest Pompeii while you're in Positano, but I don't think you have time to make it an enjoyable excursion.

IMO, Vienna doesn't fit well into your itinerary unless you consider AJPeabody's suggestion of reversing the Italy part.
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Nov 5th, 2017, 11:00 PM
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Certainly using the train Venice to Rome will be faster than the plane.

Naples airport is .... in Naples (really it is very close to the centre) so stopping there would be easiest.

But, at the moment Alitalia has not gone bust (I have been expecting it for some years now) flies inside Italy for a lot of flights to a lot of airports, so it might be worth looking at skyscanner. Eurowings is stable.

https://www.skyscanner.net/inspire/m...erDirects=true

if you look at this you might be able to fly Brindisi to Vienna direct (but only on Sturdays), Driving to Brindisi is a lot of motorway but you could do some back roads and stop at some interesting places.
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Nov 6th, 2017, 03:57 AM
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I think Sorrento might be a better base for you, even though it's not on the Amalfi Coast. Positano is a city of stairs, with lots of uphill climbing in the June heat backk and forth from town or beach, which could lead to a very cranky 11-year-old.

Sorrento has much flatter terrain. And it's a transportation hub with easy access by boat to Capri, the towns along the AC, and a train to Pompeii.

If you choose wisely, you can find a hotel with stunning views of the Bay of Naples, and a swimming pool for those afternoons when your kid is tired of sightseeing.
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Nov 6th, 2017, 06:03 AM
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I can't really help with the driving plans / itinerary as we have never driven in Italy. But I did want to chime in to say I agree and relate to your "3 night max" rule with the 11 year old. My kids are the same way - 3 nights and they are done and ready for a change of scenery. A lot of people will poo-poo anything less than a week in each city, which isn't really possible with realistic work / life schedules and kids in tow.

And sure, I'll be honest. My husband and myself are in our 40s, and perhaps we are on the immature side, but 3-4 nights is enough for us too.

I have only spent very minimal time on the Amalfi Coast, but from what I have seen there, I agree with Weadles. Sorrento itself is a nice town, and the views are stunning. Easy access to Capri / Pompeii / Naples lends itself to a variety of types of adventures - say kiddo gets tired of sightseeing - let's be honest, a lot of us do. Spend a day at the hotel pool, or take a boat to Capri. Then he may be refreshed and ready for a morning at Pompeii, or a pizza crawl in Naples.
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Nov 6th, 2017, 10:37 AM
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I've spent a lot of time on the Amalfi Coast, and while my husband and I love Positano, my kids, who were the same age as your 11-year-old the first time, were not charmed by the stairs in Positano, or the reception they received- well behaved as they were - !! at some hotels/restaurants. It's really more of a couples destination, to be honest.

What's also nice about Sorrento is that is has a very interesting old town to explore, and an area just below one of the hotels (Belle Syrene) where artists set up for the day. The town is much easier to explore on foot than Positano, though
both places can be madhouses when the season starts.
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Nov 6th, 2017, 11:13 AM
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I stayed in Sorrento several days as a base and don't remember any really stunning views from the town center anyway - not all to me at least comparable with Positano, Amalfi town, etc. But a utilitarian base for Capri, Pompeii, Mt Vesuvius and Amalfi area.
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Nov 6th, 2017, 12:37 PM
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The hotels on via Capo in Sorrento have magnificent views of the Bay of Naples. Hotel Minerva has a gorgeous terrace as do many of the rooms. The pool is on the terrace overlooking the harbor.
Views from the terrace of The Foreigners' Club are also lovely.

Evenings are especially beautiful in both places.
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Nov 6th, 2017, 01:20 PM
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But from the main streets of the town which I walked over a lot there are few views - you could stay in Sorrento and not know it were on the sea unless taking ferries. At least that was my experience in a low-rent hotel next to low-rent train station.
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Nov 6th, 2017, 02:04 PM
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We stayed very close to the old town at Hotel Tramontano. Our room had a tiny terrace with unbelievable views of The Bay of Naples. We visited guests at Bellevue ( sp???) Syrene, just down the block, and they also had a sweeping view of The Bay.

Having said this, Sorrento will never be Positano in terms of charm or beauty, but it can hold its own with some of the water views, and might be an easier place to stay for a family with a young child.
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Nov 6th, 2017, 02:12 PM
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I rather enjoyed Sorrento at night when even in November the streets were thronged with strollers - yeh probably mainly tourists but still always nice with lots of restaurants and shops open. Seems as though hotels with views block views from the Sorrento I was in. Be sure to get a hotel with a view of bay and that would be special.

For someone only spending a few days in the area I'd suggest Sorrento = because of proximity to Pompeii and ferries to Capri and buses or tours to Amalfi area.

And can easily get to Sorrento by trains from Rome - whereas public transit to Positano and beyond is poor in winter when Amalfi ferries from Sorrento probably don't run.
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Nov 7th, 2017, 07:03 AM
  #19
 
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My question is would where would be the best destination to return the car for flight to Vienna? Is Naples the only place or would another location be better?>

If driving you could drive the eastern Amalfi to Salerno- return car at or near train station and take trains to Rome- no bothering with busier Naples area.
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Dec 9th, 2017, 01:20 PM
  #20
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Okay so I have gained a few additional days so now I find myself thinking I need to rearrange the order of things. Vienna must be the last stop as we are visiting family. We will be flying out of Vienna back to the US. My question is should the plan be Venice, (maybe insert 2 nights in Florence), Rome, Naples then Vienna or in a different order?
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