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serendibtrav Aug 30th, 2013 06:17 PM

Itinerary suggestion - Italy Dec 23-Jan 5 start Milan end Rome
We are hoping to visit Italy during the dates above in winter 2013. (Mother and two kids 18&22). Landing in Milan Dec 23. Departing Rome Jan 5.

I was thinking of spending week 1 in the north and week 2 in Rome and its surrounds. New years Eve in Rome. Christmas day/Boxing day in Venice.

What is a suggested itinerary ? We will have to travel by train. Interested in picturesque old world places. Sightseeing, a bit of shopping, restaurants, and absorbing the surrounds and culture.

I was thinking .....
Milan 1 night
Verona 2 nights
Venice 2 nights
Florence 3 nights
Rome 5 nights

Thought of side trips to Ravenna, Bologna whilst in the north. And any other suggested places from Rome.

Any suggestions / changes to the above most welcome considering the dates include public holidays over christmas etc.

Jean Aug 30th, 2013 09:19 PM

From your other thread, I deduce you'd be in Florence the nights of Dec. 28-30 (Sat. thru Mon.). If you're interested in seeing several museums while in Florence, you should see what's open/closed on that particular Sunday and esp. Monday and then figure out whether you'll be able to see what you're going there to see.

Since it will be dark before 5:00p and I'd want to maximize daytime sightseeing, I would catch trains at about 5:00p or 6:00p. If it were my trip, I wouldn't stay in 5 places in 13 nights. If you arrive Milan early enough, you could spend the day there and then move on to Verona. I'd see the sights of Verona the next day and then move on to Venice. I would add the two 'saved' nights to Venice and/or Florence. My preference would be more time in Florence because of the many day trip options.

Ravenna is too far for a day trip from any of your destinations except perhaps Bologna. Bologna would be best seen in a stop on the way from Venice to Florence. There is baggage storage at the Bologna Centrale train station.
[but you won't be able to search late December yet]

asps Aug 30th, 2013 11:28 PM

Well, consider that Dec. 25th and 26th are festive days - almost all the country comes to a standstill and even railway services are severely reduced. Reserve restaurant places in advance for 25th. Dec 29th is an ordinary Sunday, then again on Jan 1st everything stops (reserve restaurant again, as well as for the night of 31st). Jan 4th-5th-6th is a "bridge" (three half or full festive days) but you should have no problems.

jgg Aug 31st, 2013 09:05 AM

I agree with others that 5 different locations is too much with only 13 nights. Personally, I would do only 3 stops, 4 at the max. and agree with Jean's suggestion to do 1 Verona, 3 Venice, 4 Florence and 5 Rome. Other than a side trip to Siena or Pisa or other place in Tuscany (based on your interests) I'm not sure you will have time for too many side trips, so much to see in each city!!

We were just in Rome in March for our 3rd trip there (this time our kids were 17 and 20) and we did a Segway tour with Rex Tours. It was fabulous - definitely a highlight for us and I think your kids would really enjoy it!

Here are some links to my previous trip reports from those places along with pictures:

mmmooommm Aug 31st, 2013 12:15 PM

We are doing almost identical flights. Family with two sons 16 & 18. We are not aiming to cover TOO much, but rather anchor in a few spots...5 nights in Venice, 8 in Rome. Looking forward to following yr thread!

hollywoodsc Sep 1st, 2013 06:28 PM

I've been in Rome for Christmas a few years ago and last year for New Year's.
I made dinner reservations for Christmas Day as I didn't want to end up having Chinese.
But the day before and after, there wasn't a problem getting around, finding restaurants open, etc.

New Year's Eve in Rome is a lot of fun! You'll find most restaurants have Fixed Price menus. Buy a small botle of champagne from a street vendor, with a couple of plastic cups, and follow the crowds to the fireworks and New Year's countdown.
If you Google - Rome, New Year's - you find plenty of street parties, concerts, fireworks and can look for something near your hotel.
Have fun!!

serendibtrav Sep 3rd, 2013 12:20 AM

Thanks ever so much to everyone so far who have given me some ideas. I am still exploring and trying to decide - so keep the ideas flowing please. Thanks again

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