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Leaving for Italy in 3 weeks...need some last minute info please!!!

Leaving for Italy in 3 weeks...need some last minute info please!!!

Old Apr 9th, 2007, 07:30 AM
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Leaving for Italy in 3 weeks...need some last minute info please!!!

To all the Italy experts,

My hubby and I are leaving for Italy in 3 weeks and I need your help with some last minute details.
Our trip starts in Rome, then off to Tuscany, then Florence, then Venice. My questions to you all are as follows...
1. Should we book our tours now or will the hotels be able to help us coordinate them?
2. Which tours are the best in Rome, Florence and Venice. We want to see the "must sees" but we want the tours to be fun and educational.
3. When we leave Rome, should we rent a car and drive out of Rome to our Tuscan destination or should we take a train and have the hotel we are staying at arrange for a car to be there?
4. Can you please provide your top 3 or 4 restaurants in each place? Is there a good book I can buy for all the great places to eat?
5. Should we buy our train tickets before we get to Italy or is it easy to purchase them before we leave for each destination?

Any and all info would be greatly appreciated. I'm getting nervous because I feel so unprepared!
Thanks in advance for all youe help!

Bea
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Old Apr 9th, 2007, 07:45 AM
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Your hotel can book tours for you if you like. Many peopl on these boards like to book with articular companies and so make their own arrangements.

Search this forum for restaurants. There are many, many threads about dining in these three cities.

For your travel destinations, it will be easy to purchase your train tickets once you arrive--frequent trains between your destinations. You can buy all your tickets at the same time, or wait 'til each travel day.
ellenem is offline  
Old Apr 9th, 2007, 07:50 AM
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If you allow your hotel to arrange your tours and car they will charge a hefty supplement for doing it. Do it beforehand. Driving isn't bad in Italy though very busy around Rome and a few other cities. Venice is easy to walk around yourself if you have a map and guide book, as is Florence (book Uffizi gallery online before going as queues are horrendous). A Lonely Planet guide book on Italy is packed with must see and do information, train info, and info on restaurants.

It is possible to hop on a Ryanair plane from Rome to Venice. Only a short hop on a cheap airline. You could spend overnight there and come back next day.


Book tickets beforehand instead of having to queue up :

http://www.tickitaly.com/

Other info :

http://www.rome.world-guides.com/

http://www.florence.world-guides.com/

http://www.pisa.world-guides.com/

http://www.venice.world-guides.com/

kaneda is offline  
Old Apr 9th, 2007, 07:58 AM
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5. Train tickets should be easy enough to arrange after arrival.

2. In Venice we did our own walking tours (following recommended paths given in a guidebook). It's a fairly small area. Also take the vaporetto that goes down the Grand Canal, that makes for an inexpensive but incredible "tour".

4. I don't plan restaurants ahead but just keep my eyes open while I'm out and about each day. No sense having a recommendation for a nce restaurant if it's way on the other side of a city imo.

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Old Apr 9th, 2007, 08:01 AM
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Regarding train tickets: Make your decisions based upon which is less stressful for you. Would you find it more stressful to worry about having tickets reserved and missing that particular train, or not having tickets and having the train sell out or not be able to sit together or not be able to get a train at the time you need?

There were 5 of us and I like to plan in advance and wanted us to sit together, so I booked train tickets on line in advance.
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Old Apr 9th, 2007, 08:13 AM
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Regarding tours, we've had great experiences with personal tour guides. I would email your hotel concierge (or front desk) and ask them to help you make arrangements. You can arrange a tour of the Vatican through the Vatican or you can arrange a Vatican/St. Peters combined tour with independent guides. In Florence, take a tour of the Uffizi and if you want, another walking tour of the highlights of Florence. In Venice, there is an interesting tour of the Doges Palace.

Some people recommend taking a train out of Rome and picking up the car later. Imho that is a waste of time. (Take taxi or bus to train station, buy tickets, wait in line, arrive at destination, deal with luggage, take taxi or bus to next destination--it's silly and a lot of extra variables are involved!). While it is very difficult to get out of Rome in a rental car, we all somehow seem to manage to get out to write about it later. Once you are out of Rome, driving is a breeze. I would return your car at the train station or airport in Florence. I've had a car delivered to my hotel in Rome and several times picked them up at the train station. It's worth the charge to have it delivered. If you want to pick up your car, you can send one member of your party to pick it up.
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