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London - Paris - Venice - Rome in 21 Days

London - Paris - Venice - Rome in 21 Days

Old Dec 15th, 2014, 07:04 PM
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London - Paris - Venice - Rome in 21 Days

My partner and I are planning a European vacation for the end of April-May in 2015. Our tentative itinerary is 21 days (including flights). We want to fly into London, and spend 3 days there and then head to Paris for 3 days. After that we will take an overnight train to Venice. We will be staying hopefully with friends in Venice which is why we have allocated most of our time there, in order to cut our costs. We would love to spend at least 3 days in Rome and fly out of there if possible.

I've lived in Venice and been to Rome once, so this will be my opportunity to show my partner the highlights. London and Paris will be a first for both of us so we don't want to cut our time too short, however, we are aware that accommodation and travel costs in these major cities can be high.

Alternatively, we may only be able to travel for 16 days. If this is the case, our plan is to fly into Paris and make our way through Venice and Rome. 3 days Paris, 3 days Rome and 8 days Venice.

While we are in Venice, our plan is to take day trips to nearby cities so we won't be spending the entire 8 days in the lagoon.

Looking for suggestions and advice from the experts! Thank you.
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Old Dec 15th, 2014, 07:40 PM
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21 days only equals 18.5 days 'on the ground'. Then you lose half a day when you move from one city to the next. Not counting the night train - you will be down to 16 days free -- the first couple probably jet lagged.

So you would not have nearly as much time as you think. If you want to spend a substantial time in Venice -- I'd limit to two other cities -- which ever two you most want to see.

W/ just 16 days . . . that is 13.5 days 'on the ground. If you want 8 days in Venice -- I'd pick either Paris or Rome and leave it at that.

And re London for 3 days . . . not a good idea IMO. It will be your arrival city, you will be jet lagged, and it is ENORMOUS w/ tons of things to see/do/ I wouldn't plan on doing London at all unless I could spend a minimum of 5 days there (which is really only 3 'useable' days)
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Old Dec 15th, 2014, 11:45 PM
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I think you need a minimum of thee days for London, Paris and Rome that do not count your travel days.

f you map out your trip:

Day 1 Overnight flight
Day 2 Arrive London (allow for jet lag so able to see just a biit)
Day 3, 4, 5 London
Day 6 travel to Paris (see a bit)
Day 7, 8, 9 Paris
Day 10 travel to Venice (see a bit)
Day 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 Venice
Day 18 travel to Rome (see a bit)
Day 19, 20, 21 Rome
Day 22 Fly Home

I think you would need an extra day to do justice to all four of your stops unless you cut time in Venice. If you eliminate London, you can take a shorter trip.
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Old Dec 16th, 2014, 03:42 AM
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Agree that OPS schedule is giving very short shrift to London and Paris. IMHO see a little more of one rather than try to fly through both in limited times.

Once you lay it out with travel days you will see how little time at task (versus in travel) you actually have.

For London I would do a minimum of 5 nights - 4 full days - and the same for Paris. If Venice is important to visit friends -perhaps eliminate Rome and add that time to London and Paris.
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Old Dec 16th, 2014, 05:10 AM
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21 days sounds like adequate time for your 4 destinations but not if you plan to spend 8 days in Venice. I would eliminate one of the other cities, probably London. That will allow you to spend 4/5 days in Paris and Rome. This is the bare minimum I would consider. If it turns out you have to limit your trip to 16 days, I would eliminate both Paris and London and spend your time in Italy.
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Old Dec 16th, 2014, 06:53 AM
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Wow thanks for the suggestions. To recap, 4 cities is doable if I cut my time in Venice and allocate more days to Paris and London.

Otherwise I would need to cut one or two cities to do it justice.

Or I could ask extra travel dates to my trip.

I think I'm leaning to the first as it seems the most feasible and I think I'm too stubborn to give up seeing any of the places I want to see. I've done short trips (a day) to Milan, Florence etc and I'm so glad I had that short amount of time rather than no time at all.

Thank you. Will probably be seeking more advice once we have our flights booked.
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Old Dec 16th, 2014, 07:11 AM
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It's true that $0 per day for a hotel bill is as cheap as it gets, but it's not truly cost free if you are going to be buying train tickets frequently to get out of Venice because you really don't want to be there the whole 8 days.

If spending extended time with your friend and revisiting Venice and its environs is the real reason you want to stay there for 8 days, then lucky you for being invited for such an extended period gratis. If you are primarily just trying save money, think about economizing some other way and give a day or two or 3 to other places that call to you. You might (or might not) be overestimating the cost of a night in a hotel in the other cities you mention. Can't tell without know what your overall budget is for your trip, exclusive of air fare. But bear in mind there are few cities more expensive than Venice when it comes to eating and entry fees to attractions (and transport if you use it, which you might need to if your friend's apartment is not near the train station).
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Old Dec 16th, 2014, 07:24 AM
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If you need to cut costs in London look at the http://www.yha.org.uk/ we are not talking multiperson rooms but doubles and often in very good positions. Then spend the money staying longer in London
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Old Dec 16th, 2014, 09:08 AM
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You will not run out of things to do in any of your proposed destinations, but london in particular is huge and there is loads to see. Add in at least one day's jet lag, and i would have thought at least 5 nights there, preferably more.

Then you will need at least the same again for Paris - that's 10 nights. ditto Rome.

Not long for Venice, is it?
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Old Dec 16th, 2014, 11:46 AM
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I have to disagree with those who think that the OP should spend more time in London, Rome and Paris at the expense of Venice (given free lodging in Venice).

For a first trip to each, I believe that four nites (three full days) is enough to get a flavor of each city and whet your appetites to return.

While eight days is an awfully long time for Venice, the plan is to see other cities in the Veneto and thereabouts (I presume by train). There are lots of very interesting smaller cities and other areas easily reachable by train for day trips. Padua, Verona, Vicenza, Ferrara, maybe Ravenna and even Bologna and Lake Garda could be done from there.
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Old Dec 16th, 2014, 02:27 PM
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I have a good idea of costs for eating and attractions in Venice, as I've basically done all there is to do there. We reserve a lot of our spending money for food, opting to go to only 1 or 2 major attractions in a day. We are not the kind of people who can go from 9AM-9PM steady on our feet. That being said, I appreciate everyone not wanting us to miss out on all there is to do and see!

Thanks annhig for the tip re: London. I've been to Rome before and I feel like 3 days is enough to see the places that we want to see. However, I have no idea when it comes to Paris and London so appreciate the tips!

I agree that 8 days in Venice does seem like a lot. However, we do have friends and family and I lived there so I see it much more as a second home than a travel destination. However, we're not entirely committed to staying that long. It's very important to me that we try to see as many different places because our flights will most likely be one of the biggest costs (we're from Vancouver). If we did stay that long In Venice, we would consider day trips to the Alps, Firenze, Milan, Verona, Padova.

Overall it appears it might be better to try allocate our time as evenly as possible as not to miss out on too much in London and Paris (4 days in each city minimum).
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Old Dec 17th, 2014, 01:56 PM
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Also - can anyone offer any links or direction to cheap accommodation/hostels/apartments. We do not care if it is shared (although private is a bonus). Our only demands are that the place be cheap, clean and close to the action.
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Old Dec 17th, 2014, 08:18 PM
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In London, check tripadvisor.com, the section for "B&Bs and Inns" and select location. Basic, bathroom down the hall rooms at the tripadv top-rated ones this will be just fine, and far better than a hostel. The St. Athans doesn't offer breakfast included, but I think most of the others do. I book directly with hotel, if possible.

My major steal Princess Hotel of this spring has changed ownership, taken away the breakfast, raised the prices along with fancier rehab.
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Old Dec 17th, 2014, 08:18 PM
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We like Bloomsbury.
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Old Dec 18th, 2014, 07:19 AM
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>>Also - can anyone offer any links or direction to cheap accommodation/hostels/apartments.
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Old Dec 18th, 2014, 10:51 PM
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We've seen a variety of accommodation (shared, private, couch surfing, whole flat) for around $30 CDN a night. However, I haven't done enough research to find out where the best locations by price point are in London and Paris. If we could find something around this price or less that is still in a convenient location for sight seeing that would be ideal. If somewhere is a good deal I wouldn't mind paying up to $50 CDN.
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Old Dec 19th, 2014, 07:18 AM
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$50 CDN? . . . That is only £25/£35. Even a hostel dormitory room will cost more than that. It sounds like you have a rural Canadian budget for major European cities. Not realistic except for couch surfing. Not a lot of couch surfers on Fodors. maybe try Lonely Planet or a backpackers forum . . .

London, Paris -- you'll have to raise your budget substantially. Maybe IF you cut back on the destinations, reducing your transport costs, you could spend more for rooms . . . .

(IF you find a flat for £25 -- RUN. It either won't be legit or its a flea bag/flop house.)
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Old Dec 19th, 2014, 07:34 AM
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oops -- that should read >>That is only £25/€35
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Old Dec 19th, 2014, 08:09 AM
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YHA as described hits the £25 in single sex dorms.
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Old Dec 19th, 2014, 12:31 PM
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My daughter and her friend had good luck, and fun, couch surfing across Europe. Always carefully vetting people in advance.
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