need itinerary help for italy

Apr 17th, 2010, 08:57 PM
  #1  
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need itinerary help for italy

My sister and I are going to Italy - first timers - and maybe a once in a lifetime - where should we go - we are planning rome,florence, venice - where else should we go or do????
pamocd is offline  
Apr 17th, 2010, 10:13 PM
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If you will type in Italy in the search box at the top of this page, you will find many threads relating to your question. The answer really depends on your interests (art, history, architecture, food, hill towns, cities, wine, etc.), how many days for your trip, how much money you can/want to spend, time of year you are going, etc.
Sassafrass is online now  
Apr 18th, 2010, 06:32 PM
  #3  
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we are going in the beginning of July we arrive on the 5th in Rome and leave from Rome on the 14th. We love architecture, history, then food and wine. If we want to hit venice and florence where should we go first, should we do it by train, and what about time allotments for each place. Any help is appreciated. BTW are budget is not modest but not $$$ either.
pamocd is offline  
Apr 18th, 2010, 06:45 PM
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OIf it's not too late, at very least try to change the arrival or departure to Venice and depart or leave out of Rome. Otherwise, you're going to waste valuable time backtracking to Rome. It's generally not more expensive to "open jaw" into one city and out of another when flying from the States to Europe.
Andrew is online now  
Apr 18th, 2010, 07:22 PM
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Rome, Florence, and Venice will fill to brimming your 9 days. Some will suggest that you cut one of them and just stick to two of these locations in 9 days since they all feature much to do. And I'd join Andrew in suggesting the possibility of flying into Venice and home from Rome to save time.

However, to answer you question within the parameters you have provided and based on your interests . . .

July 5: Land in Rome. Immediately train to Florence. Sleep in Florence.
July 6: Florence
July 7: Florence
July 8: Train to Venice. Sleep in Venice.
July 9: Venice
July 10: Train to Rome. Sleep in Rome.
July 11: Rome
July 12: Rome
July 13: Rome
July 14: Fly home
ellenem is online now  
Apr 19th, 2010, 05:09 AM
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You really only have 8 days, if you cross off your arrival day, which will be a blur, and your departure day, which will be all about getting to the airport. I would do an open-jaw flight into Rome, spend 3 days there,, train to Florence, spend two, train to Venice and spend the last days there. The time will FLY by!
StCirq is online now  
Apr 19th, 2010, 05:21 PM
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thanks for all the info - we already have the flights both out of rome - it was just too expensive - especially since my sister is coming from israel and then back to the states - i like you idea ellenem about going straight to florence but im worried abt the jetleg coming from los angeles, to philly to rome and train to florence - do you think i will just want to crawl under a rock??and if i do that is there a train at the airport and how much farther is it..
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Apr 19th, 2010, 05:42 PM
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In 2007 I flew direct from the east coast to Rome and then immediately took a train to Venice (stopping briefly in Florence). Yes, you'll be jetlagged for sure, but you can do it (like me you'll probably be arriving early in Rome that first day).

You do need to take a train from Fiumicino Airport into Rome (to the Termini station) and then catch a train north to Florence, like I did. It's easy to connect at Termini. You'll probably be taking a fast Eurostar train from Rome north, and those trains require reservations. The tricky part is: do you book the train ahead (if your plane is late, you could easily miss your booked train) or just buy the tickets at Termini for the next Eurostar north when you arrive? I wound up doing the latter, which cost me a tad more but still worked out fine in the end. But if you are traveling on a busy day it's possible the next train could be sold out I suppose.

You might I suppose build in a few hours in Rome between taking the train north from Termini, so you can safely book trains ahead of time. I'm not sure if you can still stow bags at Termini(?) and walk around for a few hours in Rome, but it's possible - then get up to Florence on the rain in time for dinner before collapsing from jet lag.

You could even consider doing what I did and taking the train all the way to Venice that first day. I guess some of that depends on how you want to schedule your first day. I just wanted to get to the top of Italy right away and start working my way back down. Take a look at the Eurostar schedules on the Trenitalia website and you can see the difference in staying on that train for a few extra hours to Venice (maybe 2-3 extra hours I'd guess). Of course, this means you'll be sitting for a few hours more trying to stay awake after your long flight. If you believe in the "don't sleep at all day you arrive to fight jet lag" that might be harder than if you were walking around a city somewhere. But you've got to do SOMETHING that first day after that long flight.
Andrew is online now  
Apr 19th, 2010, 06:00 PM
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Follow ellenem's plan. It's really the only way. Yes, you will have jetlag (we also live in L.A.), but at least you'll get the most out of your arrival day.

You'll need to take the train from the Rome airport to Rome's main train station to catch the second train to Florence. It sounds daunting, but the reward is that you'll be at your Florence hotel about 3 hours after you step on the train at the airport. You'll have almost 30 minutes to make the train connection in Rome.

If you wanted an even slower pace upon arrival, you could train to Venice instead. Same need to go into Rome for the second train, but the connection is more than 30 minutes and the ride to Venice is almost 4 hours, giving you a chance for a short nap.

You can look at the train timetables at the link below. The airport is Fiumicino Aeroporto.

http://www.ferroviedellostato.it/homepage_en.html
Jean is offline  
Apr 19th, 2010, 06:11 PM
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I would wait to buy the train tickets until you arrive in Rome and have cleared immigration and baggage claim to buy the tickets. Then you will know for sure what Florence-bound train you can actually get to in Rome.

Head to the train station at FCO airport and buy both tickets--one for the Leonardo Express train for the trip from the airport to Roma Termini, and the other for the trip from Roma Termini to Florence. The trip from FCO to Termini takes about 30 minutes. I would allow 15 minutes connection time to find your way through Termini to the correct platform for the Florence train.

Keep in mind: if your flight arrives early in the morning, even if you stayed in Rome you might not be able to get into your hotel room until after noon, so a train ride featuring a short nap might not be a bad idea.
ellenem is online now  
Apr 19th, 2010, 06:45 PM
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I would definitely KNOW the train schedule ahead of time for trains from Rome Termini to Florence. - like, if your scheduled airport arrival is 7:00, clear customs and immigration, hop a train to Termini and arrive by about...9:00, which train to Florence am I likely to catch if I'm on time? If I'm early? If my plane is an hour late? Just write down the departure times for three or four trains north. (Lots of trains to Florence no doubt, I was looking for Eurostars directly to Venice.)

All Italian train stations have self-service ticket vending machines with instructions in English, very easy to use once you become acquainted with them. If you have the schedule of two or three trains north to Florence from Termini, you can just go right up to a vending machine, see the train you were hoping for, and buy tickets, no need to wait in a long line for them at a ticket counter. Other than Eurostar tickets (which are reserved and don't require validation), make sure you validate your train tickets at the STATION validiation machine (look for others doing it) before boarding Italian trains!
Andrew is online now  
Apr 19th, 2010, 06:52 PM
  #12  
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ok - well im taking ur advice and going straight to florence - booked a hotel already that was recommended from a good friend for from july 5-8 then off to venice - any hotel recommendations for venice???
pamocd is offline  
Apr 19th, 2010, 08:06 PM
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You will have a fairly long train trip from Venice - Rome. Don't worry though, you will be ready for a rest day by then anyway. Travelling is more tiring than you expect. We loved the trains in Italy and worked out a 'rule', if the trip was less than 3 hours we booked 2nd class, if it was more than 3 hours we booked 1st class - mainly for the extra room.

Tell us what your budget is for the hotel in Venice and I'm sure you will get some good suggestions.
cathies is offline  
Apr 19th, 2010, 08:09 PM
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You might also consider an apartment in Venice. There are at least a few threads with Venice apartment suggestions here - search the Europe forum for them using the forum search function.
Andrew is online now  
Apr 19th, 2010, 08:24 PM
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Hotel Ai do Mori in Venice worked well for us. It is very close to San Marco - maybe a bit too close when the tourist numbers are high.
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Apr 20th, 2010, 04:20 PM
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our budget is $200 and night - how many days in venice do u think we should do and should we stop somewhere after venice b4 rome or will it be too much
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Apr 20th, 2010, 04:24 PM
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I wouldn't overnight anywhere else between Venice and Rome if you keep ellenem's itinerary above. At most you might stop in Bologna for a few hours and have a meal there, since your train will be going through anyway. The food in Emilla-Romagna is outstanding.
Andrew is online now  
Apr 20th, 2010, 04:30 PM
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I think you should give yourselves three nights in Venice. Or maybe four nights - but I'm a bit of a Venice nut-case.
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Apr 20th, 2010, 04:45 PM
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I loved this place in Venice (I'm kind of a Venetian nut case, too, peter_s_aus):

www.casamartini.it

Check out the website for all the details. It is near the train station so easy to get to from there, but on a little side alley so not noisy. It is family run, charming, and you really feel like you are in Venice - esp if they are serving breakfast on the little terrace overlooking rooftops and those great Venetian chimneys.

It's in Cannaregio, near the Jewish ghetto. The owners were very helpful and loved sending us to out of the way locals' restaurants (one we never did find, but stumbled on something equally fun); they are proud of being Venetians with a long family history there.
annabelle2 is online now  
Apr 20th, 2010, 06:45 PM
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>>>At most you might stop in Bologna for a few hours and have a meal there, since your train will be going through anyway.<<<
You will have to book two separate tickets to stopover. You would also need to store your luggage.
http://www.grandistazioni.it/cms/v/i...003f16f90aRCRD
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