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Opinions on this N. Italy Itinerary, Please

Opinions on this N. Italy Itinerary, Please

Old Sep 19th, 2007, 11:56 AM
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Opinions on this N. Italy Itinerary, Please

I wrote some weeks ago about a planned trip for Northern Italy, and received some helpful advice. I now have a revised itinerary, and would love to hear some comments about it.

We will probably have 14 days in Italy, not including flight days. We will be two couples and will travel by car for most of the trip. Land in Milan.

Day 0: Arrive in Milan in the AM, and go to Turin.

Day 1:View sights in Turin, (or go for a day trip to Aosta. Is that reasonable?)

Day 2: Visit Asti and Alba. Travel at end of day to Ligurian Coast, probably Camogli.

Day 3: Visit the Cinqua Terra, Portofino, and back to Camogli.

Day 4: Drive to Bergamo, then on to Varenna on Lake Como.

Day 5: Boat ride to Bellagio. Then back to Varenna hotel.

Day 6: Drive to Soglio (SW).

Day 7: Travel to Bolzano (or something in that area).

Day 8: Visit Dolomites, etc. Back to Bolzano area hotel.

Day 9: Travel to Verona, visiting Riva del Gardo and Rovereto on the way.

Day 10: See Verona, and maybe something in area like Bardolino. Return to Verona for Opera in Arena.

Day 11: Travel to Venice, visiting Padua on way. Stay that night in Venice.

Day 12 and 13: Visit Venice.

Day 14: Fly out (hopefully from Venice, or hustle back to Milan to fly out.)

Is this nuts or doable? Thanks!
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Old Sep 19th, 2007, 01:05 PM
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Hi C,

It seems doable.

Have you checked driving times at www.viamichelin.com and www.mappy.com?

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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 05:24 AM
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Thanks, I will. Anyone else out there willing to comment?
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 05:40 AM
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Ya -- I think you're nuts, I would only do about half. But it is your trip.
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 06:01 AM
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>> I would only do about half. <<

I certainly agree with that - too much jumping around. I'd focus on 3 or 4 three or four night stays. At a minimum, Turin, Aosta, Bergamo are expendable IMO. Albi and/or Alba too.
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 06:38 AM
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Using your word,"nuts".
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 07:46 AM
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Well, you did ask for additional responses. I will be blunt -- but you asked --- it is an terrible schedule. Why do you want to spend so much time in a car looking out a window as things pass. If that is your idea of being a traveler, go to Ecot Center -- see the same thing and it is cheaper. What do you want be a -- tourist or a traveler ????
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 09:22 AM
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Ha! I feared so.

OK, here is a revised schedule that omits the western half.

Day 0: Land in Milan. Stay in Milan or Varenna.

Days 1-3: Varenna. Visit Ballagio, Bergamo, and Other sights on Lake Como.

Days 4-5: Solgio (SW)

Day 6-8: Travel to Bolzano (or something in that area). Visit Dolomites, etc. Back to Bolzano area hotel.

Day 9-10: Travel to Verona, visiting Riva del Gardo and Rovereto on the way. See Verona, and maybe something in area like Bardolino. Return to Verona for Opera in Arena.

Day 11-13: Travel to Venice, visiting Padua on way. Stay that night in Venice. Visit Venice.

Day 14: Fly out (hopefully from Venice, or hustle back to Milan to fly out.)

More reasonable?
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 09:27 AM
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hi, Clt,

that's better. do try to fly back from Venice so you maximise your time there.

when are you going?

regards, ann
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 09:50 AM
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>> More reasonable? << YES!

Make your first night in Varenna. (You don't land IN Milan). Rent your car at Malpensa and head towards The Lakes.

I would not include Bergamo (not that it's not nice); I'd rather spend that time at and around Lake Lugano, my favorite of all The Lakes.

Everything else looks fine IMO.
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 09:53 AM
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Another thing:

Soglio is only a bit more than an hour's drive from Varenna, so it'd make a good day trip should you wish to stay on longer in Varenna.
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 10:57 AM
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I agree that your revised plan is much more doable. You still have a series of two-night stays - are you ok with that?

The flights FROM Venice tend to leave at very early hours. Can you flip your schedule, so you fly into Venice and out of Milan?

Given the time of year you'll be travelling, and that you visited Venice somewhat recently, your plan to visit some smaller cities makes sense, too. Depending on your interests, you may choose to visit Vicenza in addition to or instead of Padua (I haven't been to both, but we were thinking about it for our latest trip, and I had chosen Picenza to be able to see Palladio's works in the are).

Enjoy!
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 12:09 PM
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We are travelling next June.

Our friends, who are joining us, want to see Venice. We went to Italy in 03 and did see Venice, but since seeing Venice is their only requirement we are certainly not going to complain.
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Old Sep 21st, 2007, 12:20 PM
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I concur, you now have a much improved itinerary: the first draft evoked images of the two couples in Two For the Road only switching Italy for France. (And may I add, you take critiquing in the proper spirit? This is a gift you will require if you are the driver for all 14 days!)
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Old Sep 24th, 2007, 11:20 AM
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I appreciate all the critiquing, and I am taking it in the spirit it is given. Thanks.

It occurs to me that if we leave on a Friday and return Sunday, we will have more actual nights than I thought.

We could leave on 6/27/08, in the evening and land in the AM in Milan.

Days 1-5: Land in Milan (on Sat. 6/28). Rent Car and go to Varenna. Stay 5 nights (6/28, 6/29, 6/30, 7/1, 7/2). Visit Ballagio, Bergamo (maybe), and Other sights on Lake Como. Solgio day trip, Lugano day trip. Leave on 7/3 (Thursday)

Day 6-9: Travel to Bolzano (or something in that area). Stay 4 nights (7/3, 7/4, 7/5, 7/6). Visit Dolomites, Riva del Gardo and Rovereto etc. Leave on 7/6 (Sunday).

Day 10-13: Travel to Venice. Stay 4 nights in Venice (7/7, 7/8, 7/9, 7/10). Visit Venice. Leave on 7/11 (Friday)

Day 14-16: Travel to Verona, visiting Padua on way. Spend 2 nights in Verona (7/11, 7/12). See Verona incl. Opera in Arena, and maybe something in area like Bardolino. Leave on 7/13 Sunday. Fly out of Milan

Problem: Leaving from Verona should make it a lot faster to get to the airport in Milan. That should take 2-3 hours on the 13th. However, given that the flights are often at 9AM, that would mean leaving by 4AM to get there by 6AM. Is that typical?
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Old Sep 24th, 2007, 11:52 AM
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I prefer to spend the night before a flight in the departure city. Pre-booked taxis sometimes don't arrive, trains do get delayed, things go awry, etc.
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Old Sep 24th, 2007, 12:11 PM
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I'm liking your new plan.

I, too, would stay nearer the airport on the last night. We found Verona somewhat of a disappointment, and it is a short drive from Venice, anyway -- maybe just one nite in Verona? You can drive Venice-Padua-Verona in the morning, then have lunch in Vernoa, see the opera that night, then most of the next day before heading to the airport hotel (night before the flight).

On the other hand, if the whole point is to spend the evening before the flight in the same town as the airport, Venice works too....

Bolzano is a great town -- do not miss seeing Utzi in the museum of archeology; the shopping arcades are nice; there is a shuttle bus to Castelrotto from town center.
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Old Sep 24th, 2007, 12:25 PM
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Your plan is vastly improved - stick with it!

As to your 'problem' - I think you should attend the opera on 7/11 and leave Verona on 7/12 (staying just the one night). Then, on your way towards Malpensa, make your stop in Bergamo.

Spend the last night in a hotel near Malpensa. The autostrada around the outskirts of Milan is often congested and I'd not take a chance.
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Old Mar 8th, 2008, 06:23 AM
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Here is our current itinerary. We decided to travel from Lake Como to the Dolomites via the scenic northern route through the Stelvio Pass, with a stop in Glurns. Also, we will fly out of Venice.

Leave USA on 6/27/08, in the evening and land in the AM in Milan.


Days 1-4: Land in Milan (on Sat. 6/28). Take Train to Varenna. Stay 4 nights (6/28, 6/29, 6/30, 7/1). Visit Bellagio and Other sights on Lake Como. Solgio day trip. Lugano day trip


Day 5: Leave Lake Como on 7/2 (Wed) by getting to Lecco and renting a car. Travel to Malles / Glurns via Passo del Stelvio. Stay in Glurns or Mals for one night (7/2)

Days 6-9: Travel to Castlerotto. Stay 4 nights (7/3, 7/4, 7/5 and 7/6). Visit Dolomites, etc. Leave on 7/7 (Monday).

Day 10-12: Travel to Verona, visiting Riva del Gardo and Rovereto. Spend 2 nights in Verona (7/7, 7/8). See Verona incl. Opera in Arena on Tuesday 7/8 (Aida). Leave on 7/9 (Wed):

Day 13-13: Travel to Venice visiting Padua or Treviso on way. Drop off car. Stay 4 nights in Venice (7/9, 7/10, 7/11 and 7/12). Visit Venice. Fly out on 7/13 (Sun).
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