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Planning 8 days in Italy (Rome, Tuscany) with two kids

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Dec 18th, 2013, 05:46 AM
  #1
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Planning 8 days in Italy (Rome, Tuscany) with two kids

My husband and I along with our 10 and 12 year old kids will be heading to Italy in March 2014. The kids are very well traveled. But my daughter has severe ADHD and anxiety so we are trying to not overplan and want to minimize moving hotels. We totally realize that especially in Rome that we aren't going to see everything and that's not our plan. I toyed with weather or not to do an extra night in Rome (taking one from Tuscany), so that is negotiable. I was thinking that the pace of Tuscany might be easier on my daughter than Rome. I also purposedly left out Venice because we just don't have time.

Right now I'm trying to get a base plan of where we will go and then fill what we will do each day. With my daughter, I prefer the list method, where we only book the essential things ahead of time and then have a list each day of things we can do depending on how things are going and what everyone is up for. The goal is not to see everything, but have a good time at the things we do see.

After we leave Italy, we are going to take the train out of Milan to spend a few days in Paris before heading home to NC.

Here is what I am thinking:

March 17 - Land in Rome midday, overnight Rome

18 - Overnight Rome

19 - Overnight Tuscany

20 Overnight Tuscany

21 Daytrip to Florence, Overnight Tuscany (we could do this another day if it makes more sense. I wanted to give some relaxing on each side of this trip)

22 Overnight Tuscany

23 Travel to Milan - overnight Milan (or if there is a nice town right outside where we can easily get to Milan for the train in the morning). However, staying in Milan might be nice because my hubby and I would love to see the Last Supper.

24 - Leave on train for Paris

What are you thoughts and changes? Where would be a good place to base ourselves out of in Tuscany? We will have a car in Tuscany. I was thinking of Montepulcino, but wasn't sure if I should do Siena or someplace closer to Florence.
jenniferg72nc is offline  
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Dec 18th, 2013, 07:23 AM
  #2
 
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I think your list approach is a good one.

Rather than overnight in Rome, I would travel onward that first day. Maybe even take a train to Florence and overnight there (better than a day trip). The next day you could rent a car and head to a smaller Tuscan town. As is, the night in Rome is not really enough to enjoy it - I'd either add two more (at least) or cut from the itinerary.

Given your limited time and quick itinerary, why not fly to Paris from Florence (Vueling) or Pisa (EasyJet)? As is you're tying to cram too much in.
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Dec 18th, 2013, 07:55 AM
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Thank you so much. I will look into the planes but we will most likely stick with the train because my family is excited about going through the Swiss countryside.

We actually have two nights in Rome not just the first night. So it sounds like we shoukd add one more night there to make it three. That's kinda what I was thinking but wasn't sure.
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Dec 18th, 2013, 08:11 AM
  #4
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Oh my goodness thank you so much for the airline suggestions. It is a lot quicker and cheaper than the train. Plus it gives us another day. I think we will most likely do that. So we will now have an extra day since we don't have to travel to Milan
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Dec 18th, 2013, 11:11 AM
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Touring Tuscan hilltowns in chilly March would not appeal to me, but this is your trip and I realize you're working with specific family issues.

I wouldn't skip Rome altogether but adding a night would make the stop there more worthwhile.

What towns in Tuscany did you want to see? You need to figure that out before deciding where to sleep. Will you stay in hotels or would you consider renting apartments?
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Dec 19th, 2013, 06:50 AM
  #6
 
Join Date: May 2012
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For the low-cost carriers, do pay attention to their terms and policies. They're perfectly good airlines to fly but they can be more restrictive for luggage than other airlines.
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Dec 19th, 2013, 11:13 AM
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Thanks everyone. We decided to go the plane route. We also decided to base ourselves in Tuscany in Siena because then I go to Florence while my hubby stays with my daughter.

Here is what we decided:
3 nights Rome
3 nights Siena (Day trip for me to Florence)
2 nights Cinque Terra (We love hiking and views. This will be great for her and getting out her energy)
Then take plane from Pisa to Paris.

I know we are missing a lot, but we decided to concentrate on a few areas and not move around so much. Flying lets us skip Milan and do something we really want to do - Cinque Tera.

Anything I'm missing with this?
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Dec 19th, 2013, 02:31 PM
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Thank you so much. I will look into the planes but we will most likely stick with the train because my family is excited about going through the Swiss countryside.>

Well the most direct route is via Turin and Modane, France - all in France and a routing via Switzerland would require several changes of trains - often at the Swiss border at Brig/Visp - then either Lausanne, Bern or Basel or Geneva and all require different tickets making it a very expensive route

The direct Milan to Paris train has discounted fares and is much much quicker all told but not nearly as scenic as going thru Alpine Switzerland though much of the new mainline route in Swqitzerland is not in tunnel (Brig/Visp to Fruitgen so you see very few of the dramatic Alps the older route took.

Forget the Swiss route unless you want to break it up and stopover - so your new plan of taking the plane Pisa to Paris is the best idea. You are not missing out on Switzerland.
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Dec 28th, 2013, 10:17 AM
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Your trip sounds great. I agree on plane option. The train to Paris can be at night and you would not see much countryside.
We love Siena and all of Tuscany. Be aware that Cinque Terre will be very crowded and full of English speaking tourists. Your daughter may have an issue.

Good luck on a fabulous Italian family vacation.
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Dec 28th, 2013, 08:07 PM
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I doubt that the Cinque Terre will be very crowded in March.
Jean is online now  
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Apr 7th, 2014, 03:01 PM
  #11
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
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The easy jet flight from Pisa to Paris limits luggage to 32 lbs a person. Just so you know.
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