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Planning Honeymoon in Italy: First Trip to Europe from Hawaii

Planning Honeymoon in Italy: First Trip to Europe from Hawaii

Feb 6th, 2002, 10:48 PM
  #1  
Susan
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Planning Honeymoon in Italy: First Trip to Europe from Hawaii

My fiance and I would like to visit Italy for our honeymoon (May 6 ~ May 24), and would appreciate your advice. We've lived in Hawaii all our lives and are excited to visit Europe for the first time. We want to see as much as possible because it would be difficult for us to return to Italy in the near future. However, we'd like to have time for relaxation and rest as well. (We'd rather explore a few cities well, than rush from place to place.)
We are in our mid-thirties and have very different tastes. I love museums, opera, excellent food, fine wine. I enjoy reading; not too keen on shopping. My fiance loves to golf and surf. His favorite thing is a good steak dinner, as he says, "no foofy food." His favorite vacation spot is Las Vegas. I want to plan a trip that we'd both enjoy. We are interested in perhaps seeing Venice, Florence, & Rome. My fiance wondered if we could also see Paris. Ravello seems interesting, too. The possibilities are overwhelming. Do you have any advice for us? We would be flying from Hawaii to New York, probably resting in New York before going to Europe. Thank you for your help.
 
Feb 7th, 2002, 04:35 AM
  #2  
Rex
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The choices are indeed overwhelming. I think you're on the right track, and 18 days does allow enough time to do some justice to the 4 (or 5) destinations you've mentioned. May is great, for France (could be a little cold) and especially for Italy.

I'm not sure there's a specific question you've asked that I can answer.

The New York stopover seems pretty reasonable to me. I have often suggested a first day or two in London, but I'm guessing there are no nonstop flights from Honolulu to London (are there?). I had to actually look at the globe to get clear on the geography. You could also consider Toronoto, perhaps - - the midpoint is actualy somewhere a bit west and north of Hudson Bay!

Please keep coming back here as your plans and such evolve - - next round: hotels and transportation withIN Europe.

Best wishes,

Rex
 
Feb 7th, 2002, 08:25 AM
  #3  
BOB THE NAVIGATOR
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Susan, My favorite name, having been married to one for 43 years.
As Rex days, your options are infinite. To help you to narrow your choices, here are some sample itineraires. My best advice is to limit yourself to a max of 5 destinations and do not try to do Paris on this trip. Good luck !
BOB the NAVIGATORS’ FAVORITE ITINERARIES
__________________________________________________ ______________________

MAGICAL FAIRYLANDS:
* Arrive and depart from Munich--14 nites--May thru Sep.--car travel
* ITINERARY: Salzburg, Dolomites, Venice, Lake Garda, Bavaria
============================================
BELLA ITALIA:
* Arrive Milan, depart Venice--15 nites--car & train travel--April thru Oct.
* ITINERARY: The Lakes, Ligurian coast, Tuscany, Florence, Venice
============================================
CLASSIC ITALIA:
* Arrive & depart Rome--12 to 14 nites--car & train travel, all year
* ITINERARY: Florence, Tuscan & Umbrian hilltowns, Rome
============================================
LA DOLCE VITA:
* Arrive & depart Rome--12 nites--car & train travel--March thru Oct.
* ITINERARY: Amalfi coast, Tuscan/Umbrian hilltowns, Rome
============================================
OF ALPS & LAKES:
* Arrive and depart Zurich--12 nites--train travel--June thru Sep.
* ITINERARY: Berner Oberland, Lugano, Lake Como, Luzern
============================================
THE VILLAGE SAMPLER: [my off-the-path personal favorites]
* Arrive Milan & depart Rome--12 to 15 nites---car travel--April thru Oct.
* Small quaint villages to include: Lake Orta, Portovenere, Montalcino,
Spello, Orvieto, Sperlonga, Ravello, Castelrotto [ pick four of above]
============================================
These are merely intended to be sample itineraries. Every TRIP PLAN is unique
and is designed to meet your personal travel style, budget, and preferences.
________________________________________
 
Feb 7th, 2002, 09:31 AM
  #4  
scigirl
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I have no specific advice - other than to consider not stopping over in NY. I live on Oahu and it is possible to catch an Air France/Delta flight from HNL -> LAX -> Paris. The layover in LA is short and you arrive in the mid-afternoon in Paris. Why waste time on your short trip resting up? One thing to be prepared for is the 12 hour time difference - try to start re-setting your body clock before you depart for Europe, bring earplugs, and consider asking your doctor about Ambien or other sleep medication. You can spend a few days in Paris and either fly or take a night train to Italy. I'd suggest also not moving from place to place too much - Paris and Rome are each worth easily 5 days - pick 2 other places to spend a few days (cities or smaller towns) and you'll have a less rushed and more enjoyable trip. From large cities (e.g. Paris) you can always make a day trip by train to a small town or village to do some 'off the beaten path' exploring. To avoid feeling rushed I'd stay in one place for at least 5 days minimum at each stop.
 
Feb 7th, 2002, 10:30 AM
  #5  
Lexma90
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Depending on how much time you have, Venice, Florence, Rome, Paris & Ravello seem like a lot to fit in - you might want to pare down your list. Also consider tucking in at least a couple of days in the countryside, for some real R & R, some place like Tuscany. I'm sure there's golfing in Tuscany, though I wouldn't know where, as I don't golf.

Your fiance would enjoy bistros (steak-frites are steak and fries) in Paris; they generally serve more straight-forward dishes. Also, Tuscan & Florentine cuisine is also known for being simply prepared and straight-forward (though delicious, of course). You'll definitely have to share bistecca Fiorentina - that's steak from Tuscan beef (I don't know what cut; I'm not a big meat-eater), served for two. It's also delicious.

I like museums a bit more than my husband; we've several times (particularly for smaller museums) split up - he drinks wine at a cafe on a nearby piazza, and I enjoy a museum!
 
Feb 7th, 2002, 11:40 AM
  #6  
Julie
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You might enjoy Mele's Travel Europe Resource Center, because she's Hawaiian and mentions the long flights and adjusting to the colder temps. I enjoy her site a lot.

Also, you might try looking for a resort somewhere that offers golf, to put a more rural retreat in the middle of your wonderful cities, and make your fiance happy.

Congratulations and have a great trip! Maybe your husband will surprise you with what he ends up enjoying. I know my husband often surprises me!
 
Feb 7th, 2002, 03:04 PM
  #7  
Susan
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Thank you, everyone, for your responses to my post. I'm so grateful for your advice. Based on your suggestions, we've decided to skip Paris and concentrate on a few places in Italy instead. We're trying to narrow down our choices, so I'm reading a ton of guidebooks and checking the itineraries and internet sites you've recommended. Also, thanks to your sleep aid suggestion, we feel that we can manage the flight to Italy without stopping overnight in New York. That will give us more time to explore. Thank you again, for your help.
 
Feb 7th, 2002, 03:20 PM
  #8  
Rex
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I couldn't bring myself to tell you to cut out Paris - - but now that you're gonna - - get thee to Bellagio/Menaggio/Lake Como!!
 

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