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Planning Southern Italy trip - too ambitious??

Planning Southern Italy trip - too ambitious??

Feb 27th, 2006, 03:24 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 9
Planning Southern Italy trip - too ambitious??

Hello, I am planning a 10 day trip to Southern Italy from the 31 March to 9 April. This is my plan so far:
Day 1: arrive in Sorrento from Rome
Day 2: Visit Mt Vesuvius in the morning and Pompeii in the afternoon
Day 3: Take bus to Amalfi and explore area. Travel to Trulli country in Puglia in the afternoon
Day 4: Explore Trulli country
Day 5: Travel down to Sicily stopping in Catania for the night
Day 6: Visit Mt Etna, night in Catania or prehaps Syracuse
Day 7: Travel down to Syracuse and explore Syracuse
Day 8: Visit Noto, travel to Taormina in afternoon
Day 9: Explore Taormina area and in afternoon make way to mainland staying somewhere near Lamezia airport.
Day 10: Fly out of Lamezia.

We want to cover a lot of area in 10 days. Keep in mind we will have NO CAR and will be using the train and bus services.
Are we being to ambitious?
Or is it fully possible to see all this effectively?
How good is the bus and train system in connecting the different areas?

If anyone can offer any answer of these questions or offer any suggestions as to where we might want to spend more or less time or think we should should absolutely see something that I did not mention, please reply, it would highly appreciated. Thank you.
ac464 is offline  
Feb 27th, 2006, 03:35 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 74,263
Hi AC,

This is not a vacation, it is a trek.

I guess it is possible to see Mt Vesuvius and Pompeii in one day.

Train schedules are at www.trenitalia.com.

Let us know how it works out.

ira is offline  
Feb 27th, 2006, 04:31 AM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 21,992
I think it is way too packed, especially without a car. For starters, consider leaving Alberobello and the trulli area for another trip.
ekscrunchy is offline  
Feb 27th, 2006, 04:46 AM
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 18,606
If it's Tuesday, this must be.........

To answer your question, yes I think this is much too ambitious. You'll be doing little else than riding trains/buses and checking in and out of hotels.
In the very least, I would eliminate Puglia since it's out of the way and will involve a lot of travel time. In this short amount of time, it's better to concentrate on Amalfi and Sicily, which will still be a very hectic trip.
The train ride from the Amalfi Coast to Sicily is long, but scenic. You might consider the overnight ferry Naples/Catania to save time. I'd eliminate the night in Catania and go directly to Taormina and spend a couple of nights there. You can get an excursion to Etna from there, and should also try to see Agrigento. Then spend a few nights in Siracusa. There's much to see in the area.
If you don't already have your flights booked you should consider flying into Naples and out of Catania, which will save you additional unnecessary travel.
panecott is offline  
Feb 27th, 2006, 04:58 AM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 3,801
I agree with dropping either Puglia or Sicilian, and I would play it by ear regarding a tour of the Amalfi unless you get a brilliantly sunny day. Given your interest in historical sights, you might get more out of touring Naples and a visit to the archeological museum.

Bear in mind that spring doesn't really arrive to Sicily until mid-April. Unlike Vesuvius, you won't be able to get very far up Mt. Etna.

I recommend flying in and out of Catania. It might make more sense to bundle a look at Etna with a visit to Taormina. You can save money by not staying in Taormina itself. Look for a B&B in the vicinty. At that time of year, there are so few tourists a proprietor is likely to be willing to pick you up at the train station.

You might consider saving Sicilia for another trip, since it is best when you can afford to do it with a car and a little bit later in April. In that case, you might consider adding Naples to your itinerary, more time in Pompeii and a trip to Paestrum. If the weather is brilliant, I'd be tempted to take a boat to Capri, which is probably much nicer in March than any other time of year since no many tourists will be around.

nessundorma is offline  
Feb 27th, 2006, 05:02 AM
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 770
I cannot help with most of this, but day 2 and 3 already seem to be too much to me esp. considering you are using public transportation. I always try to see and do everything on a trip. I have not visited Mt Vesuvius but Pompeii needs two hours at the very least with a good guide unless you have studied hard and have a definite plan ready when you arrive. We spent three hours and did not even go to one end. It also seems a shame to rush the Amalfi coast. I am partial to Ravello and there are so many other beautiful towns I did not even spend time in. Having said all of this, you have not really said much of your specific goal other than "explore", "visit" and "travel". Perhaps you have a definite idea of just what you really want to see and are just concentrating on that. If your main goal is just being there and taking in the scenery from the bus/train then maybe you can fit in all of this.
Happy travels.
mimipam is offline  
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