Revised itinerary please advise

Oct 31st, 2007, 04:33 PM
  #1  
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Revised itinerary please advise

we are a family of five children are aged 9.6. and 14 months. we have five weeks in Italy with a car this mid December to late January.

we start with a few days in Paris before we fly to Nice to pick up the car, over night close by, then to Riomaggiore for 2 nights then a week in Florence, with Christmas.

Next we go to Venice for four nights.

I have found an apartment in a small hill town called Monterado in Le Marche. I have looked at the le-marche.com web site and found lots that we can see if we feel like it. I thought we would stay there six nights.

Then we have a rather long drive to Matera and stay there for five nights.

Then to Amalifi or somewhere near for six nights

than back to rome for the last six nights.

Any great side trips and pointers would be great.

thank you

Lynn
Bosworth_Family is offline  
Oct 31st, 2007, 05:10 PM
  #2  
LJ
 
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Hello Bosworths- you will enjoy exploring the Marche region and the adjacent Umbrian towns. I was not able to locate the town of Monterado, but have some experience with other parts of this beautiful part of Italy.

The area around Monte Conero and Sirolo is very interesting and we found the deserted beach resorts along the coast had their own off-season charm. This is the home of Verdicchio (white wine) and excellent fresh seafood-try a local frito misto followed by the fish stew with garlic and tomatoes.

You are also very close to Gubbio and Perugia, both well worth wandering in. Gubbio has excellent ceramics and hand made leather and linen goods. Perugia is a university community and very lively all year round and also the home of the best chocolatiers of Italy.

As I write this I am gazing at a plate from a fine restaurant and hotel called Hotel Giardino in San Lorenzo en Campo in Le Marche. My DH and I enjoyed many fine meals there.

Much to love about this area.
LJ is offline  
Oct 31st, 2007, 05:14 PM
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It will be cheaper to pick up the car in Italy if you plan to return it in Italy. There's usually a big drop off fee for returning in a different country. Since you are keeping a car so long you should look at leasing which is usually cheaper.
kybourbon is online now  
Oct 31st, 2007, 05:25 PM
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Hi

Monterado is inland about 10km from Senigallia which is half way between Fano and Ancona.

we are doing a peugeot eurolease and know about the extra cost dropping off in Rome rather than in France.

Thanks
Bosworth_Family is offline  
Oct 31st, 2007, 05:52 PM
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Definitely, Gubbio and Urbino.
Jean is offline  
Oct 31st, 2007, 06:01 PM
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Add Ravenna.
Jean is offline  
Nov 1st, 2007, 01:31 PM
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Jean ,
We will properly only go to one of Gubbio or Urbino. which one did you like best and why?
we may call into Ravenna on the way down from venice. which places would be best to see as we would stop for lunch there.
thanks lynn
Bosworth_Family is offline  
Nov 1st, 2007, 08:03 PM
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Gubbio or Urbino? Difficult choice.

Urbino is a university town and, depending on your timing, the streets may be busy with students. The Palazzo Ducale is an outstanding Renaissance building which now houses the Museum of the Marches. It has some exceptional paintings and sculpture. You can also see Raphael's house, but the open hours are rather limited. Depending on your approach to the town, it's a pretty dramatic "skyline" of towers and domes.

Gubbio seems more medieval and quieter, and in fact its Italian nickname is the City of Silence (La Citta del Silenzio). I haven't been there at Christmas, but I've seen pictures of an enormous tree pattern in strings of colored lights that stretch over the rooftops from the top of the town to the bottom. The Palazzo Ducale is a scaled-down copy of the one in Urbino. The main piazza holds the town's museum which has some interesting Etruscan artifacts, but the real draw is the wonderful view of the town's rooftops.

Outside the town walls is an odd little funicular that takes you to a church at the top of the hill and more wonderful views. (There is a race in May every year from the main piazza to the top of this hill with teams carrying wooden pillars on their shoulders.) I'm not sure I'd recommend this funicular with small kids. Two people at a time essentially leap into a moving bird-cage-like conveyance, but I'd check it out and decide what you and your kids are up for. It's possible to hike to the top, but it's a bit long and steep in places. At the bottom of the town, probably where you would park your car, are the ruins of a Roman amphitheatre that you can explore.

I guess you can see I prefer Gubbio.

I haven't been to Urbino in several years, so I hesitate to recommend a restaurant.

We were in Gubbio last October and had a very nice lunch at Ristorante Picchio Verde (the "green woodpecker," an endangered local bird), via Savelli della Porta, 65. Not much English was spoken; it seemed to be a popular spot for locals and we were the only tourists there.
Jean is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2007, 02:40 AM
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I'd pick Urbino. Gubbio's really nice, but the palace in Urbino is one of the most amazing buildings anywhere, IMO.
Nonconformist is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2007, 10:23 AM
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2 nights in the CT area is certainly not enough time to truly explore the area, but also I would not reccommend staying in on eof the villages during that time. I am of course biased being that I live in Lerici, but it is an extremely kid friendly village and only 10 minutes from the autostrada so you can easily make visits to nearby Portovenere, Carrara, Pisa, Lucca, Portofino, and take the train from Sarzana to visit the CT. Give it some consideration...
meganinitalia is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2007, 02:55 PM
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What hotel did you choose for Venice? I am having an awful time finding one nice yet reasonable for four of us in early May. Thanks.
snorklesue is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2007, 07:11 PM
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I'll throw in my comments about Ravenna. The moscaics there are amazing, and I don't know of another place in the world with so many mosaics in one place. There are a number of churches with the mosaics, all within walking distance (for grownups, at least) of each other within the center of town. There's San Vitale, the Mausoleum of Gallus Placida, St. Appollinaire Nouvo, the Neonian bapistry (and maybe St. Andreasí chapel, which was closed for restorations when we visited in 2004). I think maybe kids would like them (they're very colorful), and each of the buildings is rather small (except for San Vitale), so you can see the mosaics pretty close-up. (We had lunch there at Ca de Ven, a very Italian-locals sort of place; it was packed at lunchtime on Sunday!)

As for Urbino and Gubbio, I've only been to Gubbio. It was an adorable small city/town. The old castle, I don't remember much of. To be honest, based on the descriptions that others have given, I can't imagine that 6 and 9-year-old kids would really enjoy Urbino or Gubbio very much. Based on my kids, including the one who's been to Europe several times, and who are more interested in history and old things than most kids I know, beautiful views, skylines and buildings don't mean much to them. But an interesting castle that they can go inside and climb around, is much more likely to claim their attention. In doing your research, you might want to keep an eye out for more interactive sites, rather than beautiful sights.
Lexma90 is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2007, 10:18 PM
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re venice accomodation I just doubled the budget for there.

to snorklesue thankyou I must read your trip reports. I agree with the boys needing castles they can interact with, get up close to and climb around, rather than just what we think is amazing to see.

Do you have any suggestion for the best child castles from my itenerary? there seems to be heaps in Le Marche and I will study the write ups.

We are just hoping that we will get a nicer day when we are in the Cinque Terre, But being winter I know we could luck out. But then it will be a day reading books and playing games.

thanks
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