Rome and Sicily

Jun 7th, 2006, 07:55 PM
  #1  
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Rome and Sicily

Thinking about a (pre-Christmas) Dec trip to Italy for 9 or 10 days -- never been there. Would like to do both Rome and Sicily in one trip if that is feasible. Was thinking of flying into Rome and then driving to Sicily -- stopping along the way at the various sites...then spending a couple of days in Sicily. Can the board give me their thoughts. Does this make sense as itinerary in this timeframe -- or am I shoving too much into one trip, How many days do I need in Rome? And -- is this a good time to visit -- I know it won't be hot then -- and am hoping things would not be so crowded -- or expensive. Thoughts? Thanks!
Pamo is offline  
Jun 7th, 2006, 09:52 PM
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You could certainly do Rome and Sicily in one trip if all you want is a "taste" of each - a few days. Many people spend a week or more in each, but 4 or 5 days in each would not be too rushed. However, driving there would be crazy in my opinion. Do you know how far it is? It would eat up most of your time. Flying between them would make much more sense. Try whichbudget.com for cheap flights. We flew between them last years, lots of flights, only takes about an hour or so. We spent 11 days in Sicily but I guess if you picked one area (either Palermo and the west coast, or Sicily and Taormina,etc on the east coast) it would not be too rushed. Both Palermo and Catania have airports.
isabel is offline  
Jun 7th, 2006, 11:07 PM
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I think that doing 4 full days in Rome and then heading off to Sicily for 4-5 days would be perfect. I would suggest using windjet airlines. (it is about a 12 hour drive from Rome to Sicily and the roads aren't very good)Their web-site is www.volawindjet.it and a ticket from Rome to Sicily is normally about 150 Euro round trip.

I think the west coast of the island has more to offer than the east- if you fly into Palermo you can visit the ruins at Segesta, the midieval town of Erice, Marsala (where the famous Marsala wine is produced) and possibly even Selinunte or Agrigento along the Southern Coast. I would rent a car in Palermo make hotel reservations along the west/south west coast ending up in Marinella Di Selinunte and then just hop back on the freeway to Palermo where you can return your car and fly out again.
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Jun 8th, 2006, 03:21 AM
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Thanks for the comments. They have generated additional comments. I understand the coast line south of Rome is very beautiful. Would you suggest doing that instead of Sicily? Is the road that bad. I would not mind a few days of driving if it was interesting and scenic. Alternatively -- flying to Sicily sounds like a good idea. What are your thoughts?
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Jun 8th, 2006, 04:57 AM
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The Amalfi Coast south of Naples is absolutely gorgeous! I think that as far as breathtaking scenery/ocean views go the Amalfi Coast has Sicily beat. But, if you're looking to visit more historical sights/ruins, etc. I would suggest Sicily. Sicily has an amazing history!

You also need to keep in mind the time of year that you will be travelling. I've never been to the Amalfi Coast during the winter, so I can't speak to what is open/closed in December, but I do know that some things close down in the winter in Sicily. You will still be able to find restaurants, hotels, etc., but if you are interested in staying in more bed and breakfast type places they may be closed. Maybe before you make your final decision you could do some hotel research and find out which places on the island are open in December.
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Jun 8th, 2006, 07:30 AM
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I agree with ZoeB that December is not the best month to visit the Amalfi Coast. Most hotels and restaurants will be closed.

Sicily in December is most interesting for someone who wants to discover its rich history: Phoenician, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Norman, Swabian, Spanish - and I've probably left out a few of the peoples who have conquered Sicily and made it a veritable palimpsest of cultures.

I would, however, discourage anyone from driving up to Erice if there is the slightest danger of rain or snow. The road is very difficult, and Erice itself has the slipperiest stone streets known to man - even on a hot and sunny day. There is not much to see in Erice: it is a small hill town with one very good pastry shop on the main street, but I'm not even sure that it would be open in December.
Eloise is offline  
Jun 8th, 2006, 08:43 PM
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Hhhhmmmm -- It sounds like Dec is not the best time to go to Italy. We thought that perhaps that would be a good time - less crowds -- not real hot....etc.
Pamo is offline  
Jun 8th, 2006, 09:46 PM
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I think that the best time to visit Rome for inexpensive(low season for hotels ) and no crowds is the period between late February and middle March before all the springbreakers start arriving. I just got back from Rome today and the crowds are already bursting at the seams at all the attractions. On the way to the airport in our van, the crowds were 6-8 persons across and a good half mile long to get into the Sistine Chapel.If you go at a low season time-you can get right in.Sicily is beautiful in early spring too!
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