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Rome, Florence, and Venice in 7 days--Is It Doable?

Rome, Florence, and Venice in 7 days--Is It Doable?

Feb 2nd, 2012, 08:07 AM
  #1  
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Rome, Florence, and Venice in 7 days--Is It Doable?

My parents and I are going to Italy in May for a family vacation and want to see Rome, Florence, and Venice, but we're only going to have a little less than 7 days on the ground (it's technically 8 days including air travel). I want to try to fit in Rome, Florence, and Venice in that amount of time.

A little bit more about us:
-I'm a college student, and my parents are in their late 50s (and they're not the most active people), so we'll most likely not be able to actually do all that I want to pack in, which I'm anticipating.
-We love history and art, so the more museums and churches, the better.
-We've been to Europe before--Paris for 3 days a few years ago--but this is our first time in Italy. None of us speak Italian, but I'm always up for trying to speak as much of the native language as possible while I'm there.

As of now, I'm thinking of flying into Rome, spending three days there, taking the train to Florence, spending 2 days there, and then spending a day in Venice (flying out either from Venice or back in Rome). Does this sound feasible? What are your must-see places in these cities? I would love to hear your recommendations!
snoozermoose is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 08:11 AM
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First I would fly into Venice and out of Rome as generally the flights back to N. America (assuming you are from there) are very early in the morning out of Venice.

With 7 days I would pick 2 places. As a general rule deduct half a day each time you move and you've already lost 1.5 days plus likely most of the first day to jetlag leaving you with a measly 4.5ish days to see 3 of the most site-packed cities in the world. 2 places will give you a nice balance of different cities and allow you to actually see some of the cities you are in rather than spending time running around with luggage and in train stations.
jamikins is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 08:15 AM
  #3  
 
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You CAN do it, but a lot of your time is going to be spent just getting from place to place. I think you' be better off just doing Rome and Florence......
tenthumbs is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 08:16 AM
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Yeah, I'm thinking that's much more sane, but for the life of me, I can't figure out which two cities to pick. Rome is Rome (enough said), but I do really want to see both Florence and Venice and don't know when or if I'll ever get a chance to come back. I'm really into art history and the Uffizi's been on my list since I can remember, but then I feel like Venice is one of those places I want to see before I die (but then again, I've also heard mixed things about Venice). Any thoughts on which I could skip?
snoozermoose is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 08:19 AM
  #5  
 
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That is really something only you can decide. Everybody has an opinion but yours is the only one that counts here (and your families obviously!)

Go into this with the attitude that you will return, because most likely you will if you want to. I have been to Venice 3 times, but never Florence (have been to Italy 6+ times now) and I am not interested in art, so there is no point in me telling you to go to Venice if you have always wanted to see Florence!

Get some guide books, sit down with your family and see what grabs you!
jamikins is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 08:23 AM
  #6  
 
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One option may be to consider Florence a day trip on the way between Rome and Venice. Leave EARLY and plan on arriving late. You could at least catch a museum or two, see the duomo and a few sites going in-between. You'll need to store your luggage at the train station (or nearby if there aren't lockers there). That part is the pain.
Wekiva is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 08:32 AM
  #7  
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Thanks for all the suggestions! A friend of my parents did a day trip to Venice and said a few hours there is enough. That's what we're thinking of doing now, since I just want to see Venice whereas I really want to explore Florence. (I guess in the process of answering this, I figured out which one is more important to me.)
snoozermoose is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 08:35 AM
  #8  
ira
 
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Hi s,

It's too bad that you only have 7 days.

I would split the time between Venice and Florence. Others will suggest staying in Rome.

You can see the Big 3.

With only 7 days you want to fly into Venice and out of Rome or VV. Backtracking will take up too much time.

You can spend a day in Florence by taking the early train from Rome, leaving your luggage at the station and taking a later train to Venice.

This will give you more time in Venice.

A DAY IN FLORENCE:

Train to Florence SMN:
The Luggage Office is to your left as you leave the train.

From Piazza d' Stazione, walk up via Nazionale to via d'Ariento and the Mercato Centrale, wander through.

Take any street going NE to Via Degli Alfani and go right to the Accademia for The David.

Take via Ricasoli SE to the Duomo, the Baptistry and the Opera Museum (Originals of the bronzes on the doors)

From the Campanile, take via Calzaiuoli S (do some window shopping) to the Piazza d' Signoria. Look around, take a break.

Continue S to the Uffizi. Visit.

From the Uffizi, walk W along the Arno River to the Ponte Vecchio.

(You can walk up to the Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens if there is time. Great views of Florence from the top of the Gardens)

If you have time, walk E along the S bank of the river to Ponte alle grazie and cross over to visit Santa Croce.

If not, go W along the Arno from Ponte Vecchio to Ponte S. Trinita and go right. Go left on Via d'Spada to via d'Fossi and go right to Santa Maria Novella. Look around.

SMN is across the square from the train station.

If you have time, take the no. 7 bus (you can find it at the SMN train station) up to Fiesole (0:20 hr 1E) to watch the sunset from the terrace of the Bar Bleu.

Be sure to have lots of gelato (in a cup, not a cone), take some wine breaks and a light lunch.

Train schedules, prices and tickets are at http://www.trenitalia.com/en/index.html
Call center from outside Italy is 39-06-68475475

Bus routes are at http://www.ataf.net/
Buy your ticket before you get on the bus. Stamp it in the yellow box on the bus.

Uffizi and Academia Museum Reservations
You can purchase tickets online at http://www.polomuseale.firenze.it/english/musei/uffizi/
Or call the museum booking line on +39 055 294883, open during Italian hours from 8.15 am to 5.50 pm Tuesday to Sunday for the English-speaking operator.

Have a nice visit.

ira is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 08:39 AM
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Wow, thanks for the detailed itinerary, ira! You sound like you're very familiar with Florence. I'm jealous.
snoozermoose is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 08:55 AM
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"Rome, Florence, and Venice in 7 days--Is It Doable?"

No.

I would suggest:

Venice 4 nights/Florence 3 nights

OR

Rome 7 nights

Either would make for a sensible and fantastic trip.

You (and your parents) WILL return to Italy. Really.
bardo1 is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 10:08 AM
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It's possible - but you're not going to see a whole lot. If itwere me I would fly into Venice, spend 2 days (3 nights) there and hop on the train for Rome for the rest of the trip.

this will give you a very brief taste of each.

Definitely get an open jaws tickets so you don;t waste most of day or your very limited time backtracking.
nytraveler is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 03:20 PM
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>You (and your parents) WILL return to Italy. Really.<

I agree.........
tenthumbs is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2012, 04:30 PM
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Do you really not think you'll get a chance to return to Italy in the next 50-60 years??
Jean is online now  
Feb 3rd, 2012, 09:22 AM
  #15  
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Well, I'll probably be able to go back to Italy in my lifetime, but my parents who travel very rarely may not.

I guess I've decided on sticking to Rome and Florence and coming back to Venice some other time. Boy do I wish I had more time there, but I'm still very excited about this vacation and have no doubt it's going to be awesome regardless of how much I get to see.

Thanks for the suggestions, everyone!
snoozermoose is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2012, 09:48 AM
  #16  
ekc
 
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Good choice Snoozer! Don't forget to book open-haw/multi-city tickets, to save time and money.
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Feb 3rd, 2012, 10:16 AM
  #17  
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Thanks, ekc. If you don't mind me asking though, what does open-haw mean? Does it mean arriving and departing from different cities? If so, I'm thinking of flying into Florence and flying out from Rome to save time.
snoozermoose is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2012, 10:28 AM
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Seems as if you have a very superficial friend snoozer.

Considering your interests, I would split my time between Venice and Florence. Both cities are walkable and you will be able see and do a lot in the time that you have. Save Rome for another trip - it is big and there is a lot to see there as well, cetainly enough to take up a week's time.

In Florence I would consider a day trip to Siena, only about an hour's bus ride away so easily doable. That would give you 3 very different places. An alternative to Siena would be to hire a car or find a tour that will take you on a day's view of Tuscany. Base that from Florence.

If you must see Rome at all, then take an early morning train from Florence to Rome the day before you are scheduled to fly out, the earlier the better, and spend an afternoon and evening seeing a few highlights. Stay at a hotel near the Piazza Navona, taxi over to the Forum and Colosseum which are very near each other, taxi to the Fountain of Trevi, another taxi back to the Pantheon. Walk back to Piazza Navona, an easy walk, enjoy the Piazza until time to go to sleep - there will be lots going on there in May and the day is long. Fly out the next day.
This last plan can be split 3 days Venice, 3 days Florence and 1 day Rome.
basingstoke2 is online now  
Feb 3rd, 2012, 11:01 AM
  #19  
ekc
 
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That's correct Snoozer - I agree with into Florence and out of Rome. Personally, it would be easier to walk off my jetlag in the (relatively) quieter Florence for a few days, and then be ready to hit the faster pace of Rome. So are you thinking of something like this:

Day 1: depart home
Day 2: arrive Florence, get to hotel, freshen up, eat, wander
Day 3: see Florence
Day 4: morning in Florence, noon train to Rome, get to hotel, etc.
Day 5: ancient Rome
Day 6: Vatican, etc.
Day 7: whatever other Rome sights you want to see
Day 8: fly home
ekc is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2012, 11:15 AM
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I'm a college student, and my parents are in their late 50s (and they're not the most active people), so we'll most likely not be able to actually do all that I want to pack in, which I'm anticipating. >>

LOl, snoozer, I'm the same age as your parents and I'm not in my dotage and I suspect that they aren't either.

"open -JAW" flights are where you fly into one place, and out of another. pick the "multi-destination" option when you are looking at booking flights, not return trip - they should work out at abut the same price as a straightforward return ticket there and back to the same place. if they don't, you've probably done something wrong! flying into Venice and out of Rome is a very common combination, though it may not be right for you.

i agree with Basingstoke that Venice and Florence may be the best fit for you and your parents - you have longed to see the Uffizi, and they are both quite "doable" in 3-4 days, whereas in Rome, a week would be a much better length of time for a first trip. Venice is just lovely with plenty to do in that time, as well as the option of floating around on the vaporetti when you/your ages parents want a rest, and it is a short train journey to Florence, where all the things you will want to see are more or less within walking distance of each other.

you could then fly back from Florence or Pisa.

Leave Rome to a time where you have longer, and you have got your "Italy legs".

and at your age [and that of your parents!] you are all surely young enough to fit in at least one more trip to Italy.
annhig is offline  

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