Rome, Florence or Venice??

Dec 27th, 2003, 05:55 AM
  #1  
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Rome, Florence or Venice??

My husband and I will be taking our first trip to Italy to see Tuscany and staying at Locanda Amorosa. We want to see Cortona, Assisi, Montalcino, Montepulciano, Pienza, perhaps Siena, perhaps San G. and Volterra.

I would be just as happy to see Rome, Venice and Florence for our first visit, but my husband wants a relaxing "countryside" vacation, and to him Italy is Tuscany.

We had thought we might also see the Chianti region, but don't want to rush around, and thought it better to see just Southern Tuscany.

I can't imagine being in Italy, though, and not seeing ONE of the cities. As a compromise, I'm trying to get him to spend 2-3 nights in Rome, Florence, or Venice.

I would guess Florence is the logical choice, as it is closest, but we are not museum/art people, but love to walk around, love beautiful architecture, good meals, and a sense of romance. The only other European city we have been to is Paris and it stole my heart. We did no museums there either.

Which of the 3 cities makes the most sense - if any - for a short visit (2-3 nights?) I'd love something with a sense of romance, that we could see some major sites in a few days. I'm thinking Rome maybe - fly into Rome and stay a few days and the train to Chiusi, get the car forTuscany, then fly out of Rome again.

Venice sounds wonderful also, but it seems far away, and a video my husband saw of people having to don boots and slosh around ruined the image for him.

Florence I know people have loved - many times more than Rome.

So you can see - we need help - so hard to choose!! I've read until I can't read anymore, so would love some personal opinions.
wanderer is offline  
Dec 27th, 2003, 06:09 AM
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Maira
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What time of the year are you going? How many days total you have? Venice is a good choice given the likes/dislikes you mentioned. I've been there twice and never once had to wear boots and slosh!!?? Are you traveling Nov-Feb?

If you are planning to get to Assissi, you are about two hours train time from Rome, even as a day trip from there, would be a nice break and an option.
 
Dec 27th, 2003, 06:33 AM
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Based totally on what you say you are looking for, it's a no-brainer: Venice!
And tell your husband, even sloshing around in boots will not diminished the romantic atmosphere one bit!
Sure, Rome and Florence are closer, but Venice isn't that far away.
I will have to disagree with one of your statements--"Florence I know people have loved - many times more than Rome." I don't know what you base your research on, but Florence is not that much more beloved than Rome, one of the world's great cities. In fact, on this forum, there are a significant number of posters who are not that enamored of Florence. And, since you are not a lover of art and museums, I would not recommend that city for your A list.
HowardR is offline  
Dec 27th, 2003, 06:50 AM
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I'm in total agreement, for just two nights or so and purely for the "romance", it's Venice, hands down!
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Dec 27th, 2003, 06:55 AM
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The airlines may decide for you. Have you shopped prices and connections?
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Dec 27th, 2003, 07:59 AM
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ira
 
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Hi W,

For first timers to Italy I would recommend Rome Venice and Florence or Venice and Florence for a short trip.

Has your husband any experience in driving an unfamiliar car on narrow, winding unfamiliar roads in foreign countries?
ira is online now  
Dec 27th, 2003, 08:11 AM
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We are going in May for 8-9 nights - 5-6 nights in Tuscany and 2-3 maybe somewhere else.

Bob, good point. Airline may determine what we do, as these are frequent flyer miles on Delta. Perhaps Rome will be the only option or a train trip to Venice.

No, we have not driven in any foreign country - we have only been to Paris in Europe - but I have read it is not so bad with a good map.
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Dec 27th, 2003, 08:30 AM
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p.s. Is there a web site where I can get train times between the various cities?
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Dec 27th, 2003, 09:57 AM
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Rome is very nice for a first visit. There are many things to see. You can visit Florence as a daytrip or it's probably best to come back and see separately another time to dedicate more time. Same goes for Venice but in my opinion, a few days would be enough.
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Dec 27th, 2003, 11:24 AM
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With FF points on Delta, always start there. You may be too late now.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Dec 27th, 2003, 11:59 AM
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www.trenitalia.com

the Italian train web site.

I think each has there own positives. You can't go wrong with either.

Once there you WILL return. So do next time what you miss this time.
Myer is online now  
Dec 27th, 2003, 01:37 PM
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i would opt for venice given your interest in relaxing and not being into museums...it is a really unique spot and can be very relaxing. you could probably even day trip there with train travel. have fun deciding.
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Dec 27th, 2003, 01:49 PM
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Even though we are not really into museums we spent several days in Rome and really enjoyed it.

The only museum we went to was the Vatican.

We walked what we thought was the whole city every day. At some point during each day we past the Spanish Steps.

I would not go to Venice as a day trip. A major part of what we enjoyed was being in and around St Mark's Sq in the evening. Watching people walk through the street lost and enjoying it was a lot of fun. You could not do this as a day trip.


Myer is online now  
Dec 27th, 2003, 02:27 PM
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Venice or Rome, depending on your interests. Either will have plenty to keep you occupied for 2 or 3 days. I love Venice, but if you haven't been to either I wouldn't analyze it too deeply.
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Dec 27th, 2003, 02:48 PM
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BobtheNavigator - yes about Delta FF - I learned my lesson the hard way, so this trip is for 2005, not 2004. Delta has advised us to book 11 months in advance, so we are using these 4 months to plan, should we go in May.

We are leaning toward Venice or Florence, as we think (know) we will be back and think Rome makes more sense to do with a trip to the Amalfi Coast.

If we choose Venice to compliment our trip to Southern Tuscany, which month to go would be best and avoid the rains and flooding - no sloshing in boots for us!! Also, is 2 nights enough?

Would love to hear people's favorite things to do in Venice (other than museums) - walks, shops, cafes to sit and people watch, hotels...

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Dec 27th, 2003, 03:28 PM
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ira
 
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Hi Wanderer,

I suggest 3 nights in Venice. The city is itself an art/history museum.

From there you can train to Florence and daytrip to Siena and Lucca.

You might find these threads helpful:
http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...2&tid=34451044

Helpful Information: Italy http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...2&tid=34443340
ira is online now  
Dec 27th, 2003, 04:00 PM
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Yes,May and Oct. are great times to go. Given your choices, I too would opt for Venice. Delta has a direct flight from Kennedy.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Dec 27th, 2003, 04:28 PM
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I've been to Italy many times, in fact all my family comes from Italy. In terms of beauty, all the 3 cities are VERY beautiful. In terms of romance, there's no doubt about it, Venice is one of the most romantic places in the world!!! Forget about the video you saw, Venice is the perfect place to walk around as you said you like to do.
I hope I could help you to make the best decision. Anyway, any of the three cities is wonderful, I love them all. Godd luck!!
lery is offline  
Dec 27th, 2003, 05:19 PM
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Tuscany and Florence would be enough for any one vacation as both offer a wealth of beautiful places to see.

If you can make Venice then do so as it is THE most romantic city in the world.

Just be prepared to walk a lot as you can circumnavigate the islands in a day and see some great beauty but also walk a lot of miles.

I would also recommend jogging in the morning next to the lagoon as it is lovely - San Giorgio Maggiore - across the lagoon from the entrance to San Marco - being exceptionally beautiful.

If you don't get to Venice and only do Tuscany, it will be magnificent.
BarneyRubble is offline  
Dec 27th, 2003, 05:25 PM
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For many of us, the best thing to do in Venice is to just wander and literally get lost walking along the narrow alleys, small streets and little canals.
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