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Rome, Venice...then what???Where does Florence fit in?

Rome, Venice...then what???Where does Florence fit in?

Sep 14th, 2009, 04:59 AM
  #1  
ber
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Rome, Venice...then what???Where does Florence fit in?

Our family of 5 have about 2 weeks to travel Italy. I've booked 5 nights in Rome, then we train to Venice, 3 nights there...then plan about a week in Tuscany, hiring a car.

I got advice to get to France,after we finish in Italy, by catching a train from Ventimiglia to Nice (good idea??)

SO my next query is...where does Florence fit in? Should we stay a week in a villa in Tuscany, travelling to Florence? Or does it really need more than a day, in which case we could stay a night there (ie 2 days) and 5-6 nights in a villa elsewhere.(may lose the cheaper weekly rate)

Should we get the car in Venice, or after Florence??

Advice appreciated
ber is offline  
Sep 14th, 2009, 05:20 AM
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You could probably see much of Florence in a day if you don't visit any of the museums.

However, The Accademia (David) and uffizi might be the minimum and that would probably put you into a second day.
Myer is online now  
Sep 14th, 2009, 05:40 AM
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I loved Florence. In my opinion, you should give it at least two days, and that'll just scratch the surface. There's lots to see and do and the shopping is great! BTW, the food is really, really good too!
elcon is online now  
Sep 14th, 2009, 05:45 AM
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Which airport do you depart from to go home? Knowing that could help us in advising you. It is a bit of time wasting to go from Rome to Venice then back to Tuscany.
bfrac is offline  
Sep 14th, 2009, 05:55 AM
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If three of you are children, I would skip the Uffizi (agony for them and frustrating for you,) so a day in Florence would probably suffice. The pavements of Florence are often narrow, the buildings tall and forbidding. not really comfortable for a family to stroll around. I'd take a taxi to San Miniato, then walk down with the wonderful view of Florence and the Arno below you.
tarquin is offline  
Sep 14th, 2009, 06:21 AM
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I would fly into Rome, THEN hop atrain to Florence for 2 nights. After Florence, rent a car for your Tuscan villa. Drop off car and train to Venice or just drive to to Venice and drop off car. Fianally, take a train or fly from Venice to Nice.
bardo1 is offline  
Sep 14th, 2009, 10:15 AM
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Yes, after Florence is great, and it really does deserve at least 2 days. The museums are great, the shopping is fun, and the food.....well, now I'm hungry. It may be a compact city, but it's a place I always loathe to leave. If you had to shorten anything, I'd say Venice. Pretty but toooo clogged with tourists. It can be somewhat maddening.
Dobermina is offline  
Sep 14th, 2009, 04:07 PM
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What are the ages of the 5 people going?

I'd concentrate on Italy and NOT go to France. Travel time simply takes up too much of your time especially with 5 people.
AJMelheim is offline  
Sep 14th, 2009, 05:02 PM
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I also believe you should find the time to stay two days in Florence. Dante, the Medicis, Galileo, Michelangelo, DaVinci...home to so many great men and women!

I also agree that you do not need to do the Uffizi, but do not miss the Accademia (David).

And, I too agree, we had our best meal in all of Italy right there in Florence!

The logical path is Rome-Florence-Tuscany-Venice. You could train from Rome to Florence (1-hr-45-mt for express train). Spend two days, pick up your car and do Tuscany. Return car to Florence (or maybe Bologna) and train to Venice (2-hr-45-mt trip from Florence).

You will fall in love with Italy! Buon viaggio!
sarge56 is offline  
Sep 14th, 2009, 06:19 PM
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From Florence you can do a day-trip to Pisa to see the leaning tower. That's fun for kids of all ages (It was like a carnival when we were there....)
halfapair is offline  
Sep 14th, 2009, 10:10 PM
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I have only one suggestion - don't drive in Florence if you can avoid it. Traffic is difficult, and there are many "permit traffic only" areas where there are heavy fines if you do not have a permit. "Parking" and "Florence" are a contradiction in terms.

Rome/Florence/Tuscany/Venice makes sense, and you could drive from Tuscany to Venice, dropping the hire car at Piazzale Roma, which is then within walking/ferry distance of Venice proper. Dropping the car at Bologna makes sense also, and then taking a train to Venice Santa Lucia (which is the full name of the railway station in Venice).

Try and travel as light as possible - you can't avoid hauling luggage around Venice, and there are a mere 450 bridges to cross, all with steps.

That being said, Venice is just magic!
Peter_S_Aus is online now  
Sep 15th, 2009, 12:14 AM
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I second the advice not to drive into Firenze, if you go at all. You don't say how interested your party of 5 is in cultural, urban sightseeing. Museums and churches high on your list of pleasures or educational agenda? If not, pick up a car in Venezia and head directly to Toscana -- although it's not clear why you are zigzagging first to Venezia after Roma, since Toscana is in between.

If you are going to Ventimiglia to drop off your car, I would suggest that you spend some time on the Italian Riviera. Since you have a car, you might find Lerici works for you for a several days stay, and think about spending your last night in Italy in Bordighera, or Noli or Cervo (on the Ligurian coast).

What time of year are you going? In hot months, the beach is nice and Firenze is a frying pan. In cold months, the indoor of attractions of Firenze and Pisa are very appealing.
zeppole is offline  
Sep 15th, 2009, 02:59 PM
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I just don't get the seemingly prevailing idea on this forum that one should skip the Uffizi. It's to my way of thinking one of the major art museums in Florence, if not Europe, and an absolute, utter must if you're an art lover. Period.

If the idea is that folks with small children should skip the Uffizi, I don't see why they should necessarily go to Il Bargello or L'Accademia or Pitti Palace instead. What would thrill them at these other two places that's not at the Uffizi? In my experience it's the rare small child that's interested in either sculpture or paintings, David or anything else.
bachslunch is offline  
Sep 15th, 2009, 05:39 PM
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Ummm - two days for Florence? Not really. Visiting Florence needs four full days if you're willing to do it in an absolutely crazy, terribly exhausting rush. Or five days at a more relaxed (though not really relaxed either) pace. (This includes the Uffizi and the Accademia, though, plus either the Bargello or the Galleria Palatina/Palazzo Pitti. Yes, I, too, advise on skipping all of them unless you're REALLY fervent museum lovers. The art at the Uffizi is of course great. It's the museum - didactics, hanging, lighting - that sucks. The art at the Galleria Palatina is not that great, and the museum sucks even more. And at the Accademia, there's just David, forget about every other work exposed there.) Without the museums, make that three or four days, respectively. Which means that you're either not going to see all of Florence, or not much of the rest of Tuscany (for which two and a half weeks would be the scant minimum, if you want to see the whole region), that's basically the choice.
franco is offline  
Sep 16th, 2009, 01:15 AM
  #15  
ber
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Thank you - I'm digesting all of that!

Sarge56 and Bardo1 and Peter S...regarding the "logical path", Rome/Florence/Tuscany/Venice (call this Plan A)...does that make more sense than my new Plan B I'm about to reveal??

Plan B: Train from Rome to Venice, train to Florence,pick up car (on outskirts!), spend a week using car from Tuscany base to explore...instead of leaving to France from Ventimiglia, return car at Pisa or Genova and catch train to France. DOES THIS INVOLVE LESS ZIG-ZAGGING, or is Plan A best??

PS train trips x5 fares probably won't be cheap either.
ber is offline  
Sep 16th, 2009, 03:31 AM
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PLan A
bfrac is offline  
Sep 16th, 2009, 04:40 AM
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What is France itinerary? Where does French portion of trip start?
bardo1 is offline  
Sep 16th, 2009, 02:24 PM
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franco, I'll agree with you that 2 days in Florence wouldn't be enough time given how thoroughly I like to sight-see. Agreed that 5-6 days is a much better time frame to really take in what the city has to offer.

However, I didn't find the Uffizi problematic from a presentational standpoint, though it's been a few years since I was last there. There are a few other major museums that seem to have logistical or organizational or labeling problems that are a must-see despite their shortcomings, such as the British Museum in London. And re the Accademia, will suggest that the Michelangelo "Slaves" sculptures are another reason besides David to go (not much else struck me there, though, and David's really the big draw).
bachslunch is offline  
Sep 16th, 2009, 03:08 PM
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Plan A is better, IMHO.
sarge56 is offline  
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