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Should we end our Italy trip in Sorrento or Nice

Should we end our Italy trip in Sorrento or Nice

Old Jan 29th, 2023, 11:55 AM
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Should we end our Italy trip in Sorrento or Nice

Going to Italy in June with our family of 4 (two teens). We are planning Rome (4 nights), Florence (2-3), Ligurian Coast (4-Cinque Terre with hiking and day trips to Portofino and maybe other nearby towns). We either want to continue up the coast to 4 nights in Nice (easy day trips by train to nearby towns and my kids like the idea or getting a taste of France) or we can start in Liguria, then Florence, Rome and end with Sorrento with day trips to Amalfi. Pompeii etc. I'm really torn. Nice seems easy to get around for day trips by train and like something different. Sorrento seems similar in some ways to Cinque Terre but stunning with a different vibe.
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Old Jan 29th, 2023, 12:55 PM
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Day trip to Portofino- take a look, crowded, very expensive, over the top dining and shops. Then visit adjacent towns of beautiful Santa Margherita Ligure and Camogli for more enjoyable visits.
Nice is an easy small city to get around and take day trips by bus and/or train. Much easier than day trips from Sorrento.

Last edited by HappyTrvlr; Jan 29th, 2023 at 12:57 PM.
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Old Jan 29th, 2023, 01:34 PM
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Thanks that was my thought about Nice. Yes, I said Portofino, but really plan more on exploring the nearby towns, maybe hiking a bit, and want to visit the San Fruttuosso Abby. Thanks for the helpful feedback!
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Old Jan 29th, 2023, 01:40 PM
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I think day trips from Sorrento are pretty easy. Pompeii/Herculaneum/Stabiae, Naples, Capri, Ischia, AC towns, Path of the Gods.... But which town is "easier" is less important than what interests your family more. I like the variety of sightseeing that Sorrento offers.

But I don't think anyone can make this itinerary decision for you. If anything, I wouldn't add another destination, at least not another one in a crowded Med resort town. It sounds like you have 14-15 nights/13-14 days with possibly 4 (or more?) days impacted by a transfer. FWIW, I think 2 nights in Florence is nearly a drive-by.

Just a few logistical comments: You can't "start" in Liguria. You have to fly into an airport (Pisa?) and transfer to your Liguria base. Depending on when you land, this could eat up all of Day 1. Also, you can only "end" with Sorrento (or Nice) if you can fly out of Naples (or Nice). CT to Nice is a long train ride. About 5.5 hours. You might want to look into flight options and train timetables before you make any initial decisions.
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Old Jan 29th, 2023, 01:48 PM
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Thanks Jean. We have 16 nights not including our flying night. I was just speaking in generalities and realize we will fly into Genoa or Pisa if we start in Liguria and out of Naples if we end in Sorrento. We already have our flights booked into Rome and out of Nice, but I can still change them if we decide to change our itinerary. I'm really just trying to decide if Sorrento or Nice will give us a better contrast to the other 3 locations, Rome, Florence, Ligurian Coast. I know it really depends on our interests but hearing other's perspectives is always helpful when deciding.
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Old Jan 29th, 2023, 03:18 PM
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Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast are so different from Rome and Florence, it is like night and day. Can’t compare it with the CT, have not been. We have been to Sorrento, Naples and the AC several times and would go again in a heartbeat. The first time, I saw the Bay of Naples from the cliffs above Sorrento, I felt I had died and gone to Heaven.
Day trips from Sorrento seem super easy to me. From Sorrento it is an easy train to Pompeii or Herculaneum. Ferries are short rides from the pretty port in Sorrento to Positano, Amalfi or Capri. The views from the water are truly spectacular. Even if the trip takes a few more minutes, the ferry is part of the excursion and absolutely gorgeous, without traffic and feeling trapped on a bus. If you choose Sorrento, stay someplace with great views and a pool.

I would stay in Italy and do your second itinerary for three reasons.
1. The Amalfi Coast is stunning, one of my favorite places, and it is wonderful to spend time on the water rather than on roads with traffic.
2. There are endless unique sights like Pompeii, Vesuvius, the blue Grotto, Naples, Positano, etc. all extremely easy to get to and visit.
3. Getting there takes time and is much more difficult to include on other trips, especially from other countries. You are already somewhat close, include it now when it is logistically efficient to do so.

Save Nice for a more logistically cohesive trip to France.
Add a day to Florence and see Siena, Lucca or another smaller Tuscan town.
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Old Jan 29th, 2023, 04:50 PM
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"I'm really just trying to decide if Sorrento or Nice will give us a better contrast to the other 3 locations, Rome, Florence, Ligurian Coast."

If the goal is "contrast," I guess that's NIce. Different country, different language, somewhat different food. That isn't the way I'd choose, but it's your trip. I'd be more inclined to visit a smaller town that might (might) be less mobbed.

FWIW, there are the ruins of a Roman bath complex in Nice. Not much to compare to visiting Pompeii, Herculaneum or Stabiae except it being Roman.
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Old Jan 30th, 2023, 07:06 AM
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Go to Sorrento.
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Old Jan 30th, 2023, 08:10 AM
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I’d also go to Sorrento and visit Pompeii and Herculaneum (my favorite) as well as explore some of the Amalfi Coast towns. The ferry should be running and that is a wonderful way to explore the towns or Capri.

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Old Jan 30th, 2023, 10:19 AM
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Instead of Nice why not end in nearby Antibes (which is less touristy and a wonderful town right on the sea). The hotels are really well priced in comparison to Nice and I definitely think it's friendlier! We went there in November and even then it was sunny and beautiful and we had our lunch in a cafe overlooking the sea!
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Old Jan 30th, 2023, 11:23 AM
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We've visited the Amafi Coast about 4 times - always staying in Positano with a night or two in Ravello & 1 night in Capri. We were underwhelmed with Sorrento. We've spent 4 nights in the Cinque Terre - before it became overcrowded with tourists.

We've make maybe 12 - 15 trips to Nice, staying anywhere from 2 nights to 2 weeks and exploring the Nice Hinterland also.

If you want diversity - IMO the CT & Amalfi Coast would be a tad redundant. Nice and the Nice Hinterland would be a different adventure. Get to the towns east of Nice by bus, and those west by train. Actually, I bet you will decide not to do any side trips from Nice with only 3 1/2 days available.

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Old Jan 30th, 2023, 11:50 AM
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What Sassafrass said - except I have been to CT. It is charming and picturesque but unfortunately overrun with young Americans. Not to say that the Amalfi coast is not also overrun but the beauty is overwhelming and IMO, CT does not compare.
I've been to CT and Nice twice and that is more than enough for me. I've been to the Amalfi coast 3 times and am going back in May to revisit places I have loved in the past.
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Old Jan 30th, 2023, 02:04 PM
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A bit more of my experience. We have not been to Antibes or Nice, but have made two visits to other areas of Provence. The first was for only a couple of days. It felt terribly rushed and was painful to leave after such a short, busy time. So we followed that up with two weeks and even that felt minimal. We love Provence and would certainly go again when we could make the time and expense of travel there worthwhile and to see more.

Our first trip to the Amalfi Coast area was planned for two nights. After the two nights, we ditched plans for the rest of the trip and stayed ten days, changing hotels a couple of times.

A major draw was Pompeii. We did not get to Herculaneum until a few visits later, though it is my favorite of the two, better preserved and quite beautiful. Positano was the other incredible, spectacular place viewed from the water. We hiked to the top of the town too for more incredible views. On one ferry trip, the boat stopped for people to swim in the sea. It was amazing!

A few years later, I took my HS students on trips to Italy, France and Spain. Some, of course, just had a fun time. However, Pompeii was such an inspiration, one became an archeologist and another returned to Florence to study Art.
The teens’ (aged 14-18) favorite places were Assisi, Venice, and the Amalfi Coast, including the Blue Grotto and hiking up Vesuvius (not my favorite). The variety of places to actively visit on the AC and Naples area really appealed to them.

A few years ago, DH and I did a tour of the underground excavations under Naples. That was very interesting. Teens would have liked that. We have still not been to Ravello or Paestum. Next trip. . . .

Whatever you do will be wonderful and I hope you will write a trip report (with some perspectives from the kids) and share your experiences.
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Old Jan 31st, 2023, 06:56 AM
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Thanks for all the helpful feedback! You all have given me some things to think about. Che12 we did consider staying in a more quaint coastal town (even close by at Villafranche-sur-Mer), but I think our teens would enjoy a more vibrant town like Nice to explore.

Sassafrass good point about the logisitcs-Nice would be easier to fit in another trip, though we haven't managed to make it back to Europe with our kids and they are now almost adults! So while this is their first trip to Europe it's not for my husband and I. Coincidentally we have taken a group of teen students one big trip to Spain, France and Italy! Madrid, Barcelona, Cannes, Monaco, Eze, Florence, Sienna, Rome, Pompeii, Capri. So I have had a small taste of these areas, but of course leading a group of 35 students and their families on a fast paced trip just gave us a brief feel for each place, and that was over 20 years ago. Thats amazing that your trip inspired some of your students so much! Mine were a bit younger, mostly 12-14.
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