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Still deciding on what to do for six nights in Italy between Padua and Rome

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Jul 14th, 2015, 10:02 AM
  #1
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Still deciding on what to do for six nights in Italy between Padua and Rome

Hi all,
I am now in France and will head to Italy in a couple of days. I am going to be in Padua for a couple of nights until next Tuesday. Then I have booked accommodation from July 28 to August 1 in Rome. In between I had hoped to go to the Dolomites. I am already tired so I don't want to be jumping from place to place but could possibly be up to doing four nights somewhere and two nights somewhere else. I was hoping for Ortisei but to be honest am now not that confident driving as I will either be with a friend who is not that excited by the idea (and for me to feel confident I need her to also - I have driven on the other side of the road to what I'm used to, when I was in Canada, but was with someone who was extremely confident), so I am thinking it may be easier - quicker - to get to Trento, which is only a couple of hour by train from Padua. I know it's not strictly the Dolomites ... We could then either do two nights in Garda or Florence, en route to Rome. I would prefer to be somewhere I can get a fast train to Rome on the 28th.

Views? Suggestions?

Thanks,
RT
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Jul 14th, 2015, 11:03 AM
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I suggest you go to either Bologna for the entire time , and do day trips when you feel like it, or go to Ravenna for 2 nights, and then Bologna for the remainder. Despite the fact that Bologna has a reputation for being too hot in summer, the truth is that all the shaded streets are like mini-wind tunnels, and it is a great place to hang out and recuperate, with delicios food!

Don't know if either of the apartments at this place are available (or if they air con, which you would need) or if they are in your budget

http://www.bolognanelcuore.it

Or you could check airbnb

From Bologna, you have loads of options for easy day trips by train, including Florence (which will be packed and hot, hot, hot). You can go to Ferrara and rent bikes, or visit Modena, and the crown jewel, Ravenna.

If you choose Ravenna for 2 nights, followed by Bologna, you would have time to see the sights in Ravenna, plus go for swims. In fact, 3 nights there wouldn't be a hardship. Take a late-afternoon train to Bologna, so you arrive in the cooler evening.

If you are already feeling tired, be sure to slow down and stay cool. This is really a very hot summer, so drink loads of water and stay out of the sun. Sleep in the afternoons!
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Jul 14th, 2015, 11:34 AM
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Bologna is the obvious choice and one I would recommend, but you could look at Ferrara, Mantua, Parma or Ravenna
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Jul 14th, 2015, 12:33 PM
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Yes that's why I did think Trento or Ortisei might have been better options because they will be a bit cooler in between the heat of Cinque Terre/Padua and Rome. Can you do hikes from Bologna without having to commute to long to do one or two?
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Jul 14th, 2015, 01:04 PM
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Not sure, Ferrara and Mantua are both fine for walking on the flat in the Po valley. Bologna edges up against an ascarpment but maybe too far back
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Jul 14th, 2015, 01:18 PM
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There are only two "hiking" possibilities from Bologna. One is to take the train to Brisighella. The other is to march up the hundreds of stairs in Bologna itself to the Santuario di San Luca. It is completely covered by archways, so its shady, but still -- in the summer, I would only do it in the very early morning hours (and truth be told, I'd take a bus or taxi to the top and walk down -- not up!)

However, if you would like to hike in nature, and have a great, cool experience of Italy doing it then take the train to Marradi, which is high up in the mountains between Bologna and Florence, and cooler in the summertime. I highly recommend staying in Palazzo Torriani in Marradi. You have lots of hiking/walking possibilities in Marradi. The scenery is charming. The Palazzo Marradi will cook dinner for you if you ask, or you can eat deliciously at Il Camino (a slow food restaurant) near the train station. There are also delicious food shops in town for picnics for your hikes.

So for ease of travel, you might consider this: Leaving Padova, either spend 2 or 3 nights in Bologna or Brisighella. Visit Ravenna as a day trip. Then take the train to Marradi for 3 nights, and enjoy Italian small town life at its finest, with plenty of relaxing hikes. After Marradi, drop down to Florence by train (1 hour), and either immediately switch to a train to Rome, or put your luggage in the station and go gawk at Florence, plus have lunch.
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Jul 14th, 2015, 01:19 PM
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PS: Both Ferrara and Mantova are like saunas in summer, and Mantova is a rather long train trip from Bologna. In Ferrara, renting a bike will help create its own breeze.
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Jul 15th, 2015, 12:09 AM
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Sandra's dead right about the sauna bit.
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Jul 15th, 2015, 07:41 AM
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Bologna's also a sauna in the summer, and right now it's in the throes of a heat wave.
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Jul 15th, 2015, 09:33 AM
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I've been in Bologna in August (not last year) and it was comfortable in the shade. It is just not as humid as Ferrara or Mantova. If one gets a heat wave, like today, all bets are off, but it can miserable in Trento or Bolzano if a heat wave hits as well as Bologna. In fact, today it was 35+ in Bolzano and 34+ in Bologna.
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Jul 25th, 2015, 10:23 PM
  #12
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I went to Ortisei! We hired a car. I am in love with the town, the Dolomites and it's amazingly beautiful people. It broke my heart to leave! It has everything I love. We arrived yesterday in Florence and I am also in love here ... So many different experiences and I'm feeling very lucky. I will try to get some trip reports up at some stage.
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Jul 26th, 2015, 03:06 AM
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Great! Sounds like you've got your energy back.
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Jul 28th, 2015, 03:10 AM
  #14
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Sure did Sandralist. I do not want to leave your country. Off to Roma now but then must fly to Paris on Saturday.

RT
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Jul 28th, 2015, 06:25 AM
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Come again sometime!
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