Tour of Italy

Old Jun 7th, 2002, 03:59 PM
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Tour of Italy

My husband and I are making our first trip to Italy in late October. We arrive in Rome and will be staying there 11 days, then going on to Paris for 4 days before returning home. We want to see Rome, the Amalfi Coast, Florence and Tuscany, but we're not sure whether to rent a car and drive it on our own, or take a tour. Can anyone suggest a possible route that would allow us to see everything in these areas in 11 days. Also, with only 4 days in Paris, does anyone have a suggested itinerary?
Old Jun 7th, 2002, 08:26 PM
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If this is strictly a logistical question, I would recommend a modest "over-drive" (i.e. driving somewhat farther than really necessary), as follows:

1. Arrive Rome, immediately take the train to Florence, 90 minutes. Spend 2-4 days there.

2. Rent a car for 3-7 days for expolorations in Tuscany, Umbria and/or Rieti before driving on to Campania and the Amalfi coast.

3. Drive the car back to Rome and turn it in for the final 2-6 days you spend there.

4. Fly to Brussels - - - - or and then take the 90 minute train to Paris.

Best wishes,

Old Jun 8th, 2002, 07:09 AM
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We just returned:
4 nites - Conca dei Marini (4kms from Amalfi)
4 nites - Todi (lower Umbria)
3 nites - Roma

The schedule was just right for a combo of relaxing & sights. You could move closer to Firenze (Florence)if that is a must. We skipped it because we did not want our whole holiday spent around tourist hordes - especially the flag following variety.

Todi was our perfect base - 2 1/2 hrs from Montalcino - probably same for Firenze.
Old Jun 8th, 2002, 07:47 AM
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The majority of posters on this website tend towards the 'do it yourself' camp. There are many advantages in planning your own itinerary. However, if I were to try a tour of Italy, I'd look into

Old Jun 9th, 2002, 04:39 PM
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Old Jun 10th, 2002, 10:30 AM
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Other suggestions?
Old Jun 10th, 2002, 11:11 AM
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Please try to avoid driving the Amalfi coast yourself. I have relatives in Italy who are terrified of driving that coastline. The roads are very narrow and hug some very steep cliffs. That alone is not so bad, except that you would be driving among the Neopolitans, who are some of the worst drivers in Italy. When I last visited Italy, I hired a driver for the day. But I stayed in a remote town, so I cannot really suggest him. When you do go to the Amalfi coastline, I enjoyed Sorrento, Positano, Amalfi and Ravello. The ride is breathtaking and you will never forget it. If you enjoy ceramics, the town of Vietri Sul Mare has many ceramic artisan houses. Did you already make your hotel reservations? Because I really feel that you might want to stay for a couple of days. It takes at least one day to go through the coast. If you give yourself a second day, you can see Capri with the blue grotto and the Faraglioni rock formations. Also, I lived in Florence and am quite familiar with Tuscany. I would try to make a reservation in Tuscany or Umbria for a couple of days. I particularly like Florence, which should be nice in late October because many of the tourists are gone. In Florence, I would check out the Galleria dell'Accademia (Michelangelo's David), San Marco (former monastery with beautiful frescos), Duomo and the rooftop, Uffizi (Botticelli's Venus), San Lorenzo (Michelangelo sculpture), Ponte Veccio and the jewelry shops, and Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens. Florence is one hour from Pisa if you want to check out the tower. Other great cities near Florence include Siena and Bologna. Both are only one hour away and have many sites to fill in one day.

I know that this is a lot of information. Italy has a lot of art and natural landscape. If you want a tour, Perillo does a very fine job. If you want information on the Tuscany countryside, I have just read Under the Tuscan Sun, and this book is dead on.
Old Jun 10th, 2002, 11:13 AM
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Also, Venice should be cool by late October. I know that a lot of people are afraid to go because of the smell, but the city has cut back on the pollution and there usually isn't a smell in the cooler months.
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