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Traveling to Italy in April with 2 children 16 and 12

Traveling to Italy in April with 2 children 16 and 12

Jan 15th, 2011, 04:26 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 2
Traveling to Italy in April with 2 children 16 and 12

We are traveling to the Tuscany area in mid April. We are staying for 9 days. We thought about taking the train to see a soccer match in Milan, (as AC Milan is my son's favorite team) and taking in the sites of Venice and another city.These would only be day trips, as we already have a villa outside of Siena for the week. I am not sure I understand the euro rail pass costs. Does anyone have experience with the 3 day pass and how it works, as well as, it looks like extra costs for seat reservations too? I too am concerned about the wine and teenagers issue, plus my daughter looks15!
Julie_M_B is offline  
Jan 15th, 2011, 04:32 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,518
Your day trips are fantasy and not feasible. Perhaps to Florence or Siena, but not Milan or Venice. If you plan a week in Tuscany then that leaves you 2 nites somewhere else---I would guess your departure city by definition. Forget rail passes--you would need several long trips for that.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Jan 15th, 2011, 04:43 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 9,424

Is this your first trip to Italy? It seems you are greatly underestimating the effort and time needed to travel to these cities. Do you really want to spend 3 or more hours - one way - for a day trip? I wouldn't recommend it.

Also, I think teenagers will be bored to tears in Tuscany for 9 days. Where exactly are you staying? Pools in the countryside won't be open in most places as early as April, although it's a beautiful time to visit, very green. I don't think the red poppies will be blooming yet. They are a little later - May.

You will need to drive and park near the Siena train station, or possibly a further station with faster trains to the cities - departing from a city such as Florence.

Check www.trenitalia.com and get an idea of the fastest way to do day trips. Also, it's usually not worth buying eurail passes. It's cheaper to just buy regular tickets within Italy. If you really intend to do these day trips, you will want the fastest trains - and those tickets require a reservation and will be included in the cost.

If you are going to have a car anyway, it might be most convenient and cost less to just drive! Parking will be a problem though.

I would strongly recommend doing your day trips to places more near your villa - Florence, Pisa, Orvieto, maybe even Assisi. Plus all the other smaller hilltowns.

Seriously do some more homework. Happy planning!
Dayle is offline  
Jan 15th, 2011, 04:58 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2011
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Yes, this is our first time, which is why I am asking the questions. We want the trip to be enjoyable, but also want everyone to get what they want out of it, as it will probably be the only time we get there. I have been on line for hours and days for this trip researching, but it is best to hear from people that have already been there, vs. websites that say "this is possible and a great way to see the countryside..." Thank you to those that have responded and those who will with your wealth of information. We have never taken a family vacation, as we have been saving for a long time for this trip. It will probably be the last trip we take as a whole family, (other than soccer trips in New England for my son!)
Julie_M_B is offline  
Jan 15th, 2011, 05:20 PM
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 332
Julie, I am not a Tuscany expert, but to tap into the expertise of those who are, I think it would be useful if you could provide some additional information about your plans, including:

-- arrival and departure cities for airline flights
-- dates of trip, and within this period, dates of the Siena villa rental already booked [Note: this does not have to be exact dates it could be, e.g. Day 1, arrive Rome, drive to Siena; Day 2 . . . ]
-- exact location of your rental villa
-- will you have a car, and if so, where do you intend to pick it up and drop it off

It seems to me that a trip to Milan is do-able, for example, especially given your son's high level of interest, but it might be much easier to do before or after your stay in the villa rather than a day trip, depending on where you are headed. (Of course, the feasibility will also depend on the team's schedule during your stay in Italy).

Good luck!
MoonGirl is offline  
Jan 15th, 2011, 05:53 PM
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
I agree that the two kids will be bored stiff in a villa outside of Siena. they are too young for wine tasting and will soon be bored with looking at Tuscan hill towns ancient walls and churches.

Also agree that day trips to Milan and Venice don;t make any sense. First you would have to get to the train station, then trek to wherever, spend a couple of hours and then return. For train routes and schedules go to bahn.de - the German rail site. It won;t give you prices - but you wouldn;t need a pass - individual tickets bought on the spot are much cheaper - but it has the best route info.

It may make more sense for you to go to one of them for an overnight before you leave. You don;t say where you are landing/leaving from - and that may make a difference.

As for wine - in my experience in restaurants any kid that looks older than about 12 will be offered the wine ordered for the table. If you don;t want the kids drinking just tell the water to take away the wine and just leave the water glasses.
nytraveler is offline  
Jan 15th, 2011, 06:32 PM
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 9,474
Renting a villa sounds so romantic, but if you really think this will be your only trip to Italy with your kids, IMHO you are truly missing out if they do not visit Rome, one of the really great cities in Europe. Just chilling is nice, but you are going a long way and it is costing a lot for you to stay in one place rather than experiencing parts of Italy that could be an amazing education for your kids. None of my business, of course, but "just saying".

Renting a place can be a great base, but it depends on the location and what you want to see. Basing in Tuscany is good for Tuscany, not for visiting other places.

A day trip from Tuscany to Venice would not be a good way to see Venice at all. Going and coming takes too much of your time. Every hour on the ground in Italy has cost you quite a lot. How much of those costly hours do you want to spend on a train?
Sassafrass is online now  
Jan 16th, 2011, 06:51 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,518
Julie, Yes, tell us more and we can help. Give us the facts--where in Tuscany, arrival departure location, real dates. It seems you need some help.
bobthenavigator is offline  
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