Tuscany/Umbria - About a Week

Old Oct 11th, 2005, 06:11 AM
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Tuscany/Umbria - About a Week

Just planning the back end of a trip to start at the very end of May or early June.

The first part is 4 days in Prague and 3 in Budapest (night train between?).

On the way back from Budapest to the US I'm thinking of stopping in Rome and touring Tuscany/Umbria.

We've been to Italy 5-6 times but always to the major cities and twice to the Amalfi/Sorrento/Capri area.

We were in Rome two years ago (Rome and Sorrento) so spending no time or a day in Rome is optional (don't get me wrong, we loved Rome but time is an issue).

We've also been to Florence and Venice twice each over the years.

The rules of the game are as follows:
a) We never rent a car
b) my wife suffers from motion sickness so we restrict bus travel to very short/local trips.
c) All real travel is done by train.

My thoughts.

We would probably arrive in Rome between 11AM and noon.

Would like to stay in Perugia for the first of two bases but I'm leaning to Orvieto for two reasons; Orvieto is a much shorter (time-wise) train ride from Rome and it's also a much shorter train ride when we move to the second base of Siena.

From Orvieto, day trip visits could include Spoleto, Cortona (I know it's in Tuscany but a much shorter train ride from Orvieto) and Perugia.

I'm a bit concerned that we won't have enough time in Perugia since it takes about 2 hours each way. There's a temptation to keep our hotel in Orvieto and go to Perugia planning on the possibility of finding a hotel and staying over.

We would then go to Siena late in the day and spend 2 days in Siena and 1 day in San Gimignano.

Itineray for each day could look like:
1) Arrive in Orvieto mid-afternoon. Spend the rest of the day there.
2) Spoleto
3) Perugia (possible day 4 as well)
4) Cortona
5) Orvieto (train to Siena late in the day)
6) Siena
7) San Gimignano
8) Siena (travel to Rome late in the day), Stay near the airport and leave the next day.

An extra day in Perugia would move us to 9 days which I think will be one too many.

Any ideas on what to cut or alter?

Our style is to visit the odd museum but in general we just wander around taking in the sights.

My wife is more of a sit around and have a coffe type and I always want to be on the go. I feel I have to see everything. I'm starting to learn to realx and do less in a day.

Myer is offline  
Old Oct 11th, 2005, 05:16 PM
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Too much schlepping, not enough time to catch your breath. Even "short" train rides to Cortona and Spoleto will start to take their toll sooner than you think. Given where you want to go, I'd recommend staying in Chiusi, or maybe Castiglione del Lago, and daytripping back to Orvieto one day. In the process, delete Spoleto from the itinerary. Chiusi and Castiglione del Lago are much more centrally located to all the places that you want to see than is Orvieto. A train from Orvieto to Perugia will be at least 95 minutes each way, whereas it would only be about 70 minutes or so from Chiusi, and 60 from CdL.

Invest the €10 in a pack of TravelGum (ask for it by name) in any farmacia as a preventative for motion sickness.
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Old Oct 11th, 2005, 05:47 PM
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Not wild about TravelGum, but I depend on the Xamamina gel caps, also in the Farmacia.

Consider basing in Arezzo, which is a marvelous town with a very handy trian station. Good connections to many places in Tuscany/Umbria.
tuscanlifeedit is offline  
Old Oct 12th, 2005, 10:50 AM
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I'll look at this.

If I were to stay someplace other than Otvieto, which would you suggest dropping, Orvieto or Spoleto?
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Old Oct 12th, 2005, 10:59 AM
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You are trying to see too many places in too little time. Why Perugia?
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Old Oct 12th, 2005, 11:40 AM
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I'd also drop Perugia. I love Orvieto.. We spent a week in Umbria renting a house near Todi. We did 1/2 of what you are trying to do. Personally, I wouldn't move at all - would choose a central location - and day trip by train as/if you wish. I'd pick Orvieto or Chuisi as that central spot.
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Old Oct 12th, 2005, 03:15 PM
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Having never been there, I can't compare Spoleto against anything on its merits. However, from a purely logistical standpoint, Spoleto would be way out of the way if you were to stay anywhere but in Orvieto or Foligno. If you were to stay in places that I and other have recommended -- generally southeastern Tuscany and northwestern Umbria -- the logistics of getting to Spoleto would make it the prime candidate for getting dropped.

I would pick a home base in Castiglione del Lago and go to the following only Orvieto and Perugia, dropping Spoleto. Maybe there'd be time to also see Cortona. Including San Gim and Siena, this gives you 4-5 destinations in 7 days, allowing you enough time to get settled in your hotels in CdL and Siena, one or two days to stop and smell the roses, and enough daytrips to keep you interested.

I will disagree with a couple of other posters and wholeheartedly recommend Perugia. Perugia is a big city that contrasts nicely with tiny CdL, small Orvieto, and medium Siena.
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