We bought our Italy tickets!

Old Nov 1st, 2007, 07:02 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 94
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We bought our Italy tickets!

I am so excited. My husband and I just bought our tickets for a January trip to Italy. We are spending 3 days in Rome, 2 in Florence and 1 in Venice (arriving Tuesday morning and leaving Monday morning). I know we are seeing a lot in a short period of time but we enjoy packing things in. I would love any tips on what people loved in these cities, where to stay ($150 per night, ideally). Also, how long are the train rides between these cities? Any itinerary information would be much appreciated. Many thanks.
rr229 is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 07:10 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Rome-Florence by Eurostar train 1.5 hrs - up to 2 trains an hour

Florence-Venice 3.5 hrs

www.trenitalia.com for schedules and possible online discounts
PalenQ is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 07:13 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 21,369
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Try this site for train schedules in Italy:

http://www.trenitalia.com/en/index.html

It's only 4.5 hours from Rome to Venice on a Eurostar train and a nice ride (though I mostly slept through it after a 10 hour plane ride). There are less expensive trains with more stops, but I rode lots of regional and IC trains in Italy and had no problem with them. Italy has a great train system. I'm glad I had the Eurostar from Rome to Venice but for shorter runs I would have considered one of the slower trains, depending on schedules.

Many would consider 1 night not all that long in Venice. Have you considered 2-2-2 instead of 3-2-1?

I'll bet you will have no problem finding hotels for January. I traveled alone so probably am not the best to recommend hotels, but I used Cross-Pollinate.com to book guest rooms and apartments a few places. Many use Venere.com to search for hotels in general.
Andrew is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 07:20 AM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 94
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks. We are actually going to arrive in Venice Saturday night and fly put of there Monday morning at 10:55am. So we will have 2 nights and a full day there. I know it is not tons of time, but this works best with our schedule.
Rome: arrive Tuesday morning, leave Thursday night.
Florence: arrive Thursday night, leave Saturday night.
Venice: arive Saturday night, leave Monday morning.
However, I am also thinking of not booking hotels and playing how long we want in each city by ear. Is that crazy?
I have actually been to all of these cities before (12 yrs ago) but it is my husbands first time in Italy.
rr229 is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 07:59 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 21,369
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Crazy to wait to book hotels? Not to me. I planned my recent October trip to Italy a full two weeks before I arrived. January should be a much easier time to find hotels, unless you will be there during a special time or holiday. You could probably arrive day-of and find places (not that I recommend it).

If I were you I would probably start trying to book places now just to make sure you won't arrive at an unexpectedly busy time, which you would notice if prices seemed unusually high.
Andrew is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 08:05 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Last Jan i arranged hotels as i went along in Rome and Florence and got real bargains

you can try the tourist office/hotel booking services in train stations

In Rome i went there first but decided to look around the station area on my own after the prices sounded more than i wanted to pay

There are zillions of hotels around Termini station in Rome - of all sorts. I'm a low budget traveler and not fussy - paid 30 euros for en-suite hotel near Termini - no breakfast

In Florence i went to the tourist office in the station and felt the price was great and i had a nice en-suite room in a hotel a few blocks away for 39 euros including an unlimited buffet breakfast in the glassed in top floor breakfast room. That room the manager told me would have cost 90 euros in April May and June, the highest seasons and a bit less in slower summer.

So you won't have any problems.
PalenQ is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 08:15 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 106
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
The problem I see with waiting until you get there to book hotels is not availability, but time. With only 2 days in each place, do you really want to use any portion of that precious time visiting hotels and/or tourist office deciding where to stay? Even if the tourist office is in the train station -- it still takes time, and when you have so little to spare, is it worth it??
bianca1975 is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 08:17 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,496
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
For FLorence check out Hotel Casci.
MFNYC is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 08:20 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 21,369
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Well, if you pick ahead of time 2 or 3 hotels per city where you'd like to stay, you can take their phone numbers and call them a day out and book once you decide where you want to go next. (And if you have a laptop and internet, even easier.) No need to do no research beforehand and arrive blindly at the train station wondering where to stay. January should be wide open.
Andrew is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 09:13 AM
  #10  
MaureenB
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
I agree that it's a waste of precious and limited vacation time, to be looking for lodging when you arrive. Why not do it in advance, when you have plenty of time to plan and get a place you'll enjoy?

It's taking a shot in the dark, IMHO, to wait till you get there and hope for a nice place and a good price. It's a slower time of year, but still, all the 'gems' will be booked.

I wouldn't chance it, and it would make me crazy to spend time talking to reservationists instead of walking the beautiful Italian cities.

These are the hotels in your price range that we liked:
Rome, the Domus Julia
Florence, the Relais Cavalcanti
Venice, the Hotel Riva

I wrote and posted detailed trip reports about each one.
>-
 
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 09:23 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I agree with advance booking saving time and getting a hotel at a price, etc. you want

but flexibility is the OP's desire and mine too when i planned my Rome-Florence visits last winter.

And in Rome i spent about 30 mins finding a hotel

in Florence it was a matter of minutes as the tourist office in the station had no long lines like it may in summer and were so efficient.

So it's flexibility that could be the key
PalenQ is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 09:29 AM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 94
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you all so much! This is very helpful.
rr229 is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 09:29 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,282
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Agree with Bianca et al re booking hotels eating into the short time you have in each place. Also, are you really not bothered where you stay ? If you do some research ahead (look at www.tripadvisor.com and www.venere.com) you can choose hotels at the price you want, in the most convenient areas and with good reviews, so you can be as sure as it's possible to be that they will be nice. Rome in particular is a big place and even if you are staying in the best location (the Centro Storico) there's a lot of walking, so staying in a less convenient location would be even more tiring and you'd see less.

To me, although I'm not into micromanaging what we'll do each day, researching hotels is half the enjoyment. For our trip next June-July I've so far booked 3 hotels and am currently researching the 4th - it's fun !
caroline_edinburgh is offline  
Old Nov 1st, 2007, 12:58 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 237
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Hi rr, you should also keep in mind that some hotels close in January for routine maintenance, that sort of thing. An earlier reply to your post recommended the Hotel Casci in Florence, which is a great place! However, I was thinking of staying there for a night or two in January and recently saw that they'll be closed for the month.

I'm actually spending two weeks in Rome in January (with a short hop up to Florence via Eurostar somewhere in the middle) I think it'll be really interesting to see what these cities are like in the winter!

But I am prepared for some things to be closed or running at reduced hours -- such as the Vatican Museums. So, to avoid disappointment and wasting precious time, you might want to take Maureen's advice and make some of your arrangements in advance.
sacc is offline  
Old Nov 2nd, 2007, 09:38 AM
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 94
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Great advice. Many thanks everyone.
rr229 is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
nd5524
Europe
10
Apr 17th, 2009 03:07 PM
kb0728
Europe
29
Mar 1st, 2008 06:20 PM
travsgirls
Europe
13
Dec 9th, 2006 10:02 AM
passinthrough
Europe
6
May 29th, 2005 04:35 AM
susan4
Europe
4
May 10th, 2005 04:40 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 01:44 AM.