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vivian Apr 3rd, 2000 11:24 AM

When in Rome?
8 adults will be going to Rome for a few days. The books say that 2 days are not enough. I agree!!! There is so much, I am now confused. I would like to see Pompei, the Vatican, the old ruins. Any suggestions on 'must see' places and how to arrange my schedule to get the most out of our time. Any suggestions on the best way to get there from Venice. Do they have trains that you can sleep on or is airfare the way to go? Should we hire a personal guide? (Can we?) A structured tour guide seems too stiff. Someone that can show us around for 3 days seems like the ticket.

Carol Apr 3rd, 2000 01:58 PM

I'd recommend that you check out They do customized tours for groups such as yours in addition to semi-private tours. The company's run by a young American architect who lives in Rome.

Phil Apr 3rd, 2000 04:06 PM

Just got back from Italy. Three whole days is about the minimum you want. Viewing St. Peter's Church and the Vatican Museums (Sistene Chapel) will take one whole day by itself. Must see in Rome are the Vatican, Sistene Chapel, the Coliseum, Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps and Piazza Navona. A good website on what to do in Rome is <BR>From Venice a train ride will be around 4 1/2 hours. You can reserve a First Class train ticket that will give you a roomier seat and quieter surroundings for sleeping.

carol Apr 4th, 2000 06:43 AM

Dear Vivian, <BR> <BR>The posting below is about a private Venice guide who several fodorites used and liked very much. <BR> <BR>"Message: Good morning boys and girls from the turnip! Ms. Ward was nice enough to send the information we've all been waiting for. I also received an e-mail from the guide which I have posted below. Her e-mail address is [email protected] <BR> <BR>Happy travels! <BR> <BR>I am Rossella Rondana a Venitian citizen (35 years old), I am mastered in International Political Sciences at the University of Trieste. <BR>I have been guided since 1984 in French German and English speaking. I'm specialized in Venitian history and art in particular some beautiful and curious corners that are difficult to reach by tourists. <BR>So I can show you the best places in Venice or if you prefer the unknown legends of the city or better some exibition or museum that you want to see or if I may suggest you some other collection in the unusual tour path. <BR>I found your message and I am very happy to help you next may (the best month of the year). <BR>Normally I guide in the morning from 08.00 am to 11.00 am or in the afternoon from 04.00 pm on . <BR>Or I can guide all the day long in the Islands of Murano(Venitian glass), Burano(Venitian laces) and Torcello(byzantine art and roman ruins) but I have to know previously to manage my time. <BR>I can show you the best places in Venice in short time if you want or in a long time as you like. <BR>For example I could guide the morning and in the evening bring you all to a gondola-tour, during my tours I will explain also the best places to spend the rest of the day and how to reach (glass) factories in Murano Island for shopping and visit with me if you like or how to find the best market for shopping or best restaurants (not very expensive) where you can taste traditional Venitian cooking. <BR> <BR> <BR>PRIVATE TOURS <BR> <BR>1 hour of tour is 100 $ <BR>2 hours 150 $ <BR>3 hours 225 $ <BR>4 hours 300 $ <BR> <BR>Venice by night 650 $ (for 3 people) including: <BR>45 minutes Gondola tour in Venice small canals + <BR>dinner (fish and traditional plates and sparkling white wine Prosecco) + <BR>2 hours tour by night <BR> <BR>Gondola-tour 150$ <BR> <BR>Give me more details when and where do you live in Venice or your accomodation if you have booked one, so I can reach you very easily and let me know your plans asap. <BR> <BR>Thank you and warm regards. <BR>See you soon, ciao by Rossella <BR> <BR> <BR>-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- <BR>

Mary Apr 4th, 2000 09:08 AM

Hi Vivian--just back from Rome and I would agree that Scale Reale is the way to go; they can structure tours to help you get the most bang for your time. You don't say when you are going but Rome is very crowded so you really can't be overly ambitious in your planning since everything takes time. But Scala Reale can help you. You communicate with them by e-mail so it is very convenient. <BR> <BR>The train ride to Venice is very nice (you will go through part of the Tuscan countryside which is lovely); sleeping shouldn't be an issue--it's not that far, but if you do want to sleep the trains are very comfortable. Do go first class AND get reservations--that way you should get seats and be all together. We left Rome at 11:00 and were at our hotel by 4:00 p.m. <BR> <BR>have a great time <BR> <BR>Mary

Paulo Apr 4th, 2000 11:16 AM

As Phil and Mary inform, the Eurostar trains (leaving Rome at 7am, 11am, 1pm, 4:55pm and 7pm) take only 4 1/2 hours. Fares cost Lit 80,000/130,000, respectively, for 2nd/1st class. Reservations are mandatory (and a small fee should be charged if you travel 2nd class). <BR> <BR>The night train is kind of awkward. You'd have to go to the Roma Tiburtina station (not Termini) which would not be a big deal. The train would leave at 10:20pm, arriving in Venice at 5:55am (which's a bit early for my taste, also considering that one would not be able to check in at that time ...). It can be done, though, and it's way cheaper than an extra hotel night in Rome. The train has both, 2nd class couchettes and 1st/2nd class sleeping cars with cabins. <BR> <BR>Paulo <BR> <BR>

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