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With all the Y2K renovation, is Italy worth visiting this year?

With all the Y2K renovation, is Italy worth visiting this year?

Old Mar 8th, 1999, 04:59 PM
  #1  
Kate
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With all the Y2K renovation, is Italy worth visiting this year?

Hello Fodorites, I just talked to an acquaintance returning from Rome this past week. She said it's covered in scaffolding ... not even worth the visit right now. She swore she wouldn't return to Italy for at least a year and a half until the Millennium construction is completed (and the millions of visitors pass through). Does anyone else feel the same way? Is this just Rome? Or is this all cities? I was originally planning a long trip in September ... but I may rethink my plans based on your responses. I don't want the scaffolds to mar the beauty of the country and my visit.
 
Old Mar 8th, 1999, 08:51 PM
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Michael
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Hi Kate....I was just there in November and your friend is about right. Much of the sites in Rome are covered in Scaffolding including St Peter's Bassilica in the Vatican and the Colloseum. I was very dissappointed. Sure messed up what would of been some nice pics. Same in Pisa. (Pisa's barely worth visiting anyway) Not much in Florence though (however one cathedral actually had scaffolding marring much of it's INTERIOR). But I saw none in Venice. If scaffolding bothers you, you may want to wait.
 
Old Mar 8th, 1999, 08:51 PM
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Michael
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Hi Kate....I was just there in November and your friend is about right. Much of the sites in Rome are covered in Scaffolding including St Peter's Bassilica in the Vatican and the Colloseum. I was very dissappointed. Sure messed up what would of been some nice pics. Same in Pisa. (Pisa's barely worth visiting anyway) Not much in Florence though (however one cathedral actually had scaffolding marring much of it's INTERIOR). But I saw none in Venice. If scaffolding bothers you, you may want to wait.
 
Old Mar 9th, 1999, 12:42 AM
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lisa
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it is true also of paris... I was there in feb. and there is a lot of construction in preporation for 2000. I still had a great trip and saw a lot, but if the construstion will bother you wait a bit for that trip.
 
Old Mar 9th, 1999, 07:40 AM
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pam
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I was afraid of this, but... When I was in Europe in 85 (my first trip abroad) it seemed like everything was covered in scaffolding. I bought postcards. It was still absolutely worth being there. I was dying to go to Rome and didn't want to wait until after 2000 so we're going in May/June. Will buy postcards. I suspect it will still have been worth being there. Friend of mine w/ many int'l contacts thinks Rome is going to be packed this summer, too. It's always crowded; packed is a relative term.
 
Old Mar 9th, 1999, 11:12 AM
  #6  
Kate
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Michael touched on this .... but what about cities other than Rome? Also shrouded in scaffolding?
 
Old Mar 9th, 1999, 11:27 AM
  #7  
Adria
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I'm planning a trip to Paris in May of 2000. Someone mentioned renovations and scaffolding in Paris. Do you know if it is supposed to be finished by the time of my trip?

Thanks.
 
Old Mar 10th, 1999, 05:59 AM
  #8  
MollyDonnelly
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Hi Kate and others, I was in Italy in December and Paris a few weeks ago and many of the big sites were covered in scaffolding. I did what the previous poster did, bought postcards of things and enjoyed myself anyway. Renovations are also occurring in Amsterdam at the Van Gogh museum and Rembrandt's house, again for the millenium. I would wait until next year to go to Europe if possible, although, let's face it, the place is so old that something will always be under renovation. Besides, scaffolding is not covering everything, just some of the main site...St. Peter's, The Victor Emmanuelle II monument, Notre Dame etc. Whether you wait until next year or go now is up to you. If it's a once in a lifetime trip and this is really bothering you, then you may want to wait. If not, go, have fun and buy postcards!
 
Old Mar 10th, 1999, 11:11 AM
  #9  
pam
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LOL at the 'it's so old something will always be under reno' comment--had the same thought myself. IMO Rome is ALWAYS worth going but I did plan to avoid 2000 altogether. Of course, if the world ends in 2000, you risk having missed it <grin
 
Old Mar 10th, 1999, 11:20 AM
  #10  
Tony Hughes
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I really don't think it has much to do with Y2K as it happens. You must all realise that many structures in Europe are considerably older than most American ones. I mean, in about 300 years, if it still exists, I have no doubt the Lincoln Memorial will have scaffolding on it owing to the age of the structure. It's age, that's all...the media don't usually like to show famous sites all covered in scaffolding, doesn't bring in the tourits, you see.

Do you realise how old parts of Rome are? When buildings have been standing for over 1000 years it's only natural for them to need some attention.
 
Old Mar 10th, 1999, 02:03 PM
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Deb
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I agree with Tony. Sure there was scaffolding; there always will be on some monument in any of the big cities of Europe. I was in Italy both in 1997 and 1998. In the interim, St Peter's was scaffolded but it certainly did not dampen my joy at being in Rome. I'm also with Pam--go this year, don't go in 2000. There will be swarms more tourists than this year (and it will be crowded this year).
 
Old Mar 10th, 1999, 05:07 PM
  #12  
Kate
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Tony,
Actually, you are not correct. It has EVERYTHING to do with Y2K ... go read any travel magazine (Conde Nast, etc.) and they all discuss the massive preparations in Italy for the Millennium. Additionally, I do believe most of us Fodorites know how "old" European structures are, so we don't need a lecture on Europe’s antiquity.

I've been to Rome before, and would rather travel elsewhere in the country this time. I am just looking for some decent advice on the Millennium preparations. I love photography, so I don't want the renovations to hinder my ability to take "real" pictures. I’d rather not buy postcards everywhere in place of taking my own photographs. So, this Y2K stuff could have a real impact on my country choice this September. I may visit France instead .....
 
Old Mar 12th, 1999, 10:12 PM
  #13  
laiyee
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Hello from Singapore. Is it really that disappointing to visit Rome now? We're going for our Europe honeymoon & ROME is one place where we wd love to visit. Would anyone tell us more of THE sites that are bing covered with scaffolds & stuffs like that. And, Michael, is PISA really that not worth visiting??
 
Old Mar 13th, 1999, 03:31 AM
  #14  
Tony Hughes
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Actually Kate you are incorrect. Do you live in Europe? NO, you don't thus you only have a vague and anecdotal idea of what construction is like there, seemingly gleaned from those travel magazines you mention. I am a civil engineer and can tell you, without a shadow of a doubt, that renovation of buildings has been going on for some years before AND will go on for some years after the (so-called) Millennium. It's in the news all the time, isn't it? Travel magazines are obviously trying to get you to visit the places they show so of course they will say such-and-such city has spent $400 million on renovating this and that. Restoration and Renovation goes on all the time, surely you don't think that at 5.30 pm on dec 31st, 1999 whole squads of workmen will put down their tools and remove the scaffolding and say ' Tada!!!' . Give us some credit, for heavens sake.
 
Old Mar 13th, 1999, 06:27 AM
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MollyDonnelly
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Hey guys, just so you know...there are signs by the construction of these places that actually says that it's being done specifically in preparation for the millenium festivites. Yes, work will be done continuously to preserve these old places, but most of the simultaneous work being done throughout Europe is indeed being done for the Y2K celebrations. I read the signs!
As for whether Rome is still worth going to...yes! Like I said, not everything was being fixed up, just some things. Go if you want to, it's still worth it.
 
Old Mar 13th, 1999, 07:20 AM
  #16  
Monica
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I say go to Rome! Yes, there will be scaffolding no matter where you go, but you're in ROME!!! There are many things to see and I'm sure there are many sights that are not under scaffolding. There are the piazzas, the Forum, museums, and lovely streets.

Laiyee, as for Pisa, I liked it. I was there in 1990 before it got all it's extra support. It's nice little town for an hour or so. Plan your day accordingly so that you go there in the morning (or afternoon), then head to another place to visit. It' a famous building! Why miss it?

I agree with Tony in that there is always something under renovation. Europe is old! So you'll see scaffolding/renovations for both reasons.

Have a great time to EVERYONE who heads to Europe! I'm going to Paris in May and will enjoy it no matter what is hidden by construction.
 
Old Mar 13th, 1999, 07:58 AM
  #17  
Al
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To Monica:
I didn't know that Pisa was a building
 
Old Mar 13th, 1999, 10:41 AM
  #18  
nancy
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I think, Al, that we all understood Monica's message. It was very clear that when she referred to "Pisa", that it was the leaning tower that she was speaking of. Laiyee, I agree, visit Pisa. Not a long visit, but I was there last year and really enjoyed seeing that area. Enjoy! We are going to Paris in May, whatever is scaffolded, oh well! I'm sure it will still be beautiful. Can't wait....!!
 
Old Mar 13th, 1999, 11:17 AM
  #19  
Kate
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Tony,
Wrong again - I have lived and worked in Europe (your country, actually) and traveled extensively while living there - so I DO know all about European renovation. So please, I beg, quit being so condescending to me (and other Americans) about their understanding of European renovation.
 
Old Mar 13th, 1999, 11:43 AM
  #20  
Tony Hughes
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Kate i lived and worked in South Africa for a while but i wouldnt profess to know all about it because i used to stay in that particular country. Thus you DON'T live in Europe so your view is tainted with time, isn't it?
 

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