Zurich, Rome, Naples too much?

Apr 18th, 2007, 01:25 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 11
Zurich, Rome, Naples too much?

My husband and I are taking our first trip to Italy May 22nd. I found good last minute airfare from SFO to Zurich ($766)and plan to take the train to Rome. I know it's 9 hours but we'll be jet-lagged anyway.

Could you please help with our itinerary because I'm going cross-eyed reading all the posts and guidebooks and am seriously overwhelmed.

Here are the particulars:
-We'll have 18 full days to spend (not counting travel time).
-I've booked 4 nights in Rome already at the start of the trip.
-I've booked 3 nights in Zurich at the end.
-We will be traveling by train and bus (no car)
-We're in our 50's, athletic, love ruins, antiquities, architecture, art, food - but we're on a budget. So far, I've been spending 110-120 Euros a night on B&B's.

I thought we might work our way back north from Rome in the 11 days I have left to play with, but then thought maybe we should head to Naples. Is this too much? If so, could you recommend an itinerary that would lead us back to Zurich from Rome?

Florence, Lucca, Siena, Verona, Trieste, Como - my head is spinning.

Thank-you for your time and advice.

libnsteph is offline  
Apr 18th, 2007, 04:01 PM
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 565
I think hopping on the train for 9 hours after a flight from the West Coast is just too much. I would advise you to push your reservations in Rome back a couple of days. Break it up a little. Take the train to Lugano (3 1/2 hours or Como 3 3/4 hours or Milano (4 1/2 hours) and stop for a couple of days to recoup. Then make the journey to Rome. The other advantage is that there are trains to Lugano about every 2 hours, so you don't need to worry about making a connection and you don't need a reservation for the train.

For your 3 days at the end in Switzerland, you might consider staying in Lucerne (Luzern) instead of Zurich, as it is a much prettier setting than Zurich, and only an hour by train from Zurich.
lovisa is offline  
Apr 18th, 2007, 04:54 PM
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 927
I agree with lovisa about combining an overseas flight with a 9-hr train ride. Many years ago, when I was much younger, my husband and I honeymooned in Europe and at the time, the cheapest destination in Europe from Denver was Frankfurt. We wanted to be in Paris however, so we figured pretty much just as you did, what the hell, we're jetlagged anyway. Well, it was incredibly miserable. I didn't take into account that you don't just get off the plane and onto the train, you have to get from the airport to the train station, then you have to wait for the next rain to wherever you're going - in our case 3-1/2 hours! And as difficult as it is to try to get some decent sleep on a plane, it was absolutely impossible on that long train ride. Trust me, don't do it. Stay in Zurich one night or at least minimize the length of your train trip to someplace in between as lovisa suggested.
hazel1 is offline  
Apr 18th, 2007, 05:10 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 62
I don't think open-jaw trip ticket is much more than round trip ticket. Now you're wasting precious 9 hours of vacation time and money on train ticket from Zurich to Rome (although you can get a cheap ticket from www.sbb.ch, if you make advance purchase on-line). There is another option of flying low cost airline from either Zurich or Basel to Rome, but it can be a hassle; scheduling, transportation to/from airport, baggage rules, and etc.
I'm flying into Rome on May 27 and flying out of Zurich on June 10. I may be flying out on the same day as you are. My itinerary is Rome - Assisi - Florence (day trip to San Gimignano) - half day of Pisa or Lucca - CinqueTerre - Zermatt - Murren. I'm taking early train from Murren to Zurich on the day of departure. All my hotel reservation is done; Scavi tour confirmed; Uffizi & Accademia reserved; waiting for Vatican museum tour and Borghese gallery reservation confirmation; finished reading RS guide books; half done on shopping for travel gear, clothes, and etc.; JUST COUNTING DOWN FOR THE DAY OF DEPARTURE!!! Yeah!!!
Have fun planning!!
Togo is offline  
Apr 18th, 2007, 05:15 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 62
By the way, the train station is right next to Zurich airport. When I flew out of Zurich airport last year, I got out of train, took escalator upstair, and I was right inside the airport. It is so convenient. If you're trying to book train to Rome, the zurich airport station is "Zurich Flughafen".
Togo is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 11:25 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 11
Thank-you lovisa, hazel1 and Togo for reining me in a bit. I'm so excited about this trip that I'm going off in all directions.

We will stay overnight in Zurich on the inbound journey and then take the train to Italy the next day. I'll look into staying in Milan enroute.

Togo- thanks for sharing your itinerary. You are waayyy ahead of me in planning. I haven't bought plane tickets or made museum reservations yet. So much to do, so little time.
libnsteph is offline  

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