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Old 01-16-2008, 09:14 AM   #1
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Default Italy for 2 weeks - Sep '08

First off, it’s an awesome community you have got here. I have been browsing the message boards for a while now and all your world wide travel stories has made me decide that I don't want to be the only uncool kid who hasn't been to Europe yet :D

I am planning to go to Italy either during the last week of July or the first week of September for 2 weeks. I know 2 weeks is not a lot, but once you start working, you should be happy with what you get

This is a draft of my itinerary. I plotted down the route after seeing the map of Italy, so I am not sure whether this is the best possible route yet.

NYC – Rome
Rome: 3 days
Rome – Florence
Florence: 2 days
Florence – Venice
Venice: 2 days
Venice – Milan
Milan: 1 day
Milan – Cinque Terre
Cinque Terre: 2 days

Cinque Terre – Rome, via Pisa 1 day

This is where my itinerary needs some tinkering Can I do day trips to Pompeii and Naples from Rome or is it better to go to Naples for 2 days? I would also like to go to Amalfi coast. But, I don't know whether I can squeeze that in.

Can this be done or am I trying to see too many places in 2 weeks? Is there anything interesting to see in Milan for a day or should I just skip it?

Other than the fact that I want to spend 2 weeks in Italy, nothing is set on stone yet. So, please feel free to make any suggestions.

This would be my first trip to Europe. So, I really appreciate your suggestions.

Thanks!
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Old 01-16-2008, 09:21 AM   #2
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Welcome to the boards!!!

I've not been to Italy but I think your itenerary is very resonable for two weeks, in comparison to mine... I'm going for 2 weeks in June to Germany, Poland, Czech Republic, and Netherlands - and my initial itenerary was absolutely ridiculous and impossible.

Give yourself some breathing room in your schedule (be flexible anyway) because you will find as you continue to research/plan, things will shift, you'll find other places you want to go, etc. And once you get there too... you may meet up with some folks at the hostel who just came from somewhere and you want to go there next, etc.

Good luck!

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Old 01-16-2008, 10:32 AM   #3
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I think that's a pretty good schedule. The only place i haven't visited on your list is Milan. One time we just skipped right over it, pausing in the Milan train station for 15 minutes en route to Cinque Terre.

I wasn't thrilled with Naples, but going out to Capri was worth it. We took a late train to Naples, walked the city early evening, had dinner, went to sleep early, and woke up early to take the ferry the next day to Capri. Explored Capri all day, then make to Naples, then back on a train to Rome (2 hours) and stayed in Rome again that night.

I did spend 2 full days in Cinque Terre but I could have stayed longer as I didn't get to hike all the trails I wanted to try (it rained most of the first day).

You mention 2 weeks and working and thats what I have to deal with when trying to plan my next adventure. If you have 11 days of work vacation you can leave on a Thursday night flight and be in Rome by morning. Then you have Friday to Friday to Friday+Saturday+Sunday so it ends up being 17 days away. You might have more time for your schedule than you realized. Just a thought...

Let us know if you have any more questions, we love to help...
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Old 01-16-2008, 05:51 PM   #4
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Although it is possible to do that all in one day, it would involve a long day on public transport. There is a local train called the Circumvesuvia that goes from Napoli to both Pompeii and Herculanaeum. You'd connect to it from one of the intercity trains from Rome to Naples. Far better would be to spend a day or two in Sorrento, which is also on the Circumvesuvia line. Then you can also rent a vespa, car, moped, whatever, and drive the Amalfi Coast. That's what I did and it was awesome.

Unfortunately, I can't recommend where to cut your itinerary to make room for this stop. There's nothing I'd recommend snipping, except perhaps Milan (just a big city).

Italy is awesome...I've been there 3 times and still haven't seen anywhere close to everything I want. For example, I haven't even been to Cinque Terre, yet...

Feel free to ask more questions...
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Old 01-17-2008, 08:11 AM   #5
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Hey guys,
Thanks for the replies. I have changed my itinerary a little after the suggestion from mbo108(leaving on a Thursday). So, I have a little more vacation time. Also, I left out Milan and included a day trip to Amalfi coast.

I checked the website for the Italy rail system and found out that they have evening trains which fits my itinerary. I hope they don’t change the timings anytime soon.

I also checked the air fare from NY to Rome for July and September. Looks like I can save around $400 if I travel in September, but it still is bloody expensive (around $850).

Do you have to check in the hostels before a certain time like you have to do in Hotels? Would it be possible to reach the hostel at 10PM and still get a place to stay provided you have a reservation? (Sorry, if this is a stupid question)

In my current itinerary, I am spending 3 days in Florence and only 2 in Venice. Or should I spend 3 days in Venice instead?


This is my new Itinerary. Please feel free to make suggestions.

*all the intercity travel are on evening trains leaving after 4PM

Thursday evening: Leave NY

DAY 1:
Friday Morning: Reach Rome
Friday: Rest a little and a little sight seeing

DAY 2:
Rome

DAY 3:
Rome

DAY 4:
Rome
Leave Rome (4 days/3nights)
Reach Florence

DAY 5:
Florence

DAY 6:
Florence

DAY 7:
Florence
Leave Florence (3 days/3nights)
Reach Venice

DAY 8:
Venice

DAY 9:
Venice
Leave Venice (2 days/2nights)
Reach Cinque Terre (Monterrosso village)/rest

DAY 10:
Cinque Terre

DAY 11:
Cinque Terre

DAY 12:
Leave Cinque Terre to Naples via Pisa
Cinque Terre (Riomaggiore village) to Pisa(2 hours journey)

Pisa: 3 hours

Pisa – Naples (6 hours journey)

DAY 13:
Trip to Capri --- Blue Grotto
Return trip to Sorrento

DAY 14:
Trip to Pompeii

DAY 15:
Trip to Amalfi coast

DAY 16:
Early morning train to Rome via Naples to catch the afternoon flight back to NY.
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Old 01-17-2008, 10:05 AM   #6
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That looks pretty good! Even if you arrive late on day one (after 4p) there is so much to see outdoors that you can get in a good 3-4 hours of site-seeing with the forum, Trevi Fountain, Spanish steps, the colloseum etc.

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Old 01-18-2008, 05:26 AM   #7
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The only thing I might try to do is wake up in Rome on the 16th to eliminate any freak things that could come between you and making that flight home (missed/broken down train).

Other than that it looks pretty good. Also, i've seen pretty expensive airfares for Europe right now but I'm betting they will come down a little more the closer we get to summer.
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Old 01-18-2008, 12:50 PM   #8
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TPunks,
I was browsing around looking for airfares and found another site similar to kayak.

www.mobissimo.com (not sure if everyone already knows about it)

The price difference is not that huge, its around $15-$25 cheaper for some fares in mobissimo.

Cheers!
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Old 01-18-2008, 02:24 PM   #9
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Nice find, thanks.
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Old 01-21-2008, 11:30 AM   #10
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Two days in Venice is fine, but do try to stay down there at least one night - the city is magical late at night when the crowds dissipate, and early in the morning. September would be a much better time to visit than summer. You'll still face crowds, but in summer you'll spend many fruitless hours standing in lines for places like the Colosseum - come fall it won't be quite so bad. And hostels and trains won't be quite as packed, either.

Don't miss Pompeii. And if you do nothing else in Naples, go to the National Museum which showcases many artifacts from Pompeii, and the San Severo Chapel, which has two of the most amazing statues I've ever seen.

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Old 01-22-2008, 11:08 AM   #11
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I like the changes. Overnight in Venice is a must...people who daytrip in and out miss quite a bit, I feel. And Sorrento, Costa Amalfatana, Pompeii, Herculanaeum -- you'll love it!

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Old 07-01-2008, 09:23 AM   #12
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If you visit Italy definitly you have to stay at least 1 night in Rimini. It's nightlife paradise in Italy :D
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