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I can't decide which order to do things...

Sydney
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I can't decide which order to do things...

We are travelling with three children, 2 - 9 years, for three weeks in late June/early July. We depart Rome at 9pm on our last day. I can't decide between:

Option 1: Venice > Vernazza > Tuscany (near Pienza) > Positano > Rome

Option 2: Venice > Vernazza > Positano > Rome > Tuscany (near Pienza)

Option 1 has us in Rome at the end and seems the more logical way looking at the map, however I'm considering Option 2 because:

- We'll have a gorgeous pool in Tuscany and it might be nice to spend the last days in Italy relaxing before the long flight home

- We'll have a car for Tuscany only, and with Option 2 we'd get to keep the car to get to the airport - 2.5 hour drive (rather than Option 1 which would have us getting public transport to Airport on last day - since there are five of us and also we won't be bringing a baby seat taxis are not an option)

- Getting from Pisa (spending a few hours only) to Naples on train actually seems less hassle than from Tuscany area (eg drive to Florence, return car, get train).

- I feel like Tuscany is going to be our favourite.. the hilltowns, wine tasting and a beautiful pool for the kids to enjoy while we relax

On the other hand:

- Maybe it would be better to have the pool in the middle of the trip to give the kids a halfway break and so that they don't spend the ENTIRE trip begging for a pool (which we won't have anywhere else)

- Maybe it would be nice to have the car in the middle of the trip to give the kids a break from the trains

Thanks for reading, I'm hopeless at making decisions!

Edited: 23 March 2013, 18:48
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Seattle, Washington
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1. Re: I can't decide which order to do things...

Hi Rachelle!

First: Lucky you! 3 weeks to explore Italy!

I think either of the two options you have laid out have their merits (that you list), and would not be wrong.

Choosing between the two thus depends on what's important to you. Some will suggest option 1 because it is most efficient. Tuscany at the end seems like a doubling back. This, however, doesn't bother me since Pienza is only a 2 hour drive from Rome. It's not a huge thing. Plus, as you say, dropping the car off at Fiumicino seems like a plus. You can rent it in town, BTW, then drop off at the airport when done.

Like you, I like the idea of unwinding in a villa in the Val d'Orcia on the last few days before heading back home. Sounds heavenly. Where are you staying "outside Pienza"? If your kids have never been to Italy before i would wager that they will be so blown away by it all that the promise of a pool might not loom quite so large.

So, since you're asking, if it were me I would choose option 2.

-Karl

Edited: 23 March 2013, 20:50
pittsburgh
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2. Re: I can't decide which order to do things...

I would go with option 1. You don't want to be traveling to your departure city the day of travel. There are so many things that can go wrong that you'll want to be in Rome at least the night before you leave. You never know if there will be lots of road traffic or if there will be delays with the train which could cause you to miss your flights. I wouldn't risk it.

Donna

New York City, New...
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3. Re: I can't decide which order to do things...

Ditto re: being the city of your departure the night before. Stuff definitely can - and does - happen; delays for various reason - weather, strikes, etc.

If you haven't yet booked Positano - do so ASAP - many places will have been booked already for six months - crazy, but true. Given you are going to the Amalfi Coast, I'd probably not go to Vernazza - both the CT and the AC are beautiful but not so different that traveling all the way to the CT if going to the AC would be worth all that time involved.

Up to you, of course.

Sydney
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4. Re: I can't decide which order to do things...

Thanks for your opinions. I thought it might ok to not be in Rome for the last night since we would be driving ourselves all the way to airport, seems pretty safe and we have 9pm flight so no rush there.

I've actually already booked accommodation for the whole trip for Option 1, so I'd have to get in touch with them to see if we could move it around if we went that way but sounds like it might not be possible! We did book about three months ago.

Karlitos I haven't booked the agriturismo outside Pienza yet, I have about five that I've emailed so I'm hoping one of them has availability. We have a booking for one up near Certaldo, but I have decided I really want to be further south.

Seattle, Washington
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5. Re: I can't decide which order to do things...

Yes, I was sure I would be bucking the tide by suggesting option 2. They're a practical bunch here on TA. For me, given that you have 3 weeks I thought you could afford the extravagance of option 2. (Personally) I have a pretty high pressure job, so the idea of a few days relaxing in the Tuscan countryside before heading back sounds very appealing.

On the other hand, if you've booked everything for option 1, then it might be best to stick with it.

As for places to stay, I don't know if they have availability, but we stayed here and had an AMAZING time. And they have a pool! Highly recommended. It's midway between Siena and Montalpulciano/Montalcino.

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g644269-d579…

-Karl

6. Re: I can't decide which order to do things...

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