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Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

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Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

Hi Everyone,

I'm new to the forum and wondering if you can help me critique my itinerary for my upcoming trip to Italy. My main concern is assuring that my travel time between destinations is as efficient as possible so that I am able to maximize my time enjoying each city. Also, I want to make sure I spend adequate time in each city, however, I am limited to 12 days total. Please let me know if you have any advice or have recommendations:

Day 1 - 12pm arrival in Nice, France

Day 2 - Nice

Day 3 - Nice

Day 4 - Cinque Terre (travel by train from Nice to Cinque Terre)

Day 5 - Cinque Terre

Day 6 - Venice (travel by train from Cinque Terre to Venice, is this fastest?)

Day 7 - Venice

Day 8 - Rome (travel by plane from Venice to Rome)

Day 9 - Rome

Day 10 - Rome

Day 11 - Rome

Day 12 - 10am depart from Rome

Thank you in advance for all of your help!

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1. Re: Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

Welcome to the forums RV18, and yes, your itinerary is doable. Good to see you haven't tried to cram too much in. Just a couple of things you should be aware of though.

Nice to Cinque Terre will take the best part of a day in traveling. You need to catch a local French train from Nice to the border town of Ventimiglia (Vintimille in French) and then change to an Italian train for the rest of your trip. Depending on your destination village in Cinque Terre and the time of day, you could have up to 2 changes of train for this leg.

Venice to Rome is best done by train. Total journey time is around 3:45 and the trip starts in the center of Venice and ends in the center of Rome. So no having to commute to and from outlying airports, arrive 1 hour before flight, go through security, check in and collect luggage etc. Taking all those factors into consideration train is actually faster.

The Nice to Ventimiglia portion of you trip you just buy a ticket at Nice station. But for all your fast train travel in Italy it pays to book ahead. Tickets go on sale 120 days in advance. They are at their cheapest then. Best to buy your tickets from Trenitalia (www.trenitalia.com) as they have trains for every Italian leg of your journey. The Venice to Rome leg is also serviced by a private competitor, Italo Treno, so you have a choice for that trip.

Edited: 18 June 2014, 02:16
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2. Re: Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

The CT to Venice is about 6 hours just on the train alone not counting the time checking in and out of hotels and getting to and from train stations. You will then have only a bit over one full day in Venice - it is a long way to go for such a brief visit there but if that is okay with you, just as long as you know.

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3. Re: Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

Thank you for your reply, that's very helpful! Do you think it would be more efficient to arrange my itinerary per the below? I'd like to avoid the full day train from Nice to Cinque Terre if the below better minimizes travel time between cities.

Fly into Nice, France

Nice - 3 Days

Fly to Rome - 4 Days

Train to Cinque Terre - 2 Days

Train to Venice - 2 Days

Fly home from Venice

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4. Re: Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

It may save a little travelling, but not much at all.

Rome-Cinque Terre takes 4-4.5 fours instead of 5.5-6.5 from Nice. But you still have Cinque Terre-Venice by train, which on the easiest, most comfortable route (from Monterosso with one change in Milan) takes nearly six hours.

Because of the messing-around-in and to and from airports factors, flying from Nice to Rome will probably take longer than going by train from Venice to Rome.

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5. Re: Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

Thank you for your help everyone. The only other itinerary option that I am considering is the following:

Arrive in Rome

Rome - 4 Days

Train to Cinque Terre (4 hour travel time) - 2 Days

Train to Venice (6 hours travel time) - 2 Days

Fly to Nice, France (Easyjet from Marco Polo Airport, guessing 3 hour total travel time) - 3 Days

Depart from Nice

Would this itinerary be better than my original itinerary from my first post? This one cuts out the train travel from Nice to Cinque Terre (which sounds like quite a long haul with many changes, which scares me), but it still includes the long train ride from Cinque Terre to Venice and also has a flight from Venice to Nice in there. Overall, any thoughts on which of the two minimizes overall travel between cities? Thanks again!

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6. Re: Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

Hi RV18...

We are doing something similar. Our plan at the moment, is..

Rome 3 nights.

Train to Cinque Terre for 4nights.

Train to Florence for 1 nights.

Train to Venice for 2 nights.

It seems that many trains pass through or require a change at Florence, so we decided to stop here, to break up the journey to Venice. the journey is around 2 hours from cinque terre to Florence. And the journey is around 2 hours from Florence to Venice.

I think your itinerary sounds fine. One or two early starts on your trip, will be worth it to arrive at your next location in good time to make the most of your visit. Even if you face a 6hour journey, if you are on your way by 8am, you will arrive in your destination, in the early afternoon.

Good luck and happy planning!

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7. Re: Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

I always find it hard to understand why a centre to centre train journey with two changes 'scares' people, yet people seem to regard getting to and from airports on buses and trains either side of a flight as somehow not being two changes - particularly as a 'change' from a bus to a plane requires intensive and intrusive security procedures which are entirely absent from travel by train.

Three hours centre-to-centre flying Venice-Nice is an underestimate. One of EasyJet's mottos is' If you're late, we won't wait' and bag drop must be completed forty minutes before take-off, so you shouid plan to at the airport well over an hour before take-off. When flying with them, I prefer two hours beforehand to avoid any worry caused by possible delays on the way.

Staying overnight in Florence is an excellent solution to shortening the amount of train travel on any one day.

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8. Re: Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

If you're not adding the time to check out of the hotel, to the train station, the actual trip, the trip to the new hotel and the check in time then you're not being realistic in your timings.

For the Rome-CT route you're looking at "at least" 4 hours just on the train. Add an hour to each side of the trip and there's 6 hours of your day gone. If you start out at 8am. that gets you to your new hotel at around 2pm. Take an hour to get changed and refreshed and you're looking at 3pm. That's not a lot of time left to explore so your two days in the CT become one full and one partial day.

From the CT to Venice your actual train time will be about 6 hours with numerous train changes. Add an hour to the front and back and you get 8 hours of travel so your two days in Venice is just a single day.

Personally, I think you're trying to visit too many areas in not enough time. I would cut out Venice and add a day to the CT and Nice. Save Venice for when you have more time and can actually enjoy it.


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9. Re: Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

Or cut out the Cinque Terre, because it's them rather than Venice which create the long train journeys.

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10. Re: Itinerary Help (Nice, Cinque Terre, Venice, Rome)

Thanks everyone, very much appreciate your feedback! Cinque Terre does seem a little more out of the way in relation to the other destinations, but it and Venice are very high on my list. I'm thinking it might be possible to squeeze in one extra day in which case it would allow me more time in CT and for travel between cities.

Perilizia, thanks for the info regarding Easyjet and for pointing out the nuances of flying vs train. That's very helpful and would much prefer the train experience (with the scary part being I've never done it before!). But, I'm thinking about sticking to my originally posted itinerary, adding an extra day for Cinque Terre/Venice and cutting out flying altogether.

So, in the end it will be Nice - 3 days, Cinque Terre - 2/3 Days, Venice 2/3 Days, Rome 4 Days with all travel by Train (12 nights, 13 days total).