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Rome and Drive to Venice

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Winnipeg Canada
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Rome and Drive to Venice

We are planning to spend 6 days in Rome in early May then driving for 4 days to Venice...

Rome:

What tours should we go on and do we need to book ahead?

Do we need to reserve ahead of time to attractions or are they included in the tour?

The drive Rome to Venice:

What route should we go?

Any places we should not miss?

Places to stay in route?

Is the self drive a good idea?

Royal Oak, Michigan
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1. Re: Rome and Drive to Venice

Be sure to go through Tuscany and visit some of the hill towns. We stayed in San Gimignano and visited Siena (the Piazza del Campo was extraordinary), but from what I have heard and read there are many other hill towns worth seeing. We stayed in the Santa Fina Apartment in San Gimignano, with a view over the countryside, and loved it.

Ravenna is underrated. It is on the east coast of Italy about 2-3 hours south of Venice. It doesn't look like much, but we visited it last summer at the suggestion of my daughter. We went into some of the buildings to look at the mosaics, and found they were fascinating and now particularly enjoy looking at our pictures and reading some of the books and pamphlets we got while we were there. We stayed in the hotel Diana, which is not spectacular, but was clean, attractive, convenient, and moderately priced.

Of course, Florence is on the way also. The art may be too much, especially after you have just been to Rome. If you do go there, be sure to go to Piazzale Michaelangelo, which is a park overlooking the city.

Somewhat off the path between Rome and Venice (it is on the west side of Italy north of Pisa) is Cinque Terre. However, we stayed two nights in Vernazza and loved the area and would recommend it to anyone.

We rented a car (there were four of us), and that worked out well, particularly in Tuscany, where public transportation would have been difficult. However, the Italian trains are generally efficient and convenient. Be sure to turn the car in when you get to Venice, as it is worthless there.

We used Rick Steves' Italy 2004 Guidebook as our Bible. Many travelers you will see in Italy are carrying it in their hands, and they do so because it is excellent. It does not cover everything, but points you in the right direction on things to see, places to stay, and restaurants.

Have a good time!

Dave Richards

Bay Village, Ohio
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2. Re: Rome and Drive to Venice

My family and I just returned from 3 weeks in Italy last night. Our last leg was the drive from Venice to Rome. We drove the autostrada all the way - 5 1/2 hours, including a 1 hour leisurely lunch at the Chianti Autogrill which had delicious food!! We did not stop on this leg as we were making the drive on April 3rd, the day after the Pope's death, and did not know what we would face when we got to Rome (as it turned out, no problem whatsoever). We would have stopped in either Cortona or Assisi on our way from Venice to Rome if we had not wanted to get to Rome as quickly as possible. They are off the Autostrada, but not a lengthly detour at all.

On our drive from Positano to Florence the week before, we stopped for lunch and an enjoyable afternoon in Orvieto - north of Rome, just off the autostrada.