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Rome, Florence and Venice in 7-8 days

Israel
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110 posts
31 reviews
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Rome, Florence and Venice in 7-8 days

I am trying to plan a trip to Italy, end of July, beginning of August. Our party includes a 14 year old buy who is interested in Knights, weapons and midieval times....his grandma, who is awesome and energetice but also suffers from Asthma, and me (Mom). We looked at organized tours and did not like any of them because each had something missing and some unwanted extras. We are good at planning our own trips, however do not have unlimited time and need to keep a budget. So we would like to try and combine some tours with independent travel.

My son doesn't care much for amusement parks, however some "cool" museums would definitely work for us. Favorite spots would have to be Rome, Florence and Venice, and if possible to squeeze in Piza or Verona - great, but not a must.

Could the experts give us some advice regarding:

1. Recommeded companies for organized tours (local) - day trips.

2. Best method of transportation between cities without to much of a hassle to buy tickets, quews, etc

3. Is there an "All around" pass you can buy for travel and entry to attractions?

4. Any other important details...

Thank you so much !!!

pittsburgh
Destination Expert
for Rome
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1. Re: Rome, Florence and Venice in 7-8 days

Visiting 3 major cities in 7-8 days is not a good idea. You're going to lose half a day when you change locations so that means you'll only have 6-7 days to actually visit these cities unless you need to travel back to Rome for your flight out which means you'll lose another day getting back from Venice giving you 5-6 days.

With that amount of time I suggest no more than two cities. Make a list of what you want to do in each city and the two with the most sites are the ones you should concentrate on. There is no way to tour a city in a day or even in a day and a half.

1) If you mean tour companies for sites, each site will have it's own guides which you can book before leaving home. Get a good map of each city so you can get around without any trouble. All of the cities you mention are very easy to visit on your own.

2)The train is the best means of travel in Italy

3)There is no pass that will include travel between cities and the sites in the cities. Each city will have a sites pass that may or may not include transport within that city. I know Rome has one called the romapass.

4) You're trying to do and see too much. Italy is not an amusement park and the travel times are more than you realize. Not only do you need to take into account the actual time of the train ride but you need to add **at least** an hour before and after the trip in order to get checked out of the hotel, to the train station and to the correct platform, then after the trip to get off the train, find transport to your hotel and get checked in. All of this takes more time than you think and you end up wasting a lot of time when you travel too much. Slow down. Less is more.

Donna

Israel
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110 posts
31 reviews
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2. Re: Rome, Florence and Venice in 7-8 days

Thank you so much, dbabe!

We'll try to add a few days, so right now here's the general plan: 4 days in Rome, 3 days Florence, 2 Venice. Flights: Inbound to Rome, Out - from Venice. Traveling by train between the cities.

Major dilema - hotels: good location and lower rated (due to budget ), or more comfortable, a bit further out of center?

I'm thinking: location first. ...

As always, I appreciate any advice !

Also - what is the best way to book a tour of the Colosseum? The official website only allows entry tickets on-line, not tours. I could use a recommended site that doesn't overcharge you.

pittsburgh
Destination Expert
for Rome
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33,976 posts
16 reviews
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3. Re: Rome, Florence and Venice in 7-8 days

The star rating in Italy is not the same as in the US so don't go by that. It indicates amenities and not quality. Use www.venere.com to find hotels. The ratings are by people who have completed a stay and were emailed a survey, so they are very accurate with no fake reviews. Base your choice on those reviews and what you can afford. You don't need to be in the exact center of any of these cities in order to be near sites or public transportation. Being on the outskirts means you'll walk an extra 15 minutes or so at the beginning and end of the day but that shouldn't be an issue.

If you can add two days I would add a day to Rome and a day to Venice. Right now you only have one full day for Venice and 3 full days for Rome. It's not really enough time especially if your son has a full agenda.

Go to the Rome forum page and click the sticky at the top of the page for information on booking the colosseum tours. You cannot do it online. You'll need to call to make the reservations. It's a quick and easy call to make.

Donna

New York City, New...
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4. Re: Rome, Florence and Venice in 7-8 days

Given how brutally hot and humid it will be (unless something weird happens weather-wise), I would suggest you read reviews carefully re: how good or bad the air conditioning works wherever you are considering booking.

On the low end of budget (which yours is), often the air conditioning is not great. It costs a fortune to run it in Italy and the lower priced lodgings are not as generous with it as some other places; though, no where in Italy do they blast air conditioning like they do here in the states.

When you do finally get a guidebook in hand you will be able to read about many of the logistical issues for which you are asking about.

5. Re: Rome, Florence and Venice in 7-8 days

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