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Ancona - What to see in one day

Gateshead, England
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Ancona - What to see in one day

We are in Ancona for one day, in September, off a cruise ship and I am seeking advice on what must be seen and what can be avoided in the town. I like visiting places and finding great photo opportunities whether these be views, buildings or historical matters. Any tips would be welcome. Cheers

Le Marche, Italy
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1. Re: Ancona - What to see in one day

Ancona itself is a town with many possibilities, but which has never valued its merits. A large part of the city was destroyed during World War II and by an earthquake in the 1970s. There is one very scenic spot; the beautiful Romanesque cathedral of San Ciriaco stands on a promontory overlooking the bay. You can get to the cathedral by city bus.

The cruise line will probably propose a tour of Urbino. This is a very beautiful town, one of Italy's Renaissance cities. This is the best among all the cruise excursions I've heard of; you might tell me what other excursions are being suggested.

Ancona is in one of the most beautiful regions of Italy, but it's a bit hard to get to many places, especially the beautiful little hill towns in the interior, in the limited time available on a cruise stopover. When do you arrive and when do you have to be back at the ship?

Belfast, United...
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2. Re: Ancona - What to see in one day

Hey Steve

My wife and I are doing the same, possibly on the same cruise with MSC! We are supposed to dock in Ancona on Saturday 14th September at 07:00 and depart again at 15:00 later that same day.

So, bvlenci, your reply to Steve is of great interest to me too...

Le Marche, Italy
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3. Re: Ancona - What to see in one day

Steve never returned to tell us what other cruise excursions were being proposed. If you want to tell us what your choices are, we can perhaps give some advice.

Belfast, United...
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4. Re: Ancona - What to see in one day

Although we are well-travelled, this will be the first cruise for my wife and me - we are real novices - and, although we have been a number of times to Italy before, this will be our first time to Ancona. As you see, we have 8 hours available and are game for anything, as we are both reasonably fit and enjoy walking, sightseeing, food and wine, and even a dash of culture! MSC offer a number of excursions - to Urbino, Frasassi, Riviera del Conero, Ancona itself, Numana and Jesi - but they all seem quite expensive. Can we "do our own thing"? How close is the port to the city - is it within walking distance? Information like this would be very helpful if you could advise - thanks.

Le Marche, Italy
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5. Re: Ancona - What to see in one day

The port is right in the center of the city, and there are city buses that will take you to the cathedral, which I mentioned above. In the summer, there are also frequent buses to the Riviera del Conero, a series of seaside towns on a pretty bay. However, there's not much to do in the city, and the Riviera is almost entirely given over to the beaches, and suntanning, which I think you can do on the ship.

Of the tours proposed by the cruise, the tour to Frasassi and to Urbino are the ones that would be most interesting in my opinion. Frasassi is a large cavern system in a beautiful river gorge. There are guided visits to the caverns; in the vicinity there is also a little town, San Vittore Terme, with a beautiful Romaesque church that's now a speleological museum. It's an easy walk from the cavern.

Urbino is a beautiful Renaissance city, with a lovely ducal palace, now a museum.

I don't know if it would be possible to do either of these trips on your own, given your time constraints. To get to Frasassi, you'd take the train to Genga, where there is a shuttle bus to the cavern, although it's also an easy walk. I'd recommend walking in one direction, so that you can follow a path down to the river, and make a slight detour into San Vittore Terme. There is a daily market in the large lot where the shuttle bus stop is, with various places to get a quick bite. There are also a few restaurants in San Vittore Terme, which is a thermal spa town, which explains the odor of sulfur in the air. However, I doubt that you'd have time for a restaurant meal.

To get to Urbino, you'd take the train to either Fano or Pesaro, and then proceed by bus to Urbino.

You can see train schedules here:

www.trenitalia.com

They don't show prices more than seven days in advance, but tickets are inexpensive. There is a bus from the piazza just outside the port to the station. I believe that both buses 1 and 4 will take you there. There are also taxis there.

For bus schedules from to Urbino, see these:

In all cases, when I say Monday-Saturday, I mean except holidays.

Buses from Pesaro station (Pesaro FS) to Urbino:

These are express buses; those with FA at the column head run all year long Monday through Saturday. Those marked FRL-V run only in June, which is almost over, Mondays through Fridays.Those marked FRE run Monday through Saturday in the summer. Hardly any of these buses run on Sundays and holidays, only those marked FTA.

These buses make more stops; those marked FA run Mondays-Saturdays all year long, those marked FE, only in the summer.

To Urbino:

adriabus.eu/bo/…20CS.pdf

To Pesaro:

adriabus.eu/bo/…20CD.pdf

This bus goes from Fano station (Fano FS) to Urbino, taking about an hour:

adriabus.eu/bo/…202013.pdf

The column heading are the same as the previous, except that FAns means "not on Saturdays".

Whether you would take a bus from Fano or Pesaro would depend on how the various buses match up with the trains. The best would obviously be the express bus from Pesaro, but it only runs once an hour. Even so, it may get you to Urbino sooner than a slower bus that makes a good connection with your train.

Edited: 23 June 2013, 19:51
Gateshead, England
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6. Re: Ancona - What to see in one day

Sorry guys been away on business so only back today. Lovlenci thanks for all the advice above and thanks also to Tescotogs for answering the queries raised. Yes Tescotogs we seem to be on the same cruise and I look forward to having a beer with you and your wife during the trip. We are two couples and looking to make use of TA experience to see more of Ancona at a reasonable price as the cruise excursions look a little on the expensive side. The information provided by Lovelnci is great so thanks very much for that Lovlenci. I'll review matters with our group and hopefully we can get to see what we want a lot cheaper than taking the excursions. This should be able to be achieved as we will be four in a taxi as opposed to paying four times the excursion cost.

Once again thanks guys for the assistance and Tescotogs you will love cruising. This will be our fifth.

salcombe
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7. Re: Ancona - What to see in one day

We are in Ancona again off the MSC ship on the 26th October and are a party of 9 with 5 children between 7 and 14. What is the temperature like at this time of year . if it was warm enough would head to the beach with them or how far is it to the cavern if we were to get a mini bus. Any advise would be greatly appreciated.

Le Marche, Italy
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8. Re: Ancona - What to see in one day

It will almost certainly be too cold for the beach, unless you just want to see the sea and walk on the shore. The drive to the Frasassi caverns takes about 45 minutes from the port.

Would you get a bus with driver or rent a van? If you rent a van, make sure the license the driver has is valid for a van holding 9 passengers, including the driver. I think it is; the limit is 8, but I believe that doesn't count the driver.

Le Marche, Italy
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9. Re: Ancona - What to see in one day

I assume you're from the UK, but in case there are other Salcombes in the world, unless the driver has a license issued in the EU, it would be necessary to get an International Driver's Permit, which is an official translation that is carried along with the regular license.

Atlanta, Georgia
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10. Re: Ancona - What to see in one day

The responses to this thread have been so helpful! There isn't a ton of information about Ancona that is readily available. We too will be arriving by cruise boat in October. We would really like to go to Urbino, but that shore excursion is sold out and I haven't had any luck finding either a private tour or driver that could drive us to Urbino on our own. Bvlenci - is it feasible to rent a car in Ancona and drive to Urbino? We are in port for 11 hours. The only other options available to us for excursions are to stay in Ancona or to visit San Marino.