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Need help with itinerary!

Kingston, Canada
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Need help with itinerary!

My husband and I are planning a two week trip to Italy in May. We plan to fly into Rome and would like to stay for 3 or 4 days there either at the beginning or end of the trip. What I would like to see are Florence for two days, Cinque Terre two days, Tuscany for two days,( no idea where to stay there) and we definitely would like to see Pompeii. We want to stay in a hill town in Tuscany. Want some time for walking around small towns/villages, possibly a beach,relaxing. Need some ideas please. Open to car rental or train.

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1. Re: Need help with itinerary!

Nancy, your plan is a little overwhelming, considering that you have two weeks and want to cover quite a territory. I see that you are counting 10 days total on land. If yes, you would need to let something go as not to end up hopping from place to place, checking in and out of hotels, and having no time to relax and enjoy your holiday. Rome, Florence, and a brief stay in the Tuscan countryside would fill your 10 days to capacity, unless I am miscalculating something and you have more time to spend.

Alexandria, VA USA
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2. Re: Need help with itinerary!

I have to agree with the last poster. I think you are packing too much into your trip. Pompeii is south of Rome--Florence and Tuscany are north.

My rule is a minimum of three nights per location. Otherwise, all you're doing is packing and unpacking and sitting on trains rather than actually seeing Italy.

Get a good travel guide and look at the maps and travel times to get a better sense of how to plot your time.

Florence, Italy
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3. Re: Need help with itinerary!

Changing hotels every other day is an incredible waste of time and energy! I would base myself in Florence and take day trips to Chianti, Siena, etc. For 5Terre, stay overnight. Many hotels will let you check out for one night and hold your luggage for you so you don't have to haul it all with you.

Kingston, Canada
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4. Re: Need help with itinerary!

Thank you for your input. We have a total of 15 days. That includes two days travel (arrival and departure)....so 13 days on the ground.

Los Angeles...
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5. Re: Need help with itinerary!

Nancy, perfect! I am thinking five days in Rome with a day trip to Pompeii; three days in Florence, and five days in the Tuscan countryside to savor the goodness. Get a car for the Tuscan countryside portion of your holiday. You can cruise around the hilltop villages and small towns, e.g., Siena, and truly relax and enjoy.

Kingston, Canada
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6. Re: Need help with itinerary!

Thank you Anna. Any suggestions for where to stay in Tuscany? And when doing the day trip to Pompeii would it be best to go on an organized tour from Rome or on our own by train/bus?

Kansas
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7. Re: Need help with itinerary!

Nancy,

This may give you ideas for tuscany slowtrav.com/italy/tuscany/hs_planning.htm

A day trip to Pompeii can be done on your own by train and may result in more time at the ruins, many organized trip include shopping. Consider Ostia Antica http://www.ostia-antica.org/ instead of Pompeii.

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8. Re: Need help with itinerary!

Nancy, SlowTrav is a great resource, really. There are lots of very experienced Italy travelers who participate and contribute info, so you can learn a lot from them.

As far as Pompeii, I would research a small group and do an idiot-proof day trip. But, Ostia Antica may be a good alternative also.

As far as where in Tuscany, it is a large area with several lovely hubs. Many consider Val d'Orcia/Southern Tuscany to be the prettiest section so you could look at the photos of Pienza (flat), Montepulciano (uber hilly), or Montalcino (in-between), and the surrounding countryside and see whether these appeal to you. All of them appeal to me very much but I do not want to push my choices on you.

If any of the above would work for you, then we could offer some specific recommendations re places to stay, if you include your nightly budget.

Kingston, Canada
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9. Re: Need help with itinerary!

Hi Anna,

We have decided on making Montalcino our base for our Tuscan portion of this trip. Any recommendation on places to stay would be appreciated. My nightly budget would be between 100-150 euros. Could you give recommendations for Montepulciano....just in case we decide for it instead?

So, I believe our itinerary would be: fly into Rome and spend five days there, two nights Cinque Terra and and six nights in Tuscany, then back to Rome to fly home. Would it be best to do Tuscany or Cinque Terre first? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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10. Re: Need help with itinerary!

Nancy, here is what I have bookmarked as recommended places by people on various websites:

Montalcino:

- Vecchia Oliviera www.vecchiaoliviera.com/

**** star hotel at the gate into Montalcino---has pool.

- Palazzina Cesari www.montalcinoitaly.com 80 to 110E

Small B&B in heart of Montalcino—great value—2 night stay minimum.

- Hotel dei Capitani in Montalcino http://www.deicapitani.it/web/

Montepulciano:

- Locanda di San Francesco www.locandasanfrancesco.it

Lovely boutique B&B on the very top of Montepulciano, very highly reviewed. A good friend stayed here and loved it! It is likely over your budget, but do check.

- Politian apartments http://www.politian.com/ Good value apts. with

minimum stay of 3 nights in Montepulciano. I heard good things from a friend.

There are lots more. You can browse TripAdvisor and see what people write about the top, say, five, in every town. If you want a self-catering, check out Montorio right outside of Montepulciano.

Hope this helps you a bit.