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2-Week Honeymoon 5/29-6/14 in Southern Europe (Italy, France, Spain?) Advice!

Hello all, my fiancé and I are planning our honeymoon this year, and we need suggestions for places to go and things to see! We've been reading many forum posts and feel this community is extremely insightful and helpful and would really appreciate your input. This will be our first time really experiencing Europe. Suggestions for anything from specific cities to boutique cafes or gelato or macaron or paperies are highly appreciated.

We love good food/wine, and we love to walk around old city streets and go to local markets or little shops. Not very interested in seeing "touristy" areas or attractions such as museums or landmarks for this particular trip, looking more to "feel" and get immersed. A day trip to a vineyard might be nice but don't want to be too far away from culture as well.

We're planning to stay in AirBnbs mostly, and travel by trains between cities, and rent cars if necessary. Maybe have a day trip on scooters as well.

So far we would like to see the Amalfi Coast or Cinque Terre, Bellagio, and perhaps Naples, but nothing is solidified, and time is running out on purchasing plane tickets! Our first rough idea is to fly into Italy, work our way up north and then along the French coast, maybe Aix-en-Provence or Paris. Since we only have two weeks and so many places we'd love to see we were also thinking spending 2 nights per city to arrive, get settled, eat, then spend the next day immersed and walking around.

Edit: Disregard Spain. I don't think we'll have time to do 3 countries in 2 weeks. That then gives us maybe 3 cities each for Italy and France - is this realistic? We don't want to feel rushed but also want to get a quintessential Italian and French feel. We read in another forum post that Italy is a train-country, so we are wondering if we are too ambitious in trying to see many cities in our time limit.

Posted by
920 posts

Congratulations! You will have a wonderful time in France and Italy.
Overall suggestion: Limit the trip to three base towns, four tops. For your honeymoon, you want to be able to relax and not worry about moving from one location to another. Here is one possible itinerary:

May 29 - Fly ovenight
May 30 - Arrive Nice, France
May 31-June 4 - Nice with side trips to Aix-en-Provence, maybe a winery, Monaco, Eze
June 5 - train to Milan then Lake Como. Get lodging in Bellagio or Varenna.
June 6-9 - Lake Como; cruise the lake from town to town, maybe a side trip to Lugano, Switzerland
June 10 - train to Naples, stay in Sorrento
June 11 - 13 - Amalfi Coast, Capri, Pompeii
June 14 - fly home.

This will get you a taste of France and Italy. You can reverse the order of the trip as well if flights are better that way.

Posted by
21 posts

Thank you for your thoughtful reply and suggested itinerary! I like your idea of limiting the base cities, definitely feels a lot less overwhelming.

I'm wondering why you suggest Nice as the base city for France? Is it because of its proximity to Italy and hence would help with the train-taking?

I hadn't looked into Eze as it wasn't featured in the Rick Steves list of main French cities but wow, the images that come up when searching for it are extremely French-feeling and lovely. Thank you for that suggestion!

Posted by
920 posts

Nice is a great town, right on the Riviera. It has a decent size airport so flying in/out should be easy. It is close to Italy but also serves as a good base for the Riviera and parts of Provence. The train connects you easily to all of the Riviera so you can get a wide variety of towns to see. Monaco is 15 minutes away by train and if there happens to be a French train strike on your planned travel day to Milan, you can take a taxi into Italy and pick up the train in Ventimiglia, Italy and still get to Milan.