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10-11 days in it or not ?

Hi !

for the last two years we've been in Europe(Germany, Spain and Portugal) with the kids for 26 days each time. We all get a great time but we must say that sometimes kids find those trip a bit boring and are tired of walking.

For next summer (july-agust 2018) we have thought about making a road trip around geart lakes USa (we are from Montreal) with the kids (6 and 10 years old) and do a 10-11 days trip in Italy just me and my wife. The gradparents would keep the kids for that time.

My question is, could a 10-11 days trip to Italy could be enjoy or it's really too short ? We have direct flight From Montreal to Venise or Rome. So maybe we could do something like Rome 5 nights , Florence 2 -3 nights and venise 2-3 nights.

Posted by
4152 posts

With only 10/11 nights I would choose only two cities to visit. Two nights in a location only gives you a single full day there. A 10 night visit is a good introduction to some of the cities in Italy. See if you can fly into one city and out of another to avoid back tracking.


Posted by
11968 posts

I would start from Venice and work my way down to Rome. Venice, being more relaxing, smaller and less chaotic (no car traffic), will make it easier on your body to adapt to the six hour difference. Also departing with a flight from Venice often means very early wake up. Flights to North America depart in the morning and the VCE airport is in the mainland and far to reach from the historical center in the middle of the lagoon.

Venice 3 nights
Florence 3 nights
Rome 4 nights
is the ideal 10 night allocation for a first timer, IMO.
Of course you will hear from those who say you should spend your entire time in Rome, or Venice, or wherever based on their preferences but I think you should squeeze all 3 in 10 nights. You don't know if and when you will return to Italy again. There are many places I went and said I will return soon, yet after decades I haven't had a chance yet.

Posted by
1036 posts

I think you could do Venice, Florence, and Rome in 10 to 11 days if you flew into Venice and left out of Rome. It will be very hot so just be prepared. I also would make reservations for all your hotels, museums, and transportation as it will be crowded then. Make sure you have enough time in Venice. It is an amazing city and is unlike any city in the world.

Posted by
274 posts

Thanks for those reply !

We also enjoy a combination of cities and villages, but with 10 days and being a first time in Italy we would like to see some highlight, enjoy good restaurants (we both are foodies) and walk a lot at our adult pace....well it's gonna be hot so we will see about the walking part !

Of course money wise we easily could add many days, but asking the grand parents to keep the kids for more than 2 weeks is a lot...and it will be too much time for us without them !

We are very open minded about the itinerary for that amount of time, so feel free to told us what you would do with that short amount of time.

And flight from Venise to Montreal leave at 13:30 so no early wake up !

Posted by
1803 posts

I absolutely think it's worth the trip. I agree with those recommending starting in Venice, ending in Rome. And I would suggest going as early in the summer as you can ... early June would be ideal.

Posted by
1700 posts

10-11 days is plenty of time to have a good vacation in Italy.
Many Americans only get this amount of days to vacation each year so you are far from alone with that amount of time for travel.

I would stick to 3 bases in that amount of time, no more and you will be good.
So either 3 cities as you mention or personally I would prefer to see you do 2 of the main cities and then mix in a more scenic natural area or smaller hill town instead of a main city site for your 3rd stop.

June definitely better than July or August.

Posted by
2709 posts

It was not ideal but have done Rome 4 nights / Florence 2 nights / Venice 2 nights so doable with more days of course, but you will lose a day to jet lag. With shorter trips plan carefully opening times, especially evening opening times when famous things are open like Vatican Museum, Uffizi, Accademia (Florence), Medici Palace.

For the Great Lakes and 2 weeks I would circle Lakes Michigan and Superior, passing through Sault Ste Marie each way. There's a lot to see.

Posted by
4962 posts

Look at the itineraries for the Heart of Italy and the Venice, Florence Rome tours here at this site. You can see if they make sense and duplicate them as much as you like.

Posted by
61 posts

I am leaving to do 12 nights (plus 2 fly days) in about a week. Venice 4 nights, Florence 3 nights, Rome 5 nights. When I get back I will let you know, but I suspect it's never enough time. Too much to see and do in one trip!

Posted by
3357 posts

Yes, definitely go! : )

Since you're traveling during the hot season, you might want to consider Venice, Florence and villages in the northern part of Italy vs. heading to Rome. This is assuming you could go to Rome another year. Check the towns in the RS Village Italy itinerary to see if one of those towns interests you.

Posted by
3357 posts

Also, pick up a RS Italy book - lots of good info to maximize your time, especially hotels that are central to activities and where reservations will save you hours in line.

Posted by
274 posts

Once again thanks a lot !

Of course june would be better but i'm not in vacation at that time of year. My wife is a school psychologist and i'm a teacher so our vacations are in july-august. I'.ve just with a colleague who have been in Italy last year and she told me that Florence was not the best part she have seen. So maybe we could keep Venise and rome and add some daytrip or make a stop between those two (Bologna ?).

Posted by
1700 posts

Florence is pretty fantastic and this is coming from someone who is not a fan of museums.
Bologna is not on many first timers lists, as it is more of a real Italian city definitely different than touristy Venice in that regard ; one also with amazing food, university life, well situation transport and a big café scene.
Really depends on your interests, I think Florence has more to offer for most.
But these are by no means your only options. Cinque Terre, Lake Como, Dolomites, Siena, other hill towns in Tuscany are all fine choices and ones most would choose over Bologna for a first time visit to Italy I would think though if food was a major motivation that may not be the case.

Or stick with 2 bases and add day trips:
Pompeii, Orvieto, Verona/Padua are 3 good day trip options from Venice or Rome and even Florence you could plan as a day trip from either spot.

Posted by
11968 posts

Florence over Bologna?
Are you kidding? Or are you just addicted to tortellini?

Actually there is much more to see in Florence than Venice. It's just that Venice is such a magical place, that you can't possibly skip it, even if you can afford just to spare two nights there.

You will need two full days in Florence just to scratch the surface. And I'm not proposing that you visit all of the 20+ museums and the many ancient churches.

Posted by
3456 posts

Just because your friends didn't care for Florence doesn't mean you wouldn't.
Try at least one nite in Florence. (The history and art are amazing)

Fly into Venice.
3 N Venice

Train to Florence
1 N Florence.

It appears you like to drive and want to see some smaller towns.

Rent car drive to Tuscany.
3 N Tuscany.

Drive to Rome FCO drop car.

Leonardo Express or taxi to Rome.
4 N Rome.

Posted by
763 posts

If you think Venice, Florence, Rome is too far flung, consider Venice and the Veneto - maybe going so far as the Dolomites. Verona is a central train hub. Perhaps the north is a better destination in summer weather wise. Just a thought.