My wife and I are hoping to go to Italy this Sept. or Oct. It is sort of a spontaneous thing as grandma has said she would watch our 2yr old daughter. We might never get another chance until much later so we thought let's do it. We will have about 10 days so we are wondering whether to stay only in italy or visit Spain where my wife would like to see. Our style of travel is more relaxed where we like to see and feel the real places instead of just touristy only things. We were thinking of Rome,Florence, and Naples or Venice if only Italy. In Spain possibly Madrid or Barcelona. I'm leaning against Spain because it seems too much in too little time. Any replies would be greatly appreciated.
Pick one country or the other.
You will barely be able to fit Rome, Florence, Naples OR Venice into 10 days (note that's Naples OR Venice, not both!!)
If you really want a relaxed experience, only do two cities. Rome & Florence are a good combination.
With 10 days, spend all your time in Italy....Spain is too far out of the way, and it will detract from your Italian experience. Then plan for Spain in the future...it's a wonderful country!
Depending on your plans you will lose a couple of days to arrival and departure. With the time allotted you would have a more relaxed trip by limiting yourself to two destinations in one country. My suggestion would be two from these three, Venice, Florence and Rome. I'd probably pick Rome and Venice. You don't need a car in either. Fly into Venice and out of Rome and split your time evenly between both. Or you could do Venice Florence. There are folks who would argue that you could pack 3 or 4 or 5 cities into the time frame but I don't think you would enjoy it as much as fewer stops. Whatever you decide try to fly into one spot and out of another, so you won't waste time back tracking to catch a plane.
I've had friends tell me that the problem with Spain is that the main destinations are much farther apart than in Italy. The "standard" first visit to Italy is indeed Rome, Florence and Venice. And there's a reason for that. They are definitely the highlights among many, many incredible destinations.
If your style of travel is more relaxed so you can get a feel of the place, then pick Rome or Venice.
Unless you are interested in seeing the Roman ruins in Pompeii and Herculanium, I'd skip Naples. Not much there to recommend beside the Archeology museum. Venice, Florence, Rome are do-able in 10 days, especailly if you fly open jaw.
Especially if you like relaxed travel, make Spain another trip. For 10 days, I would do 2 or 3 cities only --- Rome, Florence & Venice would be great, especially if you fly open jaw. Naples is a lot farther south; I'd leave it off your itinerary.
The vote is in. We all agree -- two cities -- no more. If you want relaxed that is what you should do. I check for open jaw tickets, Venice/Rome or Milan/Rome. You might catch a deal. Milan is often ignored and under rated. If you could get a good rate into Milan, I take it. Spend arrival night and the next night in Milan, take a 3 hr train to Florence for three days or four and on to Rome for the balance, Save Spain for the next trip. And there will always be the next trip.