Final Itinerary, 3 weeks in the Boot!

I think I have my final travel itinerary! (After MANY drafts, and MUCH advice!!). Starting to finally book accommodations, so I thought I would post it one more time for feedback. This travel starts at the end of April 2013. 1 - travel day 2 land in Milan 7:30AM Tuesday, 4.23.13, train straight out to Venice ( I know, I know - trying to change my flight to Marco Polo - not going so well yet unfortunately...) (Venice -3 nights/2.5 days) 3 Venice 4 Venice 5 train to Florence (4 nights/3.5 days) 6 Florence 7 Florence 8 Florence 9 train to Cinque Terre (4 nights/3.5 days) 10 CT 11 CT 12 CT 13 pick up car and cruise Tuscan country-side for a few nights. (4 nights/3.5 days) I've basically left this portion open, "No Reservations", but with a few goals: Chianti ( I keep reading about a butcher in Greve), Montepulciano (brunello!) Volterra/San Gimignanno (even as a drive by), Siena, possibly a terme), and some beautiful landscape picnics along the way. 14 Tuscan hills/country 15 Tuscan hills/country 16 Tuscan hills/country 17 Naples (train or drive down to?) visit the Archeological Museum (must be there by about 3pm!) (2 nights, 1.5 days) 18 Herculaneum/Pompei, sleep in Naples (These sites are a MUST for me!!) 19 train to Rome (for 5 nights/4.5 days)(Vatican, Forum, Colo, Pan, Trevi, Span Steps...) 20 Rome 21 Rome 22 Rome
23 Rome 24 9:15 AM depart from FCO Rome Think that does it! If any thoughts, I would love to hear them, you all have helped so much in this planning! I'm greatly appreciative.

Posted by Janet
Plympton, MA, USA
27 posts

Hi Cat, Sounds like a great trip and not a lot of jumping around,3-4 nights in one location. I do think that you should get reservations ahead of time in Tuscany. A few years ago we made a reservation in Chiusi and then we could not make contact with them. We took a chance arrived in Florence picked up a car and drove 2.5 hours and when we arrived and the place was out of business. Then we had to run around and try to find a place to stay, not fun. 20 years ago we went to Germany and had no reservations, will never do that again. We spent too much time searching for places to stay and one night we thought that we would end up sleeping in the car. You will waste valuable time searching for a place to stay especially in May. We usually base ourselves in San Gimignano and San Quirico, great locations to see Tuscany. Good luck and enjoy.

Posted by Zoe
Toledo, Ohio, US
6325 posts

I would ditch the car after Tuscany. I would not want to drive in/ near Naples and you won't reay need a car in Rome. From Naples, there is frequent train (Circumvesuviana) service to Pompeii and Ercolano, as well as to Sorrento if you want to visit the Amalfi Coast (buses leave every half hour from the Sorrento train station). Them take a boat back from Amalfi to Sorrento. This is a harrowing drive for most people, plus you have to drive back, which is twoce the trouble with less than half the view.

Posted by Roberto
Fremont, CA, USA
5997 posts

Good planning. You won't need a car in Naples so you should ditch it upon arrival, if you decide to drive to Naples. Some people prefer not to stay in Naples because it's a big chaotic city. If the Amalfi coast is in your plans, Sorrento is a good base for both the coast and Pompeii and Herc. Naples is also only 70 min away by train. If you decide on Sorrento, drive to it and return the car in Sorrento. Several major rental agencies are in Sorrento.

Posted by Jeff
San Francisco, CA, USA
10 posts

Looks like you've been doing a lot of planning. We are also going for a bit over 3 weeks. Here's our plan: Venice - arrive Sunday, April 28th, 10am -3 nights - 28,29,30 - Sun,Mon,Tue Cinque Terre - 3 nights - May 1,2,3 - Wed,Thur,Fri Florence - 3 nights. - May 4,5,6 - Sat,Sun,Mon Siena - 3 nights - May 7,8,9 - Tues,Wed,Thur (hill towns 2 days) Rome - 6 nights - May 10,11,12, 13,14,15 - Fri,Sat,Sun,Mon,Tues,Wed (day trip to Orvieto.
Naples/Sorrento/Pompei/Amalfi/Capri - 4 nights staying in Sorrento - May 16,17,18,19 - Thur,Fri,Sat,Sun Ciao!

Posted by Karen
Santa Rosa, CA
777 posts

Oh how I wish we had three weeks! Two weeks is the max my husband and I can swing away from work. We leave for Italy April 14th, but we'll be in Rome the 21st and 22nd, so maybe our paths will cross. Last trip we visited Montepulciano (loved the Vino di Nobile) and this trip will spend 3 nights in Montalcino (Brunello).
You may want to consider dropping your car in Orvieto or Chiusi, then taking the train to Naples. It looks to be about a three hour drive from Orvieto, not including stops or traffic, then you have to drop the car, get to the Museum before 3. There are trains departing Orvieto at 8, 9, and 11:15 arriving Naples at 11, 12, and 2:15. You could drop your car that morning if you take the later train, or drop the afternoon before and spend the night in Orvieto before heading to Naples.