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Is this a realistic schedule? Florence to Pisa to Rome in 2 days

I booked a night in Florence and that will give me two full days to explore the city if I leave Rome early. I plan to visit the Uffiz and Academia. I also would like to catch a train to see the Leaning Tower on day two. Will I have enough time to see most sites? I intent to go to the museum at 8:15 and go to Pisa by 1p.m. and catch the last train back to Rome. Can someone please tell me if that is a realistic schedule?

Posted by
10344 posts

You ask if you will have enough time to see "most sites" in Florence. No, the 1.5 days you actually have in Florence to see things (minus half a day for Pisa and trip back to Rome) is not enough time to see most of the sites in Florence. But if that's all the time you have, you'll have time to see some Florence sites. You can arrange them in order of importance to you and see a few of your top choices.

Posted by
6898 posts

I agree with Kent. You won't see much beyond what you discribe and there is so much there. But, I guess we're lucky that you didn't ask if you could fit Venice or the CT in as well.

The Uffizi will take 90min-2hrs. The Accademia a bit less. You can see a bit more of Florence after visiting these two sites.

If you leave early on day two, you can get to Pisa in a couple of hours. The leaning tower is a 30 minute walk from the train station but you can go across the street and take the bus that should get you there faster.

There are several trains that depart Pisa in the afternoon and evening. CLICK HERE to see a sample schedule. Click next on the site and you will see the last train leaving at 19:56 (7:56). I hope that you don't have an early flight out of Rome the next day. If yes and the flight is before 10:00am, you'll have a tough time making it unless you take a taxi from Rome Termini and sleep in the airport.

Posted by
157 posts

I would also like to see the Duomo (does it require an advance purchase?) and maybe the Medici Crypt. I am not going to go to every museum because I will be OVERWHELMED. I am pretty fit and can walk 6-8 hours easy. I would like to think that I could see most sites by foot.

I appreciate the train info. I don't need to be back at Rome for a flight home the next day. I don't want to pay an extra night in Florence because I booked 8 eights in Rome with the intention of taking day trips. I want to have a 'home' base while I am there even though it is not the smartest way to do it.

Posted by
157 posts

Maggie,
I emailed my hotel to see if they could reserve a morning and afternoon spot for me. If not, I will call the museum direct as suggested by others. I could not book on line.

I appreciate the reminder ;)

Posted by
345 posts
  1. Consider skipping Pisa. You're spending time and money to get to Florence, so why not enjoy it before dashing off?

  2. See Kent's thread about "underestimating travel times."

  3. The less time you spend scurrying around and waiting in train stations the more time you have for fun.

Posted by
2297 posts

The problem with the Duomo is not that you need to reserve tickets. It's a "working" church. So there might be times it will be closed for tourists and only be open for worshippers at a specific church funcion. And those times may not be known until you get to Italy. We had the misfortune to arrive in Florence on a day where the Duomo was closed to tourists from 8 am till 3 pm. Well, we had tickets for the Uffizi for 2 pm and for the Accademia at 5.30 pm. Our original plan to see the Duomo in the morning was scrapped so we thought we squeeze it in on the way from the Uffizi to Academia. Well when we arrived at the Duomo at about 4 pm (there is no way to do the Uffizi in less than 2 hours) the line-up of people who had been waiting like us for the whole day to get in was 100m long outside. Instead of standing in line for an hour only to have 15 minutes inside we decided to spend some leisurly time sipping freshly made lemonade at a nice streetside cafe ...

Posted by
157 posts

I am going to Italy the last week of March (the end of low season). Even if you have advance ticket purchases, the line is expected to take two hours to get inside the Uffizi and Academia? Can you roam inside and see whatever you choose or do you have to follow the herd as directed? Is there a limit on how long you can stay? I believe the Borghese Gallery has a two hour limit. Thanks.

Posted by
6898 posts

I don't recall that there were tickets needed for il Duomo. We did have to stand in a long line. They do rope off the area of worship so you can't get under the dome. Personally, I was disappointed. It's historical but it's dark and there's really not a lot in the area you can visit. There are stairs down to a lower level where there are some things to see.

As for the Uffizi, our tickets had reserved times on them. We went through the special door for reserved tickets and had no problem getting in. You can roam around anyway you want. However, there are so many tours going on in there, you're trying to look at the art and the tour people get a little bent that they think you're trying to get a free ride on their tour.

Posted by
88 posts

Jennifer, I think the poster discussing the "2 hour" time frame was referencing how long you should expect to actually visit the inside of the museum. If you have advance tickets, you'll just have to pick them up & go through a quick, short security line. Also, if you're going in the morning, you shouldn't have much of a problem at all waiting in a lengthy line. In August (on a weekend), I was able to walk directly in & buy a ticket without a reservation in the morning (though the line became incredibly long shortly after the opening). Also, no, they don't have time limits (that I remember).

Posted by
527 posts

I would pass on Pisa. If you had time & were passing through anyway it might me worth it but Florence is so beautiful and has so much to offer. We finally made it to the tower and we looked 20 minutes, took the required picture of appearing to be holding it up and left. You might want to read Rick's thoughts on it. Just my opinion though

Posted by
15724 posts

I would have to also suggest skipping Pisa. Sure, it's a well known site...but...once you get there, and get your photo of you trying to hold it up (like everyone else does), you're going to think: "I wasted a few hours for that?"

Stay in Florence. It's a very compact city and the more time you have, the more things you can see.

However, if you have your heart set on seeing Pisa, then go.

Posted by
157 posts

I probably will end up going to Pisa just so I won't wish that I had gone years down the road. I can always go back to Florence because it is centrally located.

Posted by
70 posts

What about visiting Pisa on the way to Florence? Otherwisw reenting a car may be another option.