Hokay - like everyone else, I think Rick Steve's is a wonderful resource and thanks Rick.
We are pretty well traveled in Europe and Asia, however Italy is new territory. I'm busy and getting older so I booked a 14 night trip via COSTCO (and you can bet I will let you know how that works out - I think just fine), mostly because they had decent prices based on flying business class (although I went with BA (half is AA) - I should probably have gone with Air France). Edit - I am very tall - so coach is really tough,
I have booked tours and tickets and supplemental in advance. Here's what we are doing (two adults and a 10 year old).
Rome - Florence - Venice is the plan and here itinerary to throw rocks at:
Rome - Day 1 into Rome early - who knows. Possibly Tivoli or Ostia Antica
Day 2 - Vatican tour (am tour booked) - after ??? Perhaps a leftover from day 1 or a walk around.
Day 3 - Possibly general Pope Audience (if my reservation is actually there) in AM, PM is open.
Day 4 - Train to Naples and Cicumvesuviana to Pompeii, thence Sorrento and back to Rome (long day)
Day 5 - Colosseum (have tickets pre-booked but no tour) - May parse day 2/3 time into the tickets (48 hrs 1 -visit each place) and keep this day open.
Day 6 - To Florence from Rome (early AM)- Open but with dinner reservations at Quattro Leoni
Day 7 - Uffizi in the AM - Accademia in the early PM (remember we are dragging a kid along - can't linger in museums forever - tickets booked)
Day 8 - Train to Bologna (booked) - Ducati factory tour (booked) - probably take train to Modena from Bologna for Enzo Ferrari museum - thence back to Bologna and to "Florence" (long day).
Day 9 - Open early morning - then 5 hr. vintage Fiat 500 drive through Tuscany w/lunch, etc. (booked and nice deal as kid is free).
Day 10 - Duomo (booked) - museum, bell tower, Duomo and a few other sited included.
Day 11 - Florence to Venice - early AM - no specific agenda - relax and explore
Day 12 - Venice - no specific agenda - relax and explore
Day 13 - Venice - no specific agenda - relax and explore
Day 14 - Train to Pauda and Scrovengi tour (booked). Will go to St. Anthony's Basilica as well.
Day 15 - Early am out to airport and back.
We started out thinking we would relax and see the sights (having never been to Italy before). Of course after finding out that there are 500 sites (for starters) I pared it down and have kept Venice open as I think we will be on overload (hahaha).
Hotels: Rome Starhotel Metropole (near termini) - Florence the Baglioni, Venice the Danieli.
Part of posting this is to remind myself of the schedule - I have an half an inch of tickets in a folder. The other parts are to review COSTCO travel (I expect to be fine - however this is not an inexpensive jaunt) and to benchmark my travel plans off others.
Getting ready to go so have a glance and chime in.