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Itinerary help...nightmare waiting to happen?

This will be our first trip to Italy and I’d love some help…is this itinerary too ambitious or about right? We have not booked our flights yet, so we can be flexible with our start and end cities.

Day 1: Flight from USA
Day 2: Venice
Day 3: Venice
Day 4: early AM train to Florence, Florence
Day 5: Florence
Day 6: Florence, PM train to Cinque Terre, sleep in Cinque Terre
Day 7: Cinque Terre
Day 8: Cinque Terre, PM train to Tuscany (any home base suggestions?)
Day 9: Tuscany, pick up rental car
Day 10: Tuscany
Day 11: drop rental car, early train to Rome, Rome
Day 12: Rome
Day 13: Rome
Day 14: Rome, fly home
Thanks for your help!

Posted by
805 posts

I would do Cinque Terra on either end of the trip personally. Going to and from Tuscany with CT in the middle makes very little sense since, after all, Florence is in Tuscany. Other than that it loks pretty good.

Posted by
10344 posts

Laura: It will work. Some go from Venice to the CT, then to Florence, then to Tuscany Hill Towns--but the train trip from Venice to CT is much longer than the one from Venice to Florence--so there are pros and cons to doing it that way. David makes a good point about the CT--but the problem is that going to the CT is always going to be awkward geographically--unless the traveler flies into or out of an airport near the CT such as Pisa or Genoa (and use of those airports causes other problems).

Posted by
400 posts

Hi Laura, Just returned doing the exact same itinerary. Here's how we did it, although like someone said, there are pros & cons to any direction. I have to say, we were satisfied with how it went. We flew into Rome but immediately took the train to Orvieto(1 hr). Spent the next two days there but took the bus(75 min) for a day trip to Civita on the second day. Third day took the early train to Venice(4 1/2 hr) for a 2 day stay. Fifth day took the train to Florence(3 hr) for a 2 day stay. Seventh day took early train to CT(2 1/2 hr) for a 2 day stay. Ninth day took a early train to Rome(4 hr) for a 3 day stay. Then we flew back home from Rome on our 13th day. I think flying in and out of the same city is a little cheaper. You have an extra day than what we had and with that I would add it to Venice or Florence. Either city could have used another much to see & do in each. We loved them all but if you are blessed with beautiful weather as we were, the CT was awesome...don't miss it! Hope this helps...if any other questions, please write me.

Posted by
400 posts

One more thought....people frown on long train rides, seeing them as lost sightseeing time. But to be honest, we filled our days so full from early morning to late night with so many wonderful memories that those train rides were our chance to get some rest/sleep. Having 2-4 hours every other day to get "caught up" was just what our bodies needed.