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More Questions for our "Last Minute Italian Holiday": Florence, Tuscany

I’m now having real misgivings about this last minute trip. We’ll be in Rome April 10, and departing the morning of April 16. My first idea was to stay in Lucca, Orvieto, or somewhere in Tuscany and or Umbria to relax for 4 or 5 days, drive through the wine country, see the sights and then move on to 3 days in Florence. BUT we run into Easter. (Bad planning) I do see that the Uffizi Gallery, for one, is open both the 18th and 19th of April, leading up to the Saturday before Easter. So I think the best thing for us to do is to be in Florence for Easter, rather than in the country where probably everything will be closed. I need to make decisions in the next day or two so would appreciate any suggestions the group may have. Also - I'm looking for a small group private tour of Florence, including the Uffizi, David, etc. as I think this would make things easier during this very busy time.

Posted by
4597 posts

As you consider options, I found this great web page describing a variety of events happening in Tuscany during the 5-day celebration that begins on the Thursday before Easter and ends with Pasquetta on the Monday after.

Although you may have more crowds than you might have hoped for, you could be in for a real treat in terms of a view into the regional celebrations.

Posted by
29 posts

Thanks you! After I wrote the question I found a similar web site; I can't seem to pull the one you sent up. Just going for it. I'm sure it will be wonderful, whatever. Thank you and still open for private or semi private guides in Florence!

Posted by
11309 posts

We spent Easter in Florence one year and it was great! There is a big parade on Saturday night, the exploding donkey cart on Sunday morning, and we visited Palazzo Patti (instead of seeing the donkey cart), handily avoiding crowds. Do make a reservation for Easter lunch as everyone eats out, it seems!

Posted by
29 posts

Thank you! greatly appreciate the responses. Where did you stay? Am in the process of making reservations; still some good places left.

Posted by
2299 posts

hey vicky
another bay area poster. don't have misgivings, last minute trips turn out to be the best! make lemoncello outta lemons.
check out that has different tours of both rome and florence. has B&B's, apts, to check out. read the fine print, some have luggage storage before checkin, shared bathroom, what floor (elevator/lift) cash euros on arrival or paypal may have a fee. (find a place and check book now and reservation form and summary of cost comes up, before a final booking)
get outta the crowds one day, (30 minute train ride from rome), out in the countryside known for white wine and the pope's summer home. read "about us and blog" on their website, then pick a tour. saw a tv food special about family owned bakery/pizza oven, nona is 90 years young and still bakes, home of the best "porchetta", walk the village, enjoy the wine and food. take an extra bag with you just in case you buy.
"beautiful countryside day trip: castelli romani with pierpaolo on (search lake nemi and it's wild berry),, a dinner party in locals house or a tour.
few years back we had a great lunch outside tables family style at carlo menta's ristorante in trastevere :pizza, pasta, and tartufo yummy. then took a walk thru area then thru the jewish ghetto. back thru campo de fiori, "free" entertainment, shops, bakeries, delis, marketplace. got some bread cheese meats of course wine and had happy hour at our place on balcony, fabulous. we always carry a corkscrew. we walked down back alleyways to find any restaurant (no english menu out front)
check out the mercatos near termini train station and testaccio, lots of everything and anything. buy a
something to keep in your place for snacks, drinks. you guys will have a fun fun time, go with the flow enjoy

Posted by
29 posts

Great response! thanks so much for the reminders, the encouragement and the ideas! grazie mille