We are spending a day and night in the Orvieto area because we want to visit Citita di Bagnoregio. We are traveling by train from Siena and then heading to Rome. My question is: which is better stay in town and take buses to sights or stay in gorgeous countryside and either rent a car or hire a driver? We are 4 women with luggage. Any suggestions appreciated.
Linda, My suggestion would be to stay in town. It's a great place to stroll in the evenings and of course to enjoy the local restaurants. Be sure to visit the incredible Duomo to see the Signorelli frescoes. If you plan on visiting Civita di Bagnoregio via public transport, it will take the better part of a day. You'll travel via Cotral Bus to Bagnroregio and then use the small Shuttle to the base of the bridge at Civita. Having a rental car would offer more flexibility in getting to Civita, but that comes with some "caveats". EACH driver will require the compulsory International Driver's Permit and you'll have to be careful to avoid ZTL areas (which exist in many towns). I don't know of any "car & driver" services in that area. Happy travels!
If I understand you correctly, you're only spending one night in Orvieto and you're going to use it as a base to see Civita? When are you going to see Orvieto? We stayed there for 2 nights in 2011 and wished we had stayed 3. It's a beautiful charming place with plenty to see and do.
You can take a taxi to Civita, but it will cost upwards of 50E... and then there's the issue of paying the cabbie to stick around. Cotral buses will only cost you about 2E per person. Buy your ticket at the tabacchi in Orvieto's train station. The bus will take you to Bagnoregio, not Civita proper. When you get off the bus, you'll see a sign that reads something like "Bus / Navetta / Shuttle." Don't wait there; the shuttle will not pick you up. You'll need to walk across Bagnoregio to get to Civita. The shuttle can, however, pick you up in Mercetello (the little cluster of buildings at the bridge) and take you back from Civita to the "Bus / Navetta / Shuttle" stop, but it will not go in the other direction. Screwy, I know, but them's the brakes.
Ken - I did make a note of that previous post about the shuttle. Interesting comment. I still have a couple months, will check for more posts in the future about the Civita bus. I saw those times from a previous post reply of either you or Roberto. I like how a lot of good times are during the school year for the bus. My trip will be during the year. I will double read the guidebook. Perhaps the luggage is in a Hotel descritpion that I missed. I remember from Pisa and other sections there was a seperate luggage section. If I find someting i'll reply back later too.
I am planning on doing the same thing. We will arrive in Orvieto around 11 and have the rest of the day to explore Orvieto. The following day we are going to take the bus to Civita. Explore that and return to Orvieto for a late afternoon train around 6-7 into Rome. Is there any Baggage Storage places near the Orvieto Train station? I didn't that see in Rick's book at all. Our B&B host said we can keep our bags with her, but that would mean going back up the funicular and all the awy to the other end of Orvieto to get our bags and back to train station. Ideally if we can keep our bags near the station would be best. Any advice on where to keep bags?
Robert, As I recall, there's a hotel near the Orvieto station that will store luggage for a small fee. I'd have to check the Guidebook for the name of the hotel. Hopefully one of the others will be able to provide the information. Be sure to read the previous reply from Kat regarding the Civita Shuttle only transporting passengers one-way. That's different from my last visit, so I'd be interested to know how you manage with that. It doesn't make any sense to transport passengers in one direction, since the Bus has to travel there anyway. I don't know how current this schedule is, but you might find it helpful to have a look at THIS website concerning the Bus times from Orvieto. Cheers!
I did miss the baggage line. I found it in the guidebook - no baggage storage at the station, closest place is 300 yards from the station at Hotel Picchio