Visiting 20 year old daughter studying for semester in Rome next week. Planned 3 days in Rome solo sightseeing and then we will travel north to Sienna 2 nights, Venice 1 and Cinque 1 or 2 and then Rome again for 2. No car just train pass. Sienna sounded like break from her life in Rome. Her recent weekend in Florence is cause for a shift in our schedule. She says it could be day trip.We will not be renting a car. I feel like this itinerary needs some fine tuning. We live in MN so like to see coastal area. Sienna or not? Venice in 1 day? Thanks for any advice.
Given the short time you have for travel, my suggestion would be to focus on Siena and the Cinque Terre, due to the fact that transportation will be easier and shorter. Venice is somewhat on the "opposite" side of the country, which will increase your transportation times somewhat.
You can reach La Spezia (CT) in about four hours by direct train from Rome. From there take the smaller local train to whichever of the five villages you'll be using as a "home base". The trip from La Spezia to Siena (via Pisa and Empoli) is aobut 3.5 hours (2 changes). Finally, from Siena to Roma Termini the trip is also about 3.5 hours.
In contrast, travel from Rome to Venice is about 4.5 hours and Venice to La Spezia is about 6-7 hours (minimum 2 changes).
Venice and the Cinque Terre are the only ones I can comment on, but I would say that neither should be just one day. I suppose if you were to do one in a single day, then do that for the Cinque Terre, but you will just get the bare minimum of being there. Venice in one day may seem frustrating as you need to walk everywhere, or take slow boats to get around (unless you wish to pay small fortunes for taxi boats).
Yes, I think I am trying to pack too much into that short time. I will have to choose. For my daughter I think she would be happy with Venice and CT only. I would be more for Sienna-Florence and CT and Venice on another trip.
I agree with Steven. Neither should be one day. But of course much depends on your interests. Read about both towns before you decide.
They are quite different, but each one interests travelers. Since your daughter is living in Rome I would reduce my time there.
It loosk like you are going to have 9 or 10 days.
Well, it all depends on what you would liek to do. Visiting museums takes time, plus you might need to stay online for tickets.
Venice can be done in one day if you don't go to museums. I did Venice in 1.5 day, just walking and vaporeto all over the place. I even had time for shopping.
Cinque Terre is a beautiful area, but if you want to do some hiking, you need to spedn 2-3 days.
I son't know anything about Sienna, but being a smaller city I would spend just a day.
I did this itinerary in 10 days: Milan- 2days, Geneva-1 day, Pisa -few hours- traveled to Florence-2 days, Rome -5 days (too long). Florence is a very beautiful city with a lot of sightseeings.
Sounds like a good time to skype my daughter and try to each pick our area of interest using the help you have all provided. Yes, I was thinking of cutting down the Rome time. It is great to hear about each experience and travel time between destinations. I will keep listening...
Cinque Terre will be slow this time of year. If that's a negative for you, then pass on it and spend the extra time in Venice. Because your time is limited, best to pick either Cinque Terre or Venice. Both are on a coast, they're just very different types of coast lines.
Do you mean "ghosttown" slow or few tourists? I kind of need to be in Rome that amount of time because my daughter has class during the day. So limited time to go to Venice?
And can I get along fine without a car in Sienna - Tuscany area?
Sarah, the CT in early March is usually somewhere between ghosttown slow and fewer tourists slow. We have gone a couple of times the end of the first week in March. There are hardly any tourists. The folks that live in the villages are there. Not all the restaurants are open. Some hotels and rooms take the slow time to do maintenance, so some may be closed or have fewer spots available. The weather can be iffy. We have always lucked out with sunshine and no rain, but it was chilly mornings and evenings.
Thanks all! I am leaving this Sunday. We have taken out Venice and will do 2 Sienna and 2 CT. Stationed in Rome because of classes other days. I have found an extra day to add here or there. Would you recommend staying in Sienna and daytripping it around the area for another day? Or staying in another small town or Florence for a night? Planning already a daytrip to Florence.