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Which is better to drive - Rome-Florence or Florence-Venice?

Instead of taking a train, we may rent a car for a day and drive a few hours to get out there and liven up the trip a little more.

Which is a better drive? Rome to Florence, or Florence to Venice?

We figure if we did the Rome-Florence maybe we'd stop in Siena for a few hours too, which people seem to rave about.

Posted by
7209 posts

If you are dead set on driving (which I do NOT recommend) by all means drive between Rome and Florence. A car is absolutely worthless in Venice. Being an island, all you can do with your car is park it! It's totally useless sitting there while you pay rental fees for those parked days as well as parking fees.

Posted by
689 posts

We drive all over Italy with no problem. We much perfer the independance and the ability to stop if we wish!

I'd suggest the Rome to Florence. get a good map and get off the Autostrada at Orvieto and take the back road north... It is gorgeous. If you are there in the late summer the sunflowers are a riot of yellow!!!

Dump the car on the outskirts of Florence or risk tickets in the restricted areas.

Posted by
135 posts

Randy- The leg you drive from Roma to Firenze will be 100 times more scenic than the leg from Firenze to Venezia- The one "complaint" that I have about trains (even though they're really efficient and relatively hassle free) is that that go "through" hills rather than over them. I've seen more of Tuscany in bus rides from Siena to Volterra, or Siena to Montalcino than on all my train rides combined. Stopping in Siena could be problematic- parking is a major issue. Some of the smaller hill towns have parking just at the city walls, so a short wander, and you're in town. Siena is a city. Expect stop and go traffic and difficulty parking. Good luck!

Posted by
6898 posts

I agree with all of the above. Rome to Florence. Also as above, don't attempt to drive in Florence as they have numerous restricted areas, including the historic areas and computerized cameras to catch your license plate.

Aside from the beauty of the drive, and depending on how much time you have, you have the opportunity to drive through much of Tuscany which is one of the travel prizes in Northern Italy.

Posted by
59 posts

Okay sounds great - we'll drive from Rome to Florence and immediately drop the car off at Avis (or Budget or whichever we find) and take a taxi to our hotel there (Aldini Hotel). Should a fun couple hours.

Posted by
7737 posts

Agreed. I remember being so surprised at how non-scenic (if that's a word) the train trip is between Florence and Venice, so the same should be true of driving.

Posted by
3313 posts

If you're going to enjoy the drive, it's significantly more than a few hours. Give it a full day.