I am cruising from the USA to Rome in 2014, then plan on going to Dubrovnik. I am in debate of taking a train to either Bari or Ancona then taking the Jadrolinija ferry over... OR fly using Easy Jet or Croatia Air... any recommendations? Since we are making this a 6 week trip and have a little bit of luggage and also the theft I have been hearing about on trains in Italy... what would be best? How do you pack "light" for a trip like this? Also... it does not seem like there are any 2014 prices out yet for trains or ferries.. how do you book in advance like all the books recommend? Thank you!!
I would recommend flying from Rome to Dubrovnik (or Split, if necessary). Not because of worry about theft on trains; I think it's very rare. But you would be looking at a 4-5 hour train ride, followed by an overnight ferry, compared to probably a one-hour flight. Use skyscanner.com to look for flights. We did this flight for around $100 a few years ago. Check the baggage requirements while you're booking; on EasyJet, it's much cheaper to pay for your bag when you book than at the airport. And speaking of baggage ... the first thing you should do is use the search box at the top of this page to search this helpline for ideas about packing light. There have been lots of conversations lately. Many people (including myself) travel for 4-6 weeks with just a carry-on bag and personal item (purse, small backpack). And that's what you are going to want to do. Because whether you fly or train/ferry to Dubrovnik, you do not want to be hauling multiple or large suitcases around for six weeks.
Have you read the "pack light" section on the Graffiti Board? Packing light is essential. Many small hotels & B&B's have no elevators. Train stations do not have porters and many have lots of stairs to get to the right track. European airlines have serious wieght restrictions on luggage and most only allow a very small carry-on. More than one checked bag is very expensive. I have traveled for 3 months with only one bag and a small carry-on/large purse. Do laundry in your hotel sink. Shop for light weight travel clothes that dry overnight at REI or Magellans online.