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Italy May 2020


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#1 The new me

Posted 27 January 2019 - 07:32 AM

Have decided I want to spend my 40th birthday in Italy.
Want to travel from Naples down to Sicily
Min 3 weeks up to 5

What towns do you suggest?
We will include a little town Soriano in Calabria which is where my dad is from.

I don't speak any Italian so language will be an issue but not terrible I hope

It will be me, DH and DD16
Have been to Rome, Venice and Florence before

Thanks

#2 born.a.girl

Posted 27 January 2019 - 08:04 AM

We spent two weeks in Sicily in 2016, fabulous place.

We flew from Rome, so no help with the Naples - Sicily bit.


This is from the Guardian, recently:


https://www.theguard...re-2018-10-tips


You might also find this interesting, just on a cultural basis:

https://www.theguard...r-sale-one-euro

#3 Nickers numbat

Posted 27 January 2019 - 08:34 AM

If it’s summer, head to the Aeolian islands. They were amazing. Other places I enjoyed included agrigento, Siracusa and Noto in Sicily.

I also spent a few days on a different trip at Tropea which is an interesting seaside town. The trip up to the mountains for the day was amazing!

Language I can’t comment as I speak Italian. My Dad visited a few years ago and doesn’t speak Italian and managed fine.

#4 littlemen

Posted 27 January 2019 - 07:35 PM

We drove from Sicily to Naples about 1.5years ago with our three kids (11,9 & 5 at the time). We went from Sicily, Calabria, Basilicata, Puglia and Naples.

Could have easily spent a lot more time everywhere. In Sicily we stayed in Palermo and Catania and this included day trips to Taormina and Mt Etna. We spent about a month in Southern Italy.

We stayed in Salerno along the Amalfi Coast which is cheaper than Positano etc and you can still reach the other towns via ferry. We watched a soccer game in Naples (our favourite Italian team), which was a fantastic experience for us all.

Definitely stop at Tropea in Calabria it is beautiful. Hubby speaks fluent Italian, however everyone we spoke to could speak English.

Enjoy your trip. How exciting. Happy to answer any further questions you may have. So much to see.

#5 Cerridwen

Posted 27 January 2019 - 10:11 PM

Definitely the Aeolian Islands and Taormina in Sicily.

In Calabria I love so many places. The Aspromonte Mountains are lovely. A few of my favourite places are Gerace, Gamberie and Chianalea de Scilla. At Gambarie you can take the ski lift to the top and on the way down can see Mt Etna on one side and Stromboli on the other. Magnificent. You should also visit the museum in Reggio Calabria to see the Riace bronzes. Lots of archeological sites in Calabria too,such as Oppido Vecchio, although I believe that the road into it was destroyed in the recent floods. So many wonderful places to explore.

#6 Warey2

Posted 28 January 2019 - 01:46 PM

We have spent some time in southern Italy with kids and I worked in Sicily (pre-kids). I would recommend a small town called forza d’agro just near Taormina if you’re fans of the Godfather, but you’d need a car to get there. I would also recommend Erice and Segesta. We also did a food market tour in Palermo which we really enjoyed.

Previously I have visited Agrigento which I found fascinating and Stromboli in the Aeolian Islands, which I loved. Syracuse and Catania also have some interesting stuff, and a trip up Etna was fun.

As for Naples, we found Pompeii and Herculaneum really interesting- we got a private guide at Pompeii which was expensive but worth it. And I LOVE Positano. Also recommend Puglia and Basilicata if time permits.

#7 LipStick

Posted 28 January 2019 - 02:48 PM

Ohh how amazing! I love Italy, although I have only ever been to Rome and Florence and just outside of Florence. Just beautiful.

I would suggest going to Florence for a few days, so much to see and do and it is just a beautiful city!

#8 The new me

Posted 28 January 2019 - 03:50 PM

Oooh some great suggestion
Keep em coming
Loving the research I am doing - yay

#9 Indi

Posted 30 January 2019 - 09:32 AM

@The new me, I'm planning a trip to Italy for September with my 3 and looking at similar areas to you so will be following this thread closely too.

Feel free to message me if you want to chat :)

#10 Apageintime

Posted 01 February 2019 - 08:59 AM

I spent 3 weeks in Genoa a few years ago, it was such a wonderful little spot!

Edited by Apageintime, 01 February 2019 - 08:59 AM.


#11 Feral Grey Mare

Posted 01 February 2019 - 11:55 AM

Naples is a fantastic city to explore and is also close to Pompeii and Herculaneum which are both must-sees.
Ischia and Capri are also easily accessible. It is certainly less pretty than Venice or Florence but I loved the city!

Highlights of Naples for me were the funicular ride up to Castel Saint'Elmo, the catacombs of San Gennaro and the Museo Capella Sansevero for the breathtaking sculpture of the Veiled Christ (breathtaking being the perfect description). the national archaeological museum is also very impressive - has lots of stuff from Pompeii.

It might be a bit of a stretch but other highlights of that holiday were Puglia and Basilicata. Check out Trani, Brindisi, Bari, Alberobello, Matera, Paestum, Otranto, Locorotindo, Castel del Monte.

See if you can track down the Alex Polizzi series of travel docos, think it was called Alex Polizzi's Secret Italy.

Hugely envious. Sicily is very high on my bucket list still.

#12 MissKDonkey

Posted 01 February 2019 - 12:32 PM

We got back from Italy a week ago. We stayed in Naples on the Bellini Piazza, it was terrific. The street leading to Bellini from via Toledo is lined with book stalls and shops, and very close by there is another street with music shops and instruments everywhere. Lots of places to eat and easy to get everywhere by foot. We loved it.

#13 The new me

Posted 09 March 2019 - 09:09 AM

Ok so this is what we have so far.

Arrive Sicily.
About 7 nights in Sicily, so Palmero, Syracuse, Taormina

Head to Calabria.  I have found a tour company who will accomodate us over Easter.  They do cooking classes at their friends and family homes as well as they will help with some family research before we arrive.  They will include a day trip to Soriano.  We will spend 5 nights in Calabria over Easter, probably based in Tropea and venture out from there

4 nights on the Amalfi coast, so use the ferries and bus to visit the different towns and do walk of the gods as well

4-5 nights in Naples.  One day will be spent at Pompeii/ versuvious

5 nights in Rome.  We will catch up with my aunt and cousin one day but do all the real touristy stuff as DH hasn't been to Rome before.

6-7 nights in a village outside Florence.  We will day trip around the villages and include pisa- it is on DDs bucket list lol.

Then train it over to Venice to spend my actual birthday
Another 4-5 nights here

I know it is a big trip and lots of places
Some of it might get condensed or written off between now and then, this is just high level


#14 littlemen

Posted 09 March 2019 - 11:57 AM

Very exciting!

I would spend less time in Venice. 4-5 nights I think is too long.

You could maybe squeeze in a day trip to Capri when you are on the Amalfi Coast.

Planning is fun isn't it.

#15 The new me

Posted 09 March 2019 - 04:27 PM

How many nights in Venice do you think littlemen?
I was also wondering if I had it too long

#16 carls888

Posted 10 March 2019 - 11:47 AM

That sounds amazing. I don't think 4-5 nights is too much in Venice, we spent 7 nights in 2018 and didn't even see al we wanted to.
But I would add more nights to Rome, it's just so amazing!
Where are you staying outside Florence? Definitely add Lucca to your close towns to visit.
We stayed in the hills near Florence in a bnb called Valdirose which was lovely and explored from there before having a week in Florence itself. It was very easy to catch trains to the larger towns. But we also had a car.

#17 Cimbom

Posted 10 March 2019 - 11:59 AM

We spent 4 or 5 nights in Venice and didn't think it was too much. It was about perfect and we got to do everything we had planned. I actually can't recall too many times where I felt I had spent "too long" at a particular place, it's usually more likely to be the opposite even when you think you have planned and timed things generosly. The best you can do is make a list of your "must do" things in each location and try to time how long it will take then book your hotels accordingly. I generally don't do less than three nights though unless it is a very small town (in which case I'd prefer to do it as a day trip if possible).

Edited by Cimbom, 10 March 2019 - 12:07 PM.


#18 littlepickle

Posted 10 March 2019 - 04:07 PM

Just started thinking about a trip to Italy end of 2020 so will be watching this thread with interest. If you could stay anywhere for 6 nights over Christmas what would be your number one suggestion?

When I think of Italy I can only imagine being there in summer...

#19 littlemen

Posted 11 March 2019 - 03:03 PM

Length of time in Venice would depend on what you want to see and also the length of your trip. We spent 7 nights in Rome and 10 nights in Florence (included day trips) and that wasn't enough.

Venice in my opinion was very crowded, we were there in September, however it is lovely at night when the day trippers leave. :smile: I would have liked to have stayed in Padua or Bologna but ran out of time, which is always the case.

I second a trip to Lucca whilst you are in/ near Florence. It is lovely. A car in tuscany was handy.

#20 born.a.girl

Posted 11 March 2019 - 03:39 PM

View Postlittlemen, on 11 March 2019 - 03:03 PM, said:

Length of time in Venice would depend on what you want to see and also the length of your trip. We spent 7 nights in Rome and 10 nights in Florence (included day trips) and that wasn't enough.

Venice in my opinion was very crowded, we were there in September, however it is lovely at night when the day trippers leave. :smile: I would have liked to have stayed in Padua or Bologna but ran out of time, which is always the case.

I second a trip to Lucca whilst you are in/ near Florence. It is lovely. A car in tuscany was handy.


I think that's pretty much the same anywhere in those popular European place, though, isn't it?  With vastly greater percentages of the earth's population having the money to travel, I don't expect it to change anytime soon.

With only the two of us travelling, we were able to stay in old Rome, two mins from Trevi fountain, and with breakfast not starting until 8am, we'd go out to the fountain before breakfast each day just to enjoy it in relative peace.  Coming back that way during the day or early evening I'd think 'how can anyone enjoy that', yet that's what we were doing with most of the other places.

#21 eachschoolholidays

Posted 11 March 2019 - 03:51 PM

View Postlittlepickle, on 10 March 2019 - 04:07 PM, said:

Just started thinking about a trip to Italy end of 2020 so will be watching this thread with interest. If you could stay anywhere for 6 nights over Christmas what would be your number one suggestion?

When I think of Italy I can only imagine being there in summer...
Rome.
I love Rome in winter. We have been there a number of times in winter, including over Christmas a few years ago. Rome doesn’t get as cold as some of the more Northern countries, the crowds drop, as does the price of accomodation.

#22 eachschoolholidays

Posted 11 March 2019 - 03:54 PM

We loved Taormina and Cefalu. We had a lovely relaxing time in Cefalu. We went to the beach each morning, had afternoon naps, went out for dinner etc

If you are in Palermo, I’d highly recommend this food tour https://streaty.com/ The kids (and the adults!) all loved it.

#23 The new me

Posted 17 July 2019 - 08:54 PM

We have booked our flights
3 weeks was what we eventually settled on so lots needs to be cut out from the original plan.

So far we have
5 nights Rome
Train to Florence
Florence city 3 nights
Then hire a car and drive around Tuscany for another 4 nights.  
Train back to Rome then to Naples
4 nights Naples
4 nights Amalfi coast
Train back to Rome before flying out

Any comments welcome
Any particular towns in Tuscany worth a visit?
Thanks

#24 littlemen

Posted 22 July 2019 - 08:48 PM

Very exciting!

Lucca and San Gimignano in Tuscany are definitely worth a visit.

Love Florence, wonderful city. So much to see :heart:




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