Been there 5 years ago on free & easy trip. Venice is a beautiful place, Florence is nice too, alot of museums. Didn't quite like Rome though, found the place very messy and noisy. In the end, I cut short my stay in Rome and travelled to Switzerland instead. Ahh those are the days, so carefree...
You have to go there! It is the most romantic place! I think it is better than Paris. There is so much history in it. Beautiful buildings architectures, art and sulptures. Italy really takes my breath away.
Beautiful people! Mama Mia!
I actually saw some mafia guys dressed in black and glasses in this alley! THe time I was there, I was with my girlfriends. I thought to myself, the next time, I'm gonna bring my FH here with me.
But do be careful of pickpockets when u r in Europe. But don't let this deter your plans of going Italy ok.
We went to Switzerland instead last year. Will be going to Italy next month! Milan is not in our agenda though. Not too sure if it's a must. We are going to Rome, Florence and Venice. I read somewhere that it's cheaper to shop in Rome.
I saw on Discovery Travel once and they featured this church which has lots of skeletons. Anyone know the name of this church?
Spring is nice in Italy. I went there in late May, it was really really scorching hot. Was wearing berms and T shirt. In Milan, you can indeed get cheaper Italian branded stuff, but not very fun there. If you are not into brands, then don't bother about Milan. The nicest thing there is this super big square with lots of pigeons and droppings and a great big golden horseman statue.
Careful with gypsies and pickpockets there though. Was almost pickpocketed by some gypsies. Luckily, all they stole were some useless tissue papers. Hiaks.
Besides Venice, Florence and Rome, you can go to places like pompeii. Quite interesting. Or the little towns near the sea. Naples is interesting as well. Scribbling all these off my head. Remember to eat lots of gelato!!!!!
If you need more details of these places, can give you a short writeup. hee hee.
Hi Potbelly, Naples is Napoli right? I guess we can take a train from Rome. Do you know how long it take? By the way, how's the frequency of the train? Do we buy a one-week travel pass or just buy the ticket as and when we need? Thanks!
Yep yep. Naples = Napoli. I took a train down from Rome, but I cannot remember how long it took. If I am not wrong, the Italian train has a website that shows the train schedule. The last time I went to Italy, I bought the tickets as and when we needed it. We travelled mostly by train. However, just a word of warning, be careful while travelling on Italian trains, especially on night trains. Many of my friends have been either pickpocketed or have had things stolen. I was rather lucky, cos I didn't lose anything. Just be more careful when doing so.
plan my honeymoon to the above city?
any reccomendation, shud we take land tour (Contiki, Insight), local tour (CB,SA) or just go free n'easy by ourselves?
when is the best time to italy? spring?
I think spring/summer is a good time to go to Italy. The last time I went in July, nice weather. I personally LOVE Venice a lot. Its a romantic place, very relaxing... Good place for honeymoon definitely
Remember to take the gondola ok!
Rome is a bit dusty in the summer. Can't remember much abt Rome other than the shopping...
it's the same as any other european cities.
I had a free and easy package cos I don't like to be restricted by the tour, plus its so easy to get around there!
The skeleton church you're refering to is in Rome? If it is, it's called the Santa Maria della Concezione (Crypt of the Capuchins). It's at Via San Basilio. The walls are decorated with skeletons. Very lovely. Too bad we can't take photos. Though you can buy postcards as donations since the entry is free.
I personally love Venice and Florence but thought Rome was too messy and big, yet not easily accessible.
Venice, as the others have mentioned is such a unique city that for that itself, it's lovely.
I like Florence because all the attractions are centred around the same area. If you can find a hotel near anyone of them, you're on your way. Just walk and walk and walk. They have beautiful walkable museums like the Uffizi which is enchanting.
I think any time is a good time to go to Europe, as long as it suits your schedule. I went there last June and it was scorching hot. Winter is good just for the cool air and the lack of crowd (Venice is very very crowded in June!)
I am also thinking of going F&E...Always love the pictures of Venice and the famous gondolas..I am planning to go in the first week of July, should have missed all the crowd by then (hopefully). i heard most italians can't speak English, am i right? Wouldnt it be difficult to go F&E in that case?
Do we have to book the hotels early in advance? Any hotels to recommend? (with websiites?).
Thinking of Venice & Florence..are they near to each other? Would 8 days be sufficent?
Yah I took the train from Rome to Venice. Quite easy, cant remember how many hrs though. I haven't been to Florence, kinda regret actually cos all my friends thought its a beautiful city.
Actually July is peak season for Europe rather than June. But don't worry about the crowd, its good in a way actually, so we have other tourists to ask around.
As fas as I can remember most Italians can speak English, especially in hotels and touristy areas. You should book the hotel in advance, cos July is peak season. Hmmmm, can't remember the hotel I stayed in.
Did you hear? The summer in Europe in 2003 was the hottest since 500 years ago! But that's 2003. Let's hope it's cooler this year. But it was really hot when I went last year.
I think there's really no harm in picking up some Italian? Italian is very easy to learn. Unlike French or even Chinese. Learn a few phrases 'thank you (grazie)', ciao ciao (hello and bye) etc. The Italians, being proud of their language will appreciate your effort. That being said, I don't think you will not be able to survive if you don't know Italian
Unlike Leeds, I hate crowds
That means you have to queue, and have to have lots of tourists in your photos. But Venice's beauty lies not in San Marco but the small streets which are shaded and not at all touristy nor crowded. Explore and love Venice
As for Florence, well the tourist places were crowded. But still, Florence is a bigger city than Venice and I'ms ure you'll be able to avoid the crowd.
Having said all that, I agree with Leeds that sometimes it's a consolation to have other tourists with you. At least you know they don't have anything else up their sleeves (most of the times!).
The train ride from Venice to Florence is about 3 hours.
do you stay in one town, then explore another towns around using train? or do you move from town to town?
which town is best to be our base to stay in? plan to buy air ticket, but don't know to where (Rome, Florence, Venice?)
I did stay in one city at one time. For example, I went to Venice, then I took boats out to Murano and Burano for day trips. After that, I took a train to Florence. While in Florence, I went over to Sienna and Pisa as day trips. If you're staying in just one major city, I don't really recommend that. But if you really need to, I would recommend Florence. It's in the middle of Rome & Venice (sort of).
thanks Kare, i am clueless about Italy, basically, we intend to spend in each city, off course.
It means, if we fly frm Spore, which town is prefered to be our first stop b4 moving to another?
so, u stay at Venice and take day trip to Murano and Buano, then go to Florence, day trip to Sienna and Pisa, and stay at Rome for the last trip. Is it correct?
did you manage to go Switzerland?
plan to go for 12 days, is it sufficient?
The FnE package included the following :
- airtickets (airFrance)
- 1N stay in Rome, Florence, Lake Como, Lucerne and Paris
- Rail pass between these cities/towns. But I upgraded it to Europass as there were more places we wanted to go and duration was longer.
- 1/2 day city tour in Rome (think the other choice was Paris)
- day trip to Pisa
We could either start in Rome or Paris but because the main part of our honeymoon was in italy, we started in Rome. So we transited in Paris because AirFrance doesn't fly direct to Rome from Sgp and we flew out of Paris.
We also added a day trip to Mt Titlis in Lucerne, Switzerland. Something which you should do as well if you are as suaku as I am who have never seen a snow mountain. I was really fascinated by the snow.
On our own, we booked a day trip to Pompeii with a local agency. This is really worth going! I was totally in awe. For the rest of the trip, we did a lot of walking or took their MRT when we got tired.
I can really go on and on...but will not bore you with too much details. If you have more questions after you see my route plan, feel free to ask.
Am interested in your trip details too. My friend and I wanna take our time on our trip to Europe, especially as we are very interested in the museums and ruins, but normally packaged tour dun allow the time.
But we are also afraid of going F&E by ourself as it involves a lot of traveling over long distance and having to move from hotel to hotel on our own. Especially since pickpockets so rampant there. We are only 2 women, while you have a man with you.
We booked a fne package which included some hotel stay and 2 tours with local agencies...but the rest was booked via the internet/emails. I supposed you can book there when you reach. But I have this fear of lugging my stuff all over the place just to find accommodation. Very kiasu behaviour.
during honeymoon, we met this lady from sgp who was travelling all by herself. Got to say, really admire her guts. At least there's two of you, so there's someone to look out for you and someone to take a picture for you.
regardless of who's with you, just got to be more alert of your surroundings, especially when you walk in the crowd. We were very lucky because we didn't see much of the gypsies nor encountered any pickpockets. And both of us napped on the trains!
of course the advantage of going with a tour grp is that there is comfort in numbers and everything is set and you don't have to worry abt anything except just having fun and sufficient credit limit/cash. It all depends on what you are more comfortable with. Mail on the way to you.
Actually 12 days for 3 cities is enough, if you're only planning to go to the touristy places. Frankly, Rome has so much to see and do that two weeks is also not enough. Then again, who wants to stay in Rome for 2 weeks?! Not me! But it's a beautiful place full of history if you're into that kind of thing. I do have my own itinery but I don't have it on the computer. I have everything written down.
Like Emmie, I flew into Paris, then took a train into Venice. Paris was my last stop. I cannot resist not going to Paris to shop I haven't been to Switzerland though
was hoping that the weather in early jun in italy will not be so bad. aso my agent did print me the weather forecast for italy, the temperature abt 27 degree. cross my finger...
btw, any idea whether the prices are similar across the cities for branded stuff?
i intend to go to italy for 10 days but actaully 8 days due to tiem difference and flight time. will be covering places like rome, vatican city, st peter cathedral, capri, bya of naples, soreento, assisi, bologna, vernice, verona, milan, pisa, tuscany & florence.
is it true that those places usually consist more on historical building, churches, architeural buidling nto much sightseeing of scenery and sipping coffee away at side walk cafe daily is almost impossible due to high euro rate and going by tour is another time restrcition to do that?
anyone know how much to pay for a decent meal is it tough to find vegetarian or communicate to them in simple english and i heard racist is anotehr problem too?
i actaully wish to go to australia it had everythign that i wanted. shopping for not so expensive but yet unique and lcoal lable, flea market, vintage shop, coffee and beach and sun...it seem liek historical sight are not so suitable for me in rome?
Eh? I think I just went to the tour itinary you mentioned... is it by Ananda? I went on the 6th April batch...
For decent meals, you'll need about 5-7Euros (abt SGP$10-$15)... though if you drink beer, it cos about 3Euros (coke is about 2.5Euros). I didnt notice the vegeterian food there, though if you are travelling quite a lot, then likely you'll get to have a few meals at their AutoGrills (petrol kiosk cum supermarket cum fast food outlet) These are about 15min-30mins stops along the highways...but usually you'll get to eat pizzas and pizzas and pizzas lor...
Overall I think their pizzas are nice and big, esp when compared to their pasta (same price, but portion not that big), but this is personal opinion. Drinks are expensive too, so if you can find mineral water at 0.85Euros, try to top up a few bottles. Usual price at AutoGrills are about 1.20Euros... thats quite reasonable lah. As for food in restaurants, we didnt try western ones cos heard their real ex. Chinese Rests are cheaper.. if you can organise your tour group to go together 1-2tables, may be able to get 5dishes 1soup plus rice for about 8-10Euros/pax.
Oo...though toilet tips are optional, they are about 0.5-1Euro (SGP$1-2)
they dun really speak English, and they dun really bother about learning cos, yes, they are racists. They'll just blabber to you in Italian and expect you to understand. I felt rather pissed off initially, and so totally irritated, but just treat this tour as an eye opener... For me, I just remind myself that every place has a different culture, and we're there not only to see the scenery, we're also there to learn about the people and culture lor....
As for shopping, if you're buying branded goods, I heard their cheaper abt 20%. If going for normal normal stuff, then try not to spend too much... cos exp...
I'm also planning my honeymoon to Europe in Dec. My AD is on 12/23/04.
I'm not planning to visit too many cities but Spain will be in my itinerary besides Italy. I'm trying to gather more info. and shortlist the cities to visit. Kinda of blurr... would appreciate if someone could share tips on this.
Is true that branded stuff is not cheap in europe anymore. Unless you go to Italy the tax rebate is 14% for Gucci. Which is better than Paris and Frankfurt.
For those who are going to Switzerland from Italy. Take the train from Milan is about 4.5hours to Zurich, either by Cisalpino or Eurotrain. In fact Cisalpino is faster and more comfortable.
Hey, if you wannt to travel between Italy and Switzerland. You should start from South to North. Take a train from Rome to Pisa (4hours), Pisa to Milan (about 3hours), Venice to Milan (4hours). I can say Milan shopping is always better then Rome. All this are time consuming but along the way you get to see beautiful scenery. Esp from Milan to Zurich.
Another alternative is taking flight. Check out the rate at www.easyjet.com or www.ryanair.com. Flight departs on Friday to Sunday are more expensive. Do note flight ticket does not include airport tax.
Lastly, be very careful of your luggage. Do not leave your luggage on the floor while attending to call. The next thing you know is gone. Also try to carry your backpack in front of you. They can still cut the bag from the bottom. Also be more vigilant on the surrounding
Sorry... It should be Pisa NOT Paris...
I'm planning for 10-12days tour in Europe (Italy and Spain only). am now shortlisting the cities to visit:
3-4cities (Pisa-Rome-Venice-Milan) in Italy
2-3cities (Barcelona-Madrid-?) for Spain