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Many, many random Italy questions

Travel Forums Europe Many, many random Italy questions

1. Posted by NantesFC (Respected Member 531 posts) 9y

I'll be in Italy for a little more than 5 weeks and there's a few things I'd like opinions/answers on. I'll be arriving the night of June 30th and leaving the morning of Aug 5th (Back to London). Oh, and just in case anyone was wondering, I didn't choose these dates it's just I realized TOO late that my passport expired and that the wait was 10 weeks for a new one LoL. Anyway, here goes:

2 days in the Cinque Terre and 3 days on the Amalfi Coast. In your opinion is it too much, too little or just right?

What kind of plugs are used in Italy? I've heard the socket prongs are different from any other in Western Europe. If so, can anyone link me to a site where I can purchase a plug adaptor.

I know it's bad during July, but can someone give me a description of how packed the major sites are and if it's even possible to visit them without waiting in line EVEN if I go before opening time. Also, does purchasing advance tickets GUARANTEE direct entrace without waiting in line?

2 days in the Puglia region, Is it enough? One person told me to skip it all together

Where do I go to rent a scooter in Florence? A major point of my trip is to take pictures and I'd like to freely explore the hills of Tuscany so if anyone has done this and has experience with it, I'd appreciate your input. Oh and although I technically have a license, it's currently suspended (I'm a speed demon lol) and not currently in my possesion. Will this be a problem?

I purchased Italy rail passes from railkey.com. As of now, I only know they cover Trenitalia routes but that doesn't really tell me anything at all. What trains can I actually ride with the passes?

I will probably be updating this thread with more random questions so keep posted (please)

All help is appreciated!

[ Edit: Edited on May 18, 2007, at 3:10 PM by NantesFC ]

2. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 9y

Quoting NantesFC

2 days in the Cinque Terre and 3 days on the Amalfi Coast. In your opinion is it too much, too little or just right?

We stayed 4 days in the Amalfi coast, and that was just right. From there you can visit Capri, Napoli (if you dare), Herculaneum, Pompeii, the Pompeii museum, and all the pretty cities long the coast. Plus it's nice just to veg on the beach a day or two.

You can also rent a scooter in the Amalfi coast, but people here drive the steep roads like maniacs, so do so at your own risk.

Quoting NantesFC

What kind of plugs are used in Italy? I've heard the socket prongs are different from any other in Western Europe. If so, can anyone link me to a site where I can purchase a plug adaptor.

Same as in France, with the two rounded plugs. I bought a whole 4-piece set of adaptors from Austin House, so I'm good to go anywhere in the world.

Quoting NantesFC

I know it's bad during July, but can someone give me a description of how packed the major sites are and if it's even possible to visit them without waiting in line EVEN if I go before opening time. Also, does purchasing advance tickets GUARANTEE direct entrace without waiting in line?

We went in May, so it was a little less crowded. However, we still waited in line, especially for St. Peter's and Vatican Museums. Go very, very early for the museums (I'm talking at least an hour and a half before opening), and try to see St. Peter's about ann hour before closing. We got in with no line and managed to see the grotto and the dome, too.

I can't help you with the rest, but I'll add my two cent's if something else comes up!

3. Posted by J_P (Budding Member 9 posts) 9y

You've got plenty of time in Cinque Terre, don't worry you'll see it all, but take plenty of breaks from your hiking etc, because it'll be extremely hot that time of year.

Your rail pass should cover every train route in Italy except those run by TrainOK. I would check before boarding a Trenitalia Eurostar service though, but you should be fine on most Intercity and regional services.

If you want information on Florence, go to this site: http://www.lodging.it/florence-tour I learnt all I needed to know about the city from there, if you're stuck on anything, give them a call, they should be able to help you :-)

4. Posted by NantesFC (Respected Member 531 posts) 9y

Thanks for your replies. Anyone else? I've seen places selling plug adaptors with 3 round prongs for Italy but I guess 2 is still the most widely accepted/used ones

5. Posted by t_maia (Travel Guru 3289 posts) 9y

Chuck the Italy rail pass out of the window - if you take only local trains it is a lot cheaper to travel with point-to-point-tickets by rail (or by bus or ferry) than to use the rail pass. (Italian rail prices are a total joke compared to German or British prices.)

I bought an international ticket that covered Palermo to Venice via Rome and Florence for 80 EUR - it had 2 months validity and I could get on and off as much as I liked. Compare to this the Interrail pass for Italy - 139 EUR for 4 days in one month!

I estimate that for a trip that mainly covers northern Italy from Pisa or Venice down to Rome would cost you between 50 and 100 EUR in transport with point-to-point tickets, depending how often you travel and whether you take 1st class Eurostar or 2nd class regional trains.

www.trenitalia.com/en/index.html will give you an idea on prices if for example you search Florence-Rome and similar.

And yes, the advance ticket does guarantee you admission without waiting in line to purchase your ticket. What it does not guarantee you is that you get in without a long wait to clear security. I went to the Uffizi galleries in Florence. I got there one hour before opening and was the first 50. After one hour waiting I got in almost immediately - while all the members of tourist groups with already purchased tickets had to wait in a very long line to clear security. (They cleverly ALL showed up about 10 minutes after opening.)

[ Edit: Edited on May 30, 2007, at 9:48 AM by t_maia ]

6. Posted by jaxstar (Full Member 74 posts) 9y

im going to the amalfi coast in july, so ill be needing this info!!

i was also wondering about puglia as well, i heard lucca is worth the visit... but to skip the capital (Starts with an F forget its name!). apparently its very dry, quite agricultural, but produces 10% of europes wine! pretty big number!!