Traveling to Italy is important. It is the dream of millions of people. It doesn’t have to be just a dream. It can be a reality. Save each month for a vacation to Italy. When you have enough, make reservations. See this beautiful and romantic country. Airfare is the most expensive part of the trip. Traveling off-season can drastically reduce airfares. Stay in small European hotels not big name American hotels. Make sure you have a private bath. Eat in bars or a trattoria. Never travel in August! It is hot and very crowded.
Tour groups can be expensive as well. They are run like cruises. The initial expense doesn’t seem bad but then they always have side-trips you want that can run up on the bill. They guide you to their restaurants and shops that give them a kickback. These are not always the best places for a memorable vacation. Be a smart traveller! Do your homework. Buy a guide-book or study the Internet. Here is a checklist:
- List the cities you ant to visit. Don’t try to do all of Europe or even all of Italy in one trip.
- List the top things you want to see in each city.
- If museums are your thing, list the top things in each museum that you want to see. Don’t try to do all of a large museum.
- Research Italian hotels. Look at location, price, amenities and other travelers reviews. Don’t worry if breakfast is included. Breakfast in Italy at a bar is cheap and delicious.
- Estimate the time you need in days in each city. Then estimate travel time between cities. You can fly, drive or take a train. Flying gives you the most time in your cities if they are a distance from each other. Trains are romantic and you can see the country side.
- List entrance costs and local transportation (metro) to get to each attraction. Many cities can be walked if you are in shape.
- Now estimate your trip. List days in each place and when you should go. Airfares are often cheaper on Tuesday through Thursday than weekends.
- Now you have an itinerary and an estimate on cost. Add in spending money and extras that you will find spur-of-the-moment.
- Now you are ready for a wonderful trip. Sit back and enjoy it.
We love taking people around Italy. We enjoy seeing the amazement in their eyes and the joy they feel. When we take a group it is always small and we don’t try to do everything in a single trip. It is important to end your vacation feeling happy and full of memories, Our rules are:
- Visit the main cities first. See the top ten things in each city. Experience the city as an Italian. Meet and talk with people. Most Italians speak some English as it is the national second language.
- Visit small mountain and sea-side towns next. Some of these are so small that the large tour busses can’t get to them.
- Never go to touristy restaurants or shops. Be spontaneous and see what you find during your walks.
- Have a general itinerary but be spontaneous and be able to change it.
- Experience not just the monuments but the people, food and wine.
Italy is a passionate and romantic country. Experience all of its emotions.
George & Jo Anne