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      07-28-2019, 11:04 PM   #1
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URGENT: critique this Northern Italy itinerary

Flying out in a few days on a last minute trip to Northern Italy, landing in Milan.

Main thing is wanting to check out Cinque Terre and as little time as possible in Milan. So Iím thinking of the below. We have 8 full days. Please help provide input/suggestions ASAP. Thank you!

- Land in MXP around 6:30 AM, get to Bergamo and spend 4 nights there with day trips to Lake Como and Verano
- train to Cinque Terre and spend 3 nights there
- return to Milan on the last day to check out the Duomo, spend the night and fly back home the next morning

Looking online people suggested Parma and Bologna as home base cities. Iím not interested in Venice, Florence, or really anywhere else. Does the above work? Trying to avoid moving around as much as possible due to limited time. Last trip I just did a few days in Rome and then a week in Amalfi Coast. Rome was a better city to spend time than Milan though.

Last edited by BMW F22; 07-28-2019 at 11:10 PM..
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      07-28-2019, 11:43 PM   #2
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How r u getting around. Nice there.
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      07-29-2019, 12:02 AM   #3
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Quote:
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How r u getting around. Nice there.
Just walking and taking public transportation like trains and buses to various cities.
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      07-29-2019, 12:23 AM   #4
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I have been to Italy a number of times, and there is a lot to see.
I tend to move quicker from place to place when travelling, so this may not work for you but;

You can get a train from Milan to Cinque terre, through Pisa if you want to see the tower. Itís interesting, but packed.

Modena is not that far away, and you can see Ferrari. Lamborghini, and even a factory floor tour of Pagani (easily the best of the 3 imo) is possible on one of those days if your not set on 4 days in the foot of the Alps.

Cinque Terre is awesome by the way. My wife and I always find a way to get there when in Northern Italy/Southern France. It can be busy this time of year, but itís still great.
Tip: In Cinque Terre, only use bank machines IN banks, not ones mounted on buildings. They are often corrupt. Make sure to hike the trail from Riomaggiore to Vernazza, and take the ferry to Monterosso. The boat gives a great view of all 5 villages.

Trains go almost everywhere, and there are lots of high speed trains now so itís even quicker.


Last edited by ToddBlack88; 07-29-2019 at 12:29 AM..
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      07-29-2019, 05:52 AM   #5
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@ToddBlack88 - my current thinking is to go straight from MXP when we land to either Cinque Terre (4 hours or so) or Bergamo (2.5-3 hours). Just not sure if itís a good idea after 15-16 hours on the plane but it would make the most sense without having to spend a day in Milan at the beginning and at the end.

I plan on staying in Vernazza. Should I bus/walk to Riomaggiore to start the hike then? Also, are 3 days enough (including the day we train to get there) for Cinque Terre or should we do 4 days, 3 nights there?
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      07-29-2019, 06:50 AM   #6
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Updated itinerary: 3 nights in Bergamo with day trips; 4 nights in Cinque Terre, and 1 night in Milan to fly back next morning. Recommend places to eat too please (or any cool experience that most people donít see).


Day 1: land early morning and train from mxp to milan centrale and bus to Bergamo, spend the day in Bergamo.
Day 2: day trip to Lake Como or Verona
Day 3: day trip to Lake Como or Verona
Day 4: head to Vernazza, Cinque Terre
Day 5: Cinque Terre
Day 6: Cinque Terre
Day 7: Cinque Terre
Day 8: head back to Milan to see the Cathedral, spend rest of day in Milan.
Day 9: fly home
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      07-29-2019, 08:24 AM   #7
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Will be a cool trip

To cut down on travel time I would combine the Cinque Terre with Tuscany.
Bergamo and Verona are interesting cities but I wouldn't spend too much time there. Tuscany is so packed with gems.
And a get a small Italian rental, like a FIAT 500. Or Lancia Y.
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      07-29-2019, 08:32 AM   #8
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Bring or buy mosquito repellent, I was in Milan last year at this time and got eaten up.
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      07-29-2019, 08:35 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EdM5 View Post
Will be a cool trip

To cut down on travel time I would combine the Cinque Terre with Tuscany.
Bergamo and Verona are interesting cities but I wouldn't spend too much time there. Tuscany is so packed with gems.
And a get a small Italian rental, like a FIAT 500. Or Lancia Y.
So how would the trip be laid out? Head straight from MXP to Vernazza, Cinque Terre the day we land, spend a few days there then train/bus to Siena and rent a car from there? How do we get back to Milan after? Just trying to plan out the logistics because Cinque Terre and Tuscany would be great! Iím perfectly okay with cutting out Bergamo, Verona, and Milan completely except the night before where we have to be back to sleep.

Edit: so spend 3 nights in Vernazza, then on 4th day, rent a car from La Spezia and drive to Tuscany (where to stay as home base?), spend 3 nights there, drive back to La Spezia and drop car off on the 7th day, spend night in Cinque Terre and then on the 8th day come back to Milan, spend the night and fly home next morning.

Last edited by BMW F22; 07-29-2019 at 08:52 AM..
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      07-29-2019, 10:17 AM   #10
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F22,
Why not pickup the rental at Malpensa, then drive to North of the Cinque Terre, start at Vernazza or even Monterosso. Then work your way south to end this part of the trip in Vernazza (when coming from Monterosso) or Riomaggiore. From Riomaggiore the drive to for example Lucca Tuscany is less then 60 miles. Then pick some of the fantastic sites in Tuscany (Arezzo, Pisa, San Gimignano etc.) for the next days.
I wouldn't rely too much on public transportation in August. And the roads are gorgeous and well maintained.
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      07-29-2019, 10:49 AM   #11
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Just worried about parking. From what I gathered thereís not much parking in Cinque Terre hence I looked into public transportation.
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      07-29-2019, 11:18 AM   #12
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If you are just going to major cities, or towns, trains go everywhere. If you want to hit the Tuscan hill towns then you need a car, or a cab, or a slow bus.

You can’t really drive in Cinque Terre, you drive to the parking lots and walk from there.

Have you booked a place in Cinque Terre yet? August is Italian vacation month so most beach places are booked well in advance by vacationing Italians, and it can be difficult to find accommodation in Cinque Terre.

Lucca is a cool town with its old ring wall.

Florence is one of my favourite big city Italian experiences, and a must if looking for a Duomo.
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      07-29-2019, 11:37 AM   #13
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Yes, I think best plan is to train from MXP/Milan to CT and stay in Vernazza. Then after 2-3 days rent a car from La Spezia to hit up Tuscany. Can use Lucca as a home base to visit other cities in Tuscany. Then drop off at LS, spend a night in CT before heading back to Milan for the final day.
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      07-29-2019, 12:57 PM   #14
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How do you get so much time away from work to be so well traveled? These threads make me envious.
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      07-29-2019, 01:16 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JasonCSU View Post
How do you get so much time away from work to be so well traveled? These threads make me envious.
Unlimited PTO policy. Trying to fit things in between work projects and other commitments hence a short trip.
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      07-29-2019, 01:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JasonCSU View Post
How do you get so much time away from work to be so well traveled? These threads make me envious.
Lol.

I actually gave up a promotion with a large pay raise because it required me to work more. I found I didn’t have the time off required to spend the extra cash on what I wanted, Travelling. I don’t need or want more “things” so I went back to my old position and my 10 weeks vacation

I would like more time off.
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      07-29-2019, 03:40 PM   #17
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Unlimited PTO policy. Trying to fit things in between work projects and other commitments hence a short trip.

Nice, that is a sweet perk. I imagine it must work out well depending on the project load.
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      07-29-2019, 04:49 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ToddBlack88 View Post
Lol.

I actually gave up a promotion with a large pay raise because it required me to work more. I found I didnít have the time off required to spend the extra cash on what I wanted, Travelling. I donít need or want more ďthingsĒ so I went back to my old position and my 10 weeks vacation

I would like more time off.

Wow, 10 weeks of vacation! I don't blame you there as I wouldn't give that up either.
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