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Author Topic: Italy in 2007 - feedback please?  (Read 7992 times)
Box Brownie
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« on: October 04, 2006, 05:35:45 PM »
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Hi All

Just some forward planning thoughts.

We are considering a trip to Italy next year and want to make it a 2 centre break - firstly in Sorrento and then say 3 nights in Venice.

So, would we be picking an optimum time if we went in late June ~ seems like a good month for longer daylight hours and good comfortable max temp average of 77degress. But what about the lagoon are we likely to have our noses assaulted ;~)

Also, is it possible to use the train to travel easily between the two places?

Thoughts and guidance very welcome.

TIA
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englishm
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« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2006, 07:04:12 PM »
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June would be a great month to visit Italy... and you have picked two great destinations.  The train travel time between them is quite long however... 9 hours or so, with stops in Napoli, Rome, and possibly Bologna as well:  doable, but pretty mind numbing.  There is however so much to see between these two areas, it seems a shame to just blow by them on a train.

Why not spend some time in Tuscany, say Siena or Cortona?  Pick up a car at the Siena train station and explore the country side.  Great landscape opportunities south of Siena: particularly around San Quirico D'Orcia, or west between Poggibonsi and Volterra... absolutely quintessential tuscan lansdscapes!

Also a day or two in Florence would be worth while and would really only scratch the surface of this city.  Don't miss the sunset from the Piazzale Michaelangelo!

The train ride from Rome to Siena or from Florence to Venice is only three hours... much more palatable in my mind.

Have a great trip... Italy is far and way my personal favourite country to visit.
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englishm
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« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2006, 07:10:08 PM »
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And BTW... rumours of the aromas from the Venetian lagoon and canals are a bit out of date.  I have been there several times in the last few years, and even in the heat of late summer have never noticed a problem... Florence can be worse in fact.  Keeping in mind that both cities are over a thousand years old, neither is particularly bad in this regard.

Venice is an intense visual experience, not to be missed in any life.
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Box Brownie
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« Reply #3 on: October 04, 2006, 07:12:23 PM »
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Hi Mark

Thanks for the informed fedback.

In July 2004 we did visit Piza, Florence, Tuscany area, Siena etc (?) in the main the temps were good but we spent only a limited amount of time in Florence which was very hot  ~ not that any of those places would not warrant another visit especially with your pointers to named places.

Must check the map - perhaps a stopover in Rome would make using the train less of a drag.  Will take an internal flight if we have to but thought a train journey would be interesting ?



PS I do hope that the restrictions on hand baggage are relaxed by 2007 such that I can take my larger camera bag (Lowepro Slingshot 200AW)
« Last Edit: October 04, 2006, 07:18:30 PM by Box Brownie » Logged

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englishm
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« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2006, 07:53:59 PM »
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Train travel is my _preferred_ way to travel in Europe... definately the way to go.

I wouldn't wory about your Lowe 200AW (which I also have).  I routinely board with a Domke 805 Satchel... never been hassled in the least, but then it is legal carry on.
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giambattista
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« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2006, 01:51:17 AM »
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Hi,I'm an italian photographer living in Venice.
I've seen your post and I hope to help you.
1) June is a fantastic period to came, better the first half.It is not too hot.
    Anyway don't came in July and Agost,too expensive and too many people.
2) I suggest you the fly to go from Naples to Venice.Give a look at ALPIEAGLES website, a low cost
    company.
3)I suggest you also some Hotel : Luna Convento in Amalfi, a fantastic charming hotel,
   and Crowne Plaza - Stabiae Sorrento Coast Hotel,  in Peninsula sorrentina .
   In Venice You can make a selection and also reserve on line from a long list at this link
   http://www.netplan.it/en/company_italy_hotels.htm

For other information You can contact me at info@giambattistabenedet.com
www.giambattistabenedet.com
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Concorde-SST
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« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2006, 02:08:27 PM »
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Ciao,

I know Italy quite well since my better half comes
from Rome :-)

Venice in June sounds very good, but be prepared
for heavy turisti traffic. However, most of this will
occur around the bigger attractions (San Marco,
Rialto etc.). I´d skip visiting the musei in summer,
its just way too crowded and you can spend hours
waiting for a ticket.

Sorrento is a breathtakingly beautiful place, it will
pop your eyes out!! If you aren´t used to drive
narrow and curved roads, don´t start there :-)
Its a sure way to get gray hairs quickly :-)

Even hiking is very good there and the limoncello
too!!

hope it helps..

best,

Andreas
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cmburns
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« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2006, 11:07:10 PM »
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I was just in Venice, Rome and Florence, last month, and in 2004 was in Venice and Sorrento area in late June. I remember it being pretty hot on the Amalfi coast back in 2004. I didn't get to see all of it thanks to a problem with our rental car. We took the train from Salerno to Florence then. We dropped off the rental car, got to the station and it was 30 minutes until our local train took us to Naples for our high speed train to Florence. All we had to do was walk up one flight of stairs. We missed the train. Why? Because it was the only flight of stairs open and they were narrow. So the Italians getting off trains and coming down had to stop and argue with the Italians going up to get on a train. 45 minutes of gridlock. Then when we did get up to the platoform level it turned out all the trains were very late because it was a railroad strike. They are nice enough to announce this ahead of time, of course not in any place a typical tourist would look.
Still I would reccomend travelling by train. You could take a night train from Naples to Milan, then it's just an hour or two on to Venice, and that would be in the morning when you probably couldn't check into your hotel anyway. The eurostar trains are very nice and comfortable, much more so than Europe's budget airlines. Also check carefully with the budget airlines, most are 20kg of CHECKED bag weight and one carryone, some are even less than that. If you go the budget airline route take a look at www.whichbudget.com to search through many of them.

While you're in Sorrento it's not that far at all to go to Pompeii and probably even better, Herculaneum. Pompeii was miserably hot back in June 2004 so get there as early as possible.  I also went again last month and it was a rainy day. As soon as the sun broke through the clouds it was again hot and muggy. Same story at Herculaneum, a bunch of old building 60 feet or so below current street level with hot sun beating down on it all day. It gets toasty.
Venice I also remember as being hot in June. I know we had a hotel with AC and were very glad we did. The regular Doge palace tour was no trouble to get into but the Secret Iteneraries one was booked solid. Oh well didn't sound like much to me, and they won't let you photograph most places in the Doge palace anyway.

Besides, the best photography in Venice is off the beaten path. Get a decent map, then just start walking and try to get lost. Then start looking at the signs at the ends of alleyway and streets pointing to known landmarks,  Piazza San Marco, Pier Rialto etc., along the way you'll see all kinds of people, shops, architecture, etc. to photo. As for stink from the canals, never, and they flooded when we were there last month at high tide. You might be walking and go around a corner and it smell awful but it's just like any old city, here and there the sewer is backing up on any given day. I'd worry more about stepping it dog doo as there's far too many people there that walk there dogs and don't pick up after them.
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Jerry Kurata
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« Reply #8 on: October 30, 2006, 04:27:20 PM »
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Hi All

Just some forward planning thoughts.

We are considering a trip to Italy next year and want to make it a 2 centre break - firstly in Sorrento and then say 3 nights in Venice.

So, would we be picking an optimum time if we went in late June ~ seems like a good month for longer daylight hours and good comfortable max temp average of 77degress. But what about the lagoon are we likely to have our noses assaulted ;~)

Also, is it possible to use the train to travel easily between the two places?

Thoughts and guidance very welcome.

TIA
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Hi,

We traveled to Rome, Florence, and Venice in late June.  We used the train to get from the various cities and found them efficient and comfortable.  I suggest taking the faster EuroStar trains to minimize the travel time.  Also, first class tickets were a few Euros more, but gave you better seats.

Of the 3 places, we liked Venice and Rome the best.  BTW, in Florence you need to make reservations for prime attractions like the Academia at least a week ahead of time; or get in with a guide.  

Venice was very nice.  The water taxi system is an efficient way to get from place to place.  As a photographer you will find something to shot around every corner.  The tour ships come in the morning and depart in the evening.  With these ships come waves of tourists.  As a result, I found the best time to shoot was before 9 AM or after 9 PM.

Have a great trip,

Jerry
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RedRebel
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« Reply #9 on: November 01, 2006, 12:07:17 PM »
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I was in Tuscany for three weeks this year and I had an appartment in Isola dÁrbia (Agri Turismo) only 10km from Siena. For me it was ideal but in my case I realy needed a car. To avoid high temperatures, people and if you wan't to enjoy landscapes, it's better to avoid the holidayseason and make the trip in spring or autum. It can be very hot (and crowded) in ascient Italian citties and you do a lot of climbing.

ps if you are a Car enthousiast, you can go to the "Galleria Ferrari" in Maranello, close to Modena. It's not a large museum (1-2 hours visit) but if you like Ferarri....
The museum is at walk distance from the factory and the Pista di Fiorano (test+F1 racetrack) is at the back of the factory. So if you would like to hear a V8 at 10.000 rpm...go for it. You are not allowed on the track, but every few minutes cars are comming from the factory for testing.

PS if you wan't to shoot images in the Ferarri museum, be aware that the light conditions change every few minutes (neutral, purple, green..). In most other museums you are NOT allowed to use a camera. In churches (Florance, Siena) you are allowed to use camera's, but without a flash or trippod. But with a 5D and IS....  no problemo

Enyoy your trip and don't forget to taste real coffee and icecream...
« Last Edit: November 01, 2006, 12:14:21 PM by RedRebel » Logged
magnas
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« Reply #10 on: November 15, 2006, 12:26:23 PM »
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Hi

I don't want to hi-jack this thread but I've just registered and this thread is particularly relevant to me right now. I'm off to Venice on Sunday (19 Nov) ostensibly for my first wedding anniversary (hence the 'odd' timing) and was wondering if any of the people here who are knowledeable about Venice could tell me if it is worth risking an early divorce by taking my kit. I realise the weather won't be ideal, etc but I've heard and seen so much about Venice that it must have photographic possibilities no matter what the conditions.

we are going for a week so have plenty of time to explore and wait for a particular view - and at least the tourists should be a t a minimum (or am I being too optimistic?) Anyway I am looking forward to what this beautiful city has to offer.
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Lisa Nikodym
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« Reply #11 on: November 15, 2006, 04:17:10 PM »
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I've been to Venice in November, and, yes, it was nearly empty of tourists, which was great.  The weather when I was there was mostly cool and misty, which lent the place a very different (and good) atmosphere compared with high summer.  Photography worked fine under those conditions; it just meant fewer sweeping vistas and more short-range shots.  Less dynamic range with misty conditions, too, which made things easier in that way.  Of course, the weather can be variable this time of year; you might have sun instead.  Just bring some good water-resistant footware, in case the piazzas get somewhat flooded (which they can do when it's raining and high tide).  Also, there are some gorgeous interiors, and I don't remember whether flash and/or tripods are allowed in most of them (it was awhile ago...), so think about how you want to handle potentially dim interior shots (if you want to at all) and bring appropriate gear (high ISO? mini tripod?).

Lisa
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DaveLon
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« Reply #12 on: November 15, 2006, 04:42:43 PM »
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I was in Venice at the end of August, start of September and many of the churches etc. won't let you use flash or tripod and many discourage cameras too. But try wandering about, get lost and enjoy!

Dave S
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magnas
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« Reply #13 on: November 16, 2006, 02:02:44 AM »
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Lisa/Dave

Thanks for getting back to me. What you descirbe is pretty much how I saw things panning out. i.e. taking advantage of the things that the city and the weather deal out to me. What you said about the closer shots is interesting though, as I had been planning on taking my Xpan. I probably still will because as you say, things can be variable.

Luckily we both enjoy exploring (wandering around half lost until we come to somewhere we recognise on the map) so we will certainly fill our time.

Can't wait.
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Lisa Nikodym
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« Reply #14 on: November 16, 2006, 10:03:31 AM »
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Quote
Luckily we both enjoy exploring (wandering around half lost until we come to somewhere we recognise on the map) so we will certainly fill our time.

Venice is about as good as you can get for that sort of wandering!  I love it too.  No cars to worry about, and interesting old buildings around every corner.  I'd be sure to bring a wide-angle lens for the latter...

I have to share a funny story...
We were there on some local feast day, where the locals were all out walking around town.  We crossed a major canal on a very pretty old-style wooden footbridge at one point.  The next day, we wanted to cross the canal and were in the same area, so we wandered to where we thought the bridge had been, and... no bridge!  We thought we were going nuts.  Later someone mentioned that that bridge is only put there one day a year for the feast day.

Another possibly useful side note:
We ate at one or two of the more famous big-name restaurants in Venice, and were unimpressed.   We thought the meals where we had a big plate of pasta at a tiny side-street trattoria were much better.

Lisa
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magnas
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« Reply #15 on: November 16, 2006, 10:14:53 AM »
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I haven't got the guide books here right now but it could have been the feast day where deliverence from one of the plagues is celebrated. I think they have bridge across to one of the churches for that day only. I think it is on the day we land in Marco Polo so hopefully we'll see some of the celebrations.

I know what you mean about the quality of meals. I found the same thing in Tuscany in May. Size and interior styling usually have little to do with the quality of the food served. I usually prefer the more modest establishment myself.

I'll have my Canon 17-40mm so that should do for the wide shots (and my Xpan of course).
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daleeman
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« Reply #16 on: December 27, 2007, 11:15:42 AM »
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New to this site.

This thread is exciting to me, I am newly engaged and Sue and I will be going to Italy in the first week of November of 2008. I do the photos and she is a bird watcher, so we are looking for great eye candy in dual genres.

We hope to attend services in Rome, and I hope to tweak her excitement in costal towns and other places of simple life… but there has to be a great array of birds and not just the flocks of pigeons a city can attract.

I would like to ask the advice of those who have traveled there before us to enlighten us with what we might find and if you remember areas of flocks of birds, migration or any other wild life areas.

I must say I am excited to go, but more excited to marry this wonderful woman who loves to be out in the world and make a difference.

Lee
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GregW
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« Reply #17 on: December 27, 2007, 11:36:54 AM »
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Your agenda looks quite full but I can't help myself from recommending a trip to Lakes Como and Garda.  Additionally the Dolomites are simply stunning and very close to Venice.  If you don't have time on this trip please consider them in the future:-)
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francois
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« Reply #18 on: December 27, 2007, 12:12:47 PM »
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Lee,
In addition to Greg's suggestions, you might also want to consider the Marema Natural Park in southern Tuscany. Here's the official website. In November, you might escape tiger mosquitos  
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Francois
gioallie
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« Reply #19 on: December 28, 2007, 12:57:12 PM »
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Hi,

if you mind, give a look here: Allievi Photography. A bit out of your plans but worth a try!



Quote
Hi All

Just some forward planning thoughts.

We are considering a trip to Italy next year and want to make it a 2 centre break - firstly in Sorrento and then say 3 nights in Venice.

So, would we be picking an optimum time if we went in late June ~ seems like a good month for longer daylight hours and good comfortable max temp average of 77degress. But what about the lagoon are we likely to have our noses assaulted ;~)

Also, is it possible to use the train to travel easily between the two places?

Thoughts and guidance very welcome.

TIA
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