today i took the time to finish uploading all the pictures to my Facebook albums and can share them. you DO NOT have to have a Facebook account to look at the pictures, but i think you might need one to leave comments...
we went for two weeks: 4 days in Florence, 3 in Venice, and a week in Roma!!
We walked pretty much everywhere. Davis was in charge of hotels and he did TERRIFIC!! The rooms were a bit pricey, but we weren't having to pay for taxis to get us to with walking distance of all the touristy areas. So it averaged out, taxis are not cheap. We only took taxis to and from the train stations.
Not speaking much Italian wasn't a problem. Much easier to communicate in Italy than Paris, i'll tell you that!! We did get a local SIMS card with a prepay plan for my Iphone and that was a BIG help. i did down load tour maps for each city and a translation app just in case before leaving the states.
OH- if you plan on going into any churches in Italy, they have a strict dress code! Shoulders covered and nothing shorter than your knees- men AND women. We also were told that too much cleavage showing would get you asked to leave. Altho on one tour, we were with a lady in a see-thru blouse (and i mean see-thru!) and no one said anything to her, so *shrug* take your chances.
more advice- you WILL need a good map. not the cheap freebie they give you at the hotel check in. A map is almost necessary in Venice. it was so easy to get turned around in all those little alley ways *ack* i found that holding a map and just repeating "Dove?" (dough-veah), 'where' in Italian, someone would take pity on you and help. Just remember to return the favor when you see someone holding a map with a "where the hell are we look" on their face *grin* Most tourist attractions are well marked with signage, but Davis and I tended to try to find the path least traveled... that's how we found all those GREAT restaurants. We had a rule- We could never walk back the same way we came. (except when we walked by a closed quilt shop in Pisa. we went back that way hoping it would be open- it was)
we were there in August and August and half of September is an Italian Holiday, so my advice: have the hotel conceigre call that quilt shop that is a two mile walk away from all the hotel BEFORE you walk all the way there to find out it's closed for the holiday... and let's not forget the 2-3 hour lunch breaks, but the food makes for it...did i mention how good the food was? *grin* also, most of the laundry mats were closed for holiday and we kindda counted on that. *stank*
but speaking of...check it out:
here's that quilt shop... (it's name 'Ago Mago' translates to 'Needle Magician' Is that NOT the greatest quilt shop name ever!!! *DIBS*)
see that white and red sign next to the door?
does that quilt on the bottom look familiar??
i'm international, baby!! *giggle*
well, i've typed enuf!