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euro cruiser

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  1. The newsagent is a great tip, always try them first. I know they sell tickets to Rome at Civitavecchia and to Florence at Livorno, odds are the popular destinations at other ports can be purchased that way as well. The lines at the machines are often ridiculous, and will be until American credit card companies catch up with the technology of the rest of the world. Too many times I've watched American tourists try every credit card in their wallet only to have them all rejected because they don't have pin and chip technology, which the machines require (and have for at least a dec
  2. The trip by train is so easy, the station in Messina is an easy walk from the cruise port (about a half mile) and the train ride itself is less than an hour. Right now there is one train each hour so you have some flexibility, which may grow as people start moving around again. Given how inexpensive the train ride is (just under 5 euro per person each way) I'd cough up the money for a taxi at the other end to get from the Taormina station up into town. Yes, it will be expensive compared to the train and seem like too much for such a short ride (about three miles) but time is your
  3. The most important thing to check for a Med cruise, in my opinion, is the number of hours in port. Beware of any cruise that gives you less than twelve full hours, as some of the European lines do.
  4. I think Naples is the best port in Italy because (1) you walk off the ship and you're in the historic center of town, no long drives to get there, (2) there are more interesting things to see/do near the port than almost any other port I can think of and (3) there is excellent public transportation (much of it fast ferries) to get you around the area.
  5. You reminded me of M's first trip to Rome when she was six, she traveled like a champ and was interested in everything. For some reason the young women she saw working at sites within the Roman Forum really caught her interest and we had to walk through there everyday (at that time, nearly two decades ago, it was free and you could come and go as you pleased) so she could watch them. Castel Sant'Angelo was a revelation for me ... she climbed through the entire structure asking appropriate (for her age) questions along the way, then nearly burst into tears when we exited out onto t
  6. I just did a search on the ATAC web site to see what it would take using public transit to get to the Temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from the center of Rome. The easiest route would require about a mile of walking when you get off the bus. You could connect to another local bus at that point but I think you'd get there faster on foot. You would get the #80 bus at Piazza Venezia, the starting point of the line. You'd get off at the 22nd stop, Soldati/Bragaglia, and walk just under a mile from there. The #80 bus departs every five minutes dur
  7. Well I found several versions of the recipe, I kind of made up my own based on what I found it was fairly like the "real" one, but I used a sharp provolone. I think I might have liked it better with pecorino. My brother and my friend's husband cleaned their plates but I personally didn't think it lived up to the hype. When the summer comes and I have fresh zucchini to work with I think I'll try again using the Lo Scoglio recipe with some garlic added for good measure.
  8. I am as well. Some friends and I are trying to recreate the zucchini pasta from the Naples show, we're going to have a zoom dinner party and compare how we did. I could have lived without all of the offal discussion in the Rome episode, though.
  9. Be careful and look at the specifics. There are early entry tours and there are before opening tours. The former may be enough for you and they are fall less expensive than the before/after opening tours, just be sure to read through the details. I can tell you that after several visits to the Vatican Museums a friend and I "gave" each other one of the after hours tours as our birthday presents one year. It was expensive (more than a decade ago it was around $350 each) but we felt it was worth it to have the Sistine Chapel to ourselves (our group of about a dozen with a Vatican
  10. There really is no way to avoid massive crowds at the Vatican museums if you go during regular hours, going on the first tour of the day really doesn't change the situation. Even the shortest tour is a three hour event, by the time you get in, take the tour and get out, so keep that in mind. The only way to have a focused visit without crowds is to take one of the very expensive before or after hours tours. As for everywhere else, Rome is incredibly easy to visit on your own without a tour guide. Yes, you'll learn more with a guide but you'll only get what they decide to tell y
  11. Rome2Rio is a good start but it's far from comprehensive and does, on occasion, present outdated information. It is a good way to get started but always double check directly with the services suggested. And ask questions, here or on Trip Advisor, to learn about options that R2R doesn't present.
  12. Always go to the source for information: www.trentialia.com Italiarail is a reseller, not part of Trenitalia.
  13. It's not on the current schedule, even looking as far forward as June, but things may change by the time Americans are permitted to travel to Europe for leisure.
  14. Once tourism is up and running again this train, which I think ran twice per day, may return but like all things post-Covid it's impossible to know for sure. To answer your question about passport control, baggage claim and train tickets, three hours is far more than enough time to accomplish all of that. One hour is cutting it close, two hours is plenty of pad time, three hours is a bit excessive.
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