We selected a hotel in Rome next door to the Pantheon allowing us to enjoy the former Roman Temple and the hotel’s rooftop bar’s incredible view of Rome.
We walked to the Vatican, the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, the Trevi Fountain and Spanish Stairs. Our hotel locations in Florence and Venice offered equally convenient access to the key attractions.
(We were satisfied with the Albergo Del Senato in Rome, Hotel Globus in Florence, and Ruzzini Palace in Venice.)
-2-Early bird tours and skip the line options made our trip – the premium entry fee for the early morning tours allowed us to enter the Vatican before the crowds. It was an Excellent investment.
We would have forfeited a tour of the Colosseum if it required hours of lineup time to purchase tickets and enter the famous ruins. Tour packages are not all created equal but high rated tours delivered in the three cities visited.
-3-Research restaurants – do your homework, and you'll have much better luck with restaurant selections.
We chose one restaurant after observing local businesspeople dine for lunch and emulated their orders. The pasta of the day was exceptional, but reviews on Trip Advisor were mixed and were especially critical about the diner's pizza. (It wasn't a pizzeria.)
We'd recommend Dante's Bar al Corso for lunch and had a blast at the Hostari De Pascini Pizzeria in Rome, ate fantastic steaks at the Buca Lapi in Florence, and would recommend Nevodi to anyone who wants to enjoy seafood in Venice.
(My wife reads reviews on Japanese sites and I research English data. The comparative results have been solid.)
-4-Visit Pisa and join in the silly photographic fun - the square of Miracles in Pisa is full of people seemingly doing Tai Chi or gymnastics to get original photos pushing or leaning on the famous Tower.
Have fun but be sure to try climbing to the top of the Leaning Tower of Pisa to take pictures and share the same space as Galileo when he performed his famous experiment dropping the different sized balls made from same materials from the top. The 1000-year-old Cathedral of Pisa is inspiring and worth touring with a guide.
-5-Wine tasting at an Enoteca is an option – we had a fantastic experience at the Enoteca Alessi in Florence. Our sommelier poured our flights and explained the vintages in exciting detail and when we finished sampling gave us a tour of their cellar.
They're shipping rates were reasonable, and we have an assortment of Italian wine waiting to enjoy with friends eager to visit our rejuvenated wine rack.