Why I recommend hiring a car to make the most of your Italian holiday…

When the moon hits your eye,

Like a big pizza pie….that’s Amore!!

Trevi_Fountain,_Rome,_Italy_2_-_May_2007

I love Italy and I am sure if you have visited once – you have definitely thrown that coin in the Fontana di Trevi so you could go back to visit again.

I am lucky to have visited Italy on many occasions due to my sister being there and living in a gorgeous town called Bracciano. Aren’t I lucky? I save on hotels in a big way.

I have visited Rome, Capri, Venice, Naples, Assisi, Florence, Padua, Pisa, Amalfi and Sorrento to name a few.  All these places are absolutely out of this world. When you travel in Italy the scenery is mind-blowing. There is a vibrancy coupled with old world charm that makes you want to visit again and again.

When I visited there, I travelled mostly by train as there are links to major cities but I wish I had hired a car instead as though the trains connect cities, often, there are cancellations. By cancellations, I mean the trains do not move so if you have booked hotels, you are most likely to lose money. There have also been instances where the train has suddenly terminated in one station and we have had to wait over two hours for a replacement train with no proper information about when it was due to arrive.

One extremely good reason why I would advise hiring a car in Italy when you are there on a visit is to ensure that you are not pick-pocketed. I can give you a first-hand instance of this.

We had reached Naples station and needed to go to the hotel so we went to the bus stand. The bus we required was there and ready to leave and was super crowded. Some friendly locals (or so we thought) helped us into the bus and pushed us in so we could make it. In fact, they stopped the bus for us. Only we were quick to realise that they were being friendly only to try and pick our pockets. I could literally see a hand un-zipping my handbag and my husband (then fiancé) actually held onto the hand trying to get the wallet out of his back pocket. We jumped out of the bus and hailed a cab which proved quite expensive but well worth it as we had our wallets and purses intact.

If you are travelling with children, it is easier to travel by car as you will have everything handy in it. Remember in Italy, quite a few places are closed in the afternoon for the siesta.

Of course, to give your eye a visual treat, it would be ideal to travel by car around Italy. The roads are gorgeous and winding and the views are spectacular. The views on the Amalfi coast are breathtaking as you drive on the road that has the mountain to one side and the steep cliff, the other. Make sure you don’t look down if you suffer from vertigo. Although the Lemoncello when you reach Amalfi will ensure that your fear of heights is not any issue.

I love Rome and all of the other places I visited but I fell head over heels in love with Venice. It is an awesome city – the gondolas, the Bridge of Sighs, the Rialto. I can remember each moment of my time spent there. If you are driving from Rome to Venice, there are many cities that you can visit on the way like Florence, Padua, and Bologna so again it makes sense to travel by car so you can make stops where you like. Plus, driving through the small towns will really keep you entertained – with the Piazzas in the centre of the towns, the beautiful churches and cathedrals, fountains, cobbled streets and if you happen to chance upon one of their weekly open markets, you can shop for the things from clothing to food to household items and you can haggle.

Yes, I have been privileged to visit and see the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Colosseum, St. Peter’s Basilica, the Sistine Chapel and The Vatican Museum and many other places in Italy that have left me with a lifetime of memories. Every time I go, I throw a coin in the Fountain and hope to go back.

Writing this post as also made me want to visit again and this time I will definitely be hiring a car to make life easier and to be able to stop at the bars in the towns which serve coffees, ice creams and non alcoholic drinks so you will find families there too.

The food in Italy is amazing with freshly served pasta and vino served by friendly waiters.

So….Cappuccino anyone?

Written in collaboration with Carhiremarket.com

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