Italy - Naples, Pompeii, Sorrento, etc. - can this be done relatively cheaply?(8 Posts)
Has anyone managed to holiday in this part of Italy on a budget? Meaning for less than £1500 in total, including flights and car hire? Ideally we're thinking of a Eurocamp-type holiday, but there's only one campsite anywhere nearby (Baia Domizia) and I'm nervous because it's so big. It's not really package holiday territory and I have no idea what we should expect to pay for flights. We're looking towards May next year.
I should add we have not been on a foreign holiday for 10 years and definitely not since having kids so this is all extremely nerve wracking! Any help appreciated!
We've managed a different part of Italy for £1750 for 17 nights for two adults and two primary age but mainly because we booked very early, last October, and a variety of accommodations. Of that £450 is for flights. Looking at next year, BA's flights seem much more expensive and Easyjet aren't out yet. Car hire was just under £300 for a Ford Fiesta or equivalent - again booked last year. If you can get cheap flights and car hire the accommodation shouldn't be a problem. Eurocamp are very expensive, especially for low season i.e. May. Check out Venue, the campsites direct or the dutch operators... Roan/Selectcamp/Rent-A-Tent/Tentsetters and you should be able to get 7 nights in May for under £200.
From what I've read (we've going later this month) Italy is quite expensive when you get there though so we're taking more spending money than we would normally to France which itself isn't exactly cheap these days. Petrol is also supposed to be expensive so perhaps see if you could do it without car hire and get public transport to tour around? If I hadn't pre-paid our car hire, I might be reconsidering it as I'm the only driver and it's quite relaxing knowing that I don't have to drive.
For Eurocamp prices, you can definitely afford something else, and you might be better off with an apartment or agriturismo (farm cottages, often with shared pools). Take a look at Long Travel's Italian site to get an idea of prices for hotels and cottages. (just google long travel italy).
We switched from Eurocamp-style stuff about 5 years ago after a holiday where we spent 1 week in an agriturismo south of Naples and 1 week at a camp near Rome (slightly horrible). Relatives have booked flats in Sorrento pretty cheaply. The area south of Naples & the Amalfi peninsula is also very pretty. Driving in Naples and the far south can be nerve-racking 1) because of nutcase driving (I have found Rome much like London but the south is unbelievable) and 2) 'interesting' roads - the Amalfi peninsula roads are full of bends/tunnels/high elevated sections which can be very daunting. I think there are good train connections along the coast.
In terms of flights, it depends - we've regularly found BA and Alitalia to work out cheaper than Ryanair and Easyjet, though we are going with Ryanair this summer.
We've found Italy to be similar to the UK in terms of prices but the weather and the food are much better! Love it.
PS We are going to Italy in four days time. Eee! .
If you don't hire a car the train service is very good for those places. I think your budget is doable if you avoid the may half term dates as flights will be a lot higher that week. I can't believe there's only one Eurocamp type site in that area.
We're just back from there!! Had a fabulous time.
I did all the arrangements individually. Flights from Glasgow to Rome for 5 of us with Jet2 were around £800, car hire (Locauto) was £300, small villa with pool (From Feeling Italy) was £600 for 6 days. You can get cheaper if you don't want a pool, but that was important for us.
Things like entrance fees were good value as children got into Pompeii, Herculaneum etc for free (as did I - disabled - and dh - my carer!). Eating out was reasonable, groceries were ok (we self catered mainly as we were in a b&b in Rome afterwards).
Public transport is good - the Circumvesuviana train is excellent. We only hired a car because I'm disabled and walking was a problem.when we went there 20 years ago (well before children) we used public transport.
Pretty much everyone speaks reasonable English which helped (I've got reasonable French and good Spanish but no Italian at all!!).
Our dc are 13, 11 and 9. I've just asked them what they'd advise you did. Their answers - (1) Magic World water park in Guigliamo north of Naples (2) Pompeii (3) Climb Mt Vesuvius (4) Solfatara Crater in Pozzuoli (5) Herculaneum. The beach in Nerano was good too and we stayed near Sant' Agata Sui Due Golfi which was lovely.
I hope you manage it, we had a fantastic time.
And also, you'll never want to listen to "Pompeii" by Bastille ever again!
Brilliant, thank you everyone!! Last night I realised that we might well be able to rent an apartment/villa on a holiday complex for a very affordable price. It's a leap of faith booking direct, but we're up for it. I will investigate all your leads - thanks again everyone. <very excited emoticon>
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