Hello Lordes and everyone.

My mom and I are booked.

We fly into Florence on Sept 9 and out of Florence Sept 29.

We are heading directly to Lucca on the 9 via Train, I have accommodations booked for our first week in Lucca.

Our family name Tognotti, is from the area of Lucca, which is why we are headed there, I am nit sure where to start, as far as contacting and finding family, but this is a work in progress.

My query is schedule related.

week one Lucca Sept 9 through Sept 16, We could extend as the apartment is available for 2 more nights
Lucca and area for one week including the area of the Garfagnana Valley as we have had contact that our family name is known in Lucca and the valley. We will tour around here with a guide in Lucca for probably day 2 in Lucca, we can have the 10th to catch up after a day of travel from Western Canada.

Here is where I am conflicted. Obviously Siena area looks fabulous, but my thoughts are to head North and view some of the Sea side areas and then head up towards Prosecco and include Santa Margherita is best known for their Pinot Grigio wines from the Alto Adige region in northeastern Italy.

From here we would like to spend time in Venice staying in Mestre traveling out to Venice by train and back daily, from here head to Florence and spend a few days before heading home.

Any thoughts or people who have done a similar itinerary I would love to hear. in Canada we are not big train travellers as they are very slow, we drive. I am not opposed to driving or touring through the outer areas, but will do trains and busses when I can as i have read a few horror stories with the driving.

I guess I am just having trouble figuring out how many days to stay in an area, if I should prebook all accommodations. I love being a bit more spontaneous, especially if I could actually find dates of local harvest festivals etc.

I truly appreciate any help, I am just in the beginning and probably sound a bit loopy, but I am so looking forward to your input and will appreciate any help any of you are wiling to give!

Cheers Kim