The Nagasawa family trip to Italy and France:  June 12 - 30, 2008




June 12  Fly to Rome June 21 Fly to Marseilles
June 13 Arrive in Rome June 22 Drive to Les Barcares
June 14 Rome June 23 Sigean Animal Reserve
June 15 Assisi, drive to Venice June 24 Priory of Serrabona
June 16 Venice June 25 Collioure
June 17 Drive to Florence June 26 Relax in Claira
June 18 Florence, drive to Siena & Orvieto June 27 Drive to Barcelona
June 19 Drive to Rome June 28 Relax in Claira
June 20 Rome June 29 Drive to Marseilles
    June 30 Fly back to Boston

(the links are the days in purple; click on them to see pictures)


The buildup: 


Overall, the trip was awesome.  But to better appreciate the challenge of our family vacation, watch for us trying to do some balancing acts:  (1) Juggling Ming and my desire to see historical and artistic sites vs. John's and Zoe's desire to have fun and play.  (2) Being low-cost vs. eating well and seeing cool things.  (3) Given limited time, do we see more Antiquity vs. Renaissance? 


The main purpose was to meet my sister Mari, her husband Richard, and their 1 year old son Lucas (pronounced Luca) in southern France.  So we booked these tickets 11 months ago!  We flew on United Airlines' frequent flyer miles; I had over 200,000 miles saved up since 1994 that I never used.  But this means that airlines really don't care much about you.  United/Lufthansa cancelled our return flight without even telling us!  Only because Ming called a month ago did we find out, and get onto another return flight.  Whew!


A disclaimer:  Some of the generic pictures on this site are from other websites.  Unfortunately we were robbed in Barcelona (!) and the darn thieves took my USB drive which had most of my Italy pictures on it.  More on that later.


June 12, 2008:


We flew from Boston to Toronto to Rome's da Vinci airport.  We brought our own tent, since we decided to camp almost all the way through.  We rented a car and drove to the camp site.  I pitched the tent, and did this so often that I eventually can do it in about 15 minutes.


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