If you haven’t yet organized a trip or a trip out of town for the Christmas holidays, the best and most practical way to travel is to get on a train that will take you to your destination.
And, if you think that it is now too late to book because there will be no more places, you are very wrong. Trainline has published the report of the most booked railway routes for the Christmas holidays and also those where there are still seats available.
Italy appears to be the country where the most last minute bookings are made. According to Trainline data, in fact, in 2022 Italians booked on average only five days before departure, unlike the French who are more planners (ten days before), the Spanish (12 days before) and the Germans (15 days before ).
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The railway routes where you can still find space
Among the destinations where you can still go are Venice and Bologna, if you leave from Milan, and Naples, if you leave from Bologna or Florence.
Visit Venice in a day
Before the entrance ticket to enter Venice is paid, a trip to this splendid city, unique in the world, is a must. Starting from Milan, in two and a half hours you arrive at Santa Lucia station and, after crossing the Constitution Bridge or Calatrava Bridge, you arrive in the city. Elect best city in Europe of 2023 dal Daily Telegraph, our timeless and romantic Venice is unique for its artistic, cultural, architectural and landscape heritage. A real treasure chest that contains authentic treasures of world art.
It is the only city where streets almost do not exist, replaced by water which takes the form of canals and lagoons, so much so that one can move almost only on foot or with vaporettos. Venice has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987, not only for the historical, cultural and artistic value it represents, but also for the natural landscape that it offers to those lucky enough to visit it.
In one day you can go from Piazza San Marco to the Basilica, from Palazzo Ducale to the famous Caffè Florian, with a gondola trip on the Grand Canal, passing under the Rialto Bridge and visiting both the Accademia Galleries and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection . Here you will find other things to do in 24 hours in Venice.
Bologna in one day
Just this year, Bologna received the Urban Award as the most sustainable city in Italy. From Milan in an hour you arrive at Bologna Centrale where you can rent a bicycle and explore it far and wide through its thousand kilometers of Bicipolitana, a single cycle path, the longest in Italy, with safe and continuous routes that they serve both citizens and tourists and which, often immersed in nature, also take them out of the city.
The Emilian capital is a concentration of medieval and Renaissance history and still hides many secret corners. There are many reasons why Bologna should absolutely end up on the whislist of next destinations to visit. Its cuisine is undoubtedly at the peak of tourist interest, given the importance of food and wine in the modern era of travel. And it is in this regard that, among the recommended stops for those arriving in the city, there are its open-air markets and, obviously, FICO Eataly World, a theme park entirely dedicated to Italian delicacies.
But Bologna is much more: its complex of porticoes, 62 km long, is recognised UNESCO heritage and it is one of its distinctive symbols. As well as the 24 medieval stone towers, which stand out in the skyline.
Naples in 24 hours
With three hours by train from Florence and three and a half from Bologna you arrive in Naples. The trip can also be done in one day, but if you can stay at least one night the weekend becomes less hectic and you can visit many more places. Of course, not all.
If you have never been there, focus on the most touristy stops: the historic centre, the San Severo Chapel, the San Gennaro Chapel, San Gregorio Armeno, which is the top during the Christmas period with its nativity scenes, Palazzo Reale, Piazza del Plebiscito , the San Carlo Theater and the Mergellina seafront.
If you have already visited these Neapolitan wonders, then you can dedicate more time to exploring Spaccanapoli, the Spanish Quarter, the underground areas of Naples (there are several entrances, the best known is the one in via dei Tribunali) and calmly visit the archaeological museum where finds from the excavations of Pompeii are kept there. And, since Naples is increasingly a location for films and TV series (from Inspector Ricciardi to Mare Fuori), you can take tours of the locations of the fiction.