Are you driving from the UK to Italy

chris18 Image
06/20/2015 - 09:40

Are you driving from the UK to Italy this summer?  Which route do you take and which part of Italy do you travel too? 

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Hi Chris, i cant believe how quicly the time has gone since we got back last summer!Taking the toll free route Alan H has recommended on numerous occasions.I think i will take a slight detour through France this time and pay the toll and go through metz- strasbourg so as to see if this route is more time effective as opposed to going through nancy- colmar (past metz). I find the colmar route going up the mountain quite time consuming especially as we are looking to get to our destination sooner rather than later.From then on in in Italy we will travel to Calabria pretty much the whole length of Italy which will take a good 20 hours of travel. How about you when are you going this year?I head off in 5 weeks !All the bestTony

Hi Tony,Great to hear from you.  I can tell you're looking forward to your travel to Calabria - a cracking part of Italy!We usually travel Calais/Metz//Colmar staying overnight in Colmar.  We used to stay in Strasbourg but I find if we can get a little bit further south then its less driving to do the next day. We stay on the toll road all the way.  I find it more expensive but quicker, see what you think.  Personally I think the roads are in better condition too and that's not a bad thing for the tyres.  We normally arrive in Lucca early evening of the following day, just in time for a beer and pizza.We'll be travelling to Lucca at the end of July, we can't wait.   I think the holiday starts as soon as you close the car doors and turn the key to go.CheersChris

Hi Tony,How did you get on with your trip to Calabria?  Hope all went well.We travelled to Lucca on 2nd August and stayed over in Metz for one night on the way out, arriving in Lucca late on 3rd August.  We stuck to the our tried and tested route of Eurotunnel, then french motorway to Metz, then on to Colmar, through the Gottard Tunnel and down the autostrada to Milan, taking the turn for Parma and on to Lucca.  Tunnel tolls seemed to be exactly the same price as previous year.   I think the weather from Kent right through to Lucca was the hottest we've experienced since driving to Italy.  

Hi Chris, good to hear from you! Our trip to Calabria seems like a distant memory now but we are starting to plan for next year now and can't wait to get back. We followed the same route as you but as we left and went over a weekend we experienced a horrendous amount of traffic at the St Gottard tunnel, I suppose its to be expected in the peak of summer. Journey was fine otherwise, we left the UK on a Friday evening on the eurotunnel and got to Calabria midday on Sunday 1700 miles later! On the whole we had a great time but experienced some freak weather as on a few days a tornado hit southern Italy with lots of flooding. When are you heading back, we have booked to go next August now and I am counting down the months!!

Hi there. Anyone travelling to Italy from the UK this summer?  We're heading to Lucca in July.  We''ll probably take our usual route of Calais-Colmar, Colmar- Lucca (via the San Gottardo tunnel), but are considering Calais- Geneva, Geneva- Lucca (via Mont Blanc tunnel) in the hope its a bit quicker.Have'nt driven since 2015 so i'd be pleased to hear from anyone who has driven either of the above routes recently. Any feedback much appreciated.

Hi. Chris ! Hope you are well. This will be my 5th year of travelling to the south of Italy by car. My preferred options since 2 years ago is to go through Strasbourg and pay the toll and keep to the motorway and avoid driving over the mountains. This route is slightly longer but as it's all motorway I think it saves time. My biggest bug bear with going through the gottard tunnel is that I always seem to get stuck in hours of traffic as I normally get there mid afternoon the next day and I find it very frustrating!  Funny enough I leave next Friday and will be spending 3 weeks in Italy I truely enjoy the trip and the time down there and get looks of amazement when locals hear I have driven 1750 miles to the very tip of the toe of Italy. i purchased a BMW 5 series last year and found that very comfortable for such a long trip.  Hope you are well? When do you leave? What car do you use for trip? great to hear you post again ! all the best and safe trip Tony 

Hi Tony - great to hear from you.  What a speedy response!  You and I have exchanged a few posts on this forum over the years, and as I tapped in the last letter of my latest post I thought to myself i wonder of Tony S is still around this forum!Like you, i've headed to Strasbourg and through the Gottard tunnel each time we've driven.  I think some of the swiss service stations are worth a stop - the one at San Gottardo Sud would be worthy of a holiday in its own right given its beautiful setting. Driving through the Bellinzona area in the sun and on towards Milan, marvellous. Some of the views around Lake Como are breathtaking. I hope you enjoy your trip. 20 hours in a BMW series 5 sounds like a treat to me.  That's a superb car.  We are well thank you and hope you are too?, We leave a week on Wednesday in our diesel Range Rover, and I have to say its a pleasure to undertake the journey.  Each year we drive we'd love to stop off on the way and see a bit more of Europe, but the truth is each time we set off we simply can't wait to get to Italy.  What a country. Safe trip to you and yours too Tony!

"........... but are considering Calais- Geneva, Geneva- Lucca (via Mont Blanc tunnel) in the hope its a bit quicker."I wouldn't do that route.Last month I did Calais to Italy via Lausanne  and the Simplon Pass - absolute doddle and whilst slightly longer than via the Mont Blanc Tunnel, a fair bit cheaper [no charge for the Simplon] with a fantastic 'break point' on the top of the pass - great views and a couple of bars that do basic foodI do this route for a couple of reasons - saves the potential queue for Gotthard Tunnel, cheaper than Mont Blanc option - which is quicker, but more expensive, and a lot more Dog friendly - he loves the walk on the top of the Simplon PassGood luck

Thanks Alan,I've just checked the map and see what you are saying. No Gottard queue, no Mont Blanc expense.     Calais-- Lausanne then over the Simplon Pass into Italy.We take two dogs so it could be a good route for us too.Thank you 

In reply to by chris18

Travelling with DogsChris - we are retired, so we limit the daily drive to about 4 - 4.5 hours a day, as we find that minimises the stress of travelling for our poochWe go away for 4 weeks, spending 3 overnight stays on the way to and from northern Italy [lake Orta area].  This gives us 3 weeks at the house.--------------If you are looking for a dog friendly hotel about 90 minutes from Calais [we use the Shuttle, as the dog stays with us in the car, and it only takes about 45 minutes max], I can wholeheartedly recommend the Hotel De La Paix in Bapaume, which has 3 ground floor bedrooms that are ideal for travellers with dogs. It also allows dogs in their restaurant, and breakfast room.  We usually dine on the terrace, so seldom use the restaurant, but useful when it rains.  Adjacent to the hotel is a park where the dog can be walked.  We've stayed there about 4 times now - really good and friendly staff [family run] who speak englishhttp://www.hotel-de-la-paix-bapaume.com/   

Hello We're off to Lucca by car from the UK in July and are thoroughly looking forward to it.Is anyone else driving out to Italy this summer? If so which route do you take?   Any experiences/travel tips you care to share are much appreciated 

Hi, i go from calais down and through mont blanc, then to udinese, pricey because of the tolls and the tunnel especially but was hassle free and the only queue was the tunnel, id be open to other suggestions that are nt as expensive if anyone has any tips

Hi StuFrom Eurotunnel Calais we drive to Troyes, and stay overnight - good restaurants and medieval centre.Next day we we drive through the Montblanc Tunnel and then on to Lucca. I agree with you, that tunnel is pricey at €45.60 per crossing, but way less traffic volume and delays, at least that's been our experience.  An alternative is the Gottard Tunnel, which we've used in the past. You pay for a swiss vignette which is 40CHF (about €36.50) when you enter Switzerland, but it lasts a full 12 months, so if you're making more than one trip a year (?) it's even better value for money than €45.60 for one trip through the Montblanc, and of course with the vignette no additional toll costs in Switzerland, so if any of your other motoring could be done in Switzerland you're potentially avoiding road tolls elsewhere. If you aimed to travel via the Gottard tunnel you might travel from Calais through belgium, through Luxembourg and  back in to France before entering Switzerland.  If you do, refuelling in Luxembourg is much cheaper than anywhere else on that route.  Enjoy your trip and when you come back drop us all a note as to how it went!