Veronica met us at the apartment when we arrived in Livorno and showed us round and provided us with recommendations for our stay.
The apartment is lovely! Done to a high standard and is big and has some original features on the wall and ceiling mixed in with the new renovation. The view from the room is lovely and the apartment has everything you need for a pleasant stay
Would definitely recommend, it was just me and my husband that went but it us definitely big enough for 4 people.
We arrived to meet Veronica, who was very friendly. She showed us around the 2 bed-roomed / 2 bath-roomed apartment, chatting away and answering any questions. She then answered questions about the local area, things to see, places to go, and also provided us with a map, and marked out on the map of places to eat, supermarkets, pharmacy, and places of interest etc. She was amazingly helpful throughout the stay, allowing us to 'Whatsapp' her for train information and answer questions and to book a taxi to the airport – she was on hand if we ever needed her.
Ok - the apartment - beautiful!
1 double bed with ensuite bathroom, 1 twin bedroom, second bathroom opposite. Both bathrooms have a shower, sink and toilet and were lovely, modern and clean.
Double bed situated at back of apartment with door opening onto small balcony. There were large floor standing fans in each bedroom – much needed for us Brits who were not used to the heat!
Along the corridor is a small room that houses the washing machine and cleaning products - all ready to use during your stay.
The front room is lovely, with a kitchenette along one wall, sofa and chair, and small 4 seater dining table with chairs.
Kitchen contains all the things needed to cook, make tea etc. and had a gas 4 ring hob, and a combination oven/grill/toaster - this was used a lot by us for simple cooking.
For the safety conscious people – door to balcony and windows in both bedrooms were the double glazing type with shut/open/slant options on all. The apartment is in a block with a locking main entrance door at bottom.
Windows to front room (two) had locking windows as well as louvre shutters and double locking door.
There is wifi / internet access within the apartment – used this to contact everyone back home and was secure and fast – this helped our stay as my phone wouldn’t connect outside to anything – ensure your mobile provider can sort this before you go.
Special mention goes to the interior decoration of the apartment, with simple and clean light colours, some original brick work, some original wall colourings, high ceilings with wooden beams and laminate flooring throughout the main rooms with tiling in the bathroom and simple but effective wall art – the effect was amazing!
Be aware that flat is 4th floor up – but soooooo worth it for the view!
Balcony is comfortable enough to sit 2 people on chairs to chill, and overlooks the back of the property within the heart of a residential area – therefore you are viewing the apartments below and other blocks of apartments – but the atmosphere, sights and sounds are well worth it, throughout the day and evening.
Outside the apartment:
Coming down and outside, you enter into a residential and working area which is amazing.
The square has a large statue of Garibaldy, and small vendor huts all the way round – these are an array of bars, food places, and shops, and during the morning, there are also people who gather to set up stalls to sell their goods – worth seeing, but the stalls close up by 1pm ish.
We made friends with a lady that owned one of the local bars, and visited practically every night, joining in the community and meeting her family and friends – this in itself was truly overwhelming to be accepted in this way, and we were treated to a traditional meal one night and a drink with them on our last night, and we made friends that will last a lifetime!
The apartment overlooks the canal/river and an historical fort/castle, where boats and yachts moor, and trips can be taken – well worth seeing and looking around, with places and benches to sit down and chill.
We ventured out to the Port, and along the main coastal road – this is quite a walk, but well worth it for the sights, shops, eateries and of course the sea views.
There are ‘free’ beaches and paved areas for sunbathing. There was a beach much further along with sand as far as I know, we never got there, having found the ‘pay for beach’ – 6 euros to go in, 10 euros per sun lounger and/or umbrella/sun shade – we liked it here, it was clean, and food and drink could be bought at any time. Food was traditional and simple, drinks were a range of tea/coffee/fizzy/soft drinks. Prices were very reasonable.
There was no sand – you are going straight into the sea, with smooth large rocks, some covered with moss/water moss, and although very nice, and everyone seemed to be doing it, we were not used to it so only dipped in feet! Lol
There are also 2 children’s pools – very shallow, and a deep pool for free use once inside – we only dipped in the children’s pool which was clear salt water and lovely.
The sea is clear! Clean! And you are able to swim out and around within it.
There were many places to see and go, we didn’t get to many places to be fair.
However, we did walk around a lot, found a pizza restaurant we loved, some supermarkets where the staff were very helpful, a pharmacy where the gentleman was also very helpful and souvenir shops aplenty with a range of goods to mark your stay, including keyrings, fridge magnets, hats, bags and t-shirts etc.
The architecture was astounding, and very beautiful – take the time to walk around, and along the main canal, where you can see what Italy looks like!
Travelling & Transport:
We had paid for and hired a car before we came – but was not impressed as when we went to pick up the car, we needed a credit card, which we had said we didn’t have when placing the order over the phone with the company who are situated just down from airport. Long story short, the company we were using (Firefly) were not very helpful, we had problems trying to phone the main company direct to try and sort this out, and eventually gave up, caught a taxi to the apartment, which was about 45-55 minutes away by car, and cost 50 euros to get us to Veronica and the apartment at the agreed time to take over the keys.
Veronica was very helpful in trying to phone them to sort this out for us, but was unsuccessful, so we were going to speak to them when we got back.
The train station is about a 20 minute walk from the apartment, and is shown on the map Veronica gave us.
We used this twice – once to go to Rome (Roma!) and once to go to Florence (Firenze!).
Costs: special deal with Rome at 69 euros per person and 19.95 euros to Florence – both were return tickets.
Both were also direct trains – no changing train mid route.
The Rome train was approximately 2hours 50 minutes on the fast train, Florence was about 1 hour and 20 minutes.
Busy! Hot! Busy! Lol We went mid August, temperatures had risen to 35c on our day there!
We caught the 7.22 train, getting to Rome about 10.30, and it was already very busy and crowded. There are lots of ways to see the sights, we used a tour bus, that goes around the same route over and over, allowing you to get on and off at different places to see different things and get back on – the buses run every 15 minutes or so. Cost was 20 euros each I think, but different companies charged different prices as far as I know.
Would recommend this, as every single place had queues to get into anything – the joy of booking high season – so we stayed on the bus and toured, with headphones provided to plug into the side of the seat that allowed us to listen to historical info on each place of interest – and they had a range of languages, you picked the number for your language. There are lots of street people wanting to sell you hats, selfie sticks and water, and will barter with you.
Lots of shops and eateries, you will enjoy the bustle of the city, especially with the sights this one has to offer, but also take a walk around and see the buildings, architecture and places not on tour bus guides. We didn’t use Roma passes as advised by a friend, as we were only there for the day – but google these and choose what works for you xx
Florence was more laid back, but still lots to offer with beautiful parks, including play areas for children, astounding buildings, historical places of interest, restaurants, cafes and souvenir shops plus more! Big mention goes to the bridges that run at intervals along the main river/canal – the enclosed bridge has shops on it – they are ALL jewellery – some very big names as well like Rolex – a must if you like jewellery!
Compared to Rome, Florence was very relaxing and chilled, but worth seeing both if you can.
You must try true Italian lasagne, ice-cream and pizza (among others!) – mouth wateringly good, and Britain’s versions do not compare! Lol
Language – they loved that we tried to speak Italian, and were most helpful with words and pronunciation – plus we learnt more as we went along, especially with the friends we had made, and it was a two-way thing we us teaching English – often with hilarious consequences! Pick yourself up an Italian phrasebook and / or dictionary from Amazon, well worth it, and so helpful when trying to explain yourself.
Heat – bloody hot! Averaging between 28 to 35 while we were there mid August. If this would kill you, I would suggest going out of season – earlier or later. Suncream!!!!!! I got burnt both times as the ‘pay for beach’ – so apply suncream, and keep applying, it didn’t take too long to start burning! And don’t forget the hat! We were still sat outside at midnight in shorts and t-shirts and still feeling very very warm!
Insects/midgies – we both got bitten a lot while we were there! ☹ hence our visit to the pharmacy! Lol
I forgot to get the Avon skin so soft shower gel, which repels midgies and mosquitos – it worked last year for our holiday to Florida, just forgot this time – so get yourself online to Avon, or find your local rep and ask her – she will be able to advise which one it is, as I can’t remember.
• check dress code for some places – the Vatican will not let you in if wearing certain types of clothing, hot pants was a ‘no no’ for sure and some other places had restrictions
• check cost of entry to places – they can be expensive, so bear this in mind when allowing for expenses and spending money – google search your chosen areas or get a guide book where they give you prices
We LOVED our holiday, our apartment was beautiful with Veronica being so helpful with anything we needed.
So much so, we are returning twice next year!
My Dad is going earlier in the year, and we will go summer time all being well – and we will be staying at the same apartment!
See you soon Veronica!!!
Thank you so much for everything xxx
Veronica was a great hostess. She met us at the apartment and supplied an excellent welcome pack which was much appreciated. She has made a lovely job of renovating the apartment. There is a super market around the corner. The views from the window are breath taking. There is a launderette not to far away, and the apartment was central for everything. We thought it was an excellent place to stay, not really touristy, so a great way to experience real Italian life....and much cheaper to eat very well....
Really enjoyed our stay at this apartment. On the 3rd floor with lovely views out over the venezia district and onto a lively square
Very clean and tidy with everything you need and more, nice little extras that you don't usually get in an apartment such as toiletries and slippers. 2 lovely bathrooms with plenty of towels.
The kitchen is well equipped although we barely used it.
Veronica the owner is a lovely helpful lady who is there if you need her but not intrusive.
I would recommend this apartment for anyone staying in Livorno and would certainly return there.
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