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3+ week visit to Europe in mid June

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I am going to be visiting my son in Heidelberg mid-June but generally plan to use this as a base or starting place. I will fly into Frankfurt and return to US from Madrid (unless I can find a better fare combo). I plan to include a Ryanair flight from Heidelberg-area to Rome, then from Rome to Barcelona. The rest will be likely be train travel and day trips; the question is which are the best routes and stops? I am interested in cathedrals, museums, textiles, tiles, good food, scenics. I think I am more interested in Italy, Spain but open to Switzerland and France. I don't want to over-extend but would like to go wide rather than deep to determine future in-depth travel destinations. I have limited resources.
Any ideas/suggestions would be welcomed. Especially interested in knowledgeable train travelers and itinerary planners.

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