I've been checking out the forums for a while now, and have always seen helpful advice given. Below is an early draft of an itinerary of 4 weeks in April 2015. I know it seems rushed, but I really don't anticipate another chance to make it back for many years (although I'm still just a 20-something, going on a low-moderate budget couples trip). Thanks in advance for your help!
Here's the working line-up- apart from where flights are noted, we'll be traveling by train (I'm a little intimidated by renting/driving a car on our first trip):
London - 4 nights
Paris - 4 nights (including day trip to Normandy)
Prague - 3 nights
Munich - 3 nights (including day trip to Dachau)
Salzburg/Hallstatt - 1 night
Venice - 1 night
Florence - 3 nights (including day spent in Tuscan countryside)
Cinque Terre - 1 night
Rome - 4 nights (day trip to Pompeii/Naples)
Dubrovnik - 3 nights
Plitvice - 1 night
Zagreb - flight home
Alternatively, we would skip Prague and substitute taking the train from Paris to Munich, stopping over for 1-2 nights in Interlaken/Bern. Obviously taking the train through Switzerland with 1-2 days there is not experiencing it, but is it worth it for the scenery in April?
Anything you would cut/substitute? I'm really torn between seeing the "highlights" as it's my first time and trying to take a more Rick-Steves-esque Backdoor trip and go to more out of the way places. Finally, I'll preemptively make the argument that we're really good with train travel, and the time spent will be more like taking a break from being a tourist, but thoughts on how ambitious it is? (P.S. if you're making the argument that it's way too much- please tell me your opinion on what to skip!).
advice on first time europe itinerary
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