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Heading to Europe for a great food adventure and learning experience!

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Hello Everyone!
In about 5 weeks time, I will be heading out from California, US, to the great Europe!
I am going to be spending 3 months in the EU continent and 1 month in the UK region (Ireland & England mostly).
My plan is to eat and learn all I can about pastries and bring back what I've learned for my catering business.

I know there are certain regions in Europe that a woman just shouldn't go alone.
Also parts of the continent that are just not good after a certain time of year. I think Spain is best to be avoided after September ? Right now there really is no limitations as to which countries I will go, but I do have a few countries on the list that I will HAVE to go.
France, Italy, Ireland, England, Spain (If the timing permits), Germany, Amsterdam and if possible, Switzerland and Greece. All these places within 4 months, seems like a bit stretch.

I am very much welcome to any suggestions you may have and also places to avoid for a fellow female traveler, traveling alone. I already also have some places marked down on my list to go but won't bore you with the specific details. Taking this month to really buckle down and prepare for the trip, this project. Any and all responses are welcomed! Thank you!

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