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Where to go for 30th anniversary in the fall?

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We will be celebrating our 30th anniversary this fall. Husband & I have always wanted to see Scotland, Ireland, England, Italy, etc. We've never traveled outside the U.S. except to Mexico and throughout the Caribbean. We only have 7-9 days max time. We are looking at guided tours for this particular trip in order to see more on a limited time. We love history and we love great food and wine!!! We are in our early 50's. Any suggestions? Thank you!

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    Hi swangirl - obviously with 7-9 days, you can only see one country: either Ireland, or Scotland+England, or Italy.

    I'd say that it's easy enough to DIY for Scotland+England, and for Italy. Ireland is slighty more tricky but definitely doable if you don't mind renting a car and drive.

    Tours are fine but you will be constantly rushed from one place to the next; and most tours choose hotels that are located outside of the city (for cheaper rates) so it's not always possible to go out on your own at night for a walk in the cities. My parents do take tours to certain countries in Europe, but mainly Eastern Europe or countries that require renting a car (they're in their 60s & 70s and don't want to deal with driving in a foreign country). They usually go with Globus but I'm sure there are plenty of others.

    In any case, I don't think you can go wrong with any of these choices. We are still 6 months away from the fall so if you want to DIY there's certainly enough time for you to plan your trip.

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    Congrats on the milestone (we're planning an anniv. trip next year too).

    With a short time frame and with international travel somewhat new, I'd consider starting with Great Britain and doing train travel (to avoid the driving issue). You could see London, some of the areas outside (Bath, Oxford, Canterbury?) and take a 1-2 night trip to Edinburgh.

    I think Ireland is a separate trip; if you stop over (Dublin OR Shannon) and spend a night or two, where do you steal those 2 days from? You already have a day of travel, a day of recovery (low energy and little sightseeing probably), and 6-7 days left to travel. If you change around too much you eat up the time fast. So 3 days London, 2 country, 2 Edinburgh and you are almost done.

    I recommend you consider getting a travel agent to help you set up the trip vs. a tour group which might be hustling you around too much. You want to see a lot but you can probably see more with a TA planning the trip with you for efficient travel. She or he can help with tickets and also train travel plans/card/tickets.

    Alternatively, go to Italy, flying into the north (Venice? Italy? Pisa?), taking the train or driving to the south, and fly out of Rome.

    I urge you strongly to limit your trip to one focused region so you don't end up with a blur for your memories.

    Consider England/Scotland to feed the history interests; consider Italy for the food/wine appreciation.

    You can't go wrong unless you try to cover too much ground (IMO).

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