7 countries in 15 days, is it possible?

Old Oct 20th, 2009, 12:09 PM
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Ooh - I like Cambe's plan.

If you do decide to go to Florence, be careful about choosing a hotel. I've been twice and had both visits ruined by cheap hotels/pensiones.

IMO, I'd go for someplace away from the center of Florence (which can sound and feel like a dirt bike rally), and find a nice, quieter respite somewhere on the fringes or in a better neighborhood away from the train station and duomo.
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Old Oct 20th, 2009, 02:28 PM
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Siri,

I like Suheler's recommendation but I would change Prague for Budapest because the train journey is less.

Having said that Justshootme's response got me thinking as we really don’t know what you want to do or see in Europe. If you can come back to us with things that you want to do and see in Europe we will be able to help you in a more constructive way.

Jetsetj, I find that 2 -3 days in a city is about all I can master, after that everything becomes a blur but everyone is different.

Siri, ignore the negative posts here as the majority of people want to help you.
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Old Oct 21st, 2009, 02:52 AM
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Again, thanks for your time, input and resources given plus your feedback which always is a gift.. no matter they are the good, the bad or the ugly!

Big thanks to Schuler and cambe for your constructive comments and ideas. Taking Schuler and cambe's advice, I will start planing my itinerary. Cheers!
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Old Oct 21st, 2009, 02:57 AM
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Hello Siri, excellent! That's the travelong spirit!

Put together an itinerary and then, if you're still up to it, come back and ask any questions that needed to be answered.
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Old Oct 21st, 2009, 08:09 AM
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The OP said she is 52 - I'll leave it to you to decide if that is young or not.>

It's all relative ain't it jan - young to me, how about you?
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Old Oct 21st, 2009, 11:59 AM
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If it's Tuesday, it must be Belgium.
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Old Oct 21st, 2009, 12:54 PM
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If it's Brussels then half a Tuesday be more than enough - on to Cologne and the cathedral
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Old Oct 21st, 2009, 02:02 PM
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Or you can do as my son once did on a whirlwind trip thru Rome - i asked if he saw the Colosseum or Vatican and he said no but that they did see postcards of each in the train station.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2009, 10:03 AM
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Siri -
I have a lot to say on this topic, as I am planning my own trip right now to Europe. I travelled in Europe 10 years ago, and I did what you are trying to do! I visited 5 countries in 3 weeks, and it was NOT ENOUGH TIME! My journey went something like this:

I was already in Israel, so I flew from there to Athens, Greece. Spent a few days there (the ferry to Santorini is 13 hours, so that killed almost a day), and then flew to Rome. In Italy, we were able to spend a few days in Rome and a couple days in Florence. I regret not seeing Venice, Milan, and a few other places. From Rome, we took a train up to Warsaw, Poland (20 hours on the Eurail). Spent 2 days in Poland and then took a 24 train ride to Paris. We had a few quick days in Paris and then took the Chunnel to London, and then it was back home to California. It was a wonderful trip, and I have great memories, but it was a whirlwind! It was not well planned (it was a kind of spur of the moment thing - if that's possible). I am actually starting now, in October, to plan a trip for next summer. My intention is to take 2 months (June-August) and see about 12 countries (including going back to Israel, which complicates things!

Because travel is quite expensive, I suggest exhausting all your resources for research before you make any definite plans! Everyone on here has suggestions about places you SHOULD see, but you need to plan your trip according to where you want to go and what you want to see.

I definitely recommend, like everyone else, looking at the travel times on the bahn.de website. Definitely get a Eurail pass (eurail.com or raileurope.com). The Czech Republic is one of the countries they travel to. Multi-city flights are a good idea - if you fly into Rome, you can travel your way North and West and fly out of one of the German cities. It's important to remember in most cases that flying out of major cities is much cheaper than flying out of obscure or smaller cities.

Anyway, I hope that helps!
Bon Voyage!
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Old Oct 22nd, 2009, 10:49 AM
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Holy Cow Julesua!! You took a 20 hour trian from Rome to Warsaw to stay for only 2 days?-lol! We recently went from Ljuljana to Salzburg (5hrs) for only 2 nights and thought even that was too far for such a short a stay. It will be interesting to see how you lay out your time for your upcoming trip 10 years later - I hope you'll post your itinerary.

Siri - If you really want to span great distances don't rule out short FLIGHTS instead of trains - saves time and really, with all the super cheap flights within Europe its sometimes cheaper than the train. Paris to Milan $50 last time.

Naxos
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Old Oct 22nd, 2009, 10:56 AM
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I don't necessarily think getting a rail pass is a good idea.
Most of the time I just go to the train station (or buy online) and buy point to point tickets. Especially with an itinerary like yours, if you're only staying in a country for 1-2 days...it's a waste of money to buy a rail pass.

I would also fly point to point as an option.

I would definitely NOT buy a rail pass just because it goes to CZ, because train tix in CZ are cheaper if you just buy it at the train stations or online. https://eshop.cd.cz/default.aspx?lang=E
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Old Oct 22nd, 2009, 10:59 AM
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A multi-country rail pass may be worth it for the convenience.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2009, 11:02 AM
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multi-country rail pass $$$...

Flying might be cheaper (and faster)...
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Old Oct 22nd, 2009, 04:07 PM
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For a lot of travelers (probably most) a rail pass costs MUCH more than point to point tix. But for some a pass makes sense/saves money. But you'll never know until you work out the actual cost of the various options.

For most - a combination of point to point train trips and budget airlines work out best.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2009, 04:22 PM
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Flying is cheaper, but it can be such a pain. Once you factor in transportation to/from the airport (which is usually much farther out of the city than the train station), the time commitment (1-2 hrs early), luggage size/weight/number/contents restrictions, security checks and those crazy additional fees that regional airlines are tacking on, I'd rather take a train if I can.
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Old Oct 22nd, 2009, 11:04 PM
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I've been a lurker on these posts for quite some time and your post has moved me to actually comment. I think to get the most of your trip, you and your friend must first decide what it is you really want to see and/or do THE Most and then plan the rest of the itenary around that. Always take into consideration the time of year you will be traveling and then make sure of hours of operation are again for the things you want to see/do most.(i.e. one of my first trips to Paris, one of the two museums I wanted to see most was closed the first two days we were in the city or had different hours than the rest of the days. Considering we were only in Paris that time for three and a half days, this was a huge faux pas on my part in pre-planning. It all worked out of course, but you can bet that on the Next trip I planned my days in Paris completely differently.)
I'm an experienced and adventerous traveler (and I too am in my 50s) but I do think a different city each day is rather gruelling - mostly because of the time spent trying to see any of the sights. Lines, lines, lines exist everywhere and must be planned around.
Especially if you are also having to worry about getting to the train and in the process locate your luggage from a storage locker ahead of time...precious minutes lost. I haven't driven in Italy, but I have driven all over most of the rest of Europe and my personal preference is to drive myself. (well, except while In Paris - there the car was parked in a garage to the tune of 30 euro a day and not moved until we were on our way to Switzerland). Having a car always provided a place to stow the luggage, grab a quick nap, ability to change the route when the weather or the mood changed the day's itenary.
Of course, if you are just wanting to travel TO each country and/or particular city and not necessarily do the musuems etc, you might want to consider a cruise instead. http://gate1travel.com/ This is what a few of my friends and I are planning on for 2011. Just a thought. I haven't done this before but my friends did one of the Mediterrean cruises one year and traveled to several countries in 10 days. They loved it.
Anyway ...whatever you decide, please have fun and let us know how it all turned out!
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Old Oct 23rd, 2009, 07:19 AM
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Have you seen the show "The Amazing Race"? This is it.
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Old Oct 23rd, 2009, 09:14 AM
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If one does do 7 countries in 15 days then a 15-consecutive-day Global Eurailpass is a no brainer IMO - currently $650 a day for first-class travel or about $45 or 30 euros a day - even if you travel on half the days 60 euros for long train trips in first class as envisioned is a bargain. Folks who say point to point are cheaper than passes usually are really compare apples to oranges - a first class pass to second class ticketes and after 40 years of European rail travel i can attest that there is a big difference between first and second class - cheapest is not always the best IMO
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Old Oct 23rd, 2009, 11:48 AM
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Yes, cheapest is not always the best.
Whatever minimizes travel time and maximizes comfort will usually come at a cost; this is up to the traveler.
Yes there is a difference between first and second class. Difference is mostly in space to store luggage and the number of seats. Oh, and the small meal and table wine that comes with the high-speed trains. And the free wifi. Gotta love that!
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Old Oct 25th, 2009, 02:56 AM
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"Folks who say point to point are cheaper than passes usually are really compare apples to oranges - a first class pass to second class ticketes and after 40 years of European rail travel i can attest that there is a big difference between first and second class - cheapest is not always the best IMO"

I agree with you! I read that comment on here quite often about point to point being the better option but I do not agree with that blanket statement. we chose to travel with 1st class passes when we visit Europe, often Flexipasses or SelectPasses.

It is very convenient, we are comfortable in the first class coaches and wifi helps pass the time. 1st class is generally less crowded as well.
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