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A conflict on where to visit, 3 1/2 weeks

A conflict on where to visit, 3 1/2 weeks

Old May 13th, 1999, 10:08 AM
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A conflict on where to visit, 3 1/2 weeks

i am a 19 year college student from NY who will be traveling through europe alone. I am doing the Europass thing. Anyhow, I am not to sure where to exactly to decide where to visit. Scandanevia vs. Southern Europe? I am concerned about how to long to stay in cities such as Prague, Paris, Amsterdamn, and Stockholm(all cities I really want to visit). But, I also want to visit outside of cities ito the country like Bavaria, Italy, Portugal, etc.

Not enough of time I suppose.
Old May 13th, 1999, 10:53 AM
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George: Our son just finished his final semester at the University of Manchester through Penn State (hey, we got married young!) and is doing something like you've described.

He visited Ireland and Scotland while at school and when he finished, he was off on the continent. He had us purchase the 10 day-two month Eurail Pass over here for about $460.00 Leaving from London, he made his was to Brugges, Brussels and then to Amsterdam. He then headed to Berlin, then Prague, on to Budapest and into Vienna, Austria. West to Salzburg and he called on Mothers' Day (what a guy!) from Berchtesgaden. He then went to Munich and was heading down to Garmisch, Ettal, Oberammergau, etc., the last time we talked. I believe that he is going into Switzerland, through Provence and finally, to Paris before returning to London to fly back home. I think that Spain is optional, depending on time (money) and he already went to Italy for a week at Easter.

He's been traveling with two other guys and has been staying in hostels. Quite the traveler, I'd say.

Hope that provides some ideas.
Old May 13th, 1999, 11:24 AM
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There are two sorts of trips, and both suit certain needs. There's the concentrated tour: sticking to one city or area and really exploring. Then there's the whirlwind, where you skip across a large area, tasting just a bit here and there. Both are fun, and both have advantages and disadvantages. My only concern for you is the amount of time you'll be spending on trains vs the amount of time you'll be in Europe. You can see Paris in 3 days...but not well. You need 5-7 days minimum...BUT you can see the highlights in the three days. Amsterdam is ditto...in both cases, there are a lot of half-day and day trips outside those cities that are a shame to miss. Do as much train travel as you can at night (especially overnight trains; you save on a hotel room and also on sightseeing time) and plot out your itinerary very carefully so you're not retracing your steps and wasting time.
Old May 13th, 1999, 11:58 AM
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If money is a consideration at all, you should be aware that northern Europe in general (and Scandinavia in particular) is much more expensive. In general, the farther south you go (e.g. Greece, Italy, Spain, Portugal) the more you get for your money. Of the cities you mentioned, Paris, Amsterdam, and Stockholm are all expensive. Prague less so. I am not saying you should not go to the big cities -- far from it! Paris and Amsterdam are two of my favorite cities in the world and I would not have missed them for anything. But you will just have to look a little harder for a bargain there. For the price of a hostel bed in these cities, you can have a gorgeous hotel room on some Greek island. Also, regardless of what country you're in, things tend to be more expensive in the larger cities as opposed to the smaller towns. Just something to consider. I think you really should spend at least 5 days in Paris if you can, and even that is scarcely enough to get a taste. Amsterdam is smaller; I spent 4 days and that was plenty for me. You owe it to yourself to see at least one city in Italy and more if you can -- Venice, Rome and Florence are all glorious but very different so read up and figure out what is most important to you to experience. Again, for any major city you need to allow at least 3 days to even get a taste of it. I also loved the Greek island I went to (Poros) and feel that some of the smaller islands in Greece are a tremendous bargain (although getting there can be difficult). Good luck and have a great time.
Old May 14th, 1999, 08:02 AM
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this is what i have planned. I hope its practical. I probally going to make a ton of changes anyway.

day 29 paris
day 30 paris
day 31 paris
day 1 paris-amsterdamn
day 2 amsterdamn
day 3 amsterdamn
day 4 amsterdamn-copenhagen
day 5 copenhagen
day 6 copenhagen-berlin
day 7 berlin
day 8 berlin-rome
day 9 rome
day 10 rome
day 11 rome-naples
day 12 naples
day 13 naples-sorrento??
day 14 sorrento??
day 15 be back to rome now, ROME to Nice
day 16 Nice(don't know to stay for a day or just stay as a stop over)-Madrid
day 17 Madrid
day 18 Madrid

thats what I got to, but I have to be in London by the 20th to catch a flight home on the 22nd.
Old May 14th, 1999, 08:10 AM
Brian in Atlanta
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Consider swapping Madrid for Barcelona. Much more fun, less busy/crowded.
Old May 14th, 1999, 08:57 AM
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George: There's a whole lot of geography between Berlin and Rome that you should consider.

As you say, your plan will probably change. When you travel from Berlin to Rome, you could see some fantastic cities (and towns), such as: Prague, Vienna, Salzburg, Nurenburg, Munich,
and south into the Alps and Garmisch-Partenkirchen and into the Tirolian Alps in Austria. These destinations, although taking more time, would present you with some of the gems of Europe.

Take a look at your maps, maybe look over some guide books and then decide on what appeals to you. Check out the library, also.

Good luck!
Old May 14th, 1999, 10:55 AM
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George: I am assuming this is your first trip to Europe. At the outset, there never is enough time so that said...

I took my first trip to Europe as my high school graduation gift. It would be called "If It's Tuesday, It Must Be Belgium" tour. If this is your first time in Europe, I would consider trying to see as many places as you can. This exposure will make you want to come back for more. On subsequent trips, do like I do--I do the "one-week in Paris" trip and concentrate on a specific area.

Have a great time...I'm envious.
Old May 14th, 1999, 02:36 PM
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Just had to share the following: a young friend of mine who was a recent graduate planned an itinerary similar to yours, only her plan was to start in London, then go to Ireland, Scotland, more of England, then France, Italy, Austria, Germany, etc. etc. That was the plan.
Do you know what she did? She got to Ireland (some adorable town -- can't remember which), and decided she liked it so much that she spent the entire 6 weeks there and threw away her itinerary. To this day she says it was the best decision she ever made. She and her Irish friends visit each other every year and are like family.
I am not suggesting you narrow down your trip because I understand why you want to see so much, and I did a similar trip myself once and loved it. I am only suggesting that you allow for some flexibility and change of plans as opportunities present themselves. On my own trip, I happened to meet some people in London I liked who were going to Amsterdam, so I went there instead of Edinburgh as I had planned -- and had a fantastic time. You just never know!

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