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Amsterdam, London, or ? Looking for a good place to get over jet lag

Amsterdam, London, or ? Looking for a good place to get over jet lag

Old Jul 30th, 2003, 06:06 PM
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Amsterdam, London, or ? Looking for a good place to get over jet lag

We are planning a trip to Italy in October. We live in a small town in Louisiana and have to drive to Baton Rouge and fly to Atlanta or Houston and then get a plane to a European hub and after that another plane to Venice or Rome. We have often had to deal with missed planes and delayed vacations- spending the first day sitting in the Charles de Gaulle airport for eight extra hours because we missed our connection.

My husband's favorite solution to prevent that unwished for delay is to fly to a European city- spend a couple of days getting over jet lag, unwinding from his job, and doing low key activities and then fly on to our main destination.

A couple of times we have flown to Paris and stayed in nearby Senlis for a couple of days and then gone on to Italy or elsewhere.

We are thinking about flying into Amsterdam, which we know is easy to navigate- our preference for dealing with jet lag, or possibly London which we are not familar with. Can you suggest a small interesting town near one of the London airports.

Or suggest another city that we might enjoy staying in or near for a few days that we could fly to directly from Atlanta. We don't want to fly to Milan or Paris- we've done that several times.

My husband is usually too stressed out from his work to enjoy a vacation if it means too long a trip and too many connections. This is an enjoyable way for him to get energized to enjoy our vacation.
Sally is offline  
Old Jul 30th, 2003, 07:47 PM
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What about Zurich? Delta flies nonstop from Atlanta to Zurich. The airport has a train station in it, so you can train into the city (about 15 minutes) then taxi, tram or walk to a hotel.
An alternative to that is to land in Zurich, then train to Lucerne (about1 hr).
Both are very scenic, with moderate amount of things to do but probably nothing profoundly compelling, in other words see as much or little as you like while enjoying the general ambiance.
I have been to Lucerne but not Zurich, and both of these are overnight stays on our next trip this September. Very lovely views all around...
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Old Jul 30th, 2003, 07:52 PM
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I find Amsterdam to be very relaxing and much more low key than London. Take a nice canal boat cruise, stroll through Vondlepark, browse a museum or two. London, which I love, is much more intense.
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Old Jul 30th, 2003, 07:55 PM
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We like to do the same thing on longer trips - helps prime you for more energetic travel, rather than making the trip seem like the continuation of work in other places.

We like Amsterdam for this purpose because, as you say, it's easy - easy from the airport to town, easy around the city. The big plus about A'dam (we've used Delft, too, although it's an hour from Schiphol) is the quiet. If you're in the canal ring, Amsterdam has to be one of the quietest big cities in Europe - church and bicycle bells being the main sources of noise pollution. There are cars, of course, but nothing like other cities. Plus, it's a city that functions at all hours, or at least hours compatible with gringos with wonky internal clocks. And when you finally wake up (say around noon) and look out the window, there's no mistaking that you're in Europe, baby.
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Old Jul 30th, 2003, 11:38 PM
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I agree with the last two posts. I have lived in London, and know Amsterdam fairly well, and Amsterdam is definitely quieter, more laid-back; better for getting over jet lag. London does get very busy and crowded. And in just 2 days, you can see a lot of Amsterdam, even when taking it easy, while in London, you have just scratched the surface. Schiphol airport in Amsterdam has good onward connections to Italy.
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Old Jul 31st, 2003, 12:47 AM
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Small interesting towns near London:

- from Heathrow, Windsor (with its, frankly boring and largely bogus castle, but also with a neighbour -Eton - that has one of Britain's most stunning pieces of architecture) is 30 minutes by bus: Oxford 60 minutes from T1/3: buses every half hour
- from Gatwick, Brighton. Europe's most accessible royal palace, home of the dirty weekend and great clifftop walking nearby. 30 mins by train from the airport
- from Stansted. Cambridge. Infinitely better architecture than Oxford. But colder and damper

Oxford, Cambridge and Brighton are all complex places with lots to see and do. But all have excellent (60 minute transit: every 15 mins or so) buses or trains to central London
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Old Jul 31st, 2003, 04:17 AM
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Thanks a lot for your suggestions.
I am sure Amsterdam would be an easy to get to and pleasant place to recover from jet lag. We were there for the tulips spring of 2002.

I will have to check on Zurich as a possibility.

Thanks for suggesting small interesting towns near the London airports. I am sure we would rather stay in one of them than in London for this trip. We are planning a trip to stay in London hopefully this spring.

Is there a town to stay in near the Kew gardens? How easy would that be to get to?

Do you have any other small towns near the London airports to suggest? Which is your favorite?

Also we have considered flying into Brussels and then taking a train to stay at Brugges. Has any one done that?
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Old Jul 31st, 2003, 04:32 AM
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Hi Sally,

Along with the other suggestions, why not fly into Pisa and spend your first two days there and in Lucca.

Or you could fly into Rome and train to Orvieto. About 1 hr.
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Old Jul 31st, 2003, 05:05 AM
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Thanks, Ira, but we cannot get a direct flight from where we live to Rome or Pisa. We would have to change planes at a European hub first.

We are driving a couple of hours to Baton Rouge, flying to Atlanta or Houston, and then we want to take a relatively short flight to a European hub and stay in a small town close by for several days before flying on to Italy. We are trying to avoid a twenty plus hour trip to our final destination of Rome or Venice.

By the way, we love Orvieto.
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Old Jul 31st, 2003, 05:35 AM
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Hi Sally,

If you go to www.eltexpress.com you will find Delta and Alitalia flights direct from Atlanta to Rome.

Hope this helps.
ira is offline  
Old Jul 31st, 2003, 07:16 AM
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Ira, Thanks for that web site. That is very helpful- I see I can get a flight from Venice to Rome for around $80. That is better than the train.
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Old Jul 31st, 2003, 07:20 AM
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Pleased to have been of help.
ira is offline  
Old Jul 31st, 2003, 08:30 PM
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I did exactly that last summer and it worked out beautifully!! I flew into Amsterdam (solo) and stayed 5 days. Just spent the time, walking around, eating, napping when I felt like it, etc. before I flew on for 2 weeks in Switzerland with a girlfriend.

You can take a Connexxion hotel shuttle from the airport for 10 Euro which loops round town stopping at many hotels. I recommend the Leidseplein or Vondelpark districts for good siteseeing on foot, and much more beautiful than the central area around the train station, the Dam, RLD.

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