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Countries in Europe that are good for selfdrive vacations? Besides Ireland?

Countries in Europe that are good for selfdrive vacations? Besides Ireland?

Aug 2nd, 2003, 03:42 AM
  #1  
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Countries in Europe that are good for selfdrive vacations? Besides Ireland?

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dawnsied is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2003, 05:57 AM
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I've driven in a number of European countries without trouble, including France, Germany, the UK, Italy, Belgium. My advice would be to consider what you want to visit. If you want to go city to city, a car is a bad idea, in light of the traffic and parking headaches. If you want to explore the countryside in any of these countries, then self-drive is a fine idea. It's just important to be a considerate driver in Europe - stay to the right (or left in England) except to pass, in particular. Exploring by car, and getting lost occasionally, is a great way to see a new country!
JulieB is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2003, 06:09 AM
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I think Germany would be a fun selfdrive vacation. Fly into Munich, rent a car and head to the southern Bavaria area, Bertchesgarden, Oberamergau, Salzburg, Garmish, Fussen, Schwangau, etc. We've done that and had a blast.

When you return to Munich, spend a couple of days in this wonderful city after you turn in your rental car. Have an Augustiner Keller beer for me.
Budman is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2003, 06:20 AM
  #4  
gb
 
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I agree with the above posters. We've found driving in Europe relatively uncomplicated with the exception of large cities. We try to put them at the beginning or end of the trip, use public transport while there, then rent a car. Or we will park the car while in a large city and use public transportation. Good maps are really most helpful. We buy a few maps here for overview, then buy additional when we get there. You can't always tell from home which maps you really need in greater detail.
Driving seems to be break even with two, and more economical with more than two as compared to public transportation. Also, you can visit places that aren't constantly filled with tourist groups. Many of our most enjoyable moments have come when we ventured away from the most frequented sights.
gb is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2003, 07:35 AM
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There isn't a country in Europe that is bad for self-drive vacations, with the possible exception of the former USSR. I have driven on vacation in every country in Europe, and I have found it to be pleasurable and rewarding, with many more opportunities for direct experience and personal contact than in tours or traveling by train. Yes, driving in large cities is difficult, but in those cases you use public transport. But getting from place to place, exploring the countryside, meeting the locals, and just enjoying the freedom a car gives you, make a self-drive vacation the only choice for me.
Wayne is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2003, 07:42 AM
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I wouldn't selfdrive all over the country of Spain or France, but pick a particular region and enjoy the countryside.

Dawnsied, what are you thinking about? All of Europe is suitable for selfdrive. Are you interested in anything specific?

Budman is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2003, 08:57 AM
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You are getting some good advice. We have driven several trips in France and Germany, Italy, Greece and the Benelux countries. The main thing is not be too ambitious! Pick an area to explore and do it leisurely. One of our most difficult (but still enjoyable) trips was in eastern Germany because I wanted to go too far and the roads were under construction and traffic was very slow. I should have known better but always want to see it all. It is definitely a great way to see Europe - a little at a time. CJ
CarolJean is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2003, 09:01 AM
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We are considering driving in Italy, but for some reason we are a little intimidated. Is that unfounded? We drove 1000 miles in France this summer and it was a breeze. Besides the big cities, are there any areas of Italy you would avoid diving?
wren is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2003, 09:25 AM
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Rome and Naples can be a bit challenging. The Italians can make 5 lanes out of 3, view stop lights as yield signs, and drive with their horns.

Having said that, you shouldn't have any problems driving in the remainder of Italy. I wouldn't give it a second thought.
Budman is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2003, 09:31 AM
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Thanks Budman.
wren is offline  
Aug 3rd, 2003, 05:52 PM
  #11  
gb
 
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We had the same experience as Budman. In addition, Pompei and the towns around Pompei had unpredictable drivers. But, we had no trouble (other than the beautifully distracting view) of driving along the Amalfi coast in early June. I think the easiest place to drive (where they had wide roads for little cars) was in Holland.
gb is offline  
Aug 3rd, 2003, 05:54 PM
  #12  
gb
 
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PS We also found the Periphrenique (sp?) around Paris more difficult that driving in Paris itself because of the motorcycles.
gb is offline  
Aug 4th, 2003, 02:48 AM
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We did a combination of rail and self-drive in Germany last year. Rail from Frankfurt to Bamberg to Munich. Car from Munich to Hohenschwangau to Colmberg to Beilstein to Frankfurt.

We knew we didn't need a car in Bamberg or Munich, so we didn't rent until we left Munich. Worked out great.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
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