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Designing your own itinerary on a map --- Websites or Programs?

Designing your own itinerary on a map --- Websites or Programs?

Old Jul 22nd, 2010, 02:50 PM
  #41  
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Thanks everyone for the fabulous comments! You've all given me some great ideas.

I've done a sample map on CommunityWalk & tomorrow I will do a sample map (using the exact same sites) on Google Maps & Open Street Map. I'll let you all know which one I liked using best. Over the weekend I'll check out the prices on MSAutoRoute and then make a decision.

daveesl - thanks for the tip on using OpenStreetMap...I opened it up & it looks really easy.

djkbooks - thanks for posting more information on MSAutoRoute - I like the fact that it gives you 2 licenses. I'll definitely look into it.

ruthruthruth - Trust me, I wish I was a "winging it" kind-of-person. I do have the occasional daydream where I am completely spontaneous...not planning out my trip or doing research on my destination...to then arrive at my destination and just take it as it comes. At which point the dream becomes a nightmare to me. I'm not kidding - that's just the way I am. But I will say that with all the research I do and planning daily itineraries (I really do plan out my days when I travel - almost by the hour), I am extremely flexible when we are there. Actually, I find that we never stick to my itinerary exactly, instead we move things around, but I'm always happy to just be where I am at. So, I may not be able to wing it but I'm flexible on the trip & open to new things. Maybe I'll gain some inspiration from your post & some day I'll wing-it and find that I love it! But then I won't have to troll the Fodors forums...Oh No!!!!

I will mention that the only time that I didn't plan out meals at restaurants in Europe was on our honeymoon when we went to Paris, Venice, Florence and Rome. For us that was a HUGE mistake. I planned out our itineraries & wrote down info on bakeries and specialty shops, but I did not look up restaurants. This wasn't an issue for breakfast or lunch, since we mostly grabbed breakfast at bakeries (or the hotel) and grabbed sandwiches for lunch. The problem came at dinner time --- this was before we had iPhones & couldn't "map" ourselves easily. We followed some dinner suggestions in the guidebooks but found many of them to be closed, under new management, or not as good as they said they'd be. We even did the "eat where the locals are eating" thing. Bottom line, we must have eaten the WORST steak in Paris & the WORST pasta ever in Rome. I'm not kidding...we still laugh about it to this day. So, I've learned my lesson --- now I do tons of research on fodors on food - especially dinner choices.

Thanks everyone!
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Old Jul 22nd, 2010, 03:19 PM
  #42  
 
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Wow I thought I was a planner. But some great ideas and applications here. I will take note
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Old Jul 24th, 2010, 06:57 AM
  #43  
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Hi everyone...Here's my update on what I've found so far...

Of the free programs that were suggested in this thread, I like www.communitywalk.com the best. I found it to be the easiest to use and I really liked that the maps you create can remain private. Drawback --- you can't save the map to your PC. Of course, as long as the website is around, you can go back to your saved map & edit, over & over again. But there is something to be said for being able to save your maps on your computer.

With that said, I looked into MSAutoroute, as suggested by 'dkjbooks' - I'm currently downloading the free-60-day-trial from the Microsoft website. If it's easy (my standards of easy, which equates to SUPER easy), then I'll probably pay the $40 for the program. To be completely honest, if I do purchase the program, I'm only doing it because I am planning a trip next summer to Spain and I will use it for that trip as well.

Now, my only problem is that I have a MAC and as I'm writing this, I'm downloading the free trial (which takes a VERY VERY long time). On the Microsoft website it does not say anything about not being able to use it with a MAC, but only time will tell. If it doesn't work once the trial program is downloaded, I will create my personal maps on communitywalk.com.

Hope this helps! Thanks for the suggestions!!!
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Old Jul 24th, 2010, 09:25 AM
  #44  
 
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Oh this is wonderful, it's like I have found a support group! I love to plan and organize our trips, and making my own travel books, maps, notes, folders, etc. is something I really enjoy. Thanks for the new ideas and resources!
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Old Jul 24th, 2010, 06:00 PM
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I know this question was posted for Paris, and so it won't help the psy_dr. However, I justed wanted to tell everyone of the great site I found for maps of German cities. I'm picky about maps, and I love the ones on stadtplan.de. You can't enter your own items (I don't think, anyway), but the maps are very detailed and show the main tourist attractions by name. You can enlarge/shrink, reposition as much as you want before printing. I can actually read them, too, without having to put them right up to my nose!
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Old Aug 22nd, 2010, 12:43 PM
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Any updates to the thread? I was all set to start building my Community Walks page until I got to the part that it can't be saved to PC - I want to be able to use a map like this on an iPhone which may (or may not) have interest accessibility at the moment (only if wi-fi is available). Need to check if the MS one will work that way....
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Old Aug 24th, 2010, 06:29 AM
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ttt
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Old Aug 24th, 2010, 08:21 AM
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Try capturing the map on the screen using FastStone Capture or similar. I've been using FastStone for years... works great and is free:

http://www.faststone.org/

Save the map as a JPG or convert to PDF and store on your iPhone....
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Old Aug 24th, 2010, 08:27 AM
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... then there's this...

http://citytours.googlelabs.com/
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Old Aug 24th, 2010, 08:54 AM
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ParisAmsterdam, I checked out citytours by putting in the names of some large towns/cities, which worked. Then I was amazed to get results from two fairly obscure small towns in France.

None of the sights worth seeing in these two towns are on the walks, so I can tell from the chosen "landmarks" that no human had a hand in this. So how DO they do it?
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Old Aug 26th, 2010, 02:11 PM
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You'll have to Google for the answer I'm afraid! LOL
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Old Sep 3rd, 2010, 11:34 AM
  #52  
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Hi everyone! I would like to say that I've been able to do more with my trip map and give an update, but I haven't. Unfortunately, I've been swamped at work and with the new school year starting. As it gets closer to my trip (December) I will have some feedback.
Still, if there are any other recommendations for sites, please post.
Thanks!!!!
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Old Sep 3rd, 2010, 12:10 PM
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I just use a paper city map (like you get for free from a hotel or copied out of a guidebook) and a ballpoint pen & write my notes onto it.

For the OP, I have a spiral bound map book with each arrondisement of Paris shown separately and in detail. That would be perfect to 'personalize' with your additional information.

I know it's old fashioned but I get better results myself with this method than trying to map it on the computer (and since I don't travel with phone or computer).
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