Driving around Europe

Jun 17th, 2002, 05:03 AM
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Driving around Europe

My wife & I have decided to tackle Europe by car. We are limited to two weeks and apart from having seen pictures on the TV, don't really have much idea about where to go. We would like to visit Switzerland and Italy, and to travel over that mountain pass that switches back and fourth over the Alps. The famous one that the rally cars go up. We also want to get to the Italian lakes if we have time. Apart from that we need some pointers and ideas. Any help here would be greatly appreciated. Even if you know of a good book we could buy. Right now all we have to go on is a map. I know in France it is relatively easy to get accommodation in the Formula one motels. Is this the same throughout Europe or is there a similar chain?
Jun 17th, 2002, 07:47 AM
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I'm only fimilar w/the Megeve-Simplon rally for classic cars which is not really a rally.

If you want to visit Switzerland's mountains and Italy's lakes region, then consider starting in the Luzern area. It's only 2-4 hrs. drive to Jungfrau region - serious Swiss mountains, the Furka/Grimsel passes or Lake Maggiore (Italy)

www.switzerlandisyours.com could be helpful for general areas and maps.

As far as driving in the mountain passes,
I've been thru Grimsel and Furka passes and can recommend them. Never been thru the Simplon or other passes so I can't comment. Here's a link to driving alpine passes:
Jun 17th, 2002, 07:48 AM
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Forgot to mention, can't really help w/places to stay as we usually pick a place when we get into a town/area but, I wouldn't try that during the high season.
Jun 17th, 2002, 08:27 AM
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Andrew---with all due respect, you need to be a little better prepared before asking for help. Go out to a bookstore and buy at least one guidebook on Italy and Switzerland (which will be two books) and study them a bit. By all means, don't assume you can use only a map to plan your vacation. And please don't assume that the major attraction in those countries is some specific pass through the mountains. I've driven all over Switzerland and Italy, and I've been through probably every major mountain pass, and I can tell you that there are many more sights to see than passes. As for which pass is the one that rally cars climb, I don't know. But I can tell you that there are quite a few passes that will give you all the thrills and views you could possibly ask for.

As for getting to the Italian lakes, you can construct a good itinerary that goes through parts of Switzerland, Italy, and the lake country in 2 weeks. But you don't say when you'll go, where you plan to land or depart, and what else you might like to see or do. I think you really don't want to have other people decide for you, so go out and get those guidebooks, then come back to this web site with more specific questions.

As for the hotel chain you mentioned, I'm sorry but I don't know about it. But there are many chain hotels if that is your interest, and the biggest can be accessed by internet -- Best Western.
Jun 17th, 2002, 10:07 AM
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You make a valid point about doing one's homework before coming here but <fill in usual reasons why they don't or think their question has a simple answer>.

But Andrew did give the following hints:
- They're driving
- Want to drive mountain pass(es)
- CH and IT are on the itinerary
- They've got 2 weeks.

Damn, that's a lot more than we're used to seeing And that, IMHO, was enough to get the ball rolling for the very general answers I gave. Now, let's see if he comes back...

Jun 17th, 2002, 10:27 AM
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I tend to agree that Andrew was a little too general, especially if this is his first trip to Europe. He needs to do a little homework first.

One thing he will need before he tries to drive in Europe is a simple chart telling him what the road signs mean. That is a must for a first time driver.

Other than that he could fly into Zurich and out of Milan and see some great countryside by winging it on the go. We have done this before and had fun, but it was not our first trip. Andrew....do some homework of get a travel agent to help you out.

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