Europe tour

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Aug 2nd, 2012, 07:50 AM
  #1
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Europe tour

I am indian, with two children (Age 8 & 4). Working in dubai. like to visit europe countries france, Spain, Germany, Swiss & Italy. I would be very happy if anybody give some tips of my below questions.

My plan to come there in coming novmber, economically is it correct time...

My plan to come first to paris then go around these countries, can give the correct order to go all places...

Where i can get moderate hotel rooms...

My plan to stay 3 days in swiss, 2 days in france, 2 days in germany or spain & 2 days in italy.

I prefare to go to these countries by train. what about inside every country train is better or any other options.

Pls. guide me and thanks in advance...
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Aug 2nd, 2012, 07:54 AM
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Four countries in 9 days, by train, with young kids? You can't "go around" a country in 2 days; all you have time for is getting there, snapping a picture, then heading to the train station and getting out. You'll see and experience nothing but train stations and café cars.
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Aug 2nd, 2012, 07:58 AM
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Halliburton welcome to Fodors, as StCirq says cut the trip down and if you want to cross borders make them close. So if you fly into Zurich look at France, Germany and Switzerland but just visiting across the border
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Aug 2nd, 2012, 08:06 AM
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My suggestion is that you get a "best of Europe" guidebook. You'll find listings for hotel rooms, as well as sights there.

I agree that you are planning too many locations. Remember that each change of city will take half a day to a full day. You'll have very little time to see any of these places.

I suggest that you cut your trip down to two countries at most. If I were taking this trip, I would concentrate on one country.

Train service is very good in Europe, by the way.
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Aug 2nd, 2012, 08:50 AM
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You may want to consider the weather is deciding where to go. In Nov the outdoors will not be very pleasant in most places - esp if you are not used to cold weather.

Agree in the time you have and with children you should do no more than 2 stops. Much better - and probably less expensive to rent an apt in each place - so you're not all stuffed into one room, you can save money by having breakfast and snacks in the apt and you should find some that are near a park with a playground so the kids can run around.

Not sure what you mean by moderate hotel rooms - but I would check apts instead - and avoid Switz - which may be the most expensive place in europe.

If you spend some time in Italy is will be warmer than in or north of the Alps and you can easily spend weeks there. If you want to add a little Swtiz you could do 3 or 4 days there (in the Bernese Oberland) and the rest in italy.

And be sure yuo have clothes that are warm enough, comfy waterproofed walking shoes and sturdy folding umbrellas - since you will be getting some chilly rain (and snow in the mountains).
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Aug 2nd, 2012, 08:53 AM
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5 minutes using Google would tell you this is not a feasible itinerary.
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Aug 2nd, 2012, 09:11 AM
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With 9 days and two small children I would not even have two destinations. Choose one country and possibly even one town/village and as has been suggested rent an apartment and have day trips from your base. This will be less disruption for the children's routine and you and your spouse will enjoy the trip all the more.
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Aug 2nd, 2012, 12:08 PM
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In November you may find that Christmas markets have started (actually you can google this sort of stuff), a german christmas market would be very nice to visit for part of this trip.
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Aug 2nd, 2012, 12:48 PM
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Hi H,

You have enough time to visit one city.

Two cities would be a rush.

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Aug 2nd, 2012, 01:02 PM
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I prefare to go to these countries by train. what about inside every country train is better or any other options.> Well yes generally trains are the best option IMO for intra-country and inter-country travel in all those countries if you are heading to the key tourist cities that most folks want to.

You could mix in a flight and do open jaw - fly into Spain, work way u thru France to Switzerland and Germany and fly back to Dubai from say Frankfurt - open jaw ticket into one city and out of another.

There are also overnight trains that allow you to relocate at night and also save on a hotel cost - you can book a 4-person compartment often.

Anyways for loads of goodies on trains and yes Eurailpasses which for this type of cross-border train travel may be a great deal - especially for first class travel which for anyone with two kids that age IMO is recommended - first class seats are bigger and there are often IME of decades of incessant European rail travel often quite a few empty seats to spread out over - not always so in 2nd class which is usually much fuller and seats are smaller - harder to find room easily for luggage, etc.

anyways for sights with lots of info for planning the rail part of the trip I always highlight these IMO fantastic sites - www.ricksteves.com; www.seat61.com and www.budgeteuropetravel.com - download the latter's free and superb IMO European Planning & Rail Guide for suggested rail itineraries in all those countries - http://www.budgeteuropetravel.com/si...s/rg011210.pdf - and yes with kids that age try to keep the number of relocation days down - I like base city - base in a city and perhaps do short day trips by train to nearby cities - Switzerland is a great place for that.
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Aug 3rd, 2012, 03:11 AM
  #11
 
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May be a bus tour? it is rather cheap and you will be able to see a lot of countries.
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Aug 3rd, 2012, 07:43 AM
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In November I would head more south than north - November can be really dreary in say Germany - short days - often cloudy and rainy (never really cold but if you are from India it may seem really cold) - Spain and Italy still at that time should have weather in 60s in southern parts at least - so weather IMO should also be a deciding factor!
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Aug 3rd, 2012, 08:05 AM
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<>

With young kids? Nightmare.
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Aug 3rd, 2012, 08:07 AM
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I work with many Indian colleagues. All the European itineraries they take are like this with small children. After their trips, they are always satisfied with such trips.

To get train travel time, use http://reiseauskunft.bahn.de/bin/query2.exe/en. It gives you what is possible by train in your case.

Spain to anywhere you mentioned, even France, is a long journey by train even starting from Barcelona. Either drop Spain due to connection issue or if you insist on Spain, make Spain first stop from Dubai or last stop before Dubai and connect Spain to the rest by plane, such as www.vueling.com.

Planning the remaining destinations by train is best done by travel time as a constraint and not by distance. Unlike car trips, because of train connections and availability of high speed trains, two cities further away in distance can be actually easier to connect than two closer cities. The DB train site noted above will show you how well two cities are connected.
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Aug 3rd, 2012, 09:20 AM
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Hi
while you are in Swiss, if you buy a Swiss rail Pass and then you ask for a family card (for free) your children can travel with you by train, boat or bus for free!
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Aug 3rd, 2012, 10:17 AM
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check prices for Swiss passes both here in US if you live here and once there - I have bought passes for years and always compare prices - often in past several years exact same pass has been cheaper, sometimes dramaticdally so, here - but this is not always true so check prices on both ends and if little difference just wait to Switzerland to buy. In either case the Family Pass comes free for kids under 16 traveling with a parent (and only parents, not grandparents, aunts, etc) - and then kids never pay a dime for any transporation - even ones the adults only get 50% off on. Always free!
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Aug 3rd, 2012, 04:53 PM
  #17
 
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Many bus tours don;t allow children under the age of 12 - for obvious reasons involving the attention span of small kids and the sanity of the other tour members.
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