COVID-19 Travel Advisory: Stay up to date with the latest on the coronavirus pandemic.   Learn More >

Europe trip in February

Old Nov 10th, 2010, 01:27 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 4
Europe trip in February

Help! I am planning a trip to Europe with my older daughter. I can fly in to any city and will fly back out of a different city. We would like to see France, Italy, United Kingdom for sure, then possibly Spain and Germany. Can anyone help connect these countries to make my trip nore enjoyable? Want to spend 15 days there, also want to use trains and planes to connect to these countries, nothing fancy or expensive. We like to be on the go, not staying in one place more than 1 or 2 days. Thanks
Mike_Meservey is offline  
Old Nov 10th, 2010, 01:36 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 53,459
Hi, how old is your daughter?

What time of year?

have you been before? [i guess not from the idea that you are going to see 4 or 5 countries in 15 days]

Normally I would only want to try to get to 4 places maximum in the time you've got, but we might strech to 5 [that's cities, not countries].

ok - this is what I would do [I've omitted Spain - it's jsut too much]:

Day 1 - fly into London. [good place to recover from jetlag]. stay 3 nights.
day 4 - eurostar [that's a train] to Paris. stay 3 nights.
Day 7 - TGV [fast train to Nice]. 3 more nights
Day 10 - fly to Rome. stay [you've guessed it] 3 nights.
Day 13 - train to Milan. stay...til you go home.

this is basically a shopping trip, with loads of opportunities to do other things. if it's winter, you might want to lose Nice and stay longer in London, Paris and Rome.
annhig is offline  
Old Nov 10th, 2010, 01:37 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 53,459
oops, i just saw February in the title.

Definitely lose Nice. Fly from Paris to Rome.
annhig is offline  
Old Nov 10th, 2010, 01:41 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 3,958
Mike, I see this is your first post. You're probably going to get lots of replies about your idea being quite unrealistic. Most of the folks on this board, myself included, subscribe to the theory that you really don't see much of anything if you try to hit too many destinations. Most would say that two countries/areas, three at the most, would make a good trip for 15 days. You might fly into London, stay there for 3 days or so, maybe take a day trip into the countryside, then move on by Eurostar train to Paris for another 3 or 4 days, and finally fly to Florence for a couple of days, then rent a car to see some countryside in Tuscany for another three days and finish up in Rome for the remaining tree days before flying home from Rome. Most of us would be exhausted by the end of such a trip, but if you think you can hang on, go for it.
London--3 days
English countryside--1 day
Paris--3 days
Florence--2 days
Tuscany-- 3 days
Rome--3 days

If we knew more about your interests, e.g. do you prefer large cities to quaint rural areas, etc. we could provide more useful suggestions. Also, you might consider the time of year that you're traveling. Places in southern and eastern Spain might provide better weather than England. Likewise, you might want to explore Nice and the Riviera in France rather than the colder Paris.

You've posed a pretty big question. Please narrow it down a bit to get better responses.
JulieVikmanis is offline  
Old Nov 10th, 2010, 01:59 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 9,705
Julie has posted very good advice. We have been to London and the UK every year at least once for the last 40 yearssss or more and there is always something new to see or do.We often fly into London because we can get direct flights and move on from there either by train or plane.Trying to see 5 countries and getting anything out of it is not possible. Decide what you really want to see and what your main interest are. We have not yet made it to Germany and I really have not much interest in it. But I do want to see BUdapest, just waiting until I can get the DH to do a river cruise!

My suggestion fly to London for 5 days , Eurostar to Paris for 5 days and maybe to a daytrip to Loire or Normandy, whichevefr would interest you most.Then go onto Rome or Venice and fly back from there. You don't mention Belgium. I adore Belgium, not particularly Brussels , but Antwerp and Bruh=gges are great as is Amsterdam in the Netherlands1
avalon is offline  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 05:59 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 543
There is a film 'It's Tuesday So It Must Be Belgium'. I would not even do this modest sized country the disservice you wish to do to the countries on your wish list.

'I am planning a trip to Europe' - No you are not doing the planning, you seem to be expecting entries on forums to direct you in their eccentric and erratic way. Are there not guide and travel books where you are?

I wish you well with your at speed assault on Europe.
WomBatt is offline  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 06:14 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,525
You can 'see' a place. or you can 'be in' a place. By trying to combine many countries and cities, you are going to essentially see the top sights, and 'see' may mean just that...hey, there's the Eiffel tower...zoom...versus, "we had a nice lunch, overlooking the Eiffel tower. We found the place as we were wandering the Right Bank. Afterwards we wandered over to the Tower and went up. On walking back to the metro, we found this neat little museum of sculpture (Rodin) and decided we had to go in, It was great."

Will seeing lots of things in a short amount of time be more memorable than experiencing a lesser number of places?

I've done both. My first trip to Europe was a 21 day bus tour.
If the goal is just to see and maybe pick out some places to come back to an explore, look at this. Another issue with changing places, countries, languagues,etc..is the organizing and co-ordination. A bus tour would maximize your time, they will take you to the top sites, no need for you to figure out where the subway is, how to get back to hotel,etc...Arranging hotels in multiple places can also be tiem consumming, a tour will relieve you of that.

But if you do want to DIY...

Like idea of landing in London. Easy entry into European adventure. Jet lag will be a factor, as well as gettgin opriented, so first day is a bit of a wash (There are ways to minimize JL, but that's for later).

3-4 days in London. Maybe a 1/2 day out of city (Stonehemge, Hampton Ct.,etc..)
3-4 days in Paris. (Versailles, Chartes,etc..)
3-4 days in Rome.
Michel_Paris is offline  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 06:38 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 766
Has anyone asked how old the poor daughter is? I feel sorry for any child being 'dragged' around Europe in little over 2 weeks with no accounting for jet lag or other culture shocks!
bellini is offline  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 07:02 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 93,670
I think the London, Paris, Venice or Rome works great for two weeks. Personally I'd choose Venice because it's smaller, less overwhelming than I imagine Rome to be, and I thought it was absolutely amazing.

I'd fly into London, train to Paris, overnight train or fly to Venice, fly home from Venice. Staying 5 days each city.

You don't have sufficient time to add Spain or Germany imo.
best, suze
suze is online now  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 07:04 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 93,670
Oh dear, I missed the part about "not staying anywhere more than 1-2 days". You mean even for major cities, you only want to stay a single day???

In that case, entirely different type trip than I suggested. You might look into a rail pass if you are trying to cover all 5 countries in 2 weeks. People DO do that type of trip. You might check Lonely Planet's forum called The Thorn Tree, as they have more 'backpacker' types who do the more aggressive schedules like you propose.
suze is online now  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 07:19 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 228
1 or 2 days in each place??? Do yourself a favor and don't go. It sounds like a receipe for alienating your daughter. You wouldn't be doing justice to any place you visit in that short of time and you'll be wearing yourself out with the constant travel.

Pick 3 places like the London, Paris, Rome itinerary. Just remember that the weather can be cool to cold. You'll be spending lots of time in museums and you can't really do the British Museum or the Louvre in 4 hours.

Good luck on your plans.
pauljagman is offline  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 07:56 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 93,670
I don't normaly recommend this, but if you really want to pursue the 1-2 days per city itinerary, I might look into an organized tour instead. They can move you around quicker and more efficiently than you can do on your own. It simply covering a lot of ground is the goal.
suze is online now  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 08:34 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 33,937
A tour might be a good idea as they often do stay only 1-2 days in each place, and they would handle the logistics of all the moves. It could be a bit mroe expensive than on your own, but sometimes they get good rates on the rooms, etc.

Given this is February, I'd not recommend exploring countryside anywhere, and there is no time for it, anyway. A city trip is best in winter. So I presume the idea of "seeing" entire countries was just a way of speaking, and one main city per country is meant.

I like the London, Pari8, Rome combo. Spain is too far away. If you throw in Germany, I think it would be London, Paris, Germany, Rome or Venice. You could add in Florence to the Rome trip. You'd have to check flights on www.whichbudget.com to see if there is anything reasonable Paris to Germany and Germany to Italy.
Christina is offline  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 08:41 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,525
http://www.trafalgar.com/usa
Michel_Paris is offline  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 09:41 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 53,459
I think we've put the OP off!
annhig is offline  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 10:12 AM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,525
Hope not. We've seen a few reports here of people who ignored the take it slow plan, and managed to fit in a lot. So it is not that it can't be done. I hope the OP sees the above as simply another view and set of alternatives. And, even though there is a majority of DIY people here, a tour is not always a bad idea.
Michel_Paris is offline  
Old Nov 11th, 2010, 09:26 PM
  #17  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 4
Thanks to some of you, For me just saying I was there is good, but I will extend my time in all countries. My daughter is 25
Mike_Meservey is offline  
Old Nov 12th, 2010, 12:35 AM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 53,459
Hi Mike, welcome back.

For me just saying I was there is good, but I will extend my time in all countries. >>

does this mean you've found some extra time?
annhig is offline  
Old Nov 12th, 2010, 02:45 AM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 543
'Thanks to some of you' - a disappointing response.
WomBatt is offline  
Old Nov 12th, 2010, 06:32 AM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 93,670
Be nice. This is Mike's very first post and basically everyone said "Nodon't do what you said you want to do!" -lol I think he's being a good sport about it.

I agree with the poster who mentioned the weather. I think a winter-time trip works better in cities, than in the countryside.

I think for independent travel you need 3-4 days per destination so you aren't just running around to the airport, train station, and checking in and out of hotels every day. But as mentioned there are many organized groups tours that do the 1-2 day itinerary.
suze is online now  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO