Europe Trip Itinerary Advice/Criticism

Oct 13th, 2012, 12:01 PM
  #1  
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Europe Trip Itinerary Advice/Criticism

Greeting all. Here’s my updated European itinerary. I’m beginning my travels mid-December and I’m dedicating 8/9 weeks. I feel I’ve got a good itinerary except for the ending. I had Spain in originally, but thought maybe I should focus on spending more time in the cities I listed. I’m just not sure. I welcome any advice/critiques, and I’m open to making adjustments.

A little about myself, I’m a 26y/o male; never been out of the states, and giving up a good job to fulfill my life goal of backpacking thru Europe. Hoping it will be very liberating! I’ll be traveling solo and I’m a musician, and an art and history lover. Looking to get out of my comfort zone and meet new people.

I plan on getting a Eurail Pass. I figured I would need the 5 countries pass, but not sure on the travel days. 8 days within 2 months or 10 days within 2 months.


Dec 17-23: London (7 nights)
Dec 23-2: Amsterdam (8 nights) ---Visiting friends south of Amsterdam also
Jan 2-7: Paris (5 nights)
Jan 7-10: Berlin (4 nights)
Jan 10-14: Prague (4 nights)
Jan 14-17: Munich (4 nights)
Jan 17- 20: Zurich (3 nights)
Jan 20-24: Venice (5 nights)
Jan 24-29: Rome 6 nights)
Jan 29- 1: Naples?????
Feb 1- 13: Spain???????
anthony73m is offline  
Oct 13th, 2012, 12:31 PM
  #2  
 
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anthony - let me preface this by saying that I never did this type of trip, so i'm not in a strong position to advise you.

But - i think that you will find these 3-4 night stays pretty bitty and in the end frustrating. also if you aim at making any human connections, they are going to be pretty short-lived.

Actually i like the way you started but after that, it rather tails off. Why not pick one place in each country and use that as a base - then you will have the chance perhaps to meet a few people and to get a know a few places really well. also, i think that i would lose spain unless you have an overwhelming desire to go there on this trip. [also, Zurich, which is not terribly exciting for someone with your interests].

how about this:

Dec 17-23 - London

Dec 23-Jan 2 - Amsterdam

Jan 2-9 - Berlin

Jan 9 - 13 - Prague

Jan 13 - 20 - Munich

Jan 20 - 27 - Venice

Jan 27 - Feb 4 - Rome

Feb 4 - 13 - Paris.

I've put Paris at the end so that you can be there at the [beginning of] spring.

have a great trip!
annhig is offline  
Oct 13th, 2012, 12:45 PM
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Welcome to Fodors. Its going to be cold, possibly wet and the days will be short. Still I think you can have a great time. I think I'd drop Munich and Zurich and either extend another visit or add another (Florence perhaps).
bilboburgler is offline  
Oct 13th, 2012, 12:45 PM
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I agree w/ annhig. Your plan isn't awful--pretty good actually. But w/ the luxury of so much time, I personally wouldn't settle for pretty good.

You do have a bit less time than you think in each city since you count the same days in two places (As does annhig).

So really it would be more like:

Jan 2-6: Paris
Jan 7-9: Berlin
Jan 10-13: Prague
Jan 14-16: Munich
Jan 17- 20: Zurich - etc.

I like Annhig's suggestion -- except I might try to fit Florence in between Venice and Rome.
janisj is online now  
Oct 13th, 2012, 12:59 PM
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I would suggest adding Florence and taking a couple days from Venice.
Randy is offline  
Oct 13th, 2012, 01:03 PM
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I'd struggle to take days from Venice as you have the chance of day trips to Verona, Trieste, Padova, Ravenna and Bologna if you get bored of Venice.

Trouble is you have the same issue from Florence with Pisa, Siena and Lucca just down the train track.

In terms of trains (which in europe) are very much the way of a single person to travel, on time, clean, warm etc. You might like to read up a bit at seat61.com which will give you a good overview, in English, of the various systems you will be running into
bilboburgler is offline  
Oct 13th, 2012, 01:26 PM
  #7  
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Thanks everyone. annhig, I like your idea. I do want to meet people, so extending my stay in cities would be good.

I forgot about Florence, I’ll definitely add that in.

Thanks bilboburgler, there’s lots of info on seat61.com Now I’m not sure I need to buy a Eurail pass. I may just by city to city at the station. Seems cheap for short distances.

Dec 17-23: London (7 nights)
Dec 23-2: Amsterdam (8 nights)
Jan 2-8: Berlin (7 nights)
Jan 9-13: Prague (5 nights)
Jan 14-19: Munich (6 nights)
Jan 20-26: Venice (7 nights)
Jan 27- 30:Florence (4 nights)
Jan 31-6: Rome (7 nights)
Jan 6-12: Paris (7 nights)
anthony73m is offline  
Oct 13th, 2012, 01:36 PM
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You do have a bit less time than you think in each city since you count the same days in two places (As does annhig).>>

jj - wasn't counting any days or nights anywhere, merely following the OP's format. if it makes you happy JJ, i'll correct the error.

Dec 17-23 - London [7 days]

Dec 24-Jan 2 - Amsterdam [10 days]

Jan 3-9 - Berlin [7 days]

Jan 10 - 13 - Prague [4 days]

Jan 14 - 20 - Munich [7 days]

Jan 21 - 27 - Venice [7 days]

Jan 28 - Feb 4 - Rome [8 days]

Feb 5 - 13 - Paris. [9 days]

of course it is obvious that if you are travelling from, say, London to Amsterdam on Dec 23rd, you're not going to have much time on at day to do much other than do the travelling. That said, it's less important where the traveller has relatively long periods of time in each place, as the OP does. [he still has 9 full days in Amsterdam].
annhig is offline  
Oct 13th, 2012, 01:55 PM
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oh - sorry. I didn't mean it was an error - was just explaining to the OP that in his original plan there was less time in each city than he might think.

[I actually intended to delete the >>(As does annhig)<< bit but clicked submit by mistake]
janisj is online now  
Oct 13th, 2012, 02:04 PM
  #10  
 
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no probs, jj, no offence meant or taken. i think i was feeling a bit defensive as of course, you were right and i hadn't spotted the error.

and anthony - in my haste i failed to adjust my revised itinerary to take account of you changes, but you get the idea.

as you have taken on board the idea of staying longer to get to know people, another trick is to go to the same places each day. What we do is to find a bar or cafe that we like and stick to it. obviously if the people are unfriendly or the food bad, you don't go back, but we have found it to be a good tactic in places like Rome and Florence, even Paris, to have our breakfast in the same place every day, to go to the same bar in the evening, to buy our bread/milk at the same shop etc, etc, waiters soon get to know you as do other customers, and you maximise your chances for some human contact.

I'm sure you'll have a great trip and wish you lots of luck with your travels.
annhig is offline  
Oct 15th, 2012, 04:06 AM
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anthony;

Looking at this logistically, and considering your age and interests, I think Zurich is an outlier. Munich to Venice is about 6:30 hours by train. Munich to Zurich is about 5 hours and Zurich to Venice is 7 hours, so the jog west is costing you about 6 hours. Zurich, as a financial centre, is probably not a prime place to explore art history and meet others of your age.

The days you would save from Zurich could be added to Florence, which fulfills your requirements better than almost anyplace else, so the change you have proposed looks like a great call.

And Feb 4th is not the beginning of spring in Paris, by a long shot, so if that is why you moved it to the end of the trip....... It is a long haul from Rome to Paris, so unless it works for you on another level, like a cheaper flight home than from Rome, it might be better to leave it in after Amsterdam.
Aramis is offline  

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