Europe trip, need suggestions

Apr 5th, 2006, 12:45 PM
  #1  
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Europe trip, need suggestions

Hello.

After to much time studing the best ways to travel around Europe I finalized with the design of the itinerary.

ARRIVE AT MADRID
3 DAYS
NIGHT TRAIN TO BARCELONA
2 DAYS
FLY TO ROME WITH VUELING
4 DAYS
FLY TO PRAGUE WITH SMART WINGS
5 DAYS
TRAIN TO BERLIN (WITH GERMAN-BENELUX PASS)
3 DAYS
TRAIN TO BRUGES (WITH GERMAN-BENELUX PASS)
2 DAYS
TRAIN TO AMSTERDAM (WITH GERMAN-BENELUX PASS)
4 DAYS
TRAIN TO PARIS VIA LILLE (WITH GERMAN-BENELUX PASS AND PURCHASE TGV TICKET)
2 DAYS
EUROLINES BUS TO LONDON AT NIGHT
3 DAYS
EUROLINES BUS TO PARIS AT NIGHT
3 DAYS
END OF THE TRIP

Travel's experts, I need your suggestions.

THANKS!!!!


hernanc2002 is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 05:41 PM
  #2  
 
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All that shouting is giving me a headache.
I can;t even read what you've written.

Can only say it looks like a tremendous amount of moving around for the number of days in each place - and am not sure your routes are the most efficient/effective.

And think traveling by bus at night is madness. You'll be an exhausted pretzel in the morning.
nytraveler is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 07:21 PM
  #3  
Neopolitan
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Wow, that is one huge amount of traveling. I agree that I'd be a mess after those all nighters. Too bad you won't be able to see any countryside as you travel either.

When you say 5 days in Prague, then a train to Berlin for 3 days, I'm assuming you have an extra day in there. I have a hard time keeping track of "days" rather than actual nights in a town.
Unless all those flights are at night, I think you probably need to re-evaluate your number of days in cities. Are you spending 2 nights in Barcelona? Four nights in Rome? Five nights in Prague? Some of those train trips are long, so unless you've added a full extra day for travel I think you might have to reduce your stated number of days in each city by one in most cases. The way I count up your "days" in each city, I'm figuring you're gone 39 nights all together. Is that right?

It would be interesting to total the number of hours you will be sitting on trains, busses, and planes, rather than "experiencing" Europe.

This is a trip I don't think you could pay me to take.

The very first thing I would do is to take a cheap flight from Amsterdam to London, then go to Paris. You'd be cutting out a long train trip from Amsterdam to Paris and an overnight bus to London. Right there alone is saving you a full day's worth of travel and probably quite a bit of money as well.
 
Apr 5th, 2006, 07:26 PM
  #4  
 
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I would only suggest that Amsterdam for 4 days might be a bit long. Two full days I hear is great....but 4 might be more than you need.

Just my two cents.
ilovetotravel29 is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 08:02 PM
  #5  
rex
 
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I think that the itinerary is sound for someone who wants that kind of intense, 31 day experience. I fear that this is your first trip to Europe, and generally, I caution against a trip so lengthy and so ambitious. You're almost certain to end up with 2-3 days that will seem "lost" (fatigue, or sick, or burned out). Still out of 31, that hardly makes it a disaster. I "lost" about two days out of 42 on my first trip (student "study tour") due to "stomach flu". It was still the best trip of my (young) life (at that point), and started me in pursuit of what will be my 25th trip to Europe this fall.

I do question the German-Benelux "pass" for - - as I see it - - only three train rides? (not clear on the AMS_PAR trip; what happens there exactly?)

Please keep us apprised on how the balance of your trip planning goes - - and additional info will help "us" identify with how ou are crafting this plan... your age? ever been to Europe before? traveling alone? what departure month? general budget level?

Best wishes,

Rex
rex is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 06:07 AM
  #6  
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Why do you think there are to much cities? I'll be traveling at night in night trains and for the very long distances I'll be taking a fly.

I think I'll not spend to much traveling.

The german-benelux pass is because the single tickets in germany and benelux are very expensive.

And I'll be doing Amsterdam-Paris via lille in a night train and then the TGV.

It's my first trip, I have 29 years and I will be traveling with a friend.

I have a total of 35 days to travel.

If you insist that there are to much cities. Would you suggest to skip one? Which? May I change the rout?

More suggestions are welcome!!!!


Hernán
hernanc2002 is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 06:14 AM
  #7  
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I forgot some information:

dates: 20/08 to 24/09

I'm from Argentina so my budget is tight

I make numbers and in moving from city to city (plane, train and bus) I have abount EU 450.
hernanc2002 is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 06:19 AM
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Why not Berlin - Amsterdam - Bruges - Paris - London, instead of doubling back on yourself (and with overnight bus trips)? If you have to leave from Paris rather than London, why not a cheap flight from Amsterdam to London, then Bruges and Paris by train?
PatrickLondon is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 06:20 AM
  #9  
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I don't know how much you're budgeting for the trip from Amsterdam to Paris including the TGV ticket plus the trip from there to London, but for 30 Euro including all fees and taxes you can fly Easy Jet from Amsterdam to London -- lots of time options, but they all take an hour and 10 minutes total!
 
Apr 6th, 2006, 06:22 AM
  #10  
 
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I never tell people how long to travel (e.g. you are travelling too much) because everyone has a different preference.

That being said, I took a similar trip last year and SPAIN was cancelled becasue it presented a logistics problem (it is just so out of the way from everywhere you are travelling.

Here is my suggestion however, and it is a directional suggestion:

ROME--PRAGUE- GOOD
PRAGUE--BERLIN- GOOD
BERLIN to BRUGE---SILLY

Instead,

BERLIN-AMSTERDAM
AMSTERDAM-BRUGES
BRUGES-PARIS
This is more of a direct line
Take the train to LONDON and BACK if it is not cost prohibitive. I agree, bussing stinks.

Now, as for you Spain part, I dont think it is an issue if you dont mind travelling...you are flighing from Barcelona to ROme and ROme to Prague...so you should be fine.

You have plenty of time to sleep when you get home.
pmgoosed is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 06:38 AM
  #11  
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May be you are right about doing BERLIN-AMSTERDAM-BRUGES-PARIS instead of BERLIN-BRUGES-AMSTERDAM-PARIS.

I was thinking about the idea to sleep in the train for the trip AMS-PARIS and I don't have to pay for an hostel.

And the EUROLINES PAR-LON-PAR is also to sleep there for free.

I make numbers and I have u$d 2000 (hostels + traveling + others)

I'm thinking doing less days to Amsterdam as ilovetotravel29 said.

Any other suggestion
hernanc2002 is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 06:44 AM
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I respectfully disagree with Ilove2travel, simply because I am presuming you are younger (hostelling) and they have not been (based on her post).

Amsterdam is a MUST four day place. So much to do.

Give me a list of the hostels you plan on staying at. In the 'Dam, I would suggest the Flying Pig (downtown first) and the Bulldog (Leidsplein or Downtown).

As for saving a night on the hostel...totally understandable, but you are going WAY, WAY out of your way to go to Bruges and then back up to Amsterdam and then down to Paris.

The hostelling cost, 15-25 bucks is better for you overall than cramping up on a couchette or sitting up in a chair (both of which i have done) on a train.
pmgoosed is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 06:48 AM
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Oh...and you dont have to go through LILLE to get to paris from either amsterdam and/or Bruges. There is a switch in Belgium though. It is the quicker route.

About your budget of 2k....does that include the Benlux pass, the flights, hostels, etc.

MY BIGGEST SUGGESTION, BTW...bring yourself a mini-light (go to REI or any outdoor store) that is colored (key ring sized...4 bucks) to use at night at the hostels so you dont make enemies with people as you move around the room and need to see. The other, bring a pocket knife (I have an awesome Amsterdam-Berlin story involving border patrol) like a swiss army.

With that budget, you will subsist on bread, cheese, wine, sausage, etc...and that pocket knife will become your BEST, BEST FRIEND!
pmgoosed is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 06:56 AM
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hernanc...email me at [email protected]....I did a similar trip last year (except for the italy, spain portions) if you have travelling and hostel questions.

Berlin...BOOK CIRCUS (there are two...get the new one...its the bigger one). Amsterdam- Flying Pig and Bulldog Paris-see the link previously posted. Prague- Sir Toby's, however Circus Berlin just opened a new one there and you can access it if you google Circus Berlin and then there is a link on the site...looks amazing...and cheap. Bruges...Bauhaus...no questions asked. I walked by Charlie Rockets, looked ok...same block as Bauhaus...but Bauhaus is "THE TRAVELLERS" hostel.

As for you Berlin-Prauge travel, I could be wrong but the BenLux pass does not cover it. Prague is an "excursion" pass ($45 one way) seperate from Eurail passes (though can be purchased via any Eurail supplier). check on that.

You are 29...as for a travel guidebook, for your age, I suggeste Lonely Planet, Let's Go, and Rough Guide. Lonely is aussie written, Rough Guide British, Let's Go--Harvard.

All are published in various languages. I used Let's Go, but Lonely is also equivalent. They all have their good and bad.


Cut Prague to 3-4 days...add a day to Berlin. YOU WONT BE SORRY ON THIS...TRUST ME.
pmgoosed is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 06:59 AM
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I forgot one of the best hostels of them all...ST. CHRISTOPHER's LONDON.

They are in Borough, a very cool section of London...it is packed with travellers, has their own pub, and a 6 man jacuzzi on the ROOF DECK!!!

To book all the hostels, go to hostels.com and these will all be listed, with ratings (independant ratings). You can and SHOULD (you are going in the back end of college travel time...and bookings will be high). You can put a deposit down on each, and if you bail because you change travel dates (and you most likely will...maybe liking one city more than another) and you only lose your $5 US deposit.

pmgoosed is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 07:13 AM
  #16  
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Thanks a lot pmgoosed. The budget includes:
- u$d 550 traveling (rail pass, singl tick, bus and planes)
- u$d 540 hostels(u$d 20 aprox x 27 nights, cause the others are overnights traveling)
- u$d 850 others (eu 22 aprox x 34 days, food, pubs, etc).

About sleeping in the train instead of in a hostel, I have travel lot of times in Argentina (my country) in buses and trains at night so for me, an european train at night would be like for you a 5 stars hotel . Although, I'll strongly consider your opinion about doing BERL-AMS-BRUG-PARIS.

About the hostels, I didn't study a list yet. I'll be doing this after I confirm my itinerary, but I'll remember those you specify.

Another one, do you suggest skipping one of the cities or changing the days for one.

THANKS!!!!!
hernanc2002 is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 07:18 AM
  #17  
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Ohhhh pmgoosed, thanks for giving me your e-mail. I'll consider that very much. Sure I'll be asking you something about the trip

THANKS AGAIN!!!!
hernanc2002 is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 07:22 AM
  #18  
 
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You should be ok with that budget...just definately bring that pocket knife for food....the cheapest way to eat.

Time frame....I cant speak for Italy or Spain, but other than cutting out a day in Prague and adding it to Berlin (7 is perfect in Berlin...4 just right...3 WAY TOO LITTLE), you look good.

DO NOT CUT AMSTERDAM down in days. The days look great IMHO, and you, like me, seem like a person who can pull off such a chaotic trip. Some of us live for that craziness...and are still youthful enough to do it. No way could I pull that off in two years from now.

Have fun buddy!!
pmgoosed is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 08:00 AM
  #19  
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pmgoosed:

For the PRAGUE-BERLIN I must go to a border (for example DECIN, is about u$d 8 a ticket) and then I use the rail pass.
hernanc2002 is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 08:19 AM
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Nice....did not know that. Yep...Decin is the border that you will go through (it is a beautiful stretch of Czech countryside)
pmgoosed is offline  

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