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Help!! 2 week Europe trip with 6 year old daughter in December!!

Help!! 2 week Europe trip with 6 year old daughter in December!!

Oct 10th, 2016, 07:41 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Oct 2016
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Help!! 2 week Europe trip with 6 year old daughter in December!!

Hey everyone!!

I am planning to head to Europe Dec 20th- Jan 2nd. I am starting from Toronto and coming to the states in NYC. I know for sure I want to do Paris for Christmas and either Berlin or Prague for New Year's Eve.. Suggestions for New Years ever with a 6 year old girl will be appreciated. I am kind of planning to hop around to as many places as possible. I plan to come back to my favorite countries once I pick my favorite places.

I plan to travel by train, the eurail pass for 550(15 continuous says) that is 1st class for both my daughter and I since she is free. I want to take as many night trains as possible and sightsee during day. The only place I plan to stay for more than a day in is Paris 24th evening - 26th morning

I will leave from Copenhagen also. I want to see Spain ,France,Netherlands,UK, Germany, Italy, Denmark, and hopefully fly to Greece.

My main concern is my 6 year old and our safety but we want to see as much as possible.. Please go ahead and give me and every little piece of advice..

FYI this is my daughter's Christmas break
quitagg is offline  
Oct 10th, 2016, 08:00 PM
  #2  
 
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If your concern is for your 6 year old, you need to entirely re-think your plan. A 6 year old needs a routine and some consistency. Trying to sleep on a night train and moving every day ensures that she will be a very unhappy little girl and therefore you will be unhappy too. Even if you were traveling alone this would be a bad plan - by moving all the time you think you will see a lot, but instead you will see a blur out a train window.

Choose two cities in the time you have and divide your time between them. This will allow you to settle in and know a tiny bit of the two cities you choose.
Kathie is offline  
Oct 10th, 2016, 08:09 PM
  #3  
 
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Do you do that sort of trip with your daughter at home? Because that sounds like madness. I'm counting 8 COUNTRIES and 14 days. Have you looked at the train schedules?Because- it also sounds like a LOT of time just spent on trains. Even if you were going solo- I'd probably say madness- but with a kid, it sounds like torture.

I am not quite following you on your dates and I can't actually figure out how you plan to hop around, but if you think you'd like to see any of the German Christmas markets (which I think would be fun with a kid) I'd head to Germany first as the markets seem to largely close up on Dec. 23.
marvelousmouse is offline  
Oct 10th, 2016, 08:31 PM
  #4  
 
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Wow, you are very ambitious. You wrote the word "I" thirteen times and "we" once. A suggestion is to have your daughter spend a cozy holiday with family and you do your trip. Or max 2 cities as Kathie suggests..
LuxuryTravelExpert is offline  
Oct 10th, 2016, 10:13 PM
  #5  
 
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>> I am kind of planning to hop around to as many places as possible. I plan to come back to my favorite countries once I pick my favorite places. <<

Then do this madness alone and leave your daughter out of it.

>> want to take as many night trains as possible and sightsee during day. The only place I plan to stay for more than a day in is Paris 24th evening - 26th morning <<

Beyond nutty. First of all there are not all that many places w/ night trains. Many have been eliminated because low cost airlines and high speed day time trains are much better. And when you arrive in a new city at 8AM what the heck do you plan on doing until any sites open -- normally not til around 10AM.

And to not even stay 2 days anywhere is totally fruit loops. (meant in the kindest possible way)

And you are doing this in the dead of winter no less.
janisj is offline  
Oct 10th, 2016, 10:26 PM
  #6  
 
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I think a Disney cruise to sunny beaches would be more fun, memorable holiday for you and your daughter. And save the Europe tour for yourself during better season for weather.
LuxuryTravelExpert is offline  
Oct 10th, 2016, 10:44 PM
  #7  
 
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I don't think you should substitute a Disney Cruise -- Europe is cat nip for kids. Just not this horrible plan.

Go to two or three cities (3 max) and actually enjoy them.
janisj is offline  
Oct 10th, 2016, 11:44 PM
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Wow.. just wow.. I almost wonder if you are pulling out legs..
justineparis is offline  
Oct 10th, 2016, 11:50 PM
  #9  
 
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Actually I reread your post.. you must be pulling our legs.. your plan is ridiculus.. and I do not say that easily.. I understand some people like to do "fast travel".. but your plan is beyond fast.. its impossible, exhausting for an adult ( never mind with a child).. and doesn't sound fun at all.

2 weeks.. three places.. stop the madness. You want a fast trip.. do 4 places.

Every time you move from place to place takes time..

And you know what.. I don't care what a trooper your child is.. this is an unpleasant trip..exhausting.. a tour of train stations ..

And night trains.. puleeze.. do some research.
justineparis is offline  
Oct 11th, 2016, 01:19 AM
  #10  
 
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This has to be a joke.
StCirq is online now  
Oct 11th, 2016, 02:58 AM
  #11  
 
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You posted on someone else's thread asking about their trip. Did you read all the advice that poster had received?

So, winter, little girl aged 6, 8 countries in 14 days, night trains, all over Christmas no less. Yep! Sounds like a plan!

Are you going to sleep sitting up on trains with no sleepers, rent private accomodations on the train, or just share with whomever is assigned to the space? Very interesting trip for a six year old girl, sharing bathroom, bathing, etc. Expect exhaustion and meltdowns, but don't let common sense get in the way.
Sassafrass is offline  
Oct 11th, 2016, 04:56 AM
  #12  
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You guys are definitely Hardcore! Yes we do travel fast pace a lot in the states..

I guess I used I a lot because I'm the one planning it, definitely not excluding her. Most of the destinations are places she wants to go in fact..

Can't do Germany for Christmas she wants Paris..

I know night trains are not for all trips so those where night train isn't an option then hotel is the plan. We will not be in any train stops in the middle of the night.. I have looked at timetables but late December is not up.. So I've looked at other days to see what the schedules looked like.. We will sleep in a bed at night..
So what I'd like to know is Berlin or Prague for New Year's Eve with a child.. How is the ferry from Harwick to Holland? I don't see many blogs about it.. Advice for traveling with a child as far as safety in Europe.. Are trains running during holidays?? Those are the types of things I'm interested in hearing about
quitagg is offline  
Oct 11th, 2016, 05:00 AM
  #13  
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Canceled cruise because it is basically the same thing but stopping in cities I've never heard of..rather go to places that interest us if we are going to pay that much.. They have port stops almost everyday on those ships but only like 1-2 places of interest
quitagg is offline  
Oct 11th, 2016, 05:26 AM
  #14  
 
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"How is the ferry from Harwic[h] to [Hook of] Holland?"

Not much point unless you are taking a car. The ferry will be filled with truck drivers from all over western and eastern Europe.
Heimdall is online now  
Oct 11th, 2016, 05:45 AM
  #15  
 
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While doing your scheduling, have you bothered to look at actual daylight hours you'll have for sightseeing? At that time of year, Berlin's sunset is at about 4pm.
Envierges is offline  
Oct 11th, 2016, 05:55 AM
  #16  
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I noticed the daylight hours a little while ago.. I didn't know that at first though.. I read some cities have day time New Year's Eve celebrations for the kiddos.. I was thinking we would have a hotel where we can see the fireworks at night vs being outside on the street at midnight.

@heimdall I saw there was one that had cabins and over night.. I just figured that was a way over to Amsterdam while we sleep..is that not a good idea?
Nothing is set in stone yet.. Except for our way in and out and Paris for Christmas..
quitagg is offline  
Oct 11th, 2016, 06:17 AM
  #17  
 
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Have you been to Europe before? What kind of "fast pace" have you done in the States? Did you do it by car?

Is this trip for this Christmas? Be sure to book a place for Dinner in case things are not open wherever you are.

If your little girl wants to go to Paris, do you not want to stay three of four days so she can really see things?

Don't forget, days will be short during winter. Some places may be very, very cold. She will need some very warm clothes, hat, mittens, etc.

London is a city with lots of things to do for children. You might consider putting that in your plans.

London and Paris, even in winter, for a few days each could take a week and be a great 1/2 of the trip.

Unless is it cold enough for skating in winter, the Netherlands is nicer in Spring. There are some great museums, of course, in Amsterdam.

Southern Germany, Bavaria, if there is snow already, is pretty and fun with visiting castles, sledding, etc. You need at least 2 or 3 days there though.

Vienna is also interesting for a kid. Read about some of the things like the Lipizanners and cathedrals.

Europe can be good, if you come up with a reasonable plan, one that is good for your little girl, not just dragging her all over creation, seeing only the inside of train stations.

If you can't do that, then this is one time I agree with LuxuryTravelExpert. A nice cruise in the Caribbean with beaches, snorkeling, swimming pools, play activities for kids, etc. is fantastic during that time of year. You don't have to do an expensive Disney cruise. Many of the other, less expensive lines have fantastic kids' programs and are very family oriented. Depart from San Juan and add a few days at the beginning of the trip for touring, tubing, etc. Look at vacationstogo.com and cruisecritic.com for ideas.
Sassafrass is offline  
Oct 11th, 2016, 06:26 AM
  #18  
 
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I would never take a child on a cruise instead of a European trip, particularly a child who wants to see Paris.

For a fast paced two week trip I would do Paris, London and perhaps two other cities.

I think night trains work for some people , but they never have for me.

Look at man in seat 61 for rail travel info, a Eurail pass may not be the best choice.
jubilada is offline  
Oct 11th, 2016, 06:35 AM
  #19  
 
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I am assuming you have a fairly unlimited budget. Because I don't think jumping from city to city like that is very cost effective...

But one idea for New Years is Disneyland Paris. That gives you fireworks, kid friendly stuff galore. I'd imagine a 6 year old would not turn down the chance to play princess. I've gone to family first nights in the states and there usually isn't a lot to actually do, especially with a kid that young.

I don't understand the idea that staying in only a few cities is a waste of money. I mean, I've travelled with a 6 year old before. You aren't going to see Paris very fast- and there is so much to see! I would really, really want 3 nights in each place at least.

The one thing a cruise has going for it (even if I disagree with luxury and think a Disney cruise sounds like hell) is that you don't have to pack up each day. I really think you are underestimating the amount of time you will spend packing and in transit. You just need more time with a kid that age. I have no idea if family friendly luxury tours exist, but possibly look into that. Then hopefully your kid would have other kids around, the planning is done for you, and the pace will still be fast.
marvelousmouse is offline  
Oct 11th, 2016, 06:36 AM
  #20  
 
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I've been in Berlin for Sylvester Eve. It's a madhouse, not for children. Your decision of course. What draws you to this destination? At that time of year, I much prefer Rome. Warmer, better weather . . .sun even!!!
Envierges is offline  

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