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Help Appreciated for France, Spain, Germany Itinerary

Help Appreciated for France, Spain, Germany Itinerary

Jul 9th, 2004, 09:22 PM
  #1  
ladybrett
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Help Appreciated for France, Spain, Germany Itinerary

Hi there. I have been lurking here since late 2003 during preparations for a trip to London (with a day trip to Paris) with my husband in March 2004. We enjoyed London, but we really enjoyed our day trip to Paris. My husband was smitten and vowed that any time we travel to Euope, we must stop in Paris. I agree!

Other than a 1 week trip to Paris back in the early 90's with my best friend, I have had no other opportunities to travel to Europe. My husband has no other European travel experience.

We are travelling to Venice, Florence, Rome, and Paris for 2 weeks in Feb. 2005, and I have received excellent information from everyone here to prepare for that trip.

Now that I have the travel bug, I am researching a trip for our 10 year anniversary in Mar. 2006. (My husband says I'm addicted!) I am 32 and have always regretted not having that backpack through Europe experience.

My husband, 31, and I are saving up our vacation time and will be lucky enough to take a 1 month vacation to Europe in 04/06. We originally anticipated doing a grand tour of France, Spain, Germany, Vienna, Prague. During planning I realized that the itinerary was insane, and maybe I'm too old to enjoy that kind of travel! I decided that narrowing down to France and Spain (2 weeks each) made sense, but my husband is insistant that that is too slow for him. He is adament that we add Germany. He is open to anything in Germany as long as it includes Berlin.

(Now please don't waste too much time with me on an itinerary request for 2006!) But I'd love suggestions on how to divide up 1 month between France, Spain, and Germany. We enjoy big cities/history/museums, but because it is our anniversary, we would love to add a mix of small towns and nature.

Thanks to everyone for itinerary advice.
 
Jul 10th, 2004, 03:54 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,330
I like the timing of your planning. After Memorial Day weekend with my traveling friend I now have Australia in the fall of 2005 to start planning. I also like your pace. I think 4 weeks with 3 countries will be wonderful.

As a rough outline I would do an open-jaw flight starting in Barcelona, ending in Berlin. This lets you start in the better weather in the south and head north hopefully with spring weather for the area improving along the way.

Work your way north and watch Spain turn into France as you head towards Montpellier or Avignon. TGV to Paris for a few days. Then watch France turn into Germany from Paris through Strasbourg into Germany. You could hit a bit of the southern half of Germany like Wurzburg or Dresden then into Berlin.

With a trip of your length I really prefer a mix of travel between cars & trains. I hate a car in a city of any size. Take advantage of the fact that most rental car deals involve a 3 day minimum and staying within a single country.

For example after a few days in Barcelona with a day trip to Sitges or someplace I'd take the train to Perpignan in France and pick up a rental car there. Then you could drive along the Mediterranean Sea to Avignon stopping at small villages. Drop the rental car and explore Avignon. Take the TGV to Paris. Take the train to Strasbourg to get a rental car for Germany and drive stopping along the way to Munich or Dresden. (I know Strasbourg is in France but sometimes border towns are counted as being "in" the neighboring country when a car rental is concerned.)

I envy your task. I spent a year planning 8 weeks in Europe when I turned 40 in 2001. I loved every minute of it.
indytravel is offline  
Jul 10th, 2004, 04:00 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,098
We spent two weeks on just Bavaria and the Mosel River valley two years ago. The highlights of the trip were Bamberg, Munich, the Mosel, and Hohenschwangau and the surrounding area. We also drove up the Romantic Road visiting Nordlingen, Dinkelbuehl, and Rothenburg o.d. Tauber.

If you get to the point where you decide you might want to visit any of these spots, let me know and I'll provide more info.

We didn't find Spain to be all that interesting compared to other destinations, but others will disagree on that.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Jul 10th, 2004, 07:27 AM
  #4  
ira
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 74,147
Hi LB,

>...Venice, Florence, Rome, and Paris for 2 weeks in Feb. 2005...<

This is only about 2 1/2 days per city.

May I suggest that that is too much for only 2 weeks?

You might want to consider 2 weeks in Paris with daytrips or one week each in Paris and Rome.

ira is offline  
Jul 10th, 2004, 06:41 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 4,204
I agree with Ira, but would suggest a week Paris and split the other time between Venice and Florence.
artlover is offline  
Jul 12th, 2004, 07:43 PM
  #6  
ladybrett
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Thank you for your replies to my rambling post. I have never been known to be concise.

Ira and artlover...you're right. I was very concerned that Paris/Venice/Florence/Rome was too much for 2 weeks. My husband really wanted to add Paris after I mentioned a comment from another poster here. Someone wrote that they just had to stop in Paris everytime they were in Europe, and my husband really liked that idea. As much as I want to see Paris again, we've decided to leave it out for the Italy trip.

Thanks to indy and Rufus for your comments on Germany. Now that I know a France/Germany/Spain itinerary is pleasantly do-able in 4 weeks , I will get to work researching and come up with more specific questions.

I'm actually getting excited about Germany now that I hear more about it. To be honest, Germany was low on my list of places I wanted to visit, but my husband really wants to go.

Rufus...where did you travel in Spain, and what was it missing for you?
 

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