Help! Europe in February, where to go?

Old Sep 5th, 2004, 04:53 PM
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Help! Europe in February, where to go?

I am looking to plain a ten day trip to Europe (or nearby) in February 2005. I will be going with my husband and two kids (14 and 17). The trouble is that I am having difficulties deciding where to go. We have already been to parts of Italy (Rome, Florence, and Venice), London, and Paris. However, when it comes to planning our next vacation, I am having some problems. My fourteen year-old is rather unimpressed with our options, and wants something more "exotic." Just to give you an idea of her taste, three countries she wanted to go to were Peru, Greece, and Croatia. Unfortunately, Peru is not an option, and Greece and Croatia will both be in their rainy season in February. Basically, if anyone had some ideas to throw out about some trips in Europe that might appeal to the taste of someone who loves ancient ruins and the likes, but that are accessible in February, please respond. I could really use the help. Thank you!
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Old Sep 5th, 2004, 04:58 PM
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Have you been to Sicily?
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Old Sep 5th, 2004, 05:07 PM
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Munich - lots to do in the city and the surrounding areas.
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Old Sep 5th, 2004, 05:13 PM
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Several other options come to my mind.
1-Portugal and Spain
2-Barcelona-Pyranees-French Riviera
3-Amalfi Coast-Sicily
I consider these all "warmer" areas for that time of year. You'd have a full agenda for a ten day trip to any of these areas.
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Old Sep 5th, 2004, 05:17 PM
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Perhaps Malta, or Malta/Sicily. Malta has a lot of ruins/archaeological sites.

http://www.visitmalta.com/en/what_to_see/index.html
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Old Sep 5th, 2004, 05:21 PM
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Sicily seems immensely beautiful. I was looking around on this site and found several recommondations towards it. At first I am reluctant to return to Italy... not because we didn't enjoy our stay there... but simply because we wanted to see another country entirely. However, Sicily is extremely different both in location and in content than where we traveled in Italy previously. About what platzman mentioned, Portugal and Spain has been a trip that I have wanted to plan for awhile. Unfortunately, my 17 year old is a little uneasy about it in light of the separatist movement there... thank you again for helping us!
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Old Sep 5th, 2004, 08:35 PM
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Germany's "Fasching" or Carnaval celebration to usher in Lent is truly exotic. Be in one of the Rheinland cities like Cologne or Mainz for the big Rose Monday Parade and other craziness. February can be wet, but not as bad as in summer (the driest months of the year are March and April) but do plan on taking warm clothing. While in the Rheinland, visit Marksburg Castle in Braubach on the Rhine for a tour (medieval castle, never destroyed, open all year.) Other nearby cities of interest that you might tour at that time of year: Trier, Germany's oldest city, with Roman ruins and 2 UNESCO World Heritage edifices; Aachen, home of Charlemagne with its very attractive cathedral; Luxembourg and Brussels aren't terribly far either.
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Old Sep 5th, 2004, 11:56 PM
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Is skiing in the French or Swiss Alps an option or a definite no-go?
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Old Sep 6th, 2004, 12:25 AM
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I have been to Sicily and [often] to Andalucia in the winter months. Both have plenty to see and if you are interested in either/both you rae welcome to my notes and URLs if you e-mail me so that I ca insert them.
[email protected]
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Old Sep 6th, 2004, 03:56 AM
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Susan56--- I believe the separatist movement your 17 year old is referring to is concentrated in the Basque region, Northern Spain. I think the recs you got were for Southern Spain, but even if those were for that Region, I would not be so concerned as not to visit. Thousands of visitors enjoyed Spain and Portugal every year with no problems with violence. I am taking my 17 yr. old niece to Spain in Nov and she can't wait!! By the way, I don't quite understand why he is lumping Portugal in this concern (?).

I would strongly suggest you guys consider Andalucia and Portugal. It is exotic, there are plenty of Roman, Moorish, medieval ruins and the history is absolutely fascinating. In top of that the Feb prices are very reasonable.
 
Old Sep 6th, 2004, 04:36 AM
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The center of the movement is in northern Spain--the Basques. However, they commit terrorist atrocities throughout Spain.

The odds of any individual being the victim of such an attack are small, but if the kid is going to be worried throughout the trip, there are plenty of other places to visit.
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Old Sep 6th, 2004, 04:48 AM
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Definitely Sicily. But I wouldn't rule out Greece either, assuming you wouldn't mind going that far for just 10 days.
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Old Sep 6th, 2004, 09:21 AM
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cmt, I would absolutely love to travel to Greece, but I read that it is bad weather there in February and that half of the attractions are shut down. Have you been there in February? I would love to be proved wrong! As to the numerous suggestions towards Sicily, I was considering maybe doing three days there and four or five in Malta. Would three days be enough for Sicily? Are there any indoors attractions, just in case of bad weather? Also, if anyone here has been to Malta, what is a good, inexpensive way of getting there from Sicily, and, also, is there enough to do there to fill up four or more days? Should I reconsider?
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Old Sep 7th, 2004, 04:16 AM
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Susan, go to Portugal only, if you have afraid of Spain!
In this small country (Portugal) you have so many and differents things to see!
My opinion to see great villages and towns:
North of Portugal - Monção/Ponte de Lima/Guimarães(The first capital city of Portugal)/Gerês/Bragança/Vila Real/Porto (the second biggest city of Portugal)...
Center of Portugal - Aveiro/Viseu/Guarda
South of Portugal - Lisboa(The capital)/Sintra/Évora/Beja/Portocovo and the region of Algarve (Portimão/Tavira and so on...)
If you want to make a trip to the island you wiil love the Island of Madeira, a "island sculpted by the gods"(http://www.madeiratourism.org/)and the beautiful Açores(http://www.drtacores.pt/)
You may see this site for more informations:
http://www.portugal.org/
http://www.portugalinsite.pt/
http://www.turihab.pt/
http://www.rtalgarve.pt/

If you need help in this country, about hotels/rent a car, etc... tell me.




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Old Sep 10th, 2004, 11:12 AM
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Portugal is sounding like a very good idea! Now, for more questions and help - we are travelers who love to move and see things. We are not the kind to spend time sitting on a beach. And my kids love museums, historic castles/homes and beautiful churches. So, assuming we have about 8 full days to sight see (not counting travel days), what should we see? We can travel within Portugal, so where would we go? In short - itinerary help please!
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