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How old were you when you the first time you went?

How old were you when you the first time you went?

Old Dec 1st, 2008, 04:20 PM
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1. Age 28 with boyfriend.
2. Budapest, Vienna, Salzburg, Alps, Belluno, Venice, Como, Geneva.
3. Pleasure trip and also test to see whether this was "the one" and whether we could happily travel together. Fantastic experience (now married 21 yrs). Budapest - had just opened up although we still needed the visa. Few Americans, very exciting to be there and very cheap. Vienna and Salzburg - lovely. Got tired of the heavy food and headed to Italy and the water taxi in to Venice is my best travel memory ever. I just couldn't get over that you could travel so relatively quickly (compared to, like, driving through Pennsylvania or California) and be in such a different environment. Brilliant trip!
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Old Dec 1st, 2008, 04:34 PM
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1. Age 21

2. Where: Athens, Rome, Florence, Venice, Vienna, Salzburg, Rhine cruise from Basel to Amsterdam, Copenhagen and surrounds, London, in six weeks.

3. Graduation gift from college in 1970.

Didn't return for 21 years, but have made 10 subsequent trips, largely to England and Wales, but also Scotland, Ireland, Portugal, Italy, and this year to Scandinavia. But we've also discovered Australia and NZ, and will be making our 4th trip down under in May. From the Western US, it's almost an easier trip than to Europe (and cheaper than the euro/pound).
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Old Dec 1st, 2008, 04:53 PM
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1. I was 15 years olds. Not only was it my first trip, but I went SOLO!

2. I went to Germany (NY-Frankfurt-Hamburg).

3. I spent the summer with my Oma and Opa on their farm in BadBramstadt. During that time, I also stayed at my Aunt and Uncle (just departed) and cousin's apartment in Hamburg. It was truly a remarkable summer.
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Old Jan 2nd, 2009, 09:08 PM
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I was 15 years old on my first trip to Europe. It was a family trip -- my stepdad, mom, sister, and me -- and we visited germany, italy, austria, switzerland, and hungary over 3 weeks. Believe it or not, I protested the trip because I was a teenager in the prime of making my parents' life as difficult as possible. I desperately preferred to spend the three weeks living out of my best friend's basement... alas, we had a great time and I'm glad they "forced" me to go

I've since been back 3 times -- once to london by myself for five days; once to visit a friend attending a program at oxford for the summer and we toured southern england for a week; and once as a backpacker where i spent 5 weeks with my sister touring the netherlands, belgium, france, italy, austria, and germany.

each trip was magical in its own way and i'm now planning our honeymoon to visit ireland in 2010. can't wait!
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Old Jan 3rd, 2009, 04:07 AM
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To: Paris

I went with my sister and friends in March '00 and scrapbooked my trip - "I Lost My Heart in Paris". The following year we went to London.

I have never did sightseeing trips growing up, we would go to a resort and lay in the sun for a week.

I caught the bug of history on my first trip to France. Since that trip, I have flown to Paris for long weekends (3 trips), did a Mediterranean Cruise and just this past May did Italy (Rome, Florence, Venice and Brussels). I want to go to the Greek Isles next and I have always wanted to go to Tahiti and Austrailia.

One day I will get there!
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Old Jan 3rd, 2009, 05:20 AM
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My first trip overseas was in 1980, between my Junior & Senior year of college. I did a Contiki trip with 2 girlfriends -- and we went just about everywhere: London, France, Barcelona, Italy, Greece, Austria, Germany, and the Netherlands.

Memories include having our camp flooded in Barcelona, singing Dean Martin's "Everybody Loves Somebody Sometime" every morning after boarding the bus, but especially all of the incredible sights we saw. Whenever we arrived at a new spot, my friends and I would jump on a bus or train and head in to take in the sights of Europe. The Aussies & Kiwis on the trip started calling us "unsocial" because we didn't want to stay in camp & party with them. But we just wanted to see as much as we could of Europe! I can still remember coming around a corner into St. Mark's square in Venice late at night -- the square was nearly deserted, but the lights were still on and to my eyes, it was magical! Or the time some elderly gentlemen convinced us to go into their wine cellar (hmmm...probably not the smartest thing to do, girls! but their intentions were honorable) to sample some of the local vintage. Or the time we helped a French girl herd her goats ("Allez! Allez!&quot. Or riding a moped around Corfu, stopping every now & then for a dip in the beautiful sea. Or standing in the Sistine Chapel, gaping at the incredible beauty above me. Those memories have stayed with me a life-time and have fueled my insatiable desire to see as much of Europe as I can!

In my 20's, I continued to travel to Europe, spending some of my hard-earned paycheck on an annual trip: England many times, Scotland, Ireland, Paris, and Portugal. Then I got married and had kids...and put traveling on hold for a bit.

Now I'm preparing to take my own children on their first trip overseas. I hope this first trip fires their curiosity about the rest of the world out there!
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Old Jan 3rd, 2009, 01:38 PM
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My first trip to Europe was in 1968 when I was 18 years old and married just 2 months. My husband was in the Army and stationed in Wildflecken, Germany (about 3 hours from Frankfurt, no Autobahn at that time). The 1 1/2 years there we traveled to Venice, thru Austria, part of France and all over Germany.
My next trip after 3 kids and a divorce didn't take place until July 2001. That was Paris, the UK and Wales.
Then 2002 for 3 weeks I traveled to London, Inverness Scotland, Wales and Ireland.
Again, 2003 I took my daughter to Rome and London.
Then February 2004 My friend and I traveled to Venice (during Carnivale), London and Prague.
Then August 2004 I had the opportunity to work in Garmisch, Germany for the Dept of Defense in the Edelweiss Lodge & Resort in the gift shop for 5 months. While there I traveled to London and saw alot of Southern Germany. Also, went to Bologna, Verona, and Venice Italy.
Then, in August 2008 I traveled to London, Amsterdam and Bruge, Belgium.
Do you see the pattern here.....London, London, London! Yes, my favorite city as there's so much to do there and I love London Theatre!
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Old Jan 3rd, 2009, 02:17 PM
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I was 17 and I had won a scholarship to school in England. Back then it was called the Isabel Carden Griffin Scholarship of the English-Speaking Union a year at an British secondary school. I was assigned to the Princess Helena College in Hertfordshire, England, and it was a perfect match.

I took A-level classes and exams. I was sent along as a "chaperone" on every field trip the younger girls took. I even learned the proper way to curtsey and address royalty when we concluded the year with a garden party that celebrated the 150th anniversary of the school, and were graced by the presence of HRH the Duchess of Gloucester, who died just a few years ago at the age of 103.

During spring break--I was barely 18--I visited friends in Copenhagen, Denmark, and Paris, France. The Danish friends had been neighbors in Cleveland OH in the early 1960s. The French friends dated back to 1917 when my grandfather was an ambulance driver for the French army in WW1.

During the summer, before returning stateside, I traveled with an American also on the E-SU around Europe: Scandinavia, France, Switzerland, and a dip into Italy.

It is simply impossible in this space to express what the experience was. My best friend from Princess Helena is my son's godfather and I have an extraordinary relationship with her daughter. That week in Paris in 1970 is as fresh in my mind--fresher I suspect--than the activities of the week just gone by.

I emerged from that year with a rich and complex sense of the world that has never left me.

And I have traveled back as often as possible since then.

Oh my. It was perhaps the greatest year of my life.

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Old Jan 19th, 2009, 07:51 AM
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I turned big 3-0 on my inaugural trip to Europe. I had always been interested in the UK and grew up in the 80's with Princess Di, Britpop(Duran Duran) and Eastenders on PBS. My high school never had a study abroad program and in college I was much more concerned about getting my degree and a paying job.(Ah, the foibles of youth)!

A few months before my birthday, my parents announced their gift was a trip to London with my mom. Then however, 9/11 happened and my mother was seconded guessing our trip. But I preserviered and found tickets on UA for $385 RT and a roomy studio for 59£/night.

I planned a heavy itinerary because I though this was my one and only trip to London. My mom was a good sport and though white-knuckled survived the plane trip and had a wonderful time.

After that I was smitten, I've tried to visit Europe every year with at least a couple days in London. I sacrifice things at home-no cable, old car and eclectic furniture but I'm happy.
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Old Jan 19th, 2009, 09:16 AM
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1493 return trip with Columbus under misleading circumstances

I was 22 and went for six months with my wife for $3,000. We waited six months after we married to be sure we were compatible.

We visted Iceland, Luxembourg, Paris, and Spain We only stayed a week in Paris, if we stayed another week we would have to cut off a month from Spain.

We visited most regions in Spain in five months and stayed on the farm where my father-in-law was raised in Galicia. The toilet was a hole in the floor, they shared the first floor with pigs, chicken, and some cows. And although it was dairy farm all the water was hand cranked at the time. We were there in December and there was no heat and in the morning there was a thin layer of ice in ewer and basin.

We have been back numerous times since and they have advanced 400 years in 37. We are now very close to our youngest cousins and hope they will visit us this summer. I also 60 pounds on that trip.
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Old Jan 19th, 2009, 09:53 AM
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Age 17 -- had just graduated from high school -- went with an honor choir from Southern California -- about 90 kids with 4 chaperones -- 3 young Austrian guides. It was a whirlwind - 6 countries in 4 or 5 weeks -- the crummiest hotels. I do remember how it felt to perform in the most beautiful cathedrals, however -- wonderful.

I didn't return until I was 38 -- to northern England & Scotland.

Since then I've been on several trips to continental Europe.
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Old Jan 29th, 2009, 06:45 PM
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1 21
2 England and Wales
3 being a Beatle fan wanted to see the
places the Beatles were also into the
Tudors. Fell totally in Love with London was just there for Christmas a dream come true.

been to england 16 times now and Ireland 10 *mom was born there and also been to France Germany Switzerland and Austria thinking of
Spain next
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Old Feb 15th, 2009, 09:46 PM
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I was 22 the first time I went to Europe in 2002. I went on a Contiki bus tour from London to Amsterdam, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Venice, Florence, Rome, Lyon and Paris. It was a new world for me, as I had never traveled before.

The circumstances that took me to Europe were complicated. I was very shocked, depressed and thrown out of my comfort zone by 9/11 (I know that sounds bland, but I just can't describe how I felt after 9/11, living near NYC... no one I knew well had died, but everything seemed turned upside down.) I always wanted to see Europe, but didn't think I'd have the money for many years ( I borrowed off credit cards... which I don't recommend!!) And I just went, kind of on a mad whim, kind of an escape fantasy. It was great, it was very unplanned, and it made me a lifelong lover of travel and of Europe.

It also made me an advocate of gap-year travel. I didn't do my trip until I was in grad school, but I really believe that all high school grads should do a year abroad before college. I think I would have been so much better prepared for college if i had seen some of the rest of the world before getting there.
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Old Feb 16th, 2009, 01:01 AM
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I was 16 and I went on a school sponsored chaperoned trip to England. I actually turned 17 on the trip. It was a great way to see the major sites around London in a short time frame. I think the whole trip including travel time lasted only a week. It was my first trip out of the country but it gave me a taste of what was to come.
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Old Feb 16th, 2009, 08:42 AM
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Mid 50's, England
Our son had spent his junior year in college in Spain and then our second son and his wife went to Europe the year after they were married. We realized there was something wrong with that picture and away we went. That was in 1996 and I think we have only missed one year since (after
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Old Feb 16th, 2009, 09:35 AM
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1. I was 28. My LW was 27.

2. All over northern Italy, by car. Plus a night in Munich.

3. We were young married professionals w/ no kids, and were finally banking enough scratch to do something seriously fun.

Here's a retroactive trip report, with pix:
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Old Feb 16th, 2009, 12:21 PM
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1. At what age did you first go to Europe?
I was 32, went in 2003.

2. Where did you visit?
I spent a week in Paris.

3. What circumstances took you to Europe?

I studied French in college and was in love with all things French but was a graduate student for so long never had the money to go. Graduated, got job, moved, met DH (a German), and went to Quebec for a long Memorial Day weekend trip. The taste of the Old World got me restless so we booked a trip to Paris for that September. I was so excited I could have burst just thinking about it as I planned the trip. Once there, Paris was all I dreamed of, I fell hard and havenít recuperated since. After that I have visited Germany three times, and also Rome, Florence, Venice and Barcelona.

We are going back to Paris this April with our 10-month old DD, lucky her, her first time in Europe at only 10-months!
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Old Feb 16th, 2009, 02:22 PM
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1. At what age did you first go to Europe?

I was an innocent 19 when I first went to Europe.

2. Where did you visit?

All over Spain for a month, then traveled the rail with friends for another month--France, Germany, Austria, and England.

3. What circumstances took you to Europe?

It was the summer before my junior year in college, and one of my best childhood friends (and college pal too) told me how to earn 6 college Spanish credits in Spain AND get my father to pay for it! I certainly doubted that my dad would agree for me to go. We just weren't the "Europe type". Somehow, my friend did the talking and if I worked a couple of parttime jobs at the college to help pay for the extras, my dad agreed to pay for the tuition and board while at the college in Madrid. The whole experience completely opened my eyes socially and politically. I even found my first Parisian waiter boyfriend! Tee-hee, seriously! I've been heading back 2-3 times a year ever since. I'm married and now in my mid-30's and we already have our April trip to France and Belgium booked! I have the bug, and luckily married a man who travels globally for his job. With all of his hotel and flight points, most of our trips are practically free.
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Old Jun 25th, 2009, 04:50 AM
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I was a 10 year-old schoolboy from London. Our class of about 30 children went to Blankenberg in Belgium for a week in 1959. It seems extraordinary now, that two teachers could handle something like that. We had a fantastic time and the whole week revolved around the beach, and the entertainments thereon. We stayed at a nice little hotel near the casino and the owners could not have been more pleasant and kind to us even though we did not speak a word of French. I've had a soft spot for that place ever since.

Roger Bruton

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Old Jun 25th, 2009, 05:00 AM
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I was 12 years old. I flew to Vienna by myself to stay with an Austrian friend of my parents for a month. We spent most of the time in Vienna and Innsbruck (including going to some nifty places in the Alps where Americans were unheard of!). We also took a train to Amsterdam for 2 nights and spent a day in Paris. Before going I really did not want to go, but by the end not only did I not want to leave but I was a completely different person!
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