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Itinerary help for 14-ish days, starting in London

Itinerary help for 14-ish days, starting in London

Old Oct 7th, 2017, 05:29 AM
  #21  
 
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Sue- was there a mailing fee for the pass? Thanks.
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Old Oct 7th, 2017, 09:42 AM
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Hi Palen, Yes there was a fee for the pass that looked just like a train ticket. The fee was not bad, and I cannot recall exactly how much it was, I got two tickets for the fee. I just did not want the hassle of buying it in Basel, which probably was not necessary. We used it on lake boats, all trains, and some lifts discount. I want to go back to Wengen....Sue
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Old Oct 7th, 2017, 10:09 PM
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I agree that 4 countries in 14 days is too much. I also agree you will probably spend less if you fly into a city closer to where you actually want to be. I don't even think Frankfurt makes much sense if your aim is Switzerland, though there are some wonderful little towns (e.g. Rottenberg ober der Tauber) along the "Romantic Road" of Germany. Perhaps you can catch a connecting flight to Bern or Zurich for the Berner Oberland. Or connect or fly into Munich and see some of Bavaria ("Mad Ludwig's Castle") and/or Saltzberg, Austria. This would be a Germanic oriented trip.

On the other hand, I see nothing wrong with a Switzerland / Italy itinerary either, perhaps a week in each. Our kids went crazy over Venice and Rome as middle-schoolers. Italy and Switzerland/Austria/Germany are strikingly different looking and culturally. It might be really educational for the kids to compare and contrast the two countries.

Finally, there is more to the UK than London but London offers a lot for kids and no language barrier. That was the first destination for us when our kids were 9 and 11 and got their first passports. We also saw the Cotswolds, Bath, and Brighton.
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Old Oct 8th, 2017, 03:04 AM
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Starting in London is still a good idea depending on how much money you can save. I do it all the time but I can get a nonstop flight to London for less than half of just about anywhere else. If that's the case the for you - and you have four tickets to buy - I would say it's a great idea. Even if you only spend two nights (which would give you a day and a half assuming an early arrival) you could show your kids the highlights of a city they undoubtedly have seen lots of photos of in TV and movies, etc. There are cheap flights from London on easyjet and ryanair to almost everywhere else in Europe.

Of the other four countries you originally mentioned, Switzerland is considerably more expensive. Is it worth visiting - of course it is, it's beautiful. But Germany, Austria and Italy have some spectacular mountain scenery as well and are less expensive. You could pretty easily fly to Munich for a few days, rent a car and drive through some of Bavaria and Austria and into Italy. That is not ridiculous for a two week trip. Fairly fast paced and you'd have to realize you can't see anything close to 'everything' but are just doing a sample.

One of the first trips we took with our kids was similar to this (we had three weeks but also included France). You could do something like this: fly into London (2 nights), fly to Munich (2 nights), rent car for Bavaria, cut through part of Austria down through the Dolomites to Venice - about 6-7 days for that part - then drop car, Venice 2 nights, train to Rome (4 nights) fly home from Rome. That's just one idea but you see if you only do geographically close parts and don't expect to 'see everything' you can go through 3 or 4 countries in two weeks without it being a race. If you were to drive direct from Munich to Venice it's less than 350 miles so in a week you can see how you could make some detours and spend a good deal of non driving time.
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Old Oct 8th, 2017, 05:07 AM
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I just did not want the hassle of buying it in Basel, which probably was not necessary.>

Did you not have to go to ticket window anyway to validate pass or was it pre-validated? Curious and thanks for answers to previous questions.
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Old Oct 8th, 2017, 09:30 AM
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Palen, I don't recall that we had to validate it. I think that was done on the train. However we did have to ask some directions from the ticket window, and I could be wrong about that. Sue
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Old Oct 8th, 2017, 12:34 PM
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Thanks -according to rules you must validate your pass at a train station ticket window unless coming into Switzerland on a train that keeps going thru the border -then the conductor will do it so you need not get off to do it- and IME Swiss conductors are nice enough to do it anyway if someone has not done it properly.

But some passes may come pre-validated if it was some kind of special.

Anyway thanks for answering.
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Old Oct 9th, 2017, 12:32 PM
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HI, Just a little comment on your Germany idea. If you fly or get to Frankfurt, Wurtzburg is about 1 to 1/12 hours away, Rottenburg ober Tauber is about another 45 minutes. Rottenburg is a really lovely little town that your children would undoubtedly enjoy seeing. google it. However if I had my choice I'd go back to Switzerland esp the Lauterbrunnen Valley area, Murren,Grindelwald,Wengen. I was there this July and it was gorgeous, esp for hiking, scenery, mountains. Sue
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