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Mother-Daughter trip to Europe in January

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Jan 1st, 2012, 08:32 AM
  #1
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Mother-Daughter trip to Europe in January

Hello, I'm taking a trip with my mother (age 57) to Europe in January (14-29). We will be based in Kent, so plan to head over to Paris (via Eurostar) for a couple of days during the first week and travel UK for a bit (i.e. Bath, Stonehenge, etc), but would like suggestions on where we could go from Jan 18-29.

Would like some place where weather would be bearable and where it would not be too strenuous for my mother (i.e. no hikes/climbs/too much outdoor walking). Any suggestions for local cooking lessons would also be great.

Locations we are thinking of include: Sicily, South of France, Barcelona/Madrid,...??

Welcome all suggestions, particularly on hotels, b&b or apt rentals...if you have an itinerary to share that would be fantastic!!
Nomiz is offline  
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Jan 1st, 2012, 11:31 AM
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Well unless your mother is handicapped don;t know why a 57 year old woman can;t do any reasonable amount of walking (not suggesting mountain climbing);

You do know that England and France will be chilly and likely rainy with very short days when you are there?

I would head to Andalusia for decent (not warm but decent touring weather) but don;t know about cooking lessons. You can do SEville, Granada, Cordoba, see Ronda and perhaps another of the white towns - way more than you could ever see in only 10 days.
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Jan 1st, 2012, 11:38 AM
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57? Is she partially disabled or do you personally just think 57 is an old fogey??

No place will guarantee fine weather. As nyt suggests - maybe go to southern Spain.
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Jan 1st, 2012, 11:55 AM
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Hi Nomiz,
Should be lovely. I think Spain or Italy would be lovely. My daughter and I took a trip to Paris and Italy 4 years ago, trip report is here:
http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...heir-way-t.cfm

And I also remember a great mother/daughter trip report to Sicily that included cooking. You might try a search for that. Unless you have a reason to be in England, I'd skip it this time of year. However Paris - or any big city - is great for winter travel as there's so much to do and see.
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Jan 2nd, 2012, 02:47 PM
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So between arriving on the 14th and the 18th you're going to Kent, Paris, Bath and Stonehenge? I suggest a nice shawl for Mother's weary shoulders.
Fidel is offline  
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Jan 2nd, 2012, 03:16 PM
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I will be 76 tomorrow, and I just finalized my plane reservations for a solo trip to Spain. I can't tell what kind of shape your mother is in, so I'm not sure what you mean by not too much outdoor walking. I can easily walk a couple of miles, but after that I need to sit at a cafe for a few minutes.

I have a couple of tips. When you're planning a trip, don't forget to add in the travel time. For instance, I will be departing Seattle on Mar. 26 but won't arrive in Madrid until the 27th. The first day I always have to take it easy because of jet lag, even when I do get some sleep on the plane.

Each change of destination will take at least half a day, and maybe a full day. You'll have to pack, check out, travel to the new city and then to your new hotel, check in, etc.

Be aware that the days in England will be exceedingly short because it's quite far north.

My suggestion would be to go to the south of Spain--Granada, Sevilla, Ronda, etc., where the weather will be warmer rather than to Barcelona or especially Madrid. I've been in Madrid in January, and while it was much warmer than Spokane, where I live, the people there seemed to think it was cold.

And finally, I suggest that you get a guidebook or two, maybe one like Rick Steves "Best of Europe," that covers several of the places which interest you.
Pegontheroad is online now  
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Jan 2nd, 2012, 06:30 PM
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Cordon Bleu offers day long cooking classes, look up website. Your mother is infirm? Paris does involve a fair amount of walking , but it is flat so shouldn't be an issue for a normal person that young??
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Jan 2nd, 2012, 08:25 PM
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Nomiz, I think it's wonderful that you and your mother will be vacationing together. While I can't answer your specific questions, I do want to apologize for what seem to be
unasked-for comments/questions regarding your mother's ability to get around. This is inappropriate and insensitive. Fortunately, most fodorites are eager to help without passing judgment or making sarcastic comments. I hope you find the answers you need and that you and your mother have a memorable trip.
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Jan 2nd, 2012, 09:21 PM
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I think you need to tell us more. Where are you flying into and out of? Weather "bearable" compared to where? How much outdoor walking is "too much"? How long do you have for the second location: a week or 11 days?

In the second half of January, cities are better than small towns, because they offer more to do if the weather is chilly or rainy. Andalusia is a good suggestion; Madrid is much colder in winter. The south of France is not at its best in late January. In Italy, I don't think I'd suggest Sicily for a first-time trip. Rome (and possibly Florence) would offer more and be more "tourist-friendly".

The historic centers of most European cities are small and mostly walkable for anyone without mobility issues. They also have better public transport than many cities in the US.
Zerlina is offline  
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Jan 3rd, 2012, 02:32 PM
  #10
 
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What crkwc1 said- yikes @ some of the tactless replies.

Please do not feel any need to explain why your mother might have limitations when it comes to hiking, climbing, etc., as it is personal and not pertinent to the travel info you are seeking.

For what it's worth, my mother and I did much walking on a similar mother-daughter trip, and in the end it proved to be too much for her. She was so tired she could barely get up from her nap to join me for dinner. I felt very bad for any part I had in contributing to this, and will be far more mindful of her limitations when planning future trips.

I hope you find the answers you need here, Nomiz. Happy travels!

Boots
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Jan 6th, 2012, 08:03 AM
  #11
 
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The reason people are commenting on mothers abilities is we are all sincerely hoping that the OP( who is obviously younger) is not discounting her mothers ability to walk outdoors based on her AGE,, which is very young,, a normal 57 yr old woman should have few issues with outdoor walking that would revolve in sightseeing, but if there is another issue, then OP should state it,, since my advice would then include the tip to use the buses in Paris, NOT the metro.. and I would explain why.
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Jan 6th, 2012, 08:33 AM
  #12
 
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Warmer places
Teneriffe and the other islands
Algarve (portugal)
Southern Spain
Sicily/Puglia
Morocco (not europe but very flyable) but Marakesh will be 20C and very pleasant

There will be loads but for those weeks you just have to google but here is one
http://www.golearnto.com/course/over...ooking+holiday
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Jan 6th, 2012, 11:24 AM
  #13
 
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Precisely - I'm 55 and if anyone had written that sentence about me - I would probably have torn them limb from limb. (And being a New Yorker I routinely walk miles - although I'm not hiking UP anything.)

People were just trying to establish if there was some sort of handicap that would affect recommendations (that is: type of transit, or places that are basicaly flat, or places with pavements rather than cobblestones - in case the mom has a problem with her gait) - or just a daughter thinking mom is "old". She didn't say mom can't walk more than a mile, she said mom is 57 and she doesn't want things too strenuous - what is "too stenuous" for 57?
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