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brooklynn18 Jan 17th, 2015 11:09 PM

Planning a vacation
Hi my name is Brook.
I'm new to traveling. I've only been to four states and that was only in the United States.
My best friend and I ( 19 years old), are trying to plan a vacation to Europe. But we have no idea how long we should stay and what places we should go too. We like the thought of Spain, Italy, and Greece. We know they are really far apart and wouldn't be able to see all three places in one trip but need a general idea of what cities to visit. We are young and want to go out and explore! Meaning night clubs, shopping, trying new foods, visiting land marks, and hopefully the beach.
It would be helpful to have feedback on what places to go to and what to do for activities.
Aiming for 10 days!

kimhe Jan 18th, 2015 12:28 AM

<We are young and want to go out and explore! Meaning night clubs, shopping, trying new foods, visiting land marks, and hopefully the Beach>

In Spain, I would then concentrate on the two fabulous and VERY different big cities Madrid and Barcelona. The two cities are easily connected with the high speed AVE Train.

Madrid is known for the best nightlife in Spain, and that easily means the best nightlife in all of Europe. The madrileños are called Los Gatos (the cats) for a reason. Perhaps start the night at quirky Casa Granada, on the 6th floor of an apartemnt building and with great views from the terrace over central and local feel Tirso de Molina square:

Excellent nightlife in the close by Huertas district, or perhaps go to Malasaña where the whole Movida Madrileña started back in the 1980's:

Barcelona is an adventure, and the city beach Barceloneta is where to meet all kinds of people. The Barceloneta district, just inland from the beach, has got a great vibe, but for nightlife I would perhaps recommend the medieval Born district and the area in and around Calle Aribau, close to the university from 1450.

Barceloneta Beach:
Calle Aribau:
El Born, with a great variety of bars and clubs open until early morning. Also many of the trendiest shops in town are located here:

And both cities are full of land marks, for example the Prado, Reina Sofia, Plaza Mayor, Retiro park, Royal Castle and Santiago Bernabeu football stadium in Madrid. In Barcelona you have the spectacular Sagrada Familia as well as the other fantastic Gaudi buildings, the medieval Gothic quarter, the cathedral, the beautiful 14th century Santa Maria del Mar Church (often weddings and concerts here), the Palau de la Musica concert hall, the Boqueria market (one of the finest food markets in the world) right off the famous Las Ramblas street. And of course the Camp Nou football stadium.

Rubicund Jan 18th, 2015 04:06 AM

You sound perfect for splitting your holiday between Barcelona, for all the reasons that kimhe mentions and the party island of Ibiza. Ibiza has clubs, bars and nightlife that goes on until morning and is well known among Europeans for it's clubs and music.

nytraveler Jan 18th, 2015 04:39 AM

For 10 days you need to liit yourself to 2 locations - andy more and you will spend a lot of your time just sitting on a train getting from one place to another.

As for beahes in europe - you need to investigae carefully. Unlike the US many in europe are pebbles or even rocks (not pure white sand) and are often in the center of a ctiy - with charges for use and getting chairs or umbrellas. Also the Med is often very flat and boring versus the oceans you may be used to (I'm from Long Island, used to the North Atlantic and gorgeous beaches, and often disappointed in those in europe).

Agree Spain is a good idea - a broad variety to things to see and do and good for the budget.

You might also consider Greece - visiting Athens for big city and sightseeing and one of the islands - which often have some of the best beaches in europe - and at a fairly low price point.

I would start checking out the Let's Go student guides for each country and start building a budget from the ground up.

sandralist Jan 18th, 2015 05:16 AM

I say go to Greece. It's cheap. It's fun. It's got loads of nightlife. It's got great beaches. If you like to shop, it is affordable. It is a great introduction to Europe because that is where it all began. You can mix up some world class ancient sightseeing with island hopping.

Something you might consider is giving the buik of your time to Greece but then end your trip with 4 days in Rome just for the fun and the shock of 2 countries. Rome has fun nightlife.

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