Relatively Inexpensive Winter Trip?

Old Nov 1st, 2008, 06:22 AM
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Relatively Inexpensive Winter Trip?

I did some fine finagling with my DH, and he agreed to go on a winter trip in Europe...price is important. Normally I would pick London for winter, but he wants to go somewhere differant. I have been thinking of Amsterdam, Vienna, Prague, somewhere? in Germany. We have been to Paris, Rome, Edinburgh, Nice, Milan, Dublin, Barcelona, Athens. I have been checking airfares and not much has been discounted. Any thoughts, ideas, opinions are appreciated!
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Old Nov 1st, 2008, 09:54 AM
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I am seriously thinking of Germany, and I know nothing about it, but I will start researching now. Too cold at that time of year?
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Old Nov 1st, 2008, 10:16 AM
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Anyplace in more northern europe - or the Central European plain - such as Prague or Budapest - will be cold in winter (think NYC or Boston - not Siberia). Also anyplace with mountains will be cold - the higher the colder.

Probably Amsterdam would be lest cold - or London.

For somewhat warmer temps you would have to go to southern Italy or southern Spain.
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Old Nov 1st, 2008, 10:21 AM
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Fares to Frankfurt are generally good in winter, and weather in the Frankfurt area tends to be relatively mild in winter. We were there 2 years ago in January and enjoyed ourselves, but it's best to avoid booking in smaller villages and stick to cities, where you'll have more indoor options. Germany will generally offer more affordable accommodations than most of the cities you mention.

Koblenz makes a good city base for trips to Trier, Cologne, and Marksburg Castle in Braubach (open for tours in winter - www.marksburg.de .

Freiburg and other towns near the Rhine to the south of Frankfurt have a more temperate climate as well. Strasbourg and Colmar in France's Alsace would be good daytrip options if staying in/near Freiburg.

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Old Nov 1st, 2008, 11:50 AM
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I tend to stick to cities in the winter. Andalucia otherwise might be a good choice.
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Old Nov 1st, 2008, 12:01 PM
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Depending on when in winter you want to go, the Christmas markets in Munich, Salzburg and Vienna are great fun. They're easily connected on the train line. We flew into Munich, spent the day there, then took the train to Salzburg. We stayed in a B&B there, which wasn't expensive, a short bus ride into town. In Vienna we paid around 95€ for a pension, in an excellent location, by the Opera House. Tickets can be very inexpensive to the Operas.

I have lots of details on our trip posted in January 2008 on this site. We went at Christmas, but if you go in December it'll be almost the same.
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 05:34 AM
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Thanks so much for your replies! I really and truly appreciate them . NYtraveler, I was maybe thinking of a Rome trip repeat. Airfares are a big factor. Personally I don't mind the cold at all. Russ, that sounds wonderful. BTW, I love Castles! Mjw, I agree about the cities. Thanks images, I will look up your trip report. BTW, I noticed Dl has fares to Vienna at 644$.
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 05:46 AM
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Hello Judy !
What about Sicily? Palermo is unique and the weather is more like north FL.
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 06:28 AM
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Hi Bob, good to hear from you :-, did not even think of it. Thanks for your input.
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 09:06 AM
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Sicily is a great suggestion. I would also highly recommend Croatia.
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 09:51 AM
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If you want to be chilled to the bone, try Holland, Belgium, Luxembourg, and parts of France and Germany in the winter. Damp, penetrating, and it never lets up for weeks and weeks. Clouds, rain, fog. The Germans even have what they call "graupel" -- a mix of driving snow and rain that will soak through to your underwear. Given a choice, I go for Egypt.
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 10:07 AM
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USNR, no Eygpt for my DH. BTW, I was born in Pa and am very familiar with cold ;-). I actually LIKE cold weather. I am really thinking about southern Germany...Munich, romantic road, etc. I have been doing some major research on Germany and Austria....looks great. I do LOVE castles.
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 10:16 AM
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Hi, Judy~

I vote for Germany, especially since you're already doing research about it and like castles.

You can do a mix of cities and towns/villages...castles, rivers, mountains, half-timbered buildings, Gothic or Romanesque cathedrals, museums, tons of restaurants with cozy atmosphere and fireplaces...you get the idea.

Just pack warm layers and a waterproof jacket/shell and you'll be fine.

We usually travel in the winter because it's the only time of year we can get away. We actually prefer it now because of the cheap prices, lack of tourists and general feeling that we've got the places to ourselves.

Last year, we found the prices in Germany to be quite reasonable and are planning to go back in a few months.

I don't know where you're flying from, but you can find flights from about $548 R/T between Newark and Frankfurt from January through March.

Have fun!
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 11:02 AM
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DH wants something different - but where? What does he like?
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 12:27 PM
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Hi Judy,

I really love Germany.

And if you love castles you could spend a week seeing them and they will be very romantic and fairy tale-ish.

Also, I find Germany always quite reasonable in comparison to other parts of Europe such as London, Rome, Paris...

If you would at all consider trying some great beer then I think Germany is for you.

I'm not a beer drinker myself, but I recently spent 2 weeks in Munich and found myself having a glass every evening. The beergartens/halls really grew on me. Friendly and pleasant with good hearty food.

I've been to Berlin and Munich as well as Schwangau where the Neuschwanstein and the ? (mind is blank tonight) are... lovely and scenic. I've seen photos of them in the snow and they look spectacular.

If your husband likes history at all then you must go to Berlin. It is just an amazing city with something for everyone.

gruezi
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 01:28 PM
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Nanbug, yes the concept of less crowds and less cost makes winter travel more appealing. Momliz, he likes history and castles too. Greuzi, I would appreciate any and all help with this trip. .
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 01:38 PM
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Yes, Germany is the place to go. I've returned from London today, not just expensive but dirty and so stressful.

Munich is so nice, even in winter. Been to Heidelberg last week, very nice too. No tourists right now, except for a few Japanese but they really know how to behave themselves!
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 04:10 PM
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Logos999, yes, Germany. I will go to the library tomorrow and get a Germany book. I am getting so excited. I NEEDED a Europe trip desperately .
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 06:42 PM
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We went to Brussels late last January. The weather was cold, but invigorating. We lucked out and had blue skys for three of our five days, and rain only on the say we were leaving. We took two day trips, one to Brugges and an over and back to London on the Chunnel (found a really great one day fare online). we found Brussels to be delightful and far less expensive than Paris or London. Our rt air from the midwest to Brussels was $438 pp (inc taxes & fees)--I'll bet I won't find that again this year!
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Old Nov 2nd, 2008, 10:42 PM
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i went to the mosel/rhein area once in winter and it was such a visual experience, the cold wind one day did not even bother us. the climate is milder than other parts of germany, thus its fame for productive vineyards.

delicious abundant meals, good wine, and VERY reasonalble B+Bs/hotels.

a couple days near the mosel/mittelrhein and then larger cities would make a nice combination as someone already mentioned.

if you like castles.. you will have more than you care to visit.
also, the triangle near munich is great, munich, fussen, salzburg. i have also done that in winter and it was like a fairyland.
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