Sage advice on my itinerary?

Feb 9th, 2008, 06:53 AM
  #1  
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Sage advice on my itinerary?

Hi, I'm traveling 3 weeks in July and am seeking any wisdom, advice regarding my time in Belgium, France and Germany. My first part will be spent in Ireland and I may post a later request for that. I have a 3 country rail pass I'll be using in Europe. Any comments on my selected hotels or "not to miss sights" or local festivals would be appreciated.
I fly from Dublin to Brussels and am staying at the Hotel Mozart for 2 nights.
Then the train to Marseille where I'm staying at the La Residence Du Vieux Port for 3 nights.
On to Wiesbaden for 2 nights at the Hotel Drei Lillen for 2 nights. (and then on to Amsterdam for 5 nights where I've rented a houseboat on the Prins Hendrikkade).
I'll have 2 extra days on my rail pass so am trying to decide what might be the best place to visit on a day pass from one of the cities I am staying at. I love water and history. Also would appreciate any comments if any of my selected hotels are to be avoided. Many thanks for your comments and I'll be posting my Ireland trip later.
McNeill is offline  
Feb 9th, 2008, 07:02 AM
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Oh, yes I forgot to mention I'll need some advice on clothes. I'm a Florida girl and was anticipating wearing T-shirts and shorts until I read the average temperature in July in Amsterdam was 60 degrees F. Is Marseille any warmer or is that new bathing suit I just bought a waste of money?
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Feb 9th, 2008, 07:45 AM
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Well I won't comment on iterneries, partly since they are so personal. I guess I could add why not a day trip, or even a overnight to Paris.Its only 2.5-3 hours from Amsterdam.
Also did you check your hotel reveiws? You cna do this on tripadvisor.com or just google your hotels name and the word reveiw, I always do that and can usaully find two or three different reveiw sites .

Don'take the average weather info you have too seriously. It can vary wildly, obviously Amsterdam is not a hot dry city, but it can have some very nice weather , and remember the average is taken over a month and often covers a 24 hr period, and it may be cooler at night but quite decent in afternoon.

I have only been to Amsterdam twice but both times it was decent enough, I wouldn't rely on a wardrobe of shorts anyways,, hello, Dublin is not exactly known for roasting hot weather either,, LOL Ireland is not called the Emerald Isle for nothing, and what to you think makes that grass so green, Lol ??
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Feb 9th, 2008, 09:16 AM
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Thanks for your suggestion!
McNeill is offline  
Feb 9th, 2008, 02:09 PM
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TTT

I was hoping for some more responses. Guess I should have changed the title?
McNeill is offline  
Feb 9th, 2008, 06:48 PM
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Taking only shorts, tees and sandals to europe - even in the summer - is a big mistake. The climate is nothing like FL - with a few exceptions it's not even as warm as New York or Boston. And while you can have heat spells - you can also have days with a high in the 60s - and you can count on having at least some rain. To someone from FL you may find it chilly some nights.

So - you need to take a variety of lightweight clothing - but at least some pants and long sleeve tops. And I would never go without a least one pair of waterproofed walking shoes, a light jacket, cotton sweater and sturdy folding umbrella.
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Feb 10th, 2008, 01:06 AM
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Weather in Ireland is somewhat similar to Holland and Belgium. Always good to have some light-weight rainproof jacket with you. While there is no way to forecast the specific situation, you may not find those strong pouring rain showers like in FL, but often a more lighter, constant drizzle with some wind.

Marseille will probably be the "hot spot", and definetely the place to bring your bathing suit.

Wiesbaden in July can also be warm or even hot, but will lack the somewhat cooling breeze from the sea.

So, the weather can be anything from 60F with light drizzle or rain to 90F and baking sun - from hot summer nights with 70-75F around midnight to cool, moisty evenings.
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Feb 10th, 2008, 01:53 AM
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You say you have a three country rail pass - but you are going to to four countries by train?
hetismij is offline  
Feb 10th, 2008, 05:33 AM
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Thanks all for the clothing advice. Since Aer Lingus will only allow 44 lbs of luggage (I'm flying from Dublin to Brussels) I'm definitely rethinking my clothing to ensure I won't freeze!! As for the 4 countries on the 3 country rail pass, Belguim, Netherlands and one other country count as one--I guess because they're small. Has anyone ever stayed at any of the hotels I've listed?
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Feb 10th, 2008, 05:44 AM
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I strongly advised you to get hold of a couple of summer skirts and blouses and try to up the dress code. Traveling around Europe is nowhere near like vacationing in Florida, so that needs an adjustment. The advice about taking a light, raincoat/windbreaker type coat is spot on. I found fabulous ones at Dillard's!

Why aren't you flying Dublin-Marseille and start working your way North instead of the loop around that will take longer? I do realize you have hotels settle so I guess that's out...That said, I would definitely recommend NICE from Marseille to anybody that loves water and history (I do, too!). The azure color of the water in the French Riviera is one of the most beautiful sights I have ever seen. It is just spectacular.
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Feb 10th, 2008, 05:46 AM
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McNeill- a small question, are you a girl? I recommended summer skirts thinking you are....quot;>
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Feb 10th, 2008, 05:57 AM
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Yes, I'm definitely female so will consider some skirts!! As for the Dublin-Brussels choice, I had wanted to get my money's worth out of the rail pass and frankly, I had tooooo many choices!! Even though this is my first visit and I haven't even been yet, I'm already trying to up my frequent flyer miles and looking at next year's tax return for another trip. Did I mention I'm going solo and loving it?
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Feb 10th, 2008, 06:18 AM
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I think if you post again asking about the countries you are visiting you might get more responses

From Brussels if you love water and history Bruges (Brugge) is an obvious choice (the water part is the canals)
http://www.brugge.be/internet/en/index.htm
The new movie, In Bruges, supposedly has great shots of the city so you can try to see that to get an idea of what the city is like (beautiful!)

regarding your itinerary in general, you are taking up a lot of time with the trip to Marseille. I would pick Paris or somewhere else farther north
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Feb 10th, 2008, 06:33 AM
  #14  
ira
 
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Hi M,

>Sage advice on my itinerary?

Skip Marseille. Go to Paris.

You might not need a railpass.

ira is offline  
Feb 10th, 2008, 06:34 AM
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Actually I had planned to do a day trip to Bruges! As for Paris, I'm staying away but am trying to decide between Nice and Cassis from Marseille based on the comments here. I'll have to learn how far between Nice and Marseille is on the train as it would have to be a day trip. Also trying to get some info on a day trip boat ride on the Rhine in Wiesbaden.
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Feb 10th, 2008, 09:08 AM
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>>>As for Paris, I'm staying away<<<

Just curious- how come? Interests are a personal thing so I won't say Paris is better than Marseille, but considering the other destinations on your itinerary, Paris just seems like a logical choice.

If you're really dead set against Paris, there are other cities like Lille or Antwerp would also fit nicely with Brussels, Weisbaden and Amsterdam.

If Marseille and the south coast are must-sees, I would consider putting the trip focus there. Maybe start in Barcelona and train along the south of France hitting Marseille and Nice, to the Italian coast.

It's just personal preference, but I wouldn't like travelling such long distances for shorts stays in such different areas. I would prefer to clump my trip as either training the Med. coast or sticking in the general Benelux-North France-West Germany region.

But lots of people take trips where they train all over always on the move and love them. Just be aware of the travel times involved. The swiss rail site is a great place to get detailed timetables for most of Europe.

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