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Scotland, Italy, or Greece for 6 days?


Sep 15th, 2013, 07:37 AM
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Scotland, Italy, or Greece for 6 days?

My mother and I are traveling to Europe next summer, around late July/early August, to visit my uncle who lives in Germany. We will be visiting him for 10-12 days, and will be visiting Germany, Austria and Switzerland while with him. We do, however, have another 6 days on top of that, where we would like to visit a different country.

Our thoughts of possible options:
Reason for Scotland: our Douglass Clan heritage makes Scotland high on the European priority list
Greece: I have heard the Islands are absolutely gorgeous
Italy: anther country on our Bucket List, including the cities Rome and Venice
I had Croatia on my list, but my uncle from Germany told me to give the country another 5-10 years before going to visit.
I love landscape photography and history. Mom's just along for the journey together . Looking for a "pretty" place to visit and relax a little

We only speak English and I understand limited French. I have looked at flights from US to Scotland to Germany then back home, and it was only $30 more than if we just flew round trip to and from Germany.

What would be the suggestions for this time of year and amount of days we have to dedicate to a region? We want a safe locale for two women traveling together, and nothing too too expensive. Overnight accommodations need to be clean, and we would like them to be under $120 US /night total. We don't mind renting a car while there.

Being our first trip to Europe, we are excited but nervous at the same time.
Thank you ahead of time for any input
katahdin25 is offline  
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Sep 15th, 2013, 08:06 AM
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Late July, early August would be very hot and crowded in Italy (and probably Greece, too). So for that reason alone I would pick Scotland.
I don't think you should let the language barrier dictate where you go, you'd be fine with English anywhere in Europe.
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Sep 15th, 2013, 08:24 AM
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July is a perfect time to visit Scotland. The day light hours are considerable (at least 15 hours) I have read the paper in the garden at 11pm.

Douglas would indicate the Borders, which part of the Douglas family history would you be interested in investigating?
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Sep 15th, 2013, 08:29 AM
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I also think that "Italy" is way too big a target just for six days; you'd only be able to visit one or at most two locations, and very hurriedly at that.

With six days in Scotland (and no jetlag as you're coming from Europe) you can experience one of Europe's most enjoyable cities in Edinburgh, and still have some time to see some countryside.

In June I made a quick trip to Scotland to see some old friends, but I also took a couple of days to drive around the Highlands a little, visiting some places I hadn't seen in ages. Here's the mini-trip report - http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...n-scotland.cfm Glen Etive and Glen Coe are around 2 1/2 hours drive time from Edinburgh airport, just to give a sense of distance. With long summer days in Scotland you can even do a day trip from Edinburgh to the Highlands and back, although at least one overnight would be preferable.

Or, with your lineage, you might take a day trip from Edinburgh out along the beautiful East Lothian coast to North Berwick and Dunbar, stopping at Tantallon Castle, seat of the Red Douglases. It's a marvelous day trip. http://www.historic-scotland.gov.uk/...?PropID=PL_284
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Sep 15th, 2013, 10:25 AM
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Thank you so much for the replies. Any guidance is always appreciated! I guess Scotland makes the most sense at this time.

On www.visitscotland.com, there is a 5 day "Douglas Itinerary," so we will probably use this as a guide as to where to visit. I have done extensive genealogy throughout the years, and will go back through my records as well to determine if the given locales are pertinent to our lineage. I haven't really done any planning yet, because I wasn't sure yet which country to spend researching.

Of course, castles and ruins will be high on the priority list. After all, that's why many people travel there, right?
Being Scotland in late July, are we to expect days of rainy downpours? Or will we likely see some sun?
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Sep 15th, 2013, 10:56 AM
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Scotland could be rainy, but I just spent two weeks there beginning August 1 and you can see plenty of blue skies in my photos:

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Sep 15th, 2013, 11:11 AM
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If you want sun, I'd put Croatia back on your list. (If it doesn't cause family trouble.) The great charm of Croatia is its slight backwardness. It's like Italy in the 60's, less crowded, less aimed at mass travel, instead laid-back and easygoing. The Dalmatian coast and the islands have any number of small towns, where you can stroll along a seaside promenade and dine on fresh seafood at the water's edge. Go now before it catches up with western Europe. You can get around easily with just English. Lots of flights from Germany.

That said, I'm in Edinburgh now and really enjoying it. Even though we've been here before, there's lots to see and do. A striking cityscape and good daytrips. We went to St. Andrews on a bus tour (with Timberbush) that also went through the East Neuk villages.

I don't know about the Douglas trail. Will you need to rent a car?
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Sep 15th, 2013, 11:21 AM
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Great pics Nikki!
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Sep 15th, 2013, 11:29 AM
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I would do Scotland for better weather - but I can't stand heat and humidity - to me cool and damp is much better for touring.
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Sep 15th, 2013, 11:48 AM
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We were in Croatia in June/July last summer and nearly roasted from the heat. In fact, we spent a lot more time in hotel rooms that we ever have on a trip because it was so miserable outside.
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Sep 15th, 2013, 12:04 PM
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Loving the photos being posted and linked!

Mimar, yes, we will be renting a car in order to travel around. Gas alone is probably going to eat most of our expense money, but I don't know as we'll ever get an opportunity like this again, so to me, it's worth it!
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Sep 15th, 2013, 12:49 PM
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August is "the season" in Scotland, with the Edinburgh Festival and other activities. Late July to early August would be a good time to go.
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Sep 15th, 2013, 02:31 PM
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I'd pick Scotland and I'd focus on the Borders. Edinburgh will be heaving at that time of year, but the Borders, not so much. It's beautiful and relaxed, and easily driven, especially if you're not in a hurry. You could do it from one, or two bases. Accommodation should not be a problem.
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Sep 15th, 2013, 04:38 PM
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Greece is ideal for relaxation. A nice place to stay in Greece for 6 days is the island of Symi. A charming little island with a Gorgeous port and crystal beaches. Some must dos are: The "Panormitis" Monastery built in the 15th Century. The "Agios Georgios Disalonas" beach, the best on the island. The "Chora" (island's capital) of Symi. The "Mylopetra" taverna. The "Aliki" Hotel, a true diamond. Greece is such a unique country, so diverse. It combines History, Architecture, Food and Nature in a unique way in all of its islands, and Symi is an excellent example. Each island is an undiscovered Paradise, a jewel on the Mediterranean. Its a life trip, and one is sure, it will low your blood pressure. Your daily Program in Greece is: Stroll in the Town, Beach, Food, Sleep, Stroll, Food and Sleep, yes this is Life. Google the information I gave you, and you will understand for what I am talking about. Have a nice trip.
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