Visit Europe in April

Old Jan 27th, 2012, 03:57 PM
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I, too, cannot imagine going to Florence only for the malls outside of town. (How are you going to get to them?) I would only go to the malls if I ran out of anything else to do and had a day to use up. That means a minimum of a week in Florence.

I suppose your friend wants to buy some designer goods at cheap prices. Be advised that what's available in the malls may not be the choice items.
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Old Jan 28th, 2012, 08:56 AM
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If someone wants to go to Florence mainly to go to the outlet mall then that's fine - why must we castigate folks for saying what they really want to do?

now if the point is that the mall may not be what they think it is fine - if whatever the mall has you can buy as cheaply back home or in Florence or Rome or Venice, etc.

but why rain on someone's parade for other reasons - what drives me to Italy may be stupid to someone else and vice versa.
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Old Feb 5th, 2012, 10:38 AM
  #23  
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chapla & janisj - Thanks for your suggestion!!

Sassafrass - No, this is my first visit to Europe. Actually those places in my list are offer in my local travel agency but instead of joining local tour I prefer free and easy!

PalenQ - Thanks for the information!!

charnees - Of course spending time in Florence not only for The Mall. By the way, there do have local day tour you could join.

Anyway, I'm revising my initial itinerary, will post it soon, again thanks for all your comment here.
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Old Feb 5th, 2012, 11:37 AM
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IMHO, you should forget that travel agency and read lots of guide books, look at some travel films, etc. and think about what places in Europe that you have thought about seeing your whole life. Have you dreamed of Paris all aglow at night? Rome: the Coloseum and the Sistine Chapel? Seriously, pick those places that will set your own heart on fire, not those picked by a travel agent.
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Old Feb 6th, 2012, 11:26 AM
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It is easy to get to the Outlet Mall or at least the big famous one - I've seen many shuttle buses that take folks there from central Florence.
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Old Feb 6th, 2012, 11:37 AM
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>


What you've planned isn't even remotely free or easy. Frankly, you might as well spend your money on a helicopter ride across Europe. You are going to experience absolutely nothing but the interiors of trains and stations.

Get yourself a detailed map of Europe and make sure you understand its scale. Then start reading about these destinations, many of which as mentioned would not appear on any first-timers trip (which is fine, but you're missing out on some of the major attractions). If you are seriously asking what there is to see in Rome, you haven't even begun to do your own research. And going to Florence for a mall?? That's actually shocking, even understanding that everyone travels for different purposes.

What you have planned is an opportunity to waste a huge amount of money in a month's time with virtually zero travel benefit. I would recommend you either go back to the travel agency and book a tour, which would presumably at least focus some of your attention on culture and history and scenery, or toss this itinerary in the wastebasket and start over with no more than 6 destinations...ones that you have done some in-depth reading about and formed some logical desire to go visit.
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Old Feb 6th, 2012, 12:56 PM
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Aha - that's why this itinerary is so crazy: it's a tour bus schedule. You need to realize that the only way this insane schedule works for tours is it starts at an insanely early hour and does a "drive-by" for many, if not most, of the main attractions. You'll never be able to duplicate it on your own, given getting to and from your own modes of transportation, checking in and out of hotels, finding your way to whatever sites you want to visit, etc.

Do yourself a favor - either accept the reality that you can't duplicate their pace on your own, or just sign up for the tour.
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Old Feb 6th, 2012, 01:30 PM
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The main reason to develop your own itinerary rather than book a tour is to avoid the crazy fast-paced itinerary that gives very short-shrift to the towns/sites. Develop your own itinerary and spend a minimum of 3 nights in each location. That only gives you 2 full days to explore each place. We've now realized that a minimum of 5 nights per location would be much more satisfactory. Once you read some guidebooks you will sees what everyone is saying to you. Start with Rome.
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Old Feb 6th, 2012, 02:18 PM
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"What is the sightseeing I should not miss in Rome?"

Well, start with the Sistine Chapel, St Peter's Basicilia, The Roman Forum, the colosseum, the Pantheon, etc. Read, read, read and read some more about them before you go so you will understand what you are actually seeing and why they are important.
Just one example/possibility: Why is the dome of the Pantheon so significant to the world of architecture? How did knowledge of that construction contribute to the Duomo in Florence and to St Peters? Learn something about what you are going to see and the connections between them so you will really get more out of seeing them.

Florence is the birthplace of the Renaissance, so most people go there for the art (David, Baptistery, Duomo, Uffizi, etc.) If you have no interest in that, you can shop pretty much anywhere.

No one is castigating you. It seems that you are not really clear on what these places have to offer, so are picking places based on casual sugestions/desires/interests of others, rather than on your own interests.

The problem with your trip, as many others have pointed out, is that you will not even have time to find out if you might enjoy some of these places or to see what they have to offer because you will not have any time to do so.

If architecture or art doesn't interest you, that is fine. Learn something of the history or food and culture, whatever interests you. Then you will know what you want to see for yourself and why, so you are not jumping around all over the place, and missing out on those things/places that would make your trip great.
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Old Feb 8th, 2012, 10:37 AM
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Why is the dome of the Pantheon so significant to the world of architecture? How did knowledge of that construction contribute to the Duomo in Florence and to St Peters?>

Florence first time such a domed ceiling was put up - think first few fell down? Thus a visual symbol of the beginning of the Renaissance - harking back to the Pantheon where Romans centuries earlier conquered the architecture of putting not a flat Romanesque roof on but a veritable domed ceiling, much much more a engineering feat than a simple flat roof.
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Old Feb 27th, 2012, 09:44 AM
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Sassafrass, StCirq, hazel1, elnap29 - Thanks for all your suggestions.

PalenQ - Yup, got my link from Florence city to Outlet Mall.
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Old Feb 27th, 2012, 09:57 AM
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Suggest you go the library and get hold of som of the MIchelin green guides. Besides describing major sightsin detail - so you can decide what yuo want to see/do they also tell youhow long it will take to see the sight (you can;t do the Eiffel Tower in 20 minutes or the Roman Forum in 30).

I think if you list the sights you want to see in a few places and how long it takes to see them you will get some idea of why your idea is just not going to work. (If you have 25 hours of sightseeing and you will be in a city just one day - something's got to give!)
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Old Feb 27th, 2012, 10:24 AM
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Revised Itinerary
April
01 & 02 - Amsterdam(Netherlands)
03 - Amsterdam to Brussels(Belgium)
04 - Brussels to Triberg(Germany) via Luxembourg
05 & 06 - Triberg
07 - Triberg to Zurich(Switzerland)
08 - Zurich to Interlaken(Switzerland)
09 - Interlaken
10 - Interlaken to Geneva(Switzerland)
11 - Geneva
12 - Geneva to Milan(Italy)
13 - Milan
14 - Milan to Venice(Italy)
15 - Venice
16 - Venice to Florence(Italy)
17 - Florence
18 - Florence to Rome(Italy)
19 & 20 - Rome
21 - Rome to Lisbon(Portugal) by fly
22 & 23 - Lisbon
24 - Lisbon to Porto(Portugal)
25 - Porto
26 - Porto to Madrid(Spain) by fly
27, 28 & 29 - Madrid
30 - Madrid to Barcelona(Spain) till May 4 leave Barcelona at night.
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Old Feb 27th, 2012, 10:38 AM
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- Brussels to Triberg(Germany) via Luxembourg
05 & 06 - Triberg
07 - Triberg>

well be sure to drive down the Mosel Valley to Koblenz - one of Europe's most awesomely exquisite drives - thru the deep often vineyard-carpeted Mosel River Valley - a sinuous course but so so lovely - cute little wine towns everywhere - Cochem a picture postcard town - nice overnight - and just beyond it Burg Eltz, one of Europe's most imposing and famous castles.
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