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Sep 7th, 2018, 10:57 PM
  #21
 
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Originally Posted by KarenWoo View Post
We visited Czech Republic twice, once in October and once in August. I didn't find the crowds to be as bad as I thought they would be in August but that was in 2009, and summer crowds could have changed drastically since then. The Charles Bridge and Old Town are always the most crowded.. And the temperatures were comfortable for sightseeing, 70's and 80's. If you only have around 10 days, for example, I think Prague and some smaller cities outside of Prague (such as Cesky Krumlov, Karlovy Vary, Telc, etc) would make a nice vacation and you aren't wasting too much time moving around. We did this route one year easily by car. June would be the least crowded of all the summer months. I hope this helps.
Karen I believe Prague has gotten far more crowded since 2009. We went in 2015 in late September and it was still quite crowded even then.

Still, I am a believer that if you only have a certain time of year to travel, better to go then than never.

I would do your Prague, Munich, Switzerland trip. Summer seems like the time for hiking in the Alps. Not sure how you plan to get to Munich but there is a university my friend once attended in Passau. The pictures looked amazing. Stop there if you can.

Italy I would save for an April/May or Sept/Oct trip.

​​​​​​You also could opt to pair Czech Republic and Poland, or add a third country--Romania or Austria.

I don't see Corsica as a next-tier destination especially compared to everything else on your list.


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Sep 8th, 2018, 08:06 AM
  #22
 
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Originally Posted by StCirq View Post
The "European way of life?" Oh puhleeze. It's not Disneyland here.
Originally Posted by suze View Post
Such a warm & friendly welcome for a new and first time poster on Fodor's.
Originally Posted by suze View Post
StCirq now lives in France she moved there from the USA (if that helps as an explanation or to soften the rude reply).
Originally Posted by goyourownway View Post
Well, that is not what I thought the first response would be.

The reason Europe gets so many visitors every year is exactly because of Europe's way of life, how Europeans value their history and various cultures and learn to incorporate them into their modern, daily lives. I am not sure where you are from, but if I offended you, I apologize.

Yes, very rude indeed and good to call it out as a new poster should not be treated this way.

I'm baffled at this response because wasn't it this American poster who used to try to make money giving "cultural tours" aimed at showing and teaching other Americans the "authentic European way of life"? Using "authentic" French food markets as stops on a tour? Helping helpless Americans buy cheese from French people?

Anyway, the OP said nothing wrong and did not deserve this treatment. An apology should be forthcoming IMO.
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Sep 8th, 2018, 08:34 AM
  #23
 
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5Alive, I'm not surprised that Prague has become even more crowded since we were last there. And I agree it is better to visit a place even when it is crowded than to never visit it at all.

The first time we visited Prague we also went to Poland, so I agree that is a nice combination, too. We took the train from Prague to Krakow. Very easy to do.
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Sep 9th, 2018, 03:35 AM
  #24
 
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With about four weeks any of those combinations can work. Obviously you can always spend more time just about anywhere, but it would not be rushed. For example, here are some of the time frames I've used in those locations.


I spent about a week in Slovenia (Ljubljana, Lake Bled and Piran) and just over that in Croatia (Dubrovnik - day trips to Mostar and Kotor), Korcula and Split (day trip to Trojir). I'm currently planning a second trip to the northern half of Croatia. So with 4 weeks you could easily cover the highlights and then some of those two countries.


I spent 4 days in Tallinn, 3 each in Riga and Vilnius and thought that was good but didn't get out into the countryside much except one day trip to a castle. On another trip I had about five days in Krakow which felt about right. I think they limit you to 4 days in St Petersburg without getting a visa so many people do just that. A month or even three weeks would allow you to do the highlights that I did plus quite a bit more.


I did Sicily in 11 days and feel I got to see most of what I wanted, included some little know inland villages. I can certainly see how you could be happy with two weeks. Then if you had an additional two weeks that is a decent amount of time for Naples/Pompeii/Amalfi Coast. If you wanted to include another whole region (say Puglia) you might be rushing it.


I think that is also a great amount of time for Southern Germany, Czech republic and Switzerland. Would you see ALL of each of those - no. But you'd get a good sample in three to four weeks.


So ALL of your combinations are very doable in your time frame.


I travel to Europe every July. My understanding is that August is significantly different from July (and even more so than June). Many European companies close for vacation for the month of August so it's a little worse than in the US when you are mostly dealing with school vacation times which stretch to almost three months. Especially coastal areas (where Europeans as well as international travelers go) is more crowded in August. I usually start my trips the last week in June and run through all of July and even in that time frame I see things getting more crowed as August approaches. And the past couple of years have been significantly more crowded than even 5 or 10 years ago.


I always decide where to go based on photos. Here are mine (and they include all the places on your list (expect St Petersburg). https://andiamo.zenfolio.com/
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Sep 9th, 2018, 06:53 AM
  #25
 
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I have posted part of my trip report on Prague and Austria (not done with Vienna). We had about 3 days each for Prague, Vienna and the Salzkammergut (Austria lakes district), plus travel time. Not enough time ( of course!) but we did enjoy it tremendously. Next trip we’re going to try to take everyone’s advice and stay in a smaller geographical area.

Isabel, your photos are stunning and should help anyone deciding where they want to go.
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Sep 9th, 2018, 08:59 AM
  #26
 
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isabel... just WOW!!! how have i missed this? thank you so much for posting your portfolio. now THAT'S how to plan a trip!!! sincerely suze
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Sep 11th, 2018, 06:06 AM
  #27
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Hi everyone,

I am very thankful to all of you as I never expected this type of response and help, especially after the first response I received

There is only one problem. I am now more confused than before. With other destinations mentioned, I am now exploring those areas as well. I am going to bundle two, or maybe even three, different areas, as we really would like to do something different this time around and get a sense of different cultures in one trip, For example, exploring Brittany, Slovenia and Croatia seems to us like a very interesting and diverse trip.

Isabel, your pictures are fantastic. Thank you.
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Sep 11th, 2018, 08:53 AM
  #28
 
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For example, exploring Brittany, Slovenia and Croatia seems to us like a very interesting and diverse trip.

I say, do that It was #1 on your list when you first posted, and seems to have stood the test of time with all the conversation on this thread so far.
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Sep 11th, 2018, 09:00 AM
  #29
 
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have you been reading other people's threads too? like this one...

Need help with Croatia/Slovenia & bit of Montenegro Itinerary
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Sep 11th, 2018, 09:51 AM
  #30
 
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You guys are such an inspiration. I've always wanted to travel my whole life but it seems I'm getting old and this may never happen. In these parts of the world, things work a lot differently. I'm glad I can experience a bit of your adventures through the forums
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Sep 11th, 2018, 10:34 AM
  #31
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chasisboi, it is NEVER too late or one can NEVER be too old to travel if one's health is decent.Just book a flight to any destination in Europe and explore. Just do it.

As well, suze, would you change Slovenia for the Dordogne area of France, so we would fly into Paris, drive through Brittany and Dordogne then fly into Croatia and concentrate on Croatia only before returning home?

Thanks.
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Sep 11th, 2018, 12:25 PM
  #32
 
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I have no idea about any of these countries. I just know about planning trips. And trying to make it fit your dreams... And have been following your thinking. I'm only repeating what YOU have said more than once
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Sep 11th, 2018, 12:36 PM
  #33
 
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Goyourownway--

Suze is right on. What is calling to you?

Once you choose your destinations, then you need to get more analytical about your day-to-day timeline, and hotel reservations etc. Watching some Rick Steves DVDs from the library or on Youtube can be of help if you still feel undecided. Or picking up some travel guides at the library or bookstore.

And also--check out the Destinations Tab on this site.
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Sep 11th, 2018, 04:38 PM
  #34
kja
 
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Originally Posted by goyourownway View Post
For example, exploring Brittany, Slovenia and Croatia seems to us like a very interesting and diverse trip..
If that's what most appeals, by all means, go for it! But FWIW, I think you will find it extremely challenging to fit those 3 areas into a single trip of a month or less. I would urge you to think through your itinerary in some detail before finalizing anything.

As already noted, Croatia and Slovenia provide a great deal of diversity, and fitting those two countries into a single trip of a month or so will still mean skipping a lot. I know -- I've done it. Brittany would be different, but Brittany is quite different than other parts of France, so one can have a delightfully diverse experience of a month or so there -- I know, I've done it, and managed only a small portion of western France in that time.
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Sep 13th, 2018, 09:26 AM
  #35
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We have decided to include Croatia and France in our trip and leave Slovenia for another time. You are right, kja, there would be too much to see in both Slovenia and Croatia in just a few weeks.

Which brings me to my next question. In about 12 days, which area should we visit, Dordogne or Brittany?

Thank you once again.
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Sep 13th, 2018, 09:31 AM
  #36
 
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I would check the flights between France and Croatia before settling on that--you could lose a terrible chunk of time.
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Sep 13th, 2018, 10:00 AM
  #37
 
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Originally Posted by yorkshire View Post
I would check the flights between France and Croatia before settling on that--you could lose a terrible chunk tof time.
There are nonstop flights between Paris and both Zagreb and Dubrovnik.
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Sep 13th, 2018, 02:11 PM
  #38
 
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Regarding traveling from France to Croatia, it depends on where the OP will be in France when they are ready to go to Croatia. We are going to Croatia in April after first spending 2 weeks with our daughter who lives in southern France. So we will fly from Marseille. There are no non-stop flights from Marseille to Dubrovnik. It will take us between 6 & 7 hours to get to Dubrovnik from Marseille.
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Sep 13th, 2018, 02:27 PM
  #39
 
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Originally Posted by goyourownway View Post
We have decided to include Croatia and France in our trip and leave Slovenia for another time. You are right, kja, there would be too much to see in both Slovenia and Croatia in just a few weeks.

Which brings me to my next question. In about 12 days, which area should we visit, Dordogne or Brittany?

Thank you once again.
We have been to the dordogne and we love it!!! There are many, many interesting and diverse caves, castles, gardens, lovely towns to explore, etc. We were there for 6 days and obviously did not see everything so 12 days is a good chunk of time to explore the area. I haven't been to Brittany yet.

However, I apologize for confusing the matter more, but I wonder if it would make more sense to visit Croatia and Slovenia instead of France, since Croatia and Slovenia border each other. It might be easier logistically, and you wouldn't lose time traveling from France to Croatia. I personally think Croatia and Slovenia pair better together. We haven't been there yet but I am in the process of planning our trip for April 2019. But of course if you have your heart set on France and Croatia, that is what you should do. Although you have already been to France . . . . I hope I am not making this more difficult for you.
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Sep 13th, 2018, 04:01 PM
  #40
kja
 
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Originally Posted by goyourownway View Post
We have decided to include Croatia and France in our trip and leave Slovenia for another time. You are right, kja, there would be too much to see in both Slovenia and Croatia in just a few weeks. ... Which brings me to my next question. In about 12 days, which area should we visit, Dordogne or Brittany?.
FYI: Of the month I spent in Croatia+, only 4 or 5 nights were in Slovenia.

The Dordogne and Brittany are very different places, so I don't see how any of us could tell you which to see. It really depends on what you want to see and experience. I'd think you would want 7 to 12 days for either, depending on whether you explore areas just outside these regions or not.
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