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Spreading myself too thin? Backpacking x 2 months.

Travel Forums Europe Spreading myself too thin? Backpacking x 2 months.

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1. Posted by sumthinswt (Budding Member 26 posts) 10y

Hello everyone!

My second post...and a long one!:)

I have a basic itinerary worked out for my backpacking trip to Europe starting in mid September for 2 months.

LOADS of questions and would appreciate any suggestions/advice:

  • Firstly, am I spreading myself too thin, should I be spending more/less time in each city?
  • Any cities/places I could do without?
  • Any cities/places I shouldn't miss along this route?
  • Adjustments to this route?
  • Suggestions for modes of transportation?
  • Should I be getting a Eurorail pass? or any type of train pass?

My draft itinerary is as follows:
In bold is my mode of transportation between cities, except where it is not stated, I am taking the train.

Britain - London 3 days FLYING TO
Ireland - Dublin 3-4 days FLYING TO
Amsterdam - 3 days FLYING TO
Munich (for Oktoberfest) x 2 days FLY TO
Hamburg - 2 days
Berlin - 2 days
Prague - 4 days
Krakow - 3 days
Warsaw - 3 days
Gdansk - 1 day
Budapest - 4 days HYDROFOIL TO (recommended by a friend to try)
Vienna - 3 days FLYING TO
Venice - 2 days
Florence - 1 day
Rome - 3 days
Naples/Pompeii - 1 day
French Riveria/coast of Mediterranean - 4-6 days in different small towns OR
Nice - 2 days
Marseille - 2 days
FLY BACK TO London and travel Britain for remainder of days

There are a handful of days left which allows for time travelling in between countries/cities and/or staying an extra day here and there.

Your help is much appreciated! Thank you all kindly in advance!


2. Posted by jza80 (Full Member 54 posts) 10y

Hi there,

Just by looking through your list, you should include Wroclaw when you're in Poland, and Zakapone. Get to Krakow, meet some people, talk to the people at the hostels, and get directions on where to go and what to see. The Auschwitz would kill off one day and the salt mines would kill off day 2 in Krakow. You might want to spend a bit more time in Krakow and reduce the time spent in Warsaw. You might want to look at the map of Poland and consider Zakopane. Might as well cover the entire country since you're there unless you're planning to go back.

As for the Eurorail pass, you don't really need it. Check for the prices and destinations. Since you're going to Eastern Europe, the pass might not work there.

You might want to consider shortening your stay in Budapest by a day and add Salzburg and Vienna Woods while you're in Austria.

You won't die if you miss out on Nice but then again, the French Riviera's nice!

Ensure to stay in London for awhile to catch a few shows.

Going to Florence/Venice for only a few days, I'd rather skip it if I were you if you can't even spend 5 days in both places. The last half of the trip looks too tight. It seems like you're going to skip Pisa and Milan, it would be worth while to take a quick stop in each of these cities. How can a trip be complete in Florence without going to Pisa to see the leaning tower?

Hope you'll have loads of fun!

[ Edit: Edited at Jul 10, 2006 7:58 PM by jza80 ]

3. Posted by bentivogli (Travel Guru 2398 posts) 10y

Looks good, but what's with all the flying? It's ridiculous to fly from Amsterdam to Munich since there's an excellent train connection, and buses aren't half bad either... And flying from Vienna to Venice? That's an overnight journey through a wonderful part of the Dolomites/Alps! And flying from Marseille to London...

Flying where feasible alternatives exist in ground transportation in my book is an utterly irresponsible form of travelling. Do you have any idea how much worse you burden the environment by taking a plane than by taking a car or a train?

I would strongly advice that you get a EUrail pass instead of taking planes. Sure, it's expensive, but it's definitely worth it.

[ Edit: Edited at Jul 12, 2006 12:26 AM by bentivogli ]

4. Posted by jza80 (Full Member 54 posts) 10y

The previous poster made some valid points. I disagree with taking the train from Marseilles to London. If there are time constraints, just fly back to London.

Flying from Vienna to Venice is a silly thing to do, I have to agree with that. Why not spend a few more days in Austria and go to Salzburg, then take the train down to Italy from there. The train ride isn't so bad and you get to see the dolomites!

Travelling is not a race. It's not as "cool" as you think it is if you try to hit 20 cities in 30 days.That's unless you're in a race. You'd accumulate a lot of photos without knowing the place well. Unless this is the last time you're setting foot on European soil, you might want to shorten that list. I haven't been to Oktoberfest so I can't comment on the trip from Amsterdam to Munich but according to the map of Europe, it seems like Munich is out of the way. You're up north, then you fly south, then you head back up north, then you loop around Eastern Europe and back down south again. Munich is only 2-3 hrs away from Salzburg by train.

Taking the train/bus around Europe is the way to go. Flying from Marseilles to London is acceptable though.

5. Posted by hymen (Budding Member 9 posts) 10y

how much money were you planning on being equipped with for those two months if you dont mind me asking because i am going for two months as well and think i am really pushing it with the funds. I am going for two months and am staying longer in my destinations, and am leaving flexible time not labled because often when traveling you meet great people and find interesting places on your own that are less touristy and just as grand. And the eurail pass, you can find cheaper transportation by buying tickets in advance by train, but eurail pass allows you two be flexible. I use the Youth Eurail pass flexi and you also get lots of bargains when you have it as well. Easy jet is also a great mode of transportation, it can be verrry cheap starting at 9 pounds for some flights! The problem is you must do it in advance and this doesnt leave much leeway in your travels. Have a good time

6. Posted by rasberries (Inactive 154 posts) 10y

which rail pass did u buy? I got
a Germany Select pass with 5 countries
(france,italy,austria,slovenia & croatia)
but i'm taking a few flights too just it made more sense financially and time wise. i'm a bit restricted on both.
but since i'm an travel agent i gor 75% off my pass.

7. Posted by sumthinswt (Budding Member 26 posts) 10y

Thanks for the replies everyone!

jza80 I am a newbie to Europe and this is a draft itinerary and I know it doesnt quite flow..but that's why I'm posting for advice. I am definately flexible and want to take my time to enjoy the cities/towns I visit. I'll only know when I reach those destinations, how long I want to stay.

hymen Budget...I have no idea...I can afford approx $7500 CAD. Of course spending less is the goal. My budget will be smaller after I purchase my supplies and new digi cam. I'm thinking I should be ok.

Railpasses..I'm still feeling overwhelmed as to what pass and whether or not I need one. Should I just by as I go along? Will that be more expensive or no difference?

Raspberries! You are so lucky! I wish I got a crazy discount like that! Can you hook it up?? lol ;) I am 25, so at least I qualify for the youth rate.

bentivogliThe flying bit..I was just pencilling it in as a possible mode of is certainly not in any intention to harm the environment. If a train ride takes too long and I have a time constraint..I would then opt for flying.

Alrighty..I will tinker with the itinerary and repost! Look forward to further advice from you all!

8. Posted by jza80 (Full Member 54 posts) 10y

How do you feel about removing France from your itinerary. You can always go there for a romantic date or honeymoon in the future.

If I were you, I'd end the trip somewhere in Italy and return to London from there.

The problem with those eurail passes is that it won't cover all the countries that you're going to.

Travel on the national rail networks of 18 European countries:

* Austria
* Belgium
* Denmark
* Finland
* France
* Germany
* Greece
* Hungary
* Republic of Ireland
* Italy
* Luxembourg
* Netherlands
* Norway
* Portugal
* Romania
* Spain
* Sweden
* Switzerland

Czech Republic and Poland aren't listed there.

9. Posted by sumthinswt (Budding Member 26 posts) 10y

Nice & Marseille were just suggestions thrown out there...I actually just want to spend the last 2 weeks of my trip in the mediterranean...somewhere warm! I will be spending the last 5 days in and around London before I fly home. Would love to hear your suggestions. I definately want to make a stop in Barcelona!

10. Posted by jza80 (Full Member 54 posts) 10y

Quoting sumthinswt

Nice & Marseille were just suggestions thrown out there...I actually just want to spend the last 2 weeks of my trip in the mediterranean...somewhere warm! I will be spending the last 5 days in and around London before I fly home. Would love to hear your suggestions. I definately want to make a stop in Barcelona!

Woah, Barcelona! How about removing Poland altogether then? Skip Poland and use that time for the entire Spain, might as well head to Madrid, Seville and Malaca while you're there. =P

Anyhow, 2 months wouldn't be enough for you to cover everything. You'll need to remove something out of your itinerary, that's for sure.