I was wondering if anyone could help us with our trip plans? My wife and I are planning a trip to Europe this fall (September 07). There are so many places to see and we are limited to 12-14 days. We are not much for museums but a little would be nice. I spent 10 days in Austria and just loved it and want to take my wife to see it.
Tell me if I am out of my mind for this plan. Fly into Paris and spend 3 days there, one day to Normandy beaches, the rest in town. Then drive to Salzburg (3 days). Two nights in Kirchdorf an der Krems to visit a friend. Then to Prague or Venice for the balance of the trip.
Am I planning an overloaded trip? Is driving from country to country a big problem. Can I get a gps navigation system in a rental car?
I want to plan a trip but also be flexible. If we want to stay longer in Salzburg could I call and move my other reservations out with out much problems?
We would be grateful for any information or assistance.
Well, I think 12-14 days is possible for your trip, but it certainly is the minimum amount of time.
Maybe skip the Normandy part, it's not that great and from Paris it's several hours westwards before heading east. I think from Paris to Salzburg can be done in one day of driving.
Hertz has a 'never lost' GPS system, so try them for renting a car. Along with Avis and Budget, they have the best cars and service.
Driving between all of the countries you mentioned is really straightforward, you probably won't have any border controls at all, they are all EU countries.
So maybe stick to Paris, drive to Salzburg and see in Salzburg what you do.
everything is possible! and drivable! thats the beauty about the mainland continent. one can drive everywhere.
i personally think that after all that driving you will need a holiday just to recover and i dont think that is what holidays are about.
i suspect that with your 12-14 days you are cutting it fine, i think you will leave yourself with very little time to see venice and prague!
the only benefit a satelite nav system has is that if you get lost you can find your way much more easily...saving time.
however doesnt one have to purchase the maps for each country? eg 100euro per map per country? dont quote me here unless this has all changed!
forget about changing your plans, i dont see how you have any flexibility...and you will create more problems for yourself eg hotel bookings etc.
if this is possible then you will need to stick by a plan.
i too would forget about normandy! nothing spectacular there except a bit of history...
Would it be easier to take a train from Paris to Salzburg and then rent a car? Then do the same from Salzburg to Prague and rent a car at each city?
Sounds like you guys think I should skip Normandy. I would have liked to see the beaches and visit the area that my uncle fought in during WW2. More I think about it if it is a three-hour drive we will be in the car for a long time and essentially spend a day driving.
What I would really like to do is don’t make any reservations after Salzburg and just go with it. If we want to stay longer in an area we can and when we are ready to move on then call for a room the day before. We will take a list of places and phone numbers to stay that we like.
Any feed back on Prague or Venice? I really like the architecture of the old European buildings like in the old part of Linz.
Thanks for the input
If the time you can spend is limited it is wiser to visit cities that are closer to eachother. Unless there is a cheapflight available. I do think you are overloading you trip.
I would recommend spending more days in Paris if you really want to visit it. If your focus is more on Salzburg/Prague and Venice, than I would choose to drop Paris. Driving from Paris to Salzburg, will take about ten hours of driving, including stops to rest, dring and eat, you loose one whole day driving. A day you would much rather spend checking out a town.
If you would still like to visit Paris, maybe a nighttrain would more suit your purpose to get to Salzburg. (provided you are able to sleep on a riding train).
I would stick to a shedule like this (or the other way around):
Prague 3-4 days
Salzburg 2-3 days (if you planning on daytrips maybe 3-4 days)
Kirchdorf 2 days
Venice 2-3 days.
If you have some time left, Innsbruck might do for a quick stop of one day. (en route to Venice) It might also depend, if you have to do some travelling back to the airport where you arrive, or if you are getting an open-jaw ticket.
The really great thing about Europe is most cities have great public transport/underground and very expensive parking, with many low cost airlines you can skip driving and walk the cities as this is how you enjoy them the most... some low cost airlines are:
and many more.
If i were you i would fly and also visit Rome and Barcelona 2 of my favourite cities and skipping an Austrian one.
Ciao for now
Check with your car rental company. Some have restrictions as to which Countries you can drive in... Last time I was in Germany, Italy and Poland (+ other former Eastern Block countries) were out of bounds for insurance reasons (higher theft and collision risks).
I think the nighttrain is a very sensible idea, driving 12 hours not accounting for possible traffic jams is not everybody's idea of fun.
There are several connections, one of them is the DB Nachtzug from Munich to Paris with onward local train to Salzburg. They sometimes have special offers starting from 29 EUR per person for this train. Look at www.bahn.de around 2 or 3 months before intend to go for these tickets. Normal price is around 135 EUR per person - relaxed arrival guaranteed.
Also note that www.skyscanner.net gives flight connections from Paris to Salzburg for 50 EUR per person and from Paris to Vienna from 35 EUR per person, both connections with SkyEurope Airlines.
Ok we have another question. We will be traveling from the USA, what I was wondering is it better to get a round trip flight from the US to our 1st stop or can you fly into one city and fly home from an other? Is the price very different?
We are not real experienced travelers and don’t know all of the ins and outs of traveling.
Again thanks for your help and information