Me and 3 of my friends from university are going travelling round europe for 2 weeks in a couple of days.
I just wanted to know peoples opinions on the best places to visit whilst we are there because 2 weeks isnt all that long, so we need the cream of the crop.
I also wanted to know ifyou think it is feasible to sleep on overnight trains every night we are there and travel to a different place every night?
Without knowing the sorts of things you are interested in it is very difficult to give places that you would like to see, but most people of university age would be attracted to Amsterdam so that should probably be on your list. Others that are must sees on most peoples lists are London, Rome and Paris. I especially love London and Rome.
My personal thoughts is that it would be a bit stupid to sleep on an overnight train everynight and see a different city every day. If you did that you certainly wouldn't be able to see most cities even remotedly well and you'd be so over sleeping on trains (or if you are like me getting no sleep on trains) by the time the end came you'd be glad it was over!
I think you'd be much better off doing something like spending 3 days in London, 2 days in Amsterdam, 3 days in Paris, 4 days in Rome and get a train to somewhere like Venice or Florence for 2 days before finding a flight on Ryanair that'll get you back to London quick (assuming that's where you'd be leaving from) and relatively cheap seeing you'll be booking so close to departure date. Some of those journies would take quite a long time on the train and probably be more than just an overnight journey and require a change of train in a different country. If you were landing in London and departing from London, then you may have to purchase a flight on Ryanair or another budget airline to get back there in such a short amount of time.
If you spent everynight on a train to a new city, if someone asked you what Paris was like (assuming you went there) you wouldn't hardly be able to tell them what was even there apart from the Eiffel Tower because in 3/4 of a day you couldn't even see the Lourve properly let alone everything else that is of tourist interest. If Rome was one of the places you went just visiting the Vatican City travelguides I have read recommend a couple of days to see it properly if you visit the Vatican Museum and all the other attractions there. One full day might allow you to squeeze most the Vatican in without taking much in, but then seeing the other must-see things in Rome wouldn't happen because of lack of time. I spent 4 days in Rome on my first trip and in total 40 hours of walking and catching the metro and still didn't see everything worth seeing and even after having now spent 11 days in total I am yet to see all things of tourist interest (I have doubled up on a lot of things though).
[ Edit: Edited on Aug 31, 2007, at 7:44 PM by aharrold45 ]
reading these last 2 posts i am put in mind of a friend of mine who often comments on her trip to Spain. Truth is, her trip amounted to a 4- hour stop- over at an airport ! Yet...no denying it, she WAS in Spain. My suggestion is to- instead of rushing around trying to grab bits and pieces of this incredible feature and that amazing sight- just focus on ONE of each. For instance: you like grand old buildings? - do some research online or consult a travel guide paperback and pick one out- then check it out when you arrive in whatever city or town. ditto for interesting neighbourhood, museum, walk, park, historical site, nightclub, entertainment zone, cafe, gallery, landmark, etc...if cathedrals turn your crank, such as notre dame in paris, then just hit notre dame and wait until next time you are there to see other cathedrals or churches of outstanding ' quality '. Just pick ONE of each, then figure out a route between sights. Example: I am in New York City and I have only ONE DAY (!) ...I want to see a: notable architecture, B: hit a gallery or museum, c: have a memorable meal somewhere, d: check out a park, and e: wander around in some interesting nyc neighbourhood. With your guide, whether online or not, plus suggestions from others, pick ONE of each. Calculate a general time- plan and route, send a few e/ mails to make sure the places you intend to visit are still there and/or open for the time you propose to be there. Try to concentrate your specific destinations within a not- too- broad area, to save time. allow flexibility. don't make it rigid; keep it loose to allow for chance adjustment. anyway, have a great trip! -K
Two weeks, means doing 3 or 4 of the major cities, or maybe 5 if you take in some smaller ones.
Things to keep in mind is that you want to have minimal traveling time. So take a look if you can get open-jaw tickets, at your travelagent. (Open-Jaw means flying into one city, and out of another, thus saving you time/money and the need to return to your original starting point).
A lot of combinations are possible. Within Europe most places can be reached with a flight with a few hours. (so you can combine Berlin and Sevilla, pretty easy). If you want to do this by train, than rather pick cities that are close to eachother.
Vienna - Salzburg - (Cesky Krumlov) - Prague - (Dresden) - Berlin,
London - Paris - Brugges - Amsterdam.
Madrid - Cordoba - Sevilla - Granada - (flight) - Valencia - Barcelona
Venice - Cinque Terra - Florence - Siena - Rome - Amalfi Coast.
But a lot will depend on your interests .....