Hi, I am traveling through Europe in 09 and am just starting to plan my trip now. I'm not sure how long I'll spend there though, six months? I'm wanting to see the culture, way of life, meet other people etc. Where should I go and what are some great things to do? Money isn't so much a issue, just want ideas thanks
[ Edit: Edited on Dec 23, 2007, at 3:27 PM by marshal ]
The first places/experiences which come to mind:
Norway: up above the polar circle, experience the midnight sun amongst the surreal peaks of the Lofoten islands.
Rome: climb the quiet hills steeped in history, and descend to the never-ending bustle of the city.
Southern Portugal during winter: enjoy balmy temperatures; have Christmas dinner sitting on the beach.
Are you aware of the Schengenrules? Basicly if you stay longer than 3 months, and you don't own a pasport of one of the member-states you need a visa.
Where to go and what to do, really depends on your interests, it would be easier to give you some destinations, if you can tell us what you are looking for. (Cities, Nature, History, Art ???)
You're gonna have so much fun in europe. Bergen in Norway is a really beautiful city! So is krakow in poland and copenhagen in Denmark.
Got to agree...Norway definately. Tunisia is lovely too, mix in a different culture from the majority of Europe. You can visit El Jem where the film gladiator was filmed. Carthage with its roman ruins. Take a camel safari through the Sahara desert. Visit the busy bazaar of Tunis. And loads more but i cant think off the top of my head ha ha.
I would highly recommend Istanbul too! Definitely visit the blue Mosque, Yeni Camii (new mosque) and Aya Sofya. The princess island. The tower which over looks the city. The archaeological museum with the gates of babylon. Istanbul is awesome, i was there for 10 days and that wasnt enough! Definitely buy a guide book to get the most out of a visit threre.
Barcelona is good, the olympic village, gaudi buildings and cathedral, plaza de catalunya, les ramblas, the port, the beach- great city and good nightlife too and transport links to the rest of spain!
I will stop now before my post gets too long, i hope these ideas gives you something to think about but norway is a must! I stayed in a really nice and cheap hostel, if you need more details let me know
My favorite cities would be Prague and Rome, I especially love Italy and if you've time it's well worth going to southern italy to avoid the crowds.
Europe is big, so 6 months will go by much faster than you imagine. We are 16 months into a multi year open ended trip around the world and have spent all of that in Europe ( plus Turkey and Morocco). There is so much to see and experience that we are not done yet.
To really get a feel of the culture, one needs to spend time. Following the weather also helps as touring is much easier in nice weather compared to unbearable heat or cold and rain. Also think in terms of crowds, because even slightly off season can make a huge difference and in some places like Florence, VERY off season will make the experience much better.
We got a long stay visa, but there are still ways that one can tour Europe at length and stay legal. The number of places are dwindling but you can still do things like 3 months in France, 3 months in Turkey, 3 months in Italy and then 3 months in Great Britain.
Get some guide books and look at what appeals to you. We have really enjoyed all of our trip, some of our favorite places have been Morocco, Turkey, Croatia, Santorini, Hallstatt, Rhodes, Paris, Pompeii, Ephesus and that entire area including Pumuklkale ( the only place where you can swim in ancient Roman ruins & in the very same water that Roman emperors and Cleopatra bathed in), Umbria, Tuscany, Lake Bled, Edam Netherlands,Provence, Burgundy, Seville, Barcleona,Crete, Florence, Venice etc etc
You can look at our blog archives to possibly get some ideas...we have seen some wonderful things and look forward to more before we head off to other continents:
We find that after 6 or 7 months we get satiated with travel and we winter in a little village in Spain where it is sunny and the people and festivals a delight. Our long stays here give us the biggest insight into local culture as we become part of it. DO book times to just rest and take it easy as that is an important part of long term travel and we often would stay in one place for a month if we liked it ( like Barcelona, Dubrovnik, Santorini etc) which gives one a deeper connection to a place.
Have fun! Carpe Diem!!