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Winter Europe (Italy,Greece,Egypt,Spain,France) - help pls

Travel Forums Europe Winter Europe (Italy,Greece,Egypt,Spain,France) - help pls

1. Posted by cict2011 (Budding Member 5 posts) 8y

Hi all

This is my draft itineraries for Europe from 23/11 - 28/12. i would really appreciate if someone could give me some input.

24/11 arrive in Rome,spend roughly a week in Italy
1/12 Italy - Greece for about 4 days
5/12 Greece - Egypt for 8 days Intrepid tour
14/12 Egypt - Spain, spend roughly 4-5 days in Spain
19/12 Spain - France, spend the rest of the time in France, might do a quick trip to Switzerland/Austria if i have time.

I want to check out xmas markets, any recommendations? Could you pls also give me some websites for fly bookings/accommodation/rail pass and tours. i came across this website yesterday but not sure how good it is http://www.europebyair.com/efp/index.jsp

It's only a draft itineraries and i'm not too sure if the direction i'm going is logical. appreciate any input

Thanks for your help in advanced.

2. Posted by vanessa (Travel Guru 257 posts) 8y

Heya!
Traveling in December is pretty difficult because of weather. Be ready that part of attractions will be closed or switched off (fountains, parks, etc)
I have seen you choused South countries, probably in hope that it's milder climate there, but December cant be warm anyway. So, dress well and b ready to get inside (museum, restaurant, etc) when u feel uncomfortable outdoors.
I wrote you pretty detailed, prepare to long text ;-)
Some comments abt your travel-plan r below:

>>> 24/11 arrive in Rome, spend roughly a week in Italy

ITALY is my biggest love and I can say that 1-week is definitely not enough (as well – it’s better then nothing).
Don’t miss Italian coffee (the absolutely best in the world!), ice-cream (even winter) and Italian food and wines at general.

ROME – big city, gives you lots of historical sites, good museums, adorable “piazzas” (squares) as well some shopping, food, etc. The best of Rome is just to flow with it’s streets, enter private yards (where possible). All others - depends of your interests.
Visit of Vatican (includes museum and St. Peter’s Cathedral) – need 1 full day.
As I know they are so-so abt Christmas markets & Christmas itself. You will find it in other places in Europe.

VENICE – well, who doesn’t know Venice? It one of 3 Italian “musts”. I feel evil to tell you don’t go there – but I will tell it. Mate, it’s DECEMBER . you will b freezing and wet there. Just miss it this time and return one day at good season.

You cant miss FLORENCE. And , if you already going between Rome and Florence, take more of Toscana & Umbia. All this area is beautiful and over-rich with arts, architecture, wine and dining, etc. SIENNA – not far from Florence. There are plenty of smaller towns in all this area. All depends your time and ability to travel + weather conditions. It’s airport in Florence, try to check where you can fly from there – instead of lose the day on return to Rome for flight.

>>> 1/12 Italy - Greece for about 4 days
I adore Greece, but it’s more about islands, then land. In some days that u have + season that you go – you only could visit Athens. It’s nice, but.. mmm.. not necessary. Some famous ruins, not much more. Only if you r deep abt history – I’d say go on it. If you don’t – I’d not b going there.

>>> 5/12 Greece - Egypt for 8 days intrepid tour
Intrepid? Lol…
It’s much to see in Egypt, BUT distances and bad transportation makes your intrepid tour difficult. Being short, I’ll separate all Egyptian activities to several parts, and you’ll decide what you get.
1) Pyramids (they are several and located not near!) - choose one site that seems you the best + transportation.
2) Cairo – big city, very interesting + museums. Probably you will fly to Cairo, even it’s not the only Egyptian airport
3) Sinai – composes desert (possible do 4x4 or camel safari) and stunning Red Sea (that less inviting at winter, but still possible to dive, if ur into it)
I’d do Cairo + Pyramids, if you’d have more time you could add anything else. The best thing not to be depend one airport, but arrive to one place, move, while traveling and fly out from the next destination

19/12 Spain - France, spend the rest of the time in France, might do a quick trip to Switzerland/Austria if i have time.

SPAIN – I prefer Barcelona to Madrid. Barcelona is adorable in any time of year, and, I guess also in pre-Christmas time. It’s some inexpensive hostels near La-Rambla, try to live there, it’s the best area for traveler.

PARIS – is Paris all over the year.

And , finally , if you are looking for CHRISTMAS MARKETS – the best European that I know is in VIENNA, Austria. Vienna is absolutely lovely and worse the visit.
Enjoy your trip and good luck!
If you have more questions – feel free to contact me.
Cheers,
vanessa

3. Posted by cict2011 (Budding Member 5 posts) 8y

Thanks Vanessa. Your post has helped a lot. I might drop Greece and save it for my next trip.

Since it's December, low season, is it safe to say that I can just book things as I go? If I just book my accomodation in Rome and then from there book as I go, would that work? Similar in Spain, can I just book one place then decide from there where to go?

When I said Intrepid tour in egypt, that's the actual company that I'll do the tour with. 8 days and the meeting point is in cairo then we're going to see the pyramid and few other places (i haven't got their itinerary wiht me).

The other thing you said it's difficult to travel around Dec, is it because it's raining & wet? How cold are we talking about here. 5-10 degree or minus? I think the cold is alright, as long as it doesn't rain often. I love photography and plan to take a lot of photos, is the weather ok? or is it kind of raining all the time during Dec.

thanks for ur help