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Need help for planning europe trip 2010!!!

Travel Forums Europe Need help for planning europe trip 2010!!!

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1. Posted by jiew (Budding Member, 4 posts) 16 Nov '09 19:21

hello,
me and my wife is planning for an europe trip next year, so finally we manage to book our promo tickets last few days and we are travelling in next year end august till end sept for 4 weeks. we will be flying to london stanted airport.
i have browsed d web and m getting very confuse now. there is too many beautiful countries which we like to go but times is so limited for us and oso our budget not allow. i really need your most valuable experience on planing tis trip.
here is some countries and days we would love to go and stay

london-manchester and liverpool (3days)
paris (3days)
barcelona (3days)
monaco (2days)
milan (2days)
venice (2days)
florence(3days)
rome(3days)
frankfurt (3days)
amsterdam (2days)
brussel (2days)

we planing to take some night train to save on d accomodation. how should we travel if we wanna visit all tis cities?? which transport and route should we take and any good hostel or b&b from your list??
any idea/advice/suggestions will be much appreciated!!!
thanz in advance!! cheers...:)

2. Posted by nessierrpa (Budding Member, 2 posts) 17 Nov '09 02:16

Hi,

There is a train tiket valid for one month to travel around europe, I don't know exactly the name but for sure you can find out.

also I would suggst not to go to Frankfurt, I would do:

LONDON (3 DAYS)- AMSTERDAM (1 DAY) - HAMBURGO (2 DAYS) - VIEN (2 DAYS) - SALZBURG (1 DAY) - MUNICH (3 DAYS) - PARIS (3 DAYS) - MADRID(5 DAYS) - BARCELONA (1 DAY) - MONACO (1 DAY) - VENECIA (1 DAY) - ROMA(3 DAYS) - LONDRES

To see:

HAMBURGO:

Alstersee, zoo, Michael Kirche, Hafen, Rathaus, Botanischer garten, biggest cementery (very interesting)...

MUNICH:

deutsches museum (nearly one day to see it), Nimfenburg palast, barock opera, schatz kammer, Neuschwanstein (30-40 km from munich), Dahau concentrastions camp), several beer bars...

MADRID:

visit Toledo near madrid, Avila near madrid, Segovia near Madrid and in Madrid as in Paris or London lots of museums and historical buildings.

The rest od the cities just what is used to be visited...

I hope this will help, I'm from Spain, born in Germany in Hamburg, I gusset you to enjoy the culture in London (clasical), Hamburg (modern, don't miss some musicals), Vien (music), in Munich the beer!!! in al the BIER GARTEN and most of all in the ENGLISCHER GARTEN and there look for the CHINESISCHER TURM, in Spain enjoy food!! and wine!! also clasical culture and FUN!!, about the rest of the places just enjoy beautifull places.

have fun and good luck!!

3. Posted by jiew (Budding Member, 4 posts) 17 Nov '09 06:55

Dear nessierrpa,

Thank you so much for your suggestion. We will definitely look into your kind recommendations. Wish you the best of luck and if you ever come to Asia, please feel free to get in touch with us. We will definitely treat you to some of the best Asian beer! ;)

4. Posted by citybell (Respected Member, 419 posts) 17 Nov '09 07:37

From your list, suggest you delete Frankfurt and Milan as nothing much to see in these two cities. Instead add any place in Austria (say Vienna or Salzburgh.) and a place in Swiss. Whole of Spain is a very nice country and choose the place that you like most in Spain.

There is a train ticket for non EU CITIZENS which are below:
Eurail Pass - access to 18 countries
- Eurail Select Pass - choose your countries
- Eurail Flexi Pass - flexible travel dates
But beofre buying , check all the conditions keeping in view of your destinations. This seems more economical for you travel. Or you can fly by budget airlines of Europe like Ryan air or Easyjet etc..(there too many to list them here).But check the location of the destination airport because these budget airlines can use airports located far away from the city like stansted. If you are sure of your dates, then you can travel by air very cheap (some say more cheaper than trains).

About the b&b or hostels, there are so many hostel and most of them are wonderful. Visit a website for hostels.

Suggest you to do some research or get a guide book like Lonely planet and choose your schedule and places.

Good that you have planned to visit during end Aug when summer in Europe would have been over so that you can get accommodation , transportation easily.

All the best.

5. Posted by lil_lil (Travel Guru, 462 posts) 17 Nov '09 08:51

That's a very tight schedule you've got there. And the city that I think is awkward in this itinerary is Barcelona. I would also most likely swap Frankfurt with Munich instead. I'm not sure if this is your first trip to Europe, so please don't mind me assuming that it is.

There is a train pass, called Eurail, that you can get. Since you're travelling in pair with your wife, you can get Eurail Saver Pass, of which the price of 1 month continuous travel for adult in 1st class is €698 per person. Some supplementary charges may be applicable, for trains where reservations are required and certain night trains too. Please note that Eurail cannot be used in UK (i.e. not valid for travel to/fro London).

Now, back to the itinerary. May I suggest the following order (based on the cities you want to visit), so that as little time is spent getting from one place to another as possible, or overnight whenever possible so you don't lose the day time. Note though, you may not be able to sleep comfortably in the train and you may end up quite tired. This will not be helped with hectic schedule as it is. As long as you are aware of this. Otherwise, I would suggest cutting down the number of cities you plan to travel, by at least 2-3 of them.

London - Barcelona - Paris - Monaco - Milan - Venice - Florence - Rome - Munich - Amsterdam - Brussel - London

Assuming this is your first trip to Europe, 3 days is just about enough for a quick trip in London. You won't have time to see London along with Manchester and Liverpool. It's madness to even want to try that.

Day 1-3: London, fly to Barcelona at the end of day 3
Day 4-6: Barcelona, overnight direct Elipsos train-hotel to Paris on night 6 (~13 hrs)
Day 7-9: Paris
Day 10-11: Train to Monaco in morning of day 10 (~6.5 hrs), Monaco
Day 12-13: Train to Milan in morning of day 12 (~5 hrs), Milan
Day 14-15: Train to Venice in morning of day 14 (~2.5 hrs), Venice
Day 16-18: Train to Florence in morning of day 16 (<3 hrs), Florence, train to Rome in evening of day 18 (~1.5 hrs)
Day 19-21: Rome, overnight direct train to Munich on night 21 (~11 hrs)
Day 22-24: Munich, overnight direct train to Amsterdam on night 24 (>10 hrs)
Day 25-26: Amsterdam, train to Brussels in evening of day 26 (<3 hrs)
Day 27-28: Brussels, Eurostar train to London in evening of day 28 (~2 hrs)
Day 29: Flight departure from London

Give it a thought at shaving a couple of cities off the schedule, and allocate then to some others. You can see that travelling by train (excluding night ones) are taking up nearly 24 hours combined. That's not including flight to Barcelona. I fear if you use train for that, it's going to take more time.

If you take Barcelona out, then you can go to Paris directly by Eurostar from London in 2.5 hrs and need not endure a 13 hours night train. You can also give London an extra day or two (since day 1 here is on assumption that it's the day you arrive, and you're most likely to be feeling jetlagged after a long 11-12 hours flight from KL so any extra time would be greatly appreciated). You can allocate the extra days to some other cities too.

Good luck and if you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to ask.

[ Edit: Edited on 17-Nov-2009, at 08:56 by lil_lil ]

6. Posted by travelbugy (Budding Member, 5 posts) 17 Nov '09 14:16

spend as little time in venice.....wasn't impressed. better to allocate that time to exploring florence more!!

7. Posted by LaurenLolz (Respected Member, 226 posts) 19 Nov '09 12:33

you can do london-amsterdam-brussels-paris in .. well hell, 10 days. I am. I would start in london. you can take the train to brussels and connect to amsterdam if you want or stay in brussels. you can aslo take a ferry from london to amsterdam (with connecting trains in and out of the cities). then from amsterdam head to brussels and take the train to paris. the train from london to brussels is more costly and around 4 hours. the ferry to amsterdam is about 8 hours, but you can take an overnight ferry. from paris, I would suggest that suggest an overnight train to barcelona. then continue to monaco and italy.

you can also get double ensuite rooms in hostels for about 65 euro a night and upwards.

btw venice was gorgeous. i would consider staying amsterdam for more than a day: anne frank house, van gogh museum, rembrandt house, national museum. outside of paris, you might want to think about visiting versailles or giverny. barcelona is also awesome. for food, shopping, night life, the BEACH! No way in HELL would I swap it for going to Frankfurt or Munich.

8. Posted by lil_lil (Travel Guru, 462 posts) 19 Nov '09 13:56

While it is possible to travel by rail from Barcelona to Monaco, note that several train changes are required and the journey time would be some 11-13 hours throughout a whole entire day. Any option that include some night train gets worse, as the travel time stretches between 15-20 hours.

9. Posted by jiew (Budding Member, 4 posts) 25 Nov '09 06:30

Dear All,
After cracking our heads and checking out flights, ferries, trains, buses etc., we have come out with a mock itinerary. Kindly take a look and of course, any suggestions are very much needed.

Day 1-3: London (we will be touching down London pretty late, at about 1930, hence fairly speaking we have only 2.5 days in London)
Day 4-7: Paris + Dijorn
Day 8-9: Milan
Day 10-11: Venice
Day 12-14: Florence
Day 15-17: Rome
Day 18-21: Ludwigburg
Day 22-24: Amsterdam
Day 25-27: Brussels
Day 28-29: London

Our main mode of transport will be bus, followed by flights (which is really cheaper than trains considering we are making our bookings way in advanced), ferries then trains. After much consideration, we figured taking flights will save us both time and much needed rest. What do you think?

P/S: Yes, this is our very first trip to Europe and we believe there will definitely be more to come (if we get this right, that is)

10. Posted by lil_lil (Travel Guru, 462 posts) 25 Nov '09 07:07

Errm when are you planning to take the bus/flights/ferry/train respectively? (I'm particularly confused on the ferry part - for crossing the English Channel?)

You're spending considerable amount of time in Ludwigsburg - even more than Rome? Mind that it's a much smaller city compared to Rome, and there are quite a lot to see/do in Rome. You could maybe consider reallocate an extra day or so to Rome, and if you think you may not have something to do in Rome, then you can always go on a day trip to Pompeii.

Buying train tickets in advance can usually be cheap too, and you won't be at the mercy of the road traffic. Plus there's more freedom to move about in a train than in a bus. Train tickets are usually available 3 months ahead of travelling date.

Taking flights may not necessarily save you more time, it depends on the journey. Know that most budget airline uses airports that are far far away from the city, so you need to account for time travelling to/fro the airports, plus time required to be at the airport prior to flight for check-in, security etc. E.g. London-Paris is much quicker by train than by flight, as the train takes about 2.5 hours, whereas taking flights means approximately 2 hours for travelling to airport in London and from airport in Paris, plus flight time, plus pre-flight time, which could amount to some 4-5 hours or so.

Also flights like Ryanair are very strictly on their luggage allowances so be aware of all their terms and conditions or you'll find yourself forking out more supplementary charges at a premium rate at the airport. They also require all check-ins to be done online and you must print your boarding passes, so there in lies a problem that you must always look for places to access internet and have printing facilities. Otherwise the penalty at the airport could quickly empty out your pockets.