I will be unemployed come May and I will finally get the chance to spend some time travelling abroad in Europe. I plan on going for at least 6 weeks in May and early June. I will be focusing most of my time In Italy as I have family and friends in Bari, Pescara and around Rome. This will also give me a home base where I can leave extra luggage or whatever.
My interests are mostly with history, culture and natural landscapes and I am less interested in art, literature etc. I also enjoy nightlife. I also speak Italian so I am hoping to really get a feel for Italian life as I like to experience a culture when I travel rather than just sightsee. So my question is then, based on my interests, what are the must-do's in Italy and what areas can I do without? I also would love some recommendation on some off the beaten path destinations that are worthwhile.
I also would like to see other areas of Europe. Spain and Greece are on my radar as well as Amsterdam and London. Would it be reasonable to fit all or any of these places in the 6 weeks that I plan on spending? Also, being Canadian, I speak a little French and i have some knowledge of Spanish...don't know how helpful that will be.
I have money saved up so even though I'm young I don't plan on travelling the typical broke-student style trip. Having said that I will be travelling alone and am a little apprehensive as I don't want to be alone for the whole trip so I am wondering if I should go the hostel route (which I know nothing about) or the contiki/topdeck type tour?
Any advice/ suggestions would be appreciated!!!