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Most Visited Countries in Europe

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1. Posted by jooksing (Full Member, 48 posts) 26 Jan '05 12:37

Hi All,

I wanted to know what countries should or a "must" to visit in Europe. I am having a really really hard time in deciding where to go in Europe. I am also thinking of using the Flexirail pass where you can go to a number of different countries within 10-20 days..do you think this is a good pass?

Thanks for your help

2. Posted by tway (Travel Guru, 7274 posts) 26 Jan '05 13:10

I believe the #1 tourist destination in the world is Paris. There's a reason for it, though! I'd highly recommend it.

The "best" places to go really depend on you, though. Is there someplace you've always dreamed of visiting? Some activity you really, really like? Are you a party-person, a history buff, a beach bum, a museum lover, a people watcher?

Try not to spread yourself too thin, or else you'll miss out on a lot. On that note, though, 2 weeks is pretty long to spend in one city. I've only ever read about the rail passes - never actually bought one. But from what I did read, it's a good deal IF you're travelling around a lot. You might need to do some calculations once you decide where you want to go.

Lucky you, though! You've got the best dilemma possible - deciding where to go!

3. Posted by Peter (Admin, 5417 posts) 26 Jan '05 17:16

Hi jooksing,

Paris is the most popular for good reason. It really is one of the most amazing cities in the world. Ok, so the people can be pretty rude and English doesn't help much, but it is a very beautiful place and has so much history attached.

For a first time visitor, I'd put it at the top of the list.

Mind you, it's not my favourite place in Europe either. Budapest is probably my no.1, with Barcelona and Edinburgh close behind. And Rome is up there as well.

The flexirail pass is a good deal I think, but you kind of have to use all the days to make it worthwhile. And the trips have to be long ones! No point spending all that money on a Flexirail pass and then only do local trips around France!

You don't want to rush things though either. I think 3/4 days is about a good time to spend in a city. Any shorter and you'll feel like you weren't even there.

Whatever you decide, you're bound to have a lot of fun. I don't think anything is a real "must" though - it just depends what you enjoy seeing.

Tough choices!

Welcome to Travellerspoint

4. Posted by jooksing (Full Member, 48 posts) 27 Jan '05 09:13

Thanks for all of your advice guys....I will definitely read more about the flexipass rail...

As for the cities to go to, it seems like Paris is most popular...Its hard for me to decide where to go in Europe because I like almost everything...historical, fun, and beaches....cant decide where to go...My husbad was suggesting to go to 3 countries on the flexirail Pass in 2 weeks...I think that is ridiculous, that is definitely not enough time to explore the three countries...what do you think is most reasonable number of cities to explore in 2 weeks??

5. Posted by summer910 (Respected Member, 1342 posts) 27 Jan '05 10:49

Quoting jooksing

what do you think is most reasonable number of cities to explore in 2 weeks??

That depends on your schedule, and the importance you accord to a city. I did about 9 places in Holland in two weeks. I had day trips for smaller places like Haarlem, Leiden and Delft, and gave a few more days for bigger ones like Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Den Haag. I didn't use the Flexipass (wasn't necessary for me). Train, tram and bus travel were good enough. Did Ghent and Antwerp in 6 days, which was pretty sufficient for me.

6. Posted by jooksing (Full Member, 48 posts) 28 Jan '05 12:28

Hey TP:

I finally decided on where I am going in Europe in the two weeks:

I want to go to Spain, France, Switzerland, and then Italy.
I actually got this idea from reading some excerpts on the Rick Steves website (not sure if anyone has heard of him). Apparently, he has a gorup of ppl tha travels around Europe and recommends what is good and not good to visit.
Getting back onto my topic, i wanted to know what are the good cities to visit in the countries that I picked above....

Thanks for your help again

7. Posted by tway (Travel Guru, 7274 posts) 28 Jan '05 12:42

Let me start by saying I've never visited more than 2 countries within two weeks, so I'm no expert on a 4-country stint. But for what it's worth:

[list]
[*]Give yourself a good 3-4 days per city

[*]Look at the travel times between the cities you choose. And I mean really look. Is a 12-hour train ride worth going all the way down to, say, Sicily? Or do you want to spend your time actually visiting cities? Or maybe you sleep on the overnight train and save on hotel fees?

[*]Here are some key cities and the driving distances between.

[*]Madrid to Paris = 12-hour drive (800 miles)

[*]Paris to Lucerne = 7-hour drive (415 miles)

[*]Lucerne to Rome = 8-hour drive (508 miles)

[list]

Hey, I got the list-thing working before! Lost it again...

8. Posted by areinstein (Travel Guru, 2787 posts) 28 Jan '05 13:17

I would probably said (having been to most countries in Western Europe) that my No. 1 pick will be Paris (although like someone else said, people can be pretty rude to English speaking tourists) but I will never regret detouring from my plans and hitting Prague. I was fascinated with this city, it is truly the Old Europe and many places to see untouched by the war.

9. Posted by applegirl (Full Member, 144 posts) 29 Jan '05 04:55

It's funny that so many mention Paris. I haven't been there yet myself (too close to London? looks like we're going there sometime in the spring tho) but I've never heard anyone say anything particularly POSITIVE about Paris, well maybe apart from that they like the architecture... Everyone who've told me about Paris mention that people are rude, the nightlife is rather dull (well, that is compared to London) and so on. Still I do want to go because it's obviously one of them 'must-see' places, which has not been very high up on my list - but still on the list tho.

My favourite cities in Europe is Barcelona, Berlin, Copenhagen and ... London.

10. Posted by summer910 (Respected Member, 1342 posts) 29 Jan '05 10:17

Quoting jooksing

Hey TP:

I finally decided on where I am going in Europe in the two weeks:

I want to go to Spain, France, Switzerland, and then Italy.
I actually got this idea from reading some excerpts on the Rick Steves website (not sure if anyone has heard of him).

I can't imagine even covering one country properly in two weeks! To really get a feel of a country or a city, you have to be willing to spend time to explore. The place will always be there. Rather than cram everything into two weeks, why don't you just plan to visit others on your next trip?

I have heard of Rick Steves. Can't say I used any of his tips when I visited Europe.