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Trying to plan first trip to Europe (please help)

Travel Forums Europe Trying to plan first trip to Europe (please help)

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1. Posted by Rayllis (Budding Member 7 posts) 5y Star this if you like it!

Hi all,

My name is Joe and my wife and I are planning to take a month trip to Europe sometime in mid to late 2013. This will give us time to save up the money needed to make our dream trip finally a reality (probably will have about 10 grand saved by then, but don’t want to overspend either). My wife has been to Europe once as part of a multi-country escorted tour, I however have never manage to make it overseas yet :(. My wife is leaning towards another tour, however I feel that it wouldn’t give us the freedom to stay in an area if we really like it. However with the tours we would get to skip all the lines and have no hassle. So as a first timer which would be the way to go?
If we go independent we would like to visit the following locations:
Italy: Rome, Florence, Venice, and Verona
Germany: Munich and Berlin
Poland: Karkow with Auschwitz (I am part Polish with my grandmother being born there and leaving during WWII. I lost quite a bit of family in that place and it is a most see in my life)
Hungary: Budapest
Czeh Republic: Prague
Austria: Salzburg and maybe Vienna (wife loves classical music and sound of music so Salzburg is a most for her)
If I can find something there Slovakia (since we will be taking a train through it from maybe Bratislava but know nothing about it)

We would like to stay in hotels as much as we can it doesn’t have to a 5 star but I am an extremely light sleeper and being 6 foot 7 in it might not be that comfortable to stay in one. I would love any advice that you could get and I appreciate your time. Happy and safe travels to all.

2. Posted by Daawgon (Travel Guru 2009 posts) 5y Star this if you like it!

You sound like a free spirit and your wife considerably less so? I say "save your money and DIY" because it's a great deal more fun, you have more freedom, and it's educational at the same time. How do you think us "regulars" got so damn smart? ha ha ha!

Independent travel is really the way to go in my book.

(hint - save considerably by traveling off season - spring or fall is the time to see Europe!)

[ Edit: Edited on 25-Jun-2012, at 19:08 by Daawgon ]

3. Posted by Rayllis (Budding Member 7 posts) 5y Star this if you like it!

I am a bit more so yes, however I like to over plan sometimes and that is kinda why I wanted to do independent so it would be our itinerary. What I really need help with is some points on how independent is better than guided tours. Also if you think that 10 grand (US dollars) is enough for a trip though Europe based on the places that I would like to go and staying in 3-4 star hotels?

My wife's points for wanting guided:
1) It is safer
2) Less stress and hassle
3) Get to stay in better hotels
4) Doesn't cost that much more

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6. Posted by Rayllis (Budding Member 7 posts) 5y Star this if you like it!

I have given some thought to a cruise of greece, but I know very little about turkey and Istanbul. If you could shed more light would really help. The only fear I have with a cruise is that one of us would get sea sick and ruin the trip lol

Post 7 was removed by a moderator
8. Posted by katiew102 (Inactive 19 posts) 5y Star this if you like it!

Istanbul is supposedly very beautiful. Haghia Sophia (a cathedral) is one of the main attractions, and the grand bazaar which has around 5,000 vendors may be interesting. You could also walk the walls of Constantinople, I know a woman who has done it and she says that they are very, very impressive!!Turkish food also is some of the best in the world.

9. Posted by Rayllis (Budding Member 7 posts) 5y Star this if you like it!

I am torn between doing a italy and a cruise with greece and turkey or doing italy with eastern europe + munich (plan is to go in sept. so that would be octoberfest).

Post 10 was removed by a moderator