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Gonna Be In Europe For Three Months...  
User currently offlineSaxdiva From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 2382 posts, RR: 42
Posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 2111 times:

... what should I make sure I don't miss?

Here's the deal: Between the beginning of September and end of November, my husband and I will be living in Florence, Italy. After that, we'll have another 2-3 weeks to travel. He'll be teaching Monday-Thursday each week, with a break of about ten days sometime in early October. I'll be doing some academic research, which will give me a LOT of flexibility unless I end up working on one of the projects I've pitched to a couple of clients. Sooo.....

What should I do? This will be my first time on the European mainland; the closest I've been so far was the UK and Ireland. Doing some spotting is a priority, and I'm already lobbying for a trip to AMS. Paris, Barcelona, and Athens have also been batted about as possibilities--he's not into aviation, but he's a sympathetic shutterbug nonetheless. Suggestions? I'd be VERY interested in attending a meet if one might get scheduled.

BTW, I'm also not opposed to taking mid-week trips by myself and hosteling if it comes to that. I don't know when I'll get this opportunity again, so I want to make the most of it!

Thanks in advance,
Leanne

25 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineOYRJA From Denmark, joined Feb 2007, 78 posts, RR: 15
Reply 1, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 2066 times:

One thing is for sure....

You gotta visit one of the Scandianavian countries before you go back home. It's beautiful here I can tell you.
And It's easy to get here as well and there are several LCC's that flies to 3 citys in Denmark. Ryanair flies to Esbjerg and Aarhus while Easyjet flies to CPH.


User currently offlineYokohama1970 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 199 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2041 times:

Visit every place possible! I love Prague! Copenhagen is awesome! Barcelona was amazing! Depends on your tastes. I wish I had a few months in Europe. I have heard that the Amalfi Coast in Italy is stunning. The Millau Viaduc in France is an enormous & historic engineering feat. Get us "trip report", after your European visit.

Bon Voyage

Tom

http://www.prague.cz/

http://www.visitdenmark.com/

http://www.viaducdemillaueiffage.com/index.php4?lang=EN



Thank You Derek! Good Luck with the LA Dodgers
User currently offlineANCFlyer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2034 times:

I recommend you travel by train - regardless of what you'll see. . . .

It's economical. Get a Eurailpass. It's NOT Amtrak. It's on time and clean.

When I lived there I went everywhere on weekends . . . by train. I could leave Wiesbaden (Germany - just outside FRA) and be in Paris for sun-up (or Copenhagen, or Munich, or Madrid, or Vienna . . . you get the idea). Since you'll be in Italy, the overnight travel to another destination might take a night and a short morning.

Most of these major European cities have train stations in the airports. Just hop off there and take your photos.

Don't miss seeing a castle - a real castle. For the Europeans, it's no big deal, they live there - kinda like moose and bears for us Alaskans. If there is time a river cruise in Germany up the Rhine. Can't beat that. There are day cruises. Copenhagen is a beautiful city. Madrid is awesome. In Barcelona, there is this Cathedral - been under construction for 200 years. In Portugal, the home of Port wine. In Germany, wine country. Make sure to see Paris.

What can I tell you - if you've the time see everything you can see. Get some guides from "Lonely Planet" where they'll list hostels and cheaper places to stay . . . .you could always book your travel so you're on a train at night - asleep - and visting during the day . . .

Always look up a local Mom and Pop place to sleep or eat. . . 100% better than the big hotels and chain eateries. In Germany ask "haben sie ein zwie-zimmer frie?" . . . "got a double room free".

Enjoy the food. The food is the best . . . well, okay, the scenery is the best, well, okay, the scenery is the best . . .as you can see I am confused. . . .

Europe is a fantastic place. Get all you can.
Too many possibilities . . . I envy your trip . . .



[Edited 2005-02-05 10:22:09]

User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 13985 posts, RR: 62
Reply 4, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2030 times:

Don�t forget to bring your saxophone.... you might end up jamming with the local jazz community....

Jan


User currently offlinePhxairfan From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 811 posts, RR: 8
Reply 5, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2027 times:

One place for you to go that is awesome, is Montecatini.(spelling?) Its about 30-45 mins west of Florence, past the airport.  Wink/being sarcastic Florence is a beautiful city, I envy you very much, being that you get to live there for 3 months. I was only there for 3 days, but I fell in love with the place.

User currently offlineSimo82 From Italy, joined Feb 2005, 181 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days ago) and read 2001 times:

Hi
Let's say that there are a lot of place that are worth a visit...
What I would visit if I were in you is:
more or less all Toscana the region of Firenze there are many important places ( Siena, Pisa, Versilia ....) the country side is fantastic!! These place are all just max 1 hour car drive from Firenze

I would also obviously go to Roma, Pompei, Napoli, and Costiera Amalfitana. After that another place that can't be miss in Italy is Venezia that really is a must!!

Sure is that if you need more information about Italy....just have to ask!!


CIAO
Simo


User currently offlinePilotaydin From Turkey, joined Sep 2004, 2539 posts, RR: 51
Reply 7, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days ago) and read 2000 times:

I would suggest visiting Monaco, beautiful place! Also if you want some peace and quiet, track up towards the area of Matterhorn in CH.

If you have the op to fly, i would recommend Athens, Istanbul, and you might think im crazy, but Moscow is beautiful that time of year, and very culturally different. I say go far as you can, because otherwise, the other places are within a weekend bus/train rides reach.

The Czech republic is beautiful!



The only time there is too much fuel onboard, is when you're on fire!
User currently offlineIakobos From Belgium, joined Aug 2003, 3313 posts, RR: 35
Reply 8, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 1978 times:

My hot shots for 2-5 days visits:

Paris and the French Riviera (combined by high speed train) with return via
San Remo and Milan (one day here),
Istanbul (A MUST !) and Athens (easily combined by air),
Prague and/or Budapest and/or Warsaw/Krakow
Switzerland (anywhere in the southern half)
Dubrovnik and the Dalmatian coast
Amsterdam, Antwerp and Brussels (by train)
Barcelona, Grenada and Sevilla
Lisbon, Porto and the NE countryside
The valley of the Rhine (in Germany)
Vienna and Salzburg
50 different places in Italy


User currently offlineAlessandro From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 1960 times:

Check out www.ryanair.com lot of cheap flights from nearby Pisa,
Carcassonne got castle and are a Ryanair destination, also close to Toulose
home of Airbus...


User currently offlineAerorobnz From Rwanda, joined Feb 2001, 7184 posts, RR: 13
Reply 10, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 1911 times:

I would go to Napoli,Pompei & the Amalfi Coast/Capri too, You should see as much of Italy as you can, the others you will always do as a circuit more easily.
I was backpacking by train for around a month consecutively. Covered Bruge/Paris/Perpignon/Montpellier/Nice/Monaco/Roma/Napoli/Sorrento/Firenze/Bologna/Modena/Maranello/Venezia/thru Austria to Munchen/Nuernburg/Praha/Cologne. by the Eurail-Interail pass, although to get one you must be in an EU country for a minimum of 6 months.
I would recommend places like Ljubjiana and Budapest and some of the 'off the circuit' type places that you may not see again. I didn't go due to lack of time & funds, but those backpackers I met/travelled with that had said they were awesome. i wasn't that impressed by Praha/Prague to be honest. It has some beautiful architecture and great history, but it was kinda seedy and rundown in many places. Still worth a short stop, but only as part of a circuit. I wouldn't have done a detour from Germany as I did if I'd realised that.


User currently offlineSLC1 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1880 times:

I love Austria/Switzerland and especially the region of Germany/Austria between Salzburg and Munich; Scandinavian countries; Scotland; and there are I'm sure many other places in that great continent.

User currently offlineSaxdiva From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 2382 posts, RR: 42
Reply 12, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1870 times:

Thanks for all the tips--I'm going to print this thread. One more question, though--is it generally pretty safe for a woman to travel alone (by train, probably) in this part of the world? Is there anything to be concerned about, weather-wise, this time of year? I'll admit I'm kind of a wimp, but I did manage to do a lot of hiking last March in Ireland without freezing my poor Californian butt off.

Thanks again,
Leanne


User currently offlineJasepl From India, joined Jul 2004, 3582 posts, RR: 39
Reply 13, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1869 times:

Leanne, don't miss out on Eastern Europe! Czechia, Slovakia, Hungary and Slovenia are just amazing.

User currently offlineHodges From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 138 posts, RR: 3
Reply 14, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1861 times:

Leanne,

If you are considering going to Germany, you might want to consider LAke Constance. It's a lovely area of Germany, which I had the privlelege of visiting this past summer. The town of Constance is undescribable. I was overwhelmed with the great attitude and cleanliness of the town. Another advantage of the Lake Constance area is that it borders on German, Switzerland, and Austria, and there is a ferry which takes you to all three nations on the lake, it's called the DreiLaenderfahrt in German, in English it is the Three Country Trip.

The town of Schaffhausen is also in the area. All of its small shops make it such a unique little town that just blew my mind. There is absolutely nothing that can compare to it in America. Plus the chocolate is amazing. I brought back pounds of the stuff for my family and friends.

I would give you some links, but its 2AM and im wiped out from baseball, but I'm sure a google search would provide you with lots of great information.

Hope this helps,

Erik



Beer, helping ugly people have sex since 1862.
User currently offlineAerorobnz From Rwanda, joined Feb 2001, 7184 posts, RR: 13
Reply 15, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 1849 times:

Leanne, I 'travelled' ( Wink/being sarcastic) with several backpacker chicks that were on their own.
It really is quite safe, provided you keep your wits and don't get yourself into too many situations that would endanger you (though you can't avoid when travelling). On trains do not sleep in the Overnight bunk cubicles alone or you may be gassed & your possessions stolen while you are unconscious- that happened to one girl I talked to. In general the train is very safe, and you shouldn't be bothered, even by forward Italian men. In Firenze and other tourist hot spots just avoid the 'Gypsies'. They are complete frauds and are making a bundle off it. Their most popular line is "Hello, do you speak English?" while holding up a sign in English with 'their' child at home in Bosnia/Romania/Albania/Enterwhicheverplaceyouwant and pleading for you to hand over cash. The easiest thing is to say Parlo Italiano or something in the local language - they will go away immediately - signalling their guilt (they only try tourists), otherwise if you reply in English they will nag/pester/intimidate you. I speak from experience - After trying to be firm but fair for about 10minutes, she kept pestering and following me around Duomo, In the end I turned and towered over this lady, said "F*ck off" and walked off....She didn't follow. Mail me if you like.


User currently offlineSimo82 From Italy, joined Feb 2005, 181 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 4 days ago) and read 1834 times:

Leanne,
Europe is a safe country, but you sure have to be careful in some situations. If you go to Napoli don't go alone go with others better if with a regular tour, stay with them don't try to go by your self in the less safe areas of the city people of the hotels will easily inform you on where you can go and where it's better not to...

Weather wise you shouldn't have any problems, actually it could also be sunny and hot in the south of Italy

If you'd like further information don't hesitate fell free to mail me.

CIAO
Simo


User currently offlineMIA From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 871 posts, RR: 1
Reply 17, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 1803 times:

IS your husband teaching at the Florida State University in Florence?

You should certainly not miss Berlin, Munich, Bremen. If you have an opportunity to goto Spain I would recommend San Sebastian and Barcelona. Also, you might want to goto Morrocco just to say you did since it is so close.



"Like all great travelers, I have seen more than I remember, and remember more than I have seen."
User currently offlineAerorobnz From Rwanda, joined Feb 2001, 7184 posts, RR: 13
Reply 18, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 1782 times:

Simo82, I was in Napoli late last year for a week independently and didn't have any problems( and I look like a foreign tourist), but I understand there have been a few mafiosi vendettas against other gangs recently. Is it really that bad these days? It was one of my favourite areas in Italy.

User currently offlineUTA_flyinghigh From Tunisia, joined Oct 2001, 6495 posts, RR: 50
Reply 19, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 1745 times:

Come over to DUB ! There's a nicey area for aircraft spotting and a a.net meet is scheduled  Big thumbs up

UTA



Fly to live, live to fly - Air France/KLM Flying Blue Platinum, BMI Diamond Club Gold, Emirates Skywards
User currently offlineSaxdiva From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 2382 posts, RR: 42
Reply 20, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1741 times:

You know, last time I was in DUB I couldn't find a spotters' area. Then again, I was also looking for the rental car joint at the same time, so I might have missed it. Where should I look next time I'm out?

User currently offlineUTA_flyinghigh From Tunisia, joined Oct 2001, 6495 posts, RR: 50
Reply 21, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1739 times:

You should get the 16/16A bus and stop right near the runway 28 threshold, then it's a small walk to the parking lot beside runway 28/10.
Come to the DUB meet  Smile/happy/getting dizzy !

UTA



Fly to live, live to fly - Air France/KLM Flying Blue Platinum, BMI Diamond Club Gold, Emirates Skywards
User currently offline707CMF From France, joined Mar 2002, 4885 posts, RR: 29
Reply 22, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1738 times:

It is alongside Runway 28. Not very difficult to find.

Cheers,

707


User currently offlineSaxdiva From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 2382 posts, RR: 42
Reply 23, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1737 times:

It is alongside Runway 28. Not very difficult to find.

That day, it seemed like *everything* was hard to find, beginning with the airport turnoff. The B&B guy insisted that his map would show us the best route--it damn near made us miss our flight home.

Nice guy, but terrible map-maker.


User currently offlineUTA_flyinghigh From Tunisia, joined Oct 2001, 6495 posts, RR: 50
Reply 24, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1736 times:

Come back to DUB and I'll galdly play chauffeur  Smile

UTA



Fly to live, live to fly - Air France/KLM Flying Blue Platinum, BMI Diamond Club Gold, Emirates Skywards
User currently offlineSimo82 From Italy, joined Feb 2005, 181 posts, RR: 0
Reply 25, posted (9 years 6 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1733 times:

Aerorobnz >I was in Napoli late last year for a week independently and didn't have any problems( and I look like a foreign tourist), but I understand there have been a few mafiosi vendettas against other gangs recently. Is it really that bad these days? It was one of my favourite areas in Italy<

unfortunatly the answer is YES and no matter if you look like a tourist or look like an Italian some areas are off limits for everybody. My point is that you must be very careful and don't go where you shouldn't.Never get out of the touristic area.

Indeed it's one of the best areas in Italy.

CIAO
Simo





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