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NWR: Europe?

Does anyone have a good book they can suggest or any info. re planning a trip to Europe?  Instead of sending my daughter on the school Europe trip next year, we were thinking of just doing a family trip instead.  We would do 3 countries max in 12-14 days.  Not sure of the countries but the one for school was Spain, Italy (including Rome) and France (but more like the French Riviera I think, not Paris).  TIA.

Re: NWR: Europe?

  • edited March 2010
    I really like Lonely Planet.

    I also like Moleskine's journal books, which you can get for individual cities. I got one for London for a trip last year and it was great. They had maps of the entire city, a map of the underground stations, labels, areas to write addresses (for restaurants and such) and journal pages so I could plan out our days. They have them for Paris, Berlin, Rome, Madrid, and other cities. It was fun to plan the trip with the help of the book (and use tiny maps rather than a huge one, flagging me as a tourist) and now the journal is helping me remember our exact schedule so I can work on a scrapbook of our trip.

    I've done Berlin and Prague in 2 weeks and London and Edinburgh in 11 days. We're doing a week in Paris next year. I think doing Paris, Belgium and the Netherlands might be great for 2 weeks, too.
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  • Thanks for the suggestions.  Hmmmm, we figured since the kids were doing 3 countries in 2 weeks, we would just mirror the itinerary.  Maybe we'll just consider 2 then.  It's not until next summer which seems like a long time, but it will probably take us a good amount of time to plan since we know nothing.  Italy and France are probably the 2 we want to see the most, or Greece, just because I'd love to see the beaches.

    Is there a better/worse summer month?  We usually take our summer break at the end of June or first of July.

  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_honeymoon_nwr-europe?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:11Discussion:38e530bc-9419-4277-b1ee-dd7517e3a1f6Post:c6dfd8d0-b466-4bce-90b0-d41de4bb2cee">Re: NWR: Europe?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Thanks for the suggestions.  Hmmmm, we figured since the kids were doing 3 countries in 2 weeks, we would just mirror the itinerary.  Maybe we'll just consider 2 then.  It's not until next summer which seems like a long time, but it will probably take us a good amount of time to plan since we know nothing.  Italy and France are probably the 2 we want to see the most, or Greece, just because I'd love to see the beaches. Is there a better/worse summer month?  We usually take our summer break at the end of June or first of July.
    Posted by stephiehall[/QUOTE]

    Those tours are usually really chaotic, and they tend to be such a whirlwind that you barely have time to stop and breathe let alone take in and enjoy the sights... lol.  That was just my personal experience anyway.  After I graduated high school, I went on a singing tour through Italy and, although I'm thankful that I got to see a lot in such a short amount of time, I would never do that again.  When my DH and I went backpacking, we tried not to spend any less than 3 days in each city which was wonderful because we were able to take our time and soak in the culture.  You could easily spend several weeks just in Italy because there's so much to do there (same goes for France, Greece, etc.).   

    Generally speaking, the summer is probably the worst time to visit Europe because it's the high season so crowds will be crazy in most places, and of course the heat can be a killer.  I think spring and fall are the best times to visit but if that's not an option, I'd probably choose June (maybe as early in June as possible).  That's when I went to Italy on my first trip and although it was busy, it probably wasn't quite as busy as it would have been later in the summer.   
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  • Kappa, the reasons you mentioned are some of the very reasons we decided against letting her go with the school.  I read so many negative reviews and horror stories!  But I thought as long as we planned it well, we could maybe still pull off the 3 countries.  Unfortunately, summer is the only time we can all have this much time off from work and school so we'll have to deal I guess!
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