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How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

Old Jan 21st 2007, 10:22 pm
  #16  
The Reid
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

On Sun, 21 Jan 2007 23:07:16 -0600, "Joe Pessarra"
<[email protected]> wrote:

> Maybe we have just been lucky, but having a car really gives you
>the freedom to go many places, taking the country roads

trains are great if you are doing museums and galleries in major
cities (or don't like driving of course).
--
Mike Reid
UK walking, food, photos "http://www.fellwalk.co.uk" <-- you can email us@ this site
Spain walking, food, tourism "http://www.fell-walker.co.uk"
Beginners UK flight sim addons "http://www.lawn-mower-man.co.uk"
 
Old Jan 21st 2007, 10:36 pm
  #17  
-Martin
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

On Mon, 22 Jan 2007 12:10:30 +0100, Deeply Filled Mortician
<deepfreudmoors@eITmISaACTUALLYiREAL!l.nu> wrote:

>Let is be knownst that on Mon, 22 Jan 2007 04:17:49 GMT, Mike
><[email protected]> writted:
>
>>My wife and I are planning a trip to Europe this Spring. I've never been
>>to Europe before...we plan on about 2 weeks (~ 15 nights). Both of us are
>>English-only speakers.
>>
>>Our current plan:
>>
>> Fly to London, 4 nights in London (maybe 1 in Bath?)
>> Rail to Paris, 4 nights in Paris
>> Rail to Koeln, _rent_ a car and spend 7 days/nights exploring Germany
>> (Rhine River Valley, Romantic Road, Rothenburg, Munich, etc.)
>> Fly out of Munich
>>
>>I'm a little skittish about renting a car in a foreign country. I know
>>Europe's rail system is supposed to be fantastic, but we like exploring
>>and enjoy checking out smaller towns and scenic countryside. Any thoughts on this?
>
>For the first trip I would suggest NOT getting a car. In 2 weeks there
>is a huge amount you will be able to see without using a car, and the
>rental process, plus driving the thing, will remove considerable time
>that you can spend exploring instead.
>
>Having said that, I have never spent much time in southern Germany,
>and if there are specific things you will need a car for...

... "exploring Germany (Rhine River Valley, Romantic Road, Rothenburg, Munich,
etc.)" is it.
--

Martin
 
Old Jan 21st 2007, 10:45 pm
  #18  
Paul Dwerryhouse
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

Mike <[email protected]> writes:

> Fly to London, 4 nights in London (maybe 1 in Bath?)
> Rail to Paris, 4 nights in Paris
> Rail to Koeln, _rent_ a car and spend 7 days/nights exploring Germany
> (Rhine River Valley, Romantic Road, Rothenburg, Munich, etc.)
> Fly out of Munich

That looks quite reasonable to me, except for the one night in Bath. You'll
waste the best part of a day getting there, and the same on the way back, and
won't have time to see the town itself. Stay in London and maybe do a day-trip
to a nearby town if you'd like to see a bit of non-city UK. Canterbury,
perhaps?

>I'm a little skittish about renting a car in a foreign country. I know
>Europe's rail system is supposed to be fantastic, but we like exploring and
>enjoy checking out smaller towns and scenic countryside. Any thoughts on
>this?

Well, at least you have the advantage of being familiar with driving on the
right-hand side of the road

On the other hand, Germany's rail network is very extensive. It is possible
to visit smaller towns by rail; you just have to be prepared to change to
the slower trains (such as Regional-Express, RegionalBahn and maybe even S-Bahn
trains). It's all quite simple to navigate, however. Have a look at
Deutsche Bahn's online timetable and become familiar with the various trains
that are available:

http://reiseauskunft.bahn.de/bin/query.exe/en

Cheers,

Paul



--
Paul Dwerryhouse | PGP Key ID: 0x6B91B584
================================================== =====================Paul's travel photos:
http://leapster.org/paul/photos/
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 1:35 am
  #19  
barney2
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

In article <[email protected]>, [email protected]
(Paul Dwerryhouse) wrote:

> *From:* Paul Dwerryhouse <[email protected]>
> *Date:* Mon, 22 Jan 2007 22:45:42 +1100
>
> Mike <[email protected]> writes:
>
> > Fly to London, 4 nights in London (maybe 1 in Bath?)
> > Rail to Paris, 4 nights in Paris
> > Rail to Koeln, _rent_ a car and spend 7 days/nights exploring Germany
> > (Rhine River Valley, Romantic Road, Rothenburg, Munich, etc.)
> > Fly out of Munich
>
> That looks quite reasonable to me, except for the one night in Bath.
> You'll
> waste the best part of a day getting there, and the same on the way
> back, and
> won't have time to see the town itself. Stay in London and maybe do a
> day-trip
> to a nearby town if you'd like to see a bit of non-city UK. Canterbury,
> perhaps?

I agree - looks like a good itinerary, but spending a night outside of
London is going to fragment the short UK element of your trip too much.
You can easily do Bath as a day trip too, of course.
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 2:27 am
  #20  
-Mark Hewitt
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

> Fly to London, 4 nights in London (maybe 1 in Bath?)

I wouldn't bother staying 1 night in Bath. It's doable as a day trip on the
train.
But then I really hate changing hotels when I don't have to.

> Rail to Paris, 4 nights in Paris
> Rail to Koeln, _rent_ a car and spend 7 days/nights exploring Germany
> (Rhine River Valley, Romantic Road, Rothenburg, Munich, etc.)
> Fly out of Munich
>
> I'm a little skittish about renting a car in a foreign country. I know
> Europe's rail system is supposed to be fantastic, but we like exploring
> and enjoy checking out smaller towns and scenic countryside. Any thoughts
> on this?

Rail in Germany is good, but nothing beats renting a car. Just remember to
get an auto tranny if you are not used to manual.
You have the advantage of being used to driving on the wrong side of the
road already, so go for it!
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 2:37 am
  #21  
kurkku
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

"Mark Hewitt" <[email protected]> kirjoitti
viestiss�:[email protected]...
>
> You have the advantage of being used to driving on the wrong side of the
> road already, so go for it!
You are provocative in this. However, now that winter has arrived in Finland
at last, many people seem to drive on the wrong side of the road which
results some nasty collisions when the oncoming cars don't do the same.
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 3:03 am
  #22  
-Mark Hewitt
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

"Markku Grönroos" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected] i...
>
> "Mark Hewitt" <[email protected]> kirjoitti
> viestissÀ:[email protected]...
>>
>> You have the advantage of being used to driving on the wrong side of the
>> road already, so go for it!
> You are provocative in this. However, now that winter has arrived in
> Finland at last, many people seem to drive on the wrong side of the road
> which results some nasty collisions when the oncoming cars don't do the
> same.

In Britain we are always being told we are on the wrong side of the road, so
it's good to return the favour from time to time

Apparently the government did think of changing to driving on the right
before, they would get trucks to drive on the right first, then get cars to
do the same a year later.
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 3:21 am
  #23  
Bill Steltzer
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

Mike wrote:
> My wife and I are planning a trip to Europe this Spring. I've never been
> to Europe before...we plan on about 2 weeks (~ 15 nights). Both of us are
> English-only speakers.
>
> Our current plan:
>
> Fly to London, 4 nights in London (maybe 1 in Bath?)
> Rail to Paris, 4 nights in Paris
> Rail to Koeln, _rent_ a car and spend 7 days/nights exploring Germany
> (Rhine River Valley, Romantic Road, Rothenburg, Munich, etc.)
> Fly out of Munich
>
> I'm a little skittish about renting a car in a foreign country. I know
> Europe's rail system is supposed to be fantastic, but we like exploring
> and enjoy checking out smaller towns and scenic countryside. Any thoughts on this?

For a first trip to Europe, your itinerary sounds ideal - the two major
cities of Paris and London and then the countryiside and smaller towns
of Germany. You'll find driving in Germany easy. Beautiful roads and
since you won't be leaving the touristic areas of Germany you'll won't
have much trouble finding people who can speak English.
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 3:32 am
  #24  
David Horne
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

The Reid <[email protected]> wrote:

> On Sun, 21 Jan 2007 23:07:16 -0600, "Joe Pessarra"
> <[email protected]> wrote:
>
> > Maybe we have just been lucky, but having a car really gives you
> >the freedom to go many places, taking the country roads
>
> trains are great if you are doing museums and galleries in major
> cities (or don't like driving of course).

You can get to plenty non-city places by train- you bring up
particularly inaccessible places, but there are others easier to get to,
and lots of people _drive_ to them, despite them being accessible by
train or other PT.

--
(*) ... of the royal duchy of city south and deansgate
David Horne- http://www.davidhorne.net
(don't email yahoo address) usenet (at) davidhorne (dot) co (dot) uk
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 3:34 am
  #25  
Scottdanzig
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

Mike wrote:
> My wife and I are planning a trip to Europe this Spring. I've never been
> to Europe before...we plan on about 2 weeks (~ 15 nights). Both of us are
> English-only speakers.
>
> Our current plan:
>
> Fly to London, 4 nights in London (maybe 1 in Bath?)
> Rail to Paris, 4 nights in Paris
> Rail to Koeln, _rent_ a car and spend 7 days/nights exploring Germany
> (Rhine River Valley, Romantic Road, Rothenburg, Munich, etc.)
> Fly out of Munich
>
> I'm a little skittish about renting a car in a foreign country. I know
> Europe's rail system is supposed to be fantastic, but we like exploring
> and enjoy checking out smaller towns and scenic countryside. Any thoughts on this?

Getting around in a car in Munich was a bit of a hassle, because
between a German map, German signs, parking pay machines in German,
etc, etc, it wasn't very straight forward how to do everything.
Between me and my frightened friend, we did manage to truck through it.
As long as you're able to steel your nerves and take one thing at a
time, maybe with a phone number of a local at your hotel who speaks
English, you'll be fine. Another thing about Munich. I stayed during
Oktoberfest, and regret getting a car. We drove around a bit, but we
should have just taken the train in. People, especially tourists,
weren't even paying for the train, often claiming ignorance (Like...
validation machine? What's that?). Not once did I see a ticket
checked.

I've been to London and Bath as well. Bath was a nice city, and I had
friends there. We hung out at this nice pub called the "Hobgoblin",
which had some live music, microbrewed refreshments, and on New Year's
Eve, the hostess gives free spankings. Also in Bath, I did the bus
tour, which was cold. The Roman Baths, in the winter, look cool
though, because the steam rises up from the greenish water.

Keep in mind that since you're going during the warmer months, the
Globe Theater will have performances, which I've not been able to see.
I think it opens in March some time. Some things I've seen in
London... let's see.. First and foremost, I loved the British Museum
and Windsor Castle. Westminster Abbey was nice. The Imperial War
Museum was very interesting as well. And you probably should take the
tour of Tower Bridge. I'd say those 5 are the can't miss things. I
also saw a classical music performance at Royal Albert Hall. Watched
the changing of the guards at the palace, and saw the crown jewels at
the Tower castle.

One more thing. These cities have tourist "fun passes" that get you
cheaper admission, train rides, etc, for one low price. Unless you
find the visitor center right away, and especially since you're not
spending more than 4 nights in a city, you probably don't want to
bother with them. Anyway, good luck and have fun

- Scott
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 3:36 am
  #26  
David Horne
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

Martin <[email protected]> wrote:

> On Mon, 22 Jan 2007 12:10:30 +0100, Deeply Filled Mortician
> <deepfreudmoors@eITmISaACTUALLYiREAL!l.nu> wrote:
[]
> >For the first trip I would suggest NOT getting a car. In 2 weeks there
> >is a huge amount you will be able to see without using a car, and the
> >rental process, plus driving the thing, will remove considerable time
> >that you can spend exploring instead.
> >
> >Having said that, I have never spent much time in southern Germany,
> >and if there are specific things you will need a car for...
>
> ... "exploring Germany (Rhine River Valley, Romantic Road, Rothenburg, Munich,
> etc.)" is it.

I suspect the 'Romantic Road' might be good for a car, but the nicest
parts of the Rhine are pleasantly accessible by different modes of
public transport. Most people with cars are driving down the same routes
and stopping in the same spots which are covered by train, boat etc.
Bike is a good way of getting about for the thus-inclined. I don't see
the point of a car in Munich itself. Rothenberg, I don't know.

--
(*) ... of the royal duchy of city south and deansgate
David Horne- http://www.davidhorne.net
(don't email yahoo address) usenet (at) davidhorne (dot) co (dot) uk
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 3:58 am
  #27  
kurkku
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

"scottdanzig" <[email protected]> kirjoitti
viestiss�:[email protected] legroups.com...
>
> Getting around in a car in Munich was a bit of a hassle, because
> between a German map, German signs, parking pay machines in German,
> etc, etc, it wasn't very straight forward how to do everything.
> Between me and my frightened friend, we did manage to truck through it.
> As long as you're able to steel your nerves and take one thing at a
> time, maybe with a phone number of a local at your hotel who speaks
> English, you'll be fine. Another thing about Munich. I stayed during

German traffic should be pretty easy to cope with. In my opinion Bangkok is
a lot more challenging. I visited Munich last August and stayed in a hostel
a couple of kilometers west from downtown. I just had the car parked on a
street nearby free of charge. No worries. If one is driving a car in Europe
in towns and out of towns, I strongly advice investing for a gps-terminal.
They are becoming both better and cheaper all the time. For instance I
bought one pretty recently. This device has a powerful receiver, good maps
(well, there are naturally errors there) running with a good search engine.
The mass memory comes in SD cards and one card can hold relevant data on the
entire Western Europe (Greece being an exception at this moment). I paid 415
euros for it (maps of the Western Europe included). In the big world you get
these gadgets cheaper. Then the navigation in Munich doesn't come too
difficult (if difficult at all). True, one doesn't necessarily need very
much a car in Munich. Naturally drivers should familiarize themselves to use
this very practical tool before the trip
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 4:00 am
  #28  
The Reid
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

On Mon, 22 Jan 2007 16:32:10 +0000, [email protected] (David Horne,
_the_ chancellor (*)) wrote:

>> > Maybe we have just been lucky, but having a car really gives you
>> >the freedom to go many places, taking the country roads
>>
>> trains are great if you are doing museums and galleries in major
>> cities (or don't like driving of course).
>
>You can get to plenty non-city places by train- you bring up
>particularly inaccessible places, but there are others easier to get to,
>and lots of people _drive_ to them, despite them being accessible by
>train or other PT.

I think its true people drive to places you can get a train to, I
think its true there are many places you cant practically get PT to,
especially if its 50 yards from road X that has the perfect foreground
for a photo of Y sort of stuff and you didnt know that was going to be
the case till you got there. There are also some places you cant get
to at all by PT, especially if carrying a cello.
Has this come up before? I get a feeling of deja vu.
--
Mike Reid
UK walking, food, photos "http://www.fellwalk.co.uk" <-- you can email us@ this site
Spain walking, food, tourism "http://www.fell-walker.co.uk"
Beginners UK flight sim addons "http://www.lawn-mower-man.co.uk"
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 4:03 am
  #29  
Giovanni Drogo
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

On Mon, 22 Jan 2007, Mike wrote:

> Fly to London, 4 nights in London (maybe 1 in Bath?)

Why did you select Bath and not e.g. Canterbury, Cambridge or Salisbury
(from where you could also do Stonehenge) ?

> Rail to Paris, 4 nights in Paris
> Rail to Koeln, _rent_ a car and spend 7 days/nights exploring Germany
> (Rhine River Valley, Romantic Road, Rothenburg, Munich, etc.)

You should be able to do all the places you quote also by train (I did).
I suggest you ask on misc.transport.rail.europe about current fares.

When I lived in Germany long ago, there were rail discount cards called
Tourenkarten, valid for unlimited travel in a given area. They could be
bought for a small price from holders of long distance tickets (over 200
km or tickets from abroad). I exploited the opportunity a few times with
my parents, just using our tickets from Italy to obtain the Tourenkarte.
I do not know if such discount still exists, but on m.t.r.e somebody
will know.


--
----------------------------------------------------------------------
[email protected] is a newsreading account used by more persons to
avoid unwanted spam. Any mail returning to this address will be rejected.
Users can disclose their e-mail address in the article if they wish so.
 
Old Jan 22nd 2007, 4:04 am
  #30  
-Martin
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default Re: How is this itinerary for first trip to Europe

On Mon, 22 Jan 2007 16:36:19 +0000, [email protected] (David Horne, _the_
chancellor (*)) wrote:

>Martin <[email protected]> wrote:
>
>> On Mon, 22 Jan 2007 12:10:30 +0100, Deeply Filled Mortician
>> <deepfreudmoors@eITmISaACTUALLYiREAL!l.nu> wrote:
>[]
>> >For the first trip I would suggest NOT getting a car. In 2 weeks there
>> >is a huge amount you will be able to see without using a car, and the
>> >rental process, plus driving the thing, will remove considerable time
>> >that you can spend exploring instead.
>> >
>> >Having said that, I have never spent much time in southern Germany,
>> >and if there are specific things you will need a car for...
>>
>> ... "exploring Germany (Rhine River Valley, Romantic Road, Rothenburg, Munich,
>> etc.)" is it.
>
>I suspect the 'Romantic Road' might be good for a car, but the nicest
>parts of the Rhine are pleasantly accessible by different modes of
>public transport. Most people with cars are driving down the same routes
>and stopping in the same spots which are covered by train, boat etc.

No they aren't. With a car you can get up to the top of the valley quickly,
where many of the castles are. You can do the same on foot but not in the time
available.

>Bike is a good way of getting about for the thus-inclined.

Have you tried cycling along the bottom of the Rhine valley sandwiched between
cars trucks and the railway?

>I don't see
>the point of a car in Munich itself. Rothenberg, I don't know.

It is better to use a car to join up the places. Rothenburg is just one place
worth visiting on the Romantic Road. It runs all the way from Wurstburg to
Fussen near the Austrian border. It includes several walled cities and the
palaces of Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau.

I've done the Rhine Valley many times with and without a car.
With a car is best, even if eventually you want to walk. I visited more places
in a year with a car, than I had visited in the previous seven years using
public transport.
--

Martin
 

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