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Inexpensive Europe Vacation
Old 02-24-2005, 02:58 PM   #1
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Inexpensive Europe Vacation

My wife and I want to travel to Europe in Fall '05. We will have about 2-3 weeks and want to go to Spain, France, England, Germany and Italy.
Any suggestions on the best way to go, to get the most for the least and how to have the best tourist experience. We are really interested in learning the history of the country(s) and not just looking at the tall buildings on the post cards.
Is rail the best, boat, or bus the best way to travel between the country's.

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Re: Inexpensive Europe Vacation
Old 02-24-2005, 06:24 PM   #2
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Re: Inexpensive Europe Vacation

It entirely depends on your preferences. I like driving and having that flexibility so I rent a car. It is probably not the cheapest way. A Eurail pass will get you around cheaply but you will need to make connections by public transportation or taxis at each destination.
My least favorite way to go but one that aligns with 2 or 3 weeks to see several countries is to get on a tour where transportation and lodging are all arranged. You only get to see the target locations and don't interact with local people much. I understand this for a place like China where outside of tourist areas it gets pretty challenging but not for Europe.
But its your trip. And sometimes deals come up on package trips.

T.S. Eliot:
Old men ought to be explorers
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Re: Inexpensive Europe Vacation
Old 02-24-2005, 07:06 PM   #3
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Re: Inexpensive Europe Vacation

We travelled around Italy in 2003 by rail and it was easy and cheap. The trains are heavily subsized there so we didn't even bother with a pass. There are little kiosks at the train stations where you can use a credit card to buy tickets - very easy.

We didn't bother with a car at all but with more time we would have rented one in Florence and done the whole Tuscan country experience. If Venice is on your itinerary then make sure to ditch the rental car before you go - you'll just have to pay to park it outside of the city. I've also heard that its cheaper to reserve a car from the US than to just show up and get one in Europe, but haven't checked it out myself. Sorry, not much experience with the other countries.
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