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Old 10-31-2015, 12:14 AM   #21
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Swiss alps. Many cantons in a small area to visit.


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Old 10-31-2015, 04:25 AM   #22
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Salzburg is a great choice, and there is a ton to do, and with Eagles Nest and such nearby, there are good day trip options. They sell a tourist card that gives you entrance and transportation around the city for cheap and is the way to go if you're going to be there for sometime.

Another good option is Prague as has been mentioned. An incredibly beautiful city and not so expensive. It's very rich in architechture, and there is a good amount to do. If you like music, it can be great, along with theater performances. Transportation is also excellent, and there are day trip options.
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Old 10-31-2015, 06:09 AM   #23
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Second Berlin. Fascinating city with lots to see. Daytrip to Potsdam .
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Old 10-31-2015, 07:09 AM   #24
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Berlin is a good one. Granted, I would not consider it a beautiful city, but there is a lot to do.
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Old 10-31-2015, 08:37 AM   #25
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Such great suggestions! Thank you all. As I said before, it looks like I have my work cut out for me evaluating these cities.
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Old 10-31-2015, 08:39 AM   #26
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This is such an impossible question. I can think of several cities that have not been mentioned. It really depends what type of experience you are looking for.
I expect that the experience will unfold once we are there. Basically, we don't want to have to pack and unpack every few days, and keep relearning what places we like best to eat, how to use the transit system efficiently, etc. Besides it's great fun and interesting to learn a new area of the world.
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Old 10-31-2015, 11:47 AM   #27
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There are places we have visited and places we would like to visit. Of course, there are a million other great places there, but these are the only ones we know about.

We lived in Copenhagen, DK for 6 months many years ago and explored Denmark, a little of Sweden and London without a car. If we ever win PowerBall, we would move to Denmark in a New York minute. We love the country. We fit in well there and were warmly accepted. YMMV. We have friends in DK and the UK. DK is unholy expensive, however.

We enjoyed Prague. It bears further exploration.

London is also great but expensive. ("When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life!") We could stay a long time in Edinburgh or Glasgow. We have a small advantage in that we can understand Scottish. Be aware that the UK is NOTHING like you see on BBC, however.

T'bilisi, Georgia was interesting, but somewhat primitive. We would go back again (in fact, I am applying for a job there).

We would like to visit Vienna, Austria; Tallinn, Estonia; Lviv, Ukraine and Pilzen, Czech Republic. The Dalmatian Coast looks interesting, but I have an idea that it may also be somewhat primitive. Worth a look. It looks like a beautiful part of the world.

Paul and Vicki Terhorst recently visited Lviv Crossing The Border From Poland To Lviv, Ukraine | Live and Invest Overseas
and observed, "We could live here!"

I would like to see Cyprus and Malta, but DW may not be so interested. One cannot just get on a train and see more Europe.

Have a good trip. Please give us an account when you get back.
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Old 10-31-2015, 11:57 AM   #28
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What time of year would you like to travel and is cost a factor? Some of the places already mentioned get astronomically expensive during high season. I'd actually vote for England the entire county is so easy to move around in. You might find a smaller local style small town with quick access to London and places like York, etc. That's probably what I might do. Don't underestimate the ease of being able to speak to everyone and read and understand all the directions and street signs!
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Old 10-31-2015, 12:02 PM   #29
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What time of year would you like to travel and is cost a factor? Some of the places already mentioned get astronomically expensive during high season.
Most likely in the Early to mid Autumn. Having been forced to travel during Summer for years, I now prefer to stay home at that time.
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Old 10-31-2015, 01:02 PM   #30
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I don't think I could stay more than a week in a city. Then you would be doing things like sitting in cafes or parks, burning some time.

With a week, you can do a couple of day trips and look around at a leisurely pace.

I stayed in Paris for 3 weeks once and got into a daily routine, going grocery shopping to prepare some of my own meals. While nice, I probably could have made better use of my time. I don't think I lived like a local, rather explore.

One reason people stay in luxury hotels is so they can really use the amenities, lounge around the pool, etc. I like a nice room but only for the end of the day, not during daytime.

As for suggestions, plenty of good ones here. I like big cities but also like smaller towns and villages in Europe too.

I agree Amalfi Coast is great but I'd stay on the coast itself, not Sorrento, unless you really want to go to Pompeii and Herculaneum, which is easier to get to than from the Coast.

Particularly if you plan to do some hiking (Path of the Gods). But Amalfi Coast is good for maybe 4-5 days if you do plan to get to Salerno and beyond (Pompeii). I'd reserve a couple of days to go to Capri and stay a couple of nights. Again, more great hiking there.

For a bigger city, London seems to offer a lot of day trip opportunities, if you get good weather. I stayed in Brussels for 5 days a couple of months ago, yes agree there are a lot of day trip options there too.

Munich also great, through the historic city center is more compact than London or Brussels.

Nice and the Cote d'Azur is great and while you can get everywhere on the trains, having a car would be more useful, through it's costly to park it in one of the bigger cities. The problem with the train in Nice is that it's like a couple of miles inland while the interesting parts of Nice are by the coast. Not just the beach but the old town. So to get anywhere along the coast, you'd have to take a tram to the train station and then back when you return. Cannes is smaller but still a lot of traffic and they do not have trams. I've never stayed in a smaller town. It might be charming but then again, you're limited for things like shops and restaurants.

For Switzerland, I've mostly stayed in alpine villages, only transiting through Zurich, which isn't as interesting unless you really like high-end shopping. Luzern is great and Pilatus is a great easy day trip but Luzern is only worth a couple of nights at most. I've only been in the winter so want to go in the summer some day.
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Old 10-31-2015, 01:06 PM   #31
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I expect that the experience will unfold once we are there. Basically, we don't want to have to pack and unpack every few days, and keep relearning what places we like best to eat, how to use the transit system efficiently, etc. Besides it's great fun and interesting to learn a new area of the world.
I feel the same way but in some places it's unavoidable.

For instance, I've been planning a trip to New Zealand and I have a bunch of 2-night stays. This is for 20-21 days, mostly in the Southern Island.

Driving times are so great that you really can't base yourself in one place and take day trips.

Distances are great but my understanding is a lot of the roads are not set up for high speed driving. Plus I'll be driving on the left side of the road for the first time.
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Old 10-31-2015, 01:09 PM   #32
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Most likely in the Early to mid Autumn. Having been forced to travel during Summer for years, I now prefer to stay home at that time.
Perfect timing for hiking in the English countryside...I guess it all depends on if you want relaxing or hustle and bustle. The English people are wonderful.
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Old 10-31-2015, 01:10 PM   #33
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When are you most likely to get dry, sunny weather in Scotland?

Never been and that's on the bucket list.
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Old 10-31-2015, 01:13 PM   #34
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Yes indeedy, Salzburg! Basel is walking or tram distance from both France and Germany, too.
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Old 10-31-2015, 01:30 PM   #35
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Yes indeedy, Salzburg! Basel is walking or tram distance from both France and Germany, too.
I love Basel.
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Old 10-31-2015, 01:31 PM   #36
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I too love Salzburg for a small city.
We just returned from visiting all the major cities in Scandinavia--and especially loved Copenhagen. But it rains this time of the year and the region's deathly expensive.
I too feel at home in Amsterdam, but the weather is pretty marginal that far north.
That leaves Budapest. It's a fantastic city--and more reasonably priced than many other large European cities. We were there last year.
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Old 11-01-2015, 11:29 AM   #37
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Most likely in the Early to mid Autumn. Having been forced to travel during Summer for years, I now prefer to stay home at that time.
We always go from mid-September to early November depending on latitude. We go every year. Except next year, our bike/barge trip from Metz is end of June.
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Old 11-01-2015, 11:53 AM   #38
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I am partial to Germany and I absolutely love Munich. I would be happy to go there every year. Beautiful walkable old town, easy train access to many, many places. Friendly people, and Rischarts bakeries everywhere! Great museums, the Residenz is worth seeing and Schloss Nymphenburg is also really cool. It is fun to walk along the Isar River by the Deutsches Museum (a great museum of technology) up to the English Gardens. It is 2 hours to Salzburg by train which can be a fun day trip for example. I think if I could live anywhere in the world this would be at the top of my list.

I also love slightly smaller cities. Nurnberg is one of my favorites. You can stay right in the old town, the Ibis Altstadt is very well priced and a great location. I also love Wurzburg and Bamberg. This year on our way from Munich to Nurnberg we got off the train in Landshut and were charmed by such a beautiful town. It was maybe an hour from Munich.

This year we went to Luzern and Zurich which I hadn't been to since the 90's. They are of course beautiful, but so much more expensive than Germany!!!!! If money is not an issue by all means go, but I think you can get much better value traveling in Germany.

If you are not familiar with the trains in Germany they have great deals for traveling on the weekend "Schoenes Wochenende" where you can travel through the whole country for very low prices, and they also have deals for each state which you can use during the week traveling after 9AM. They do limit you to the slower trains but the nice thing is they are not full of commuters. Check out the Deutsche Bahn website, it is very easy to navigate.

Our idea of a great vacation is walking around cities and towns. Have fun planning! By the way, next spring we are spending a week in London followed by a week in Berlin. It will be my first trip to Berlin.
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Old 11-01-2015, 12:25 PM   #39
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As I've mentioned here- we spent the summer with (mostly) 1 week stays in cities around Europe. Cities that left me wanting for more:

- Bologna - great food, architecture, and just a great city - easy train rides to Venice and Florence.
- Nice - as mentioned, easy bus and train rides along the riviera. Great market on Cours Saleya. Amazing food. We stayed in Nice Vieux (old part) and loved the pedestrian, cobblestone streets.
- Barcelona - architecture, food, ambiance.
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Old 11-01-2015, 01:04 PM   #40
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Ed...we did Malta and Sicily together. Good ferry connections or you can grab an inexpensive flight to Catania. Air from Sicily to Rome on Vueling can be had for less than half the price of rail. Air Malta has really good fares from Various European cities. The fares are low, the prices all inclusive, and the service/equipment is very good.
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