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Old 07-18-2012, 06:22 PM
 
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Old 07-18-2012, 06:27 PM
 
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Default gaudi buildings, Spain








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Old 07-19-2012, 02:46 AM
 
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Old 07-19-2012, 06:22 AM
 
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Great pictures, a few thoughts

In Iceland be sure to get out of Reykjavik too (the Blue Lagoon is a unique experience, but almost next to the airport)

I think I recognize Bergen Norway; consider the at least part of the coastal cruise.

Santorini looks great! Haven't been there. Yet.
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Old 07-19-2012, 06:32 AM
 
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And a few thoughts from me too .........

If you really want to experience Europe then you have to get out of the main tourist destinations and into the countryside and small towns. Places like Rome, Florence, Paris, Amsterdam are just awash with tourists to the extent that, for me, it took the enjoyment out of the visit.

But then, another time, we rented a car at Paris airport and drove down to the Loire Valley and we had a blast visiting the chateaux, wandering around the small towns eating in great and reasonably priced restaurants and staying at a fantastic, reasonably priced hotel that was a converted manor house. And the Saturday market in Blois was amazing. Sure, there were tourists but not so many that it spoiled the enjoyment.

So, give some thought to what kind of Europe you want to see and experience.

ps. I also recommend renting a car in Madrid and driving down into Andalucia. Same kind of deal as the Loire Valley.
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Old 07-19-2012, 06:33 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rational1 View Post

Santorini looks great! Haven't been there. Yet.
Greece seems to be soothed and calm again .. Santorini visually is so much more unique looking than traditional European architecture. Its very hard to take my eyes off photos of Santorini.
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Old 07-19-2012, 06:36 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaggy001 View Post

If you really want to experience Europe then you have to get out of the main tourist destinations and into the countryside and small towns.
YES, absolutely great advice.. we too had rented a car and drove from Amsterdam to Belgium for chocolates.
What a grand memory!
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Old 07-19-2012, 06:39 AM
 
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Default a little more for fun

http://www.travel-to-santorini.com/topic.php?topic_id=4

I haven't been there either.. but this thread is certainly leading me.
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Old 07-19-2012, 06:57 AM
 
Location: Earth
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaggy001 View Post
And a few thoughts from me too .........

If you really want to experience Europe then you have to get out of the main tourist destinations and into the countryside and small towns. Places like Rome, Florence, Paris, Amsterdam are just awash with tourists to the extent that, for me, it took the enjoyment out of the visit.

But then, another time, we rented a car at Paris airport and drove down to the Loire Valley and we had a blast visiting the chateaux, wandering around the small towns eating in great and reasonably priced restaurants and staying at a fantastic, reasonably priced hotel that was a converted manor house. And the Saturday market in Blois was amazing. Sure, there were tourists but not so many that it spoiled the enjoyment.

So, give some thought to what kind of Europe you want to see and experience.

ps. I also recommend renting a car in Madrid and driving down into Andalucia. Same kind of deal as the Loire Valley.
I always recommend the Loire Valley.
One of my favorite places in Europe.

I like the capitals, too.
Each one has some magic.
I'm lucky because I live here and travel almost every weekend, traveling off-season to major cities is a bonus. You miss most of the tourist traffic.
That said, the next 6 weeks in Bavaria will be hell with the schools out.
I travel north and east during this period.
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Old 07-19-2012, 08:20 AM
 
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Would you consider Turkey Europe? Istanbul and the local area are gorgeous, though Turkish street life can be intimidating for U.S. tourists.
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