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Old 07-10-2017, 06:20 AM
 
Location: World
3,660 posts, read 3,522,136 times
Reputation: 2479

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While night trains frequency in Continental Europe has been drastically reduced in recent years, more and more people have been taking Megabus (Flixbus). Overnight bus service are there. Easy to get reservation on the same day and very cheap fares.

https://www.flixbus.com/megabus
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Old 07-10-2017, 08:03 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,585 posts, read 39,962,822 times
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Backpacking through Europe

Age? and 'style' of travel desired?

We did a one yr RTW, (2016) booked a one-way from USA to Australia (Oct), took a backpack, followed the sun, and eventually arrived back to USA.

Consider joining SERVAS.org and a few other international lodging options. Hospitality exchange - Wikitravel
(many are free, we served at youth camps and trade schools in exchange for free room and board (nothing was prearranged b4 we left, except the one-way ticket OUT of USA). I suggest buying your travel insurance before you leave, and have at least 4 types of CC / cash cards. Ironically, 3 of our Banks / CC changed companies in the yr we were gone (Had never happened in the 30 yrs previous)...+_ theses days... Fraud happens and banks / CC / insurance companies will LOCK you out. Especially if you seem to me moving around alot to various countries (such as EVERYDAY for a yr...)

We used a total f 8 hotels during one yr. They were only in places we could not find better (more informative) and educational / fun stays. Usually only to catch a 4AM airport schedule.

Often it is the people you meet and relationships / information exchanged that make your trips memorable.

Some people enjoy being 'tourists' and following the crowd. That can be expensive and really slow you down.

YMMV
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Old 07-10-2017, 09:41 AM
 
2,658 posts, read 1,551,482 times
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I'd stick to a smaller area. The Benelux region is perfect for shorter trips.
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Old 07-10-2017, 10:10 AM
 
Location: Omaha, Nebraska
7,316 posts, read 4,162,308 times
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Too many of the people reading this thread clearly haven't read the OP's later post. SHE'S NOT BACKPACKING, FOLKS!!! She's going on a 10-day trip to Europe, that's all. The OP isn't going to have the TIME to hang out in the hostel making new friends, or drift from place to place as the breeze and her whims fancy.

OP, do some significant planning for this trip. With so little time to spend abroad, you really can't afford to waste a lot of time figuring out everything on the fly. Trust me on this. The only element of traditional backpacking that will be benefit you on this particular trip is learning how to travel light. If you're an experienced lightweight packer, you can easily do this trip with nothing more than a carryon.
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Old 07-10-2017, 03:35 PM
 
735 posts, read 610,495 times
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Ten days is plenty of time and between apps and a little research ahead of time, OP can have a great trip whether their luggage is a backpack or a suitcase. They just need to pick a region and have a general plan, if you haven't had a free form vacation I suggest trying it.
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Old 07-10-2017, 05:26 PM
PDF
 
11,386 posts, read 10,521,282 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aredhel View Post
Too many of the people reading this thread clearly haven't read the OP's later post. SHE'S NOT BACKPACKING, FOLKS!!! She's going on a 10-day trip to Europe, that's all. The OP isn't going to have the TIME to hang out in the hostel making new friends, or drift from place to place as the breeze and her whims fancy.

OP, do some significant planning for this trip. With so little time to spend abroad, you really can't afford to waste a lot of time figuring out everything on the fly. Trust me on this. The only element of traditional backpacking that will be benefit you on this particular trip is learning how to travel light. If you're an experienced lightweight packer, you can easily do this trip with nothing more than a carryon.
The OP mentioned backpacking in the title and also mentioned wanting an adventure and not planning ahead, so that's probably where the confusion came from.
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Old 07-10-2017, 08:01 PM
 
Location: Omaha, Nebraska
7,316 posts, read 4,162,308 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PDF View Post
The OP mentioned backpacking in the title and also mentioned wanting an adventure and not planning ahead, so that's probably where the confusion came from.
Absolutely that's where the confusion comes from. But that doesn't change the fact that much of the advice people have been giving the OP, while excellent for a several-weeks'-long trip, won't work for her 10-day jaunt. The OP doesn't need a minute-by-minute itinerary, but in general short trips benefit more from detailed pre-trip planning than long ones do, and she needs to understand that.
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Old 07-10-2017, 08:19 PM
 
Location: North State (California)
39,587 posts, read 2,991,249 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aredhel View Post
Absolutely that's where the confusion comes from. But that doesn't change the fact that much of the advice people have been giving the OP, while excellent for a several-weeks'-long trip, won't work for her 10-day jaunt. The OP doesn't need a minute-by-minute itinerary, but in general short trips benefit more from detailed pre-trip planning than long ones do, and she needs to understand that.
I agree, & I think it is more important to plan your trip, if it is a short one, because you have no room, for catch ups, on trips or destinations, if you don't go the day you thought.

I did backpack around Europe but that was 40 years ago, so the only still relevant advice is pack light. I had one skirt & one pair of pants & 3 tshirt/blouses, all color coordinated, so all the tops went with the pants of the skirts. Wash underwear every night.

We did a river cruise & then a self directed train trip through Switzerland a few years ago, about a month total, & we both only took one carry on bag each. Over-packing is a common tendency. For the self directed part, I had a hotel booked for each night, & I knew what I wanted to see in each city. Planning is key to getting the most out of a short trip.
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Old 07-12-2017, 11:51 AM
 
1,575 posts, read 1,621,108 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PDF View Post
The OP mentioned backpacking in the title and also mentioned wanting an adventure and not planning ahead, so that's probably where the confusion came from.
Yes, we are looking for an adventure. Perhaps backpacking wasn't the right term. However, we will likely have 10 days as neither get that many vacation days and would like to go from one place to another without a set itinerary. I've always booked 3 days here, another 3 days there but we were thinking of starting in one place and then taking trains ands staying at hostels or airbnbs. Neither of us have done a trip like this before so I appreciate all of the feedback.
With our limited time, would it be best if we focused on one area and do multiple cities around that area? Say...something like Amsterdam, Prague, Munich, Berlin. Or Spain and Portugal. Or France and Belgium? What do you all suggest. We are really open to anything. We've only been to Paris and Rome and that was on our honeymoon 4.5 years ago. Now, I know there I can't see all of the below at once but if maybe you can help me group them, I'd really appreciate it. Also, if you have any insight on where would be a good starting place, with cheaper flights, that would also be great, we're on the east coast, near D.C. if that helps.

Our wish list of places we'd like to see in our lifetime...not one trip...we know that's not possible. In no particular order:
London
Dublin--and other areas of Ireland
Italy--we've been to Rome, would love to see other parts of the country
France--again, we've been to Paris. We would love to go back but we also would love to see other parts of France.
Spain--especially Barcelona. My dad lived there when he was younger and raves about it, also my husband is a huge soccer fan and loves Barca.
Portugal--Lisbon but open to other areas.
Amsterdam
Prague
Berlin
Poland
Oslo
Iceland
Sweden
Denmark


We love walking around cities and just looking at the different architecture. We love good food and we are huge beer fans, but love wine too. Beaches a great but are not a deal breaker if we can't see/go to a beach. We like Art and experiencing different cultures. My husband is a big soccer fan so I know Spain and England especially are of interest to him. Honestly, we just like different cultures and experiencing new things and we are open to new experiences.

We are thinking about going in the Fall next year, but if you have suggestions for better times, we are open to that too.

I hope this helps a little more.

Thank you all again for taking the time. It is much appreciated.
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Old 07-12-2017, 12:26 PM
 
Location: Omaha, Nebraska
7,316 posts, read 4,162,308 times
Reputation: 18323
My suggestions are below, in blue.

London: you could easily combine this with a tour of the Cotswolds and either York or Edinburgh

Dublin--and other areas of Ireland: 10 days would be plenty of time for an Irish road trip,
assuming you'd be comfortable driving there.


Italy--we've been to Rome, would love to see other parts of the country: Consider Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast, and possibly Matera

Amsterdam
Prague
Berlin: These three could pair nicely for a 10-day trip. You could also easily spend 10 days checking out just the Netherlands, plus Bruges and possibly Berlin. As was said upthread, this region is compact and easy to get around in.

Iceland: You could do a circle tour of Iceland and see pretty much the entire country in 10 days.

Fall is a good time for Europe generally, but of course the temperatures will be warmer in the more southern parts of the continent.
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