40 days in Europe

Monday, October 1, 2012

Europe map This is a running blog post about the adventures of Heidi and me on our travels through Europe from October 1 to November 9, 2012. And it’s encouragement for us to record an ongoing outline of our experiences for posterity. I have dreamt of backpacking across Europe with a Eurail Pass since I was a teenager. To actually get to take a trip like this is pretty surreal. But figuring out the logistics of everything has been rather complicated.

We’re going to visit 10 countries (Iceland, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy and Vatican City). I built a rough, interactive map of the sequence of our projected European destinations (not counting Iceland at the beginning) using Google Maps. (Note: I would have included a more comprehensive path of cities if I hadn’t maxed out Google Maps with directions to 25 destinations. Thus, the map might load slowly.)

Lodging in the Old World

We have opted to avoid couch-surfing/hostels/shared bathrooms on this trip (think of it as a honeymoon), but we’re definitely attempting to choose the most affordable budget hotels that have decent ratings and reviews on Expedia/TripAdvisor. There is apparently no escaping $150+ nights in Paris in October, unless we want to sleep in remote (or terrible) locations and waste time and money on extra transportation. Amsterdam and Switzerland are expectedly pricey too. Zurich is so expensive that we decided to skip staying there altogether.

Our $30/night budget for Peru hostels and hotels doesn’t cut it in the Old World. I have resigned to accept that averaging $100/night for our 38 nights of lodging in these expensive European cities is actually pretty good. Especially if the hotels are near train stations and even have clean beds and functional bathrooms. I will now light my bank account on fire.

Iceland, Germany, Italy

Six weeks of itineraries

Now that our trip is over, the itinerary and travel commentary portion of this blog post has been broken into four parts. Also, since my mom requested that I buy her a postcard from each of the 10 countries we visited, I have scanned her postcards into these blog posts, as well as some additional documents I brought back with me.

  1. Days 1-11: Iceland, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, France
  2. Days 12-22: France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland
  3. Days 23-31: Switzerland, Italy
  4. Days 32-40: Italy, Vatican City, France

Thanks for reading!

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