UK and Europe Overview 2008

UK & Europe 2008

In spring 2008 we spent seven weeks in the UK and Europe visiting England, France, Italy, Germany & Scotland.

Favorite city…. Paris, both of us.
Next favorite city or cities…
For Jim, Edinburgh & Florence, for Jeannie, Florence, Venice and Edinburgh.

One of the most memorable experiences- Meeting Ulla Luther, the wife of Peter Luther, the Bronze medalist in the 1984 Olympics in equestrian, and the tour she gave us of their horse (and rider) training farm. She introduced us to all of the horses that were not traveling. She even invited us into their home and showed us the medals. How many people would do that when two strangers pull into the driveway to turn around. She is a lovely lady.

What not to do- don’t fall out of a store especially at the beginning of a trip.  It would have been much better to walk down those steps in London. This became the “limp across Europe tour”.

Things to do when we return to Europe:
Visit Innsbruck and the German/Swiss/Italian Alps.
Spend more time in Italy and Scotland & Germany. Visit Ireland, Finland, Norwegian Fjords, Russia. Take Mediterranean cruise and then Transatlantic cruise. That ought to keep us busy. 🙂

Under the category of lessons learned….
Do not buy EuRail (and BritRail) passes unless you are sure of how many days you are actually going to be traveling by rail. We would have spent a lot less by just buying point to point tickets for the individual rail trips.

Make sure you know how to get out of the train door before your first train ride. Seriously, that happened. 🙂 How to open Great Western train doors…you open the window on the door and reach outside to open the door. Handles are only on the outside.

After hand washing in England, and then doing our laundry at a laundromat, or laverie automatique, in France, Jim decided we did not come to Europe (or insert country) to do laundry, let the hotel take care of it. When possible I try to book apartments or condos every few days that come with washer & dryer. This was really quite easy to do in Australia.

Don’t travel by rail on the same day as professional sports team fans.

Try to avoid tourist spots on the four day holiday weekends of the country you are in.

Final thought on this trip… it was fantastic and we had a great time and want to go back.

We currently are aimed towards the UK, Europe, & Mediterranean  Fall 2015 and probably Europe (Northern)  including Norwegian Fjords Spring 2016, and Eastern Mediterranean and Black Sea, Fall 2016.