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Hi CMers wave ,
I'm traveling to Europe in July (looks like mid to end of the month) and it's my first time abroad! I'm very excited but I have so many questions! I have opted not to do a tour as this late in the game, and considering that folks spend up to a year planning their adventure, tours are really expensive! (I also didn't want so spend my future progeny's dental and college fund because that seems like an uncomfortable future conversation!) I will be visiting London, Paris and Rome over 8 gloriously jam-packed days. However I want to plan my own itinerary.

Does anyone have any suggestions?? The package includes hotel and air so that's covered. Now I need ideas for making the most of 2 days in London (cause really? I feel like between Jane Austen and Bridget Jones' Diary...I've been there...I'm kidding Londoners...I've never read Bridget Jones' Diary) and 2 days in Paris with 4 spent in Rome (where I plan to stalk the Pope**). Any suggestions for places to eat, play, pray and love being around people would be so welcome!!

I would also welcome hotel suggestions because I think I can still check againts the travel companies suggestions and match them to any CMers make. Thank you, kind souls, for any help!

In Christ,
Leyden

**any suggestions for evading the Swiss Guard also welcome....cause ya don't want to mess with men unafraid to wear those outfits.

May 3rd 2013 new

(Quote) Leyden-904885 said: Hi CMers , I'm traveling to Europe in July (looks like mid to end of the month) and it&...
(Quote) Leyden-904885 said:

Hi CMers ,
I'm traveling to Europe in July (looks like mid to end of the month) and it's my first time abroad! I'm very excited but I have so many questions! I have opted not to do a tour as this late in the game, and considering that folks spend up to a year planning their adventure, tours are really expensive! (I also didn't want so spend my future progeny's dental and college fund because that seems like an uncomfortable future conversation!) I will be visiting London, Paris and Rome over 8 gloriously jam-packed days. However I want to plan my own itinerary.

Does anyone have any suggestions?? The package includes hotel and air so that's covered. Now I need ideas for making the most of 2 days in London (cause really? I feel like between Jane Austen and Bridget Jones' Diary...I've been there...I'm kidding Londoners...I've never read Bridget Jones' Diary) and 2 days in Paris with 4 spent in Rome (where I plan to stalk the Pope**). Any suggestions for places to eat, play, pray and love being around people would be so welcome!!

I would also welcome hotel suggestions because I think I can still check againts the travel companies suggestions and match them to any CMers make. Thank you, kind souls, for any help!

In Christ,
Leyden

**any suggestions for evading the Swiss Guard also welcome....cause ya don't want to mess with men unafraid to wear those outfits.

--hide--
Tell everyone you're Canadian. You'll be treated a lot nicer.

May 3rd 2013 new

(Quote) Leyden-904885 said: Hi CMers , I'm traveling to Europe in July (looks like mid to end of the month) and it&...
(Quote) Leyden-904885 said:

Hi CMers ,
I'm traveling to Europe in July (looks like mid to end of the month) and it's my first time abroad! I'm very excited but I have so many questions! I have opted not to do a tour as this late in the game, and considering that folks spend up to a year planning their adventure, tours are really expensive! (I also didn't want so spend my future progeny's dental and college fund because that seems like an uncomfortable future conversation!) I will be visiting London, Paris and Rome over 8 gloriously jam-packed days. However I want to plan my own itinerary.

Does anyone have any suggestions?? The package includes hotel and air so that's covered. Now I need ideas for making the most of 2 days in London (cause really? I feel like between Jane Austen and Bridget Jones' Diary...I've been there...I'm kidding Londoners...I've never read Bridget Jones' Diary) and 2 days in Paris with 4 spent in Rome (where I plan to stalk the Pope**). Any suggestions for places to eat, play, pray and love being around people would be so welcome!!

I would also welcome hotel suggestions because I think I can still check againts the travel companies suggestions and match them to any CMers make. Thank you, kind souls, for any help!

In Christ,
Leyden

**any suggestions for evading the Swiss Guard also welcome....cause ya don't want to mess with men unafraid to wear those outfits.

--hide--


Hi Leyden! I believe it's Fodor's that puts out travel books - I'm sure AAA has something for Europe, as well. Of course, what you see is dependent upon your interests. I'm sure you can also buy a two-day pass for the Tube - London's railway. That will allow you to get transportation without having to dig for change or bills every time. I hope this helps a little bit! Chelle

May 3rd 2013 new

Oh, and welcome to the forums! Post early and post often!!

May 3rd 2013 new
Sounds like a great trip. Take advantage of public transit in both London and Paris. Safe, economical and extremely convenient! I used an ATM there to get the necessary euro but also used visa for most of the transactions. Make sure you call the credit card companies to tell them when you will be traveling. There are always the usual spots to visit. A bus tour gives a good overview if you have just 2 days each in London and Paris. In Paris must visit Sacre cour in the montmartre area. It is lovely, and in an artsy part of the city. Stroll down the champs d elyse (ok not sure on any of this spelling) very safe to be walking around alone. Eat at a local sandwich spots or get crepes on the ile-st-louise or bertillion for ice cream or small bistros. Be VERY CAREFUL of the "merchants" by the Eiffel Tower they are very aggressive. The line might be long to go up in the tower. Boat tour on the seine preferably during the day. Bike tour by the company "fat tire" ends with a river cruise might be an option. I was there 2 years ago. Everyone was very good about speaking English in case your drench is not so great. In London, its been a while, but I did a bus tour there, the Tower of London and the other highlights. But that was 25 years ago. Never been to Rome, have a great trip.
May 3rd 2013 new

(Quote) Leyden-904885 said: Hi CMers , I'm traveling to Europe in July (looks like mid to end of the month) and it&...
(Quote) Leyden-904885 said:

Hi CMers ,
I'm traveling to Europe in July (looks like mid to end of the month) and it's my first time abroad! I'm very excited but I have so many questions! I have opted not to do a tour as this late in the game, and considering that folks spend up to a year planning their adventure, tours are really expensive! (I also didn't want so spend my future progeny's dental and college fund because that seems like an uncomfortable future conversation!) I will be visiting London, Paris and Rome over 8 gloriously jam-packed days. However I want to plan my own itinerary.

Does anyone have any suggestions?? The package includes hotel and air so that's covered. Now I need ideas for making the most of 2 days in London (cause really? I feel like between Jane Austen and Bridget Jones' Diary...I've been there...I'm kidding Londoners...I've never read Bridget Jones' Diary) and 2 days in Paris with 4 spent in Rome (where I plan to stalk the Pope**). Any suggestions for places to eat, play, pray and love being around people would be so welcome!!

I would also welcome hotel suggestions because I think I can still check againts the travel companies suggestions and match them to any CMers make. Thank you, kind souls, for any help!

In Christ,
Leyden

**any suggestions for evading the Swiss Guard also welcome....cause ya don't want to mess with men unafraid to wear those outfits.

--hide--

Europe is fantastic, I recommend:

France-Paris: eat normal dinner bread and try chocolate in France; if you like gardens, Chateau de Versailles is beautiful and has amazing fountains (budget a whole day !), you can reach it via the public transit system- watch the maps though, only one train gets there.

St Nicolas du Chardonnet has the traditional Latin Mass in an old mini-Cathedral- quite beautiful. I was a bit disappointed in Notre Dame de Paris... but maybe it was the art show that was going on that day. The Sacred Heart Basilica is a 'newly built', but interesting, the view from its steps is amazing- you can see the whole city, but be prepared to walk up (trail or stairs)

London: tower of London is quite interesting- the English martyrs feel very close there :)

Rome: SEE THE CATECOMBS! You will not regret it! (maybe I'm just fascinated with martyrs though...), the main cathedrals..(goitaly.about.com The usual. The pillar of the scouraging and a nail or two from the Holy Cross is hidden away quite near Santa Maria Maggiore in the Basilica di Santa Prassede (don't be fooled, it's a medium-small church accessible from the side street, but worth it!) Santa Croce in Gerusalemme is quite peaceful and nice as well.

*** By the way, in any and all of these places *start early* in the day to avoid crowds.

May 3rd 2013 new

Have a wonderful trip!!

May 4th 2013 new

Hi Leyden! I am SURE you will enjoy your sojourn to the max! I took myself to EU for 5 weeks summer before last--had never been before--just wandered aound, met folks, etc. very fun! i did DE--Frankfurt, Trier, Deusseldorf, Koln--and Paris, Amsterdam, etc. I see you plan Paris? I took myself for 5 days and I would recommend looking into the Oceania Hotels. I found one in Paris to be most welcoming to Americans and convenient to transportation; plus moderately priced. The interior courtyard grounds were beautiful, pool, restaurant, etc. and the rooms super clean & well appointed. Mine had a nice window that opened up to the Eiffel Tower, so I could view their fireworks at night. Sidewalk cafe's everywhere! very nice. The subways are clean (and they don't smell bad like NYC!) and well laid out, super easy to figure out, with main lines running directly into the city center--Champs E. etc.
Another fun & practical hotel solution is Air BnB. I use them in NYC, etc. have you ever tried Air?
Best of luck on your adventure! Chandra :)

May 5th 2013 new

In London, I found a group called London Walks. They were not expensive and had interesting destinations. I was there on my own for 5 days in 2000, and used them twice. The first was a day trip to Brighton. It was about 60 miles by train and we had a tour of town while we were there as well as some free time. The next day, I ended up having the same guide and went to Greenwich, a much closer and shorter trip.

Another thing I wanted to do in London was go up in the EYE, but I did not do that. Maybe next time.

I did find a Catholic Church near where I stayed (Best Western - Kensington Gardens I think).

I must admit, it took me a day or two to get used to the way they pronounce things. It's different than this country and it was even different from some of the shows that come from England.

I notice also that, in Europe, especially Paris, that people seem to walk around with frowns or serious looks on their faces.

I am also going to be spending 4 days in Rome this year...in October as part of a 12 day tour which includes much more of Italy and there will be at least one priest on the tour who will celebrate Mass daily, so I may end up asking you a few things about Rome when you get back. (Though I'm sure the tour company has everything covered, or so it seems.)

Have fun and stay healthy. UK

May 5th 2013 new

(Quote) Tom-352850 said: In London, I found a group called London Walks. They were not expensive and had interesting destina...
(Quote) Tom-352850 said:

In London, I found a group called London Walks. They were not expensive and had interesting destinations. I was there on my own for 5 days in 2000, and used them twice. The first was a day trip to Brighton. It was about 60 miles by train and we had a tour of town while we were there as well as some free time. The next day, I ended up having the same guide and went to Greenwich, a much closer and shorter trip.

Another thing I wanted to do in London was go up in the EYE, but I did not do that. Maybe next time.

I did find a Catholic Church near where I stayed (Best Western - Kensington Gardens I think).

I must admit, it took me a day or two to get used to the way they pronounce things. It's different than this country and it was even different from some of the shows that come from England.

I notice also that, in Europe, especially Paris, that people seem to walk around with frowns or serious looks on their faces.

I am also going to be spending 4 days in Rome this year...in October as part of a 12 day tour which includes much more of Italy and there will be at least one priest on the tour who will celebrate Mass daily, so I may end up asking you a few things about Rome when you get back. (Though I'm sure the tour company has everything covered, or so it seems.)

Have fun and stay healthy.

--hide--


Good point, Tom! I had the advantage of knowing some Brits before I went to England. The slang is a little bit different, as well.

Leyden (sp?), If you have the time, you may want to watch some British programs on public television. It could be helpful in that regard, and it might start getting you in the mood for your trip! Have a great time!! Chelle

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