i just came back from my grand european tour and can say it was worth the money.... we visited seven different countries; england (london), holland (amsterdam), germany (rhineland,heidelberg), switzerland (lucerne), italy(venice, rome, florence, also fast passing by verona, assisi, and pisa), spain ( barcelona, madrid, bilbao) and france( french riviera, carcassonne, poitiers, paris). those were the highlights of the trip, we also stopped at many other little cities throught out the trip for pit stops...some worth mentioning (like pisa and verona) others not really (like avignon, burgos...)
just to let you all know do NOT think you are going to be staying in 5* hotels because it is NOT the case....but the hotels are just fine....enough to sleep in and that's IT. yet again i found it was better than backpacking through europe....you do not need to worry where to spend the night or how to get there.
KEEEEEEPPPPPP IN MIND THAT YOU ARE PASSING A LOTTTTTT OF TIME ON THE COACH (BUS), thus invest in a good pillow....dont make the same mistake i did...my neck is STILLLLL killing me to this day.
i have to admit you get to see the main touristic attractions there is to see in the countries you are staying.... italy is as beautiful, as you ca imagine....one of the countries that most suprised me was switzerland ( truth been told i didnt care for it....i didn't even wanted to go there) i am bitting my words now, as it became one of my favorit places in europe....i am alllll about the pictures, and the ones from switzerland look like i 'photoshoped' myself on postcards....simply GORGEOUS! and the french riviera....OMG......you have to go and see it for yourselves.....AMAZING!!
there is something to do for everyone on this tour....so no worries if you do not like the first two or three countries....stay calm you still have the time to be amazed!!!! ENJOY YOU ALL!!!
alright where do i start...(dont want to scare you here but i DO have a ton to write in the cons box).
First of all if your tour director's name is JANOS RUN! RUN AS FAST AS YOU CAN! the man is a horrible tour director, at first he seems ok, if you do not buy the optional excursions the man will barely look at you, and forget about the help you will need... you do not buy excursions= no help from him. he is there to make money off of you and that is his only goal, on top of this DO NOT listen to his food recomendations as 8 of of 10 times the restaurant he suggests is simply disgusting. he loves italy and will tell you everything there is to do in that country from a to z, unfortunately hates france and is not a big fan of spain and he makes sure everyone knows...( to sum up...he is not doing a good job as a tour director!!) it is alright to have favorit countries, but he is not beeing fair to the other countries like france. the worst part is that he brainwashes the whole tour that french people are rude and smell, but the best part is IT IS NOT TRUE! french people are as helpfull as in any other country you will visit during the tour (ps. they don't smell either) :)
unfortunately for you IF YOU ARE STUCK WITH THAT TOUR DIRECTOR (JANOS....HUNGARIAN BIG BOLD GUY) HAVE NO FEAR....JUST DO NOT I REPEAT DO NOT BELIEVE IN EVERYTHING HE SAYS... he's full of s*** (excuse me for my language) and do not think i am the only one who thinks that....we were 37 people on that tour i will tell you 30 of us had the same feelings towards him.... but the good part of it all is that a bad tour director will pull the group closer together and you will meet some amazing people!:)
another bad aspect of the tour was the fact that we had tooooo little time in pit stop cities such as VERONA (JULIETTE'S BALCONY), PISA, BORDEAUX, LUGANO... we only had 45mins to 1h 30 mins per city....and let my tell you it is not enough to visit and take pictures....keep in mind YOU ARE NOT THE ONLY TOURIST OUT THERE! this is one of my biggest complains...not enough time in the cities we were passing by.
the included tours ARE CRAPPPPPPP ( sorry again), most of them at least....in rome if you are planing to stay in the city after and not go back to the hotel stay in the coliseum NO matter what the tour guide tells you...give ur little radio thinggy to someone who is going back!!! (do not forget because the time you spend in there is not enough...and you willllll have to pay in order to get back in again)!
IN FRANCE, LONDON, SPAIN LIKE MADRID AND BARCELONA...I SUGGEST BIG TIME YOU BUY THOSE OPEN TOP BUS TOUR RIDES I BELIEVE THEY ARE AROUND 20-30 EURO/POUNDS PER DAY ....BUT SO WORTH IT YOU WILL SEE MORE THAN WITH THE INCLUDED TOURS WITH UR TOUR DIRECTOR! spend the extra money and you will be gratefull you did!!!! :)
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Best Suited For: Couples
Tour format: Bus
Tour type: Group
Tour length: Over a Week