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10 european cities and events for may-july

DaveHz

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  • Added on: March 11th, 2013
I need help picking an assortment of 8 to 10 European cities to visit from May through mid July.
This is my first trip to Europe so i wanna see the must-sees, however, i know the must sees are spread across so many cities that I've come up with other criteria to help me decide.

My priority list:
- famous landmarks/places/attractions (the must sees).
- castles (this is castles of all kinds but also medieval stuff of any kind i would love).
- impressive and/or unusual sights (places or nature that are awe inducing).
- festivals.
- art.
- food.

Not interested in:
- nightlife/clubs (i'm going alone and i'm not big on nightlife anyway, i'm more of a fests and pubs kinda guy, so instead there have to be some night-time must sees and festivals and stuff XD.

Feel free to suggest the order as well :D

This would be hub cities that i can then do day trips to places of interest as well as exploring the city itself.

The Travel Tart

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  • Added on: March 11th, 2013
Hi, everyone's taste is different, but my list of 8 to 10 favourite cities in Europe would be different from someone eles's.

You can pick and mix these!

But for me, I've really enjoyed - Dublin, London, Paris, Berlin, Rome, Barcelona, Lisbon, Amsterdam, Istanbul (well, part of Istanbul is technically in Europe) and Vienna. But the off the beaten track places are great as well.
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DaveHz

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  • Added on: March 11th, 2013
thank you Travel Tart, would you please say why you like them? it'll help me decide :D

The Travel Tart

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  • Added on: March 11th, 2013
Ha ha, I like them for different reasons. You're a hard task master! :lol: If you're after the history stuff, you'll find it in each of these cities.

But in short (and I'm only scratching the surface here):

Dublin - very friendly people, easy to meet locals and have a good time. Plus lots of things to do and see there.

London - heaps of icons, history.

Paris - same as above, plus food is great.

Berlin - a surprise package for me. Quite an arty place, open and green. Locals are friendly too. Modern city that offers a lot.

Rome - complete chaos, but worth checking out Roman architecture

Barcelona - food, Gaudi architecture, and Spaniards are lots of fun.

Lisbon - love this place. Great food, wine, port, and old buildings

Amsterdam - very liberal, anything goes! Plus it's a nice and compact place to get around.

Istanbul - Turkey has been criss crossed by thousands of civilisation. This is one of my favourite cities ever. So much to do here. Food is superb, fresh and healthy, and the buildings there (eg Blue Mosque, Sofia) you won't see anywhere else. Arguably the Roman ruins here are just as good as Rome!

Vienna - nice city. Good place to explore on foot.

See all of them!
The Travel Tart - Offbeat Tales From A Travel Addict - http://www.thetraveltart.com

EMH

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  • Added on: March 12th, 2013
I'll just mention places I've been to, focusing on places that would be worth staying for a week or so (which I know is what you're looking for).

London - yes, lots of great history and museums

Rome, Florence and Venice - No to all three. Obviously some great historical stuff but WAY too touristy for my taste. You'd have to pay me to go back. I preferred Naples and Bologna but I wouldn't want to spend a week there.

Vienna - Definitely yes! Only spent a day there and I feel sad for that. An absolutely beautiful city with so much to see and do.

Bratislava - Not for a whole week! But worth visiting on a day trip from Vienna (an hour away by train).

Budapest - Yes. Honestly I didn't care for Budapest. But I seem to be in the minority. Every other person I met absolutely loved Budapest. For me, the highlight was the free (tips appreciated) Communist Walking Tour.

Istanbul - Yes though expect it to be overcrowded. I was there in February and there were already too many tourists. I can't imagine what it would be like when you're there. But it's kind of a must see for it's unique blend of Eastern and Western cultures.

Krakow - Maybe. Again, a bit too crowded and touristy for my taste. But there are two amazing day trips (Auschwitz and the Wieliczka Salt Mines) nearby.

Wroclaw - Maybe. Definitely preferred it to Krakow simply because it's less touristy/felt more authentic. But a week would definitely be pushing it in my opinion.

Kiev/L'viv - Absolutely yes to both! Ukraine is far enough off the beaten track that you'll feel like you have the place to yourself. Obviously there's much more to see and do in Kiev since it's the capital. But L'viv is also amazing with it's interesting blend of Polish, German, Ukrainian, Jewish, Armenian cultures. I found Ukrainian people to be amazingly helpful and friendly. And the food is quite unique and distinctive.

Andromeda

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  • Added on: March 12th, 2013
A few of my favorites:

- Amsterdam- I've lived here a year and a half so I'm biased, but I think this is the prettiest city in Europe. ;) Great city with a very chill vibe, very easy to keep away from the Red Light District if you're not interested in that (I know I'm not in my everyday life, my friends and I tend to instead go to chill little cafes and such).

- Budapest- I like it because I speak Hungarian, so once again biased, but I love the energy whenever I visit.

- Edinburgh- a gorgeous picturesque city! If you do it I would spend a few days in Edinburgh looking at all the history stuff (castle, museums) and the Fringe Festival in August is very famous (book accommodation WAY ahead!) and then head out for a few days into the Scottish countryside for some great scenery- you'll probably appreciate that to break up the trip.

- Florence- I spent a week here and I'm pretty sure in some parallel universe I never left. Gorgeous and so filled with amazing and beautiful things to see, plus easy to escape into Tuscany.

- Istanbul- A beguiling mix of cultures and sights for sure

- Sarajevo- One of the prettiest cities in Europe, really, with lots of history old and new

- Split/Dubrovnik- Split is basically an old Roman palace that turned into a city, and is thus seriously cool to wander around, Dubrovnik is a beautiful old Renaissance walled city. Neither is terribly large so I think I'd just do both in one week.

Ok that's enough for now. Note the interesting detail that some of my favorite cities are ones EMH didn't agree on, it's really hard to account for varying preferences! Though I do think part of it is I visited most of the cities in not-as-touristy seasons so that matters a bit.

DaveHz

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  • Added on: March 12th, 2013
Thank you all so much, i'm starting to further research the cities you mentioned. I didn't have Istanbul on my radar but now it's a definite must.

EMH

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  • Added on: March 12th, 2013
Andromeda wrote:A few of my favorites:

- Amsterdam- I've lived here a year and a half so I'm biased, but I think this is the prettiest city in Europe. ;) Great city with a very chill vibe, very easy to keep away from the Red Light District if you're not interested in that (I know I'm not in my everyday life, my friends and I tend to instead go to chill little cafes and such).

- Budapest- I like it because I speak Hungarian, so once again biased, but I love the energy whenever I visit.

- Edinburgh- a gorgeous picturesque city! If you do it I would spend a few days in Edinburgh looking at all the history stuff (castle, museums) and the Fringe Festival in August is very famous (book accommodation WAY ahead!) and then head out for a few days into the Scottish countryside for some great scenery- you'll probably appreciate that to break up the trip.

- Florence- I spent a week here and I'm pretty sure in some parallel universe I never left. Gorgeous and so filled with amazing and beautiful things to see, plus easy to escape into Tuscany.

- Istanbul- A beguiling mix of cultures and sights for sure

- Sarajevo- One of the prettiest cities in Europe, really, with lots of history old and new

- Split/Dubrovnik- Split is basically an old Roman palace that turned into a city, and is thus seriously cool to wander around, Dubrovnik is a beautiful old Renaissance walled city. Neither is terribly large so I think I'd just do both in one week.

Ok that's enough for now. Note the interesting detail that some of my favorite cities are ones EMH didn't agree on, it's really hard to account for varying preferences! Though I do think part of it is I visited most of the cities in not-as-touristy seasons so that matters a bit.


Geez, how could I have forgotten Edinburgh???? Only one of my favorite cities in the world!!!

seraphim

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  • Added on: March 13th, 2013
If I had to choose 10 cities in Europe the list would be:
- Antwerp, Belgium (my home town, so I'm obviously biased, but we do have a castle ;) )
- Belgrade, Serbia
- Berlin, Germany
- Istanbul, Turkey
- London, England
- Lviv, Ukraine (haven't been to Kiev)
- Luxemburg City, Luxemburg
- Prague, Czech Republic
- Venice, Italy
- Warsaw, Poland

For castles, I would highly recommend Slovakia, it seems to be riddled with them, from Bratislava and nearby Devin to Trencin and the Spiss area. When you are there, also don't miss the High Tatra mountains (on the border between Slovakia and Poland) for spectacular scenery.
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DaveHz

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  • Added on: March 16th, 2013
seems i need a visa for Istanbul, however, it also seems it is easy to get in any Turkish embassy.
I have read I need passport size shots. should I bring a bunch of those to Europe just in case i want to do this kind of paperwork on the fly? I know it's a completely different question but, i don't think a whole topic is due on the subject. XD

Andromeda

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  • Added on: March 18th, 2013
I just got my Turkish visa at the Istanbul airport, no big deal at all (just had to hand over the money, got a sticker). So I wouldn't worry about that one.

Always nice to have a few passport photos handy as you really never know, but around Europe you probably won't need 'em.

I forget how old you are btw but if you're under 26 get an international student card- around here it'll recoup its costs very quickly!

DaveHz

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  • Added on: March 19th, 2013
oh whoa, i will research the international student card, i'm actually 25. Thanks for the tip.

About the Turkish visa though, i'm Mexican, so i'm banned from getting the Turkish visa at the airport.

Daphne Roseque

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  • Added on: April 3rd, 2013
For me dude how about visiting Madrid if you haven't been there. Madrid's day trips are unbeatable I must say and restaurant scene takes in all the regions of Spain and countries of the world and it isn't spoiled by tourist-conscious eateries that always cut corners with quality. They have whole streets of cool nightspots. Whatever your age or taste in music, Madrid will have somewhere for you. Hope you enjoy :D
A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step, Your Travel Guide "Simply Madrid"

DaveHz

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  • Added on: April 4th, 2013
I totally might, if not for the nightlife for everything else. Thanks for suggesting Madrid in a broader light, I had kinda dismissed Spain as having nightlife as its strong suit, but i have a more inclusive view now than i did when i started this post. Now i'm keeping all possibilities open. :)



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