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Old 02-24-2009, 08:40 PM   #41
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You might save up the money and rent a car in Stuttgart and drive to Munich on the Autobahn (about 2 hrs) if you've ever dreamed about it. That's a nice stretch of road through there.

Ulm is a medium sized city that has a stunning cathedral within walking distance of the train station, and is on the rail line between Stuttgart and Munich. Worth a look if you are near.
Great advice on this whole sixshooter post but I wanted to highlight these 2 paragraphs.

1) If I were in your shoes, I wouldn't go to Germany if I could not drive a fast car in an Autobahn. Try it; you won't regret it!

2) About Ulm; if you decide to go, pm me, A really close friend of mine lives there (BTW, he's an Audi engineer; German but he lived here for sometime).
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Old 02-24-2009, 08:46 PM   #42
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the Bud Light of Amsterdam...
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Red Light District
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Old 02-24-2009, 08:48 PM   #43
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Hi, I've spent some time in most countries in Europe, and to be honest your list of places to go seems ok to me, in truth you'll never get to all the countries in "Euroland" so just concentrate on the ones you really do want to visit.

London is well worth a weekend visit at least, the London Eye is a pretty cool ride. Paris is also pretty awesome, there's just so much cultural venues to visit. In Germany I'd definately stop off in Berlin, and a night in Hamburg is a good experience, especially if you visit the Reeperbahn
Amsterdam is pretty, has some nice bars & cafes and the red light area if you fell like blowing your $100 a day budget

I've just come back from a weekend in Prague and can say that it is like a fairytale city, simply stunning, the castle, charles bridge, the old town & Jewish quarter, the Czech beer & the slivovic. It's also a small & compact city, so easy to get around by foot, or the public transport (Metro, trams,bus) is superb and very cheap too. There's something about eastern Europe that I quite like....

As has been said already, try to speak even just a few words of the local language, wherever you are, I find most people are more willing to go out of their way to assist you if you do... even if like me you end up making a complete *****-up of it


Anyway, just a few ideas for you, and good luck on your Eurotrip!
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Old 02-24-2009, 09:58 PM   #44
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Wow, talk about a good turnout for my thread. Thanks for all the info, I'm going to go through it all write a ton of it down to see what I can include in my trip and see what I think I can make up in form of an itinerary for everyones criticism. I'll just start going through everyones info, reply how I can and try to make the most of everyones efforts in informing me.

Big thanks to sixshooter for typing all that up too.

Now I need to try and absorb all of this.
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:40 PM   #45
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Go to Czech Republic for another reason too, they say hello to each other by saying "AHOY". It never gets old.
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:55 PM   #46
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Again I will endorse the Europe through the backdoor method of travel. B&B's in Europe are very different from here. They are people that have an extra room or two and let them out for a little extra money. Very affordable and you avoid the party til 3am hostel atmosphere. Hostels are great for what they are but don't plan on getting much sleep at some of them. Much prefer the intimacy of the B&B.

Use the trains for sleeping by doing your long travel at night.

To me, english speaking countries like the UK are a waste of time. You are going for exotic and new experiences. You might as well go to eastern Canada as go to England. I really agree with a lot of Johndoe's advice.

Who are you traveling with by the way?
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Old 02-24-2009, 11:32 PM   #47
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If you decide to do Prague and Vienna, I suggest you visit Cesky Krumlov, a stunningly pretty town dominated by a castle. It is near the Austrian border.
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Old 02-25-2009, 01:39 AM   #48
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If you decide to do Prague and Vienna, I suggest you visit Cesky Krumlov, a stunningly pretty town dominated by a castle. It is near the Austrian border.
Cesky Krumlov is definitely worth the drive out of Prague. I went to school at the American School in Prague when my dad was working there and I loved every second of it. It is a great experience, and like everyone has noted, the city is beautiful, although it kind of smells like dog **** and English tourists used to stumble out of the nearby bar and throw up on the side of the street at night. Despite this I really look forward to going back there.

London is a cool town too, and there is a lot to see. If you go you may want to try and make it out to the Tate modern art gallery, or just stroll along the Thames, its a great walk.

Italy's countryside is stunning, and the history in all of their towns is rich.

I have no problems with the French people either, Paris is such a great place, but it will be really hard to stay under $100 per day there, especially if you keep on finding great food. If you end up there check out the Bastille district, its less touristy and has some charming cafes.

I envy you this trip! It sounds like no matter where you go it will be unforgettable. I hope to try the same kind of thing at some point, but maybe ship my car over there and do a driving tour to the ring.
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Old 02-26-2009, 03:34 AM   #49
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This was actually the first book i bought. It was only $15 so it caught my eye. It's been useful thus far. Thanks for all your other recommendations.

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My favorite travel book series is "Let's Go". Let's Go Europe was excellent.
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Old 02-26-2009, 03:48 AM   #50
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Who are you traveling with by the way?
I'll be traveling alone, making new friends along the way. No one I know has the time or money to go and I like the idea of doing what i want when i want.

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If you decide to do Prague and Vienna, I suggest you visit Cesky Krumlov, a stunningly pretty town dominated by a castle. It is near the Austrian border.
You guys have me really considering a couple day trip to prague, we'll see.

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Originally Posted by Rafa View Post
Great advice on this whole sixshooter post but I wanted to highlight these 2 paragraphs.

1) If I were in your shoes, I wouldn't go to Germany if I could not drive a fast car in an Autobahn. Try it; you won't regret it!

2) About Ulm; if you decide to go, pm me, A really close friend of mine lives there (BTW, he's an Audi engineer; German but he lived here for sometime).
I'm definitely trying to budget for a car so I drive the autobahn and possibly the ring. I have some friends that went over recently that rented from a company that didn't care if you took the car to the ring whereas many others utilize photographers as spotters and will tear you a new ******* if they find out you tracked their car.

I'll keep your Ulm and London connections in mind and let you know what I end up doing.

Thanks again everyone.
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Old 02-26-2009, 04:25 AM   #51
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Driving The Ring is an experience, but you should also consider signing up for a ring-taxi or similar. Nurburgring has a good webpage (also in English) where you can check it out. And of course, book plenty of time for just hanging out, looking at cars and buying stickers for your own car.

And when you do go to the ring you need to book a room at hotel Blaue Ecke (hotel “blue corner”). It is a nice little place in Nurburg (the building is blue and in a corner… imagine that!) packed with history. This is the little hotel all the famous race drivers stayed and stays in!

The area around Nurburg is full of mountains and mountain roads with speed limits you as an American will find liberal. Fun enough to make a dog be sick in the back seat of a BMW, in fact. There are also some nice old castles and stuff worth seeing if you are already there.

On the autobahn: Maxing out a rental car is not that big of an experience. Sorry, but it just isn't.
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Old 03-03-2009, 03:17 AM   #52
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Got my ticket today. $474 roundtrip Nashville, TN to Frankfurt. Locked in now.

Any recommendations on backpacks?

I also plan to bring my SLR camera, I hate point and shoots and feel that I will be really disappointed if I don't bring the SLR. Any blatant reason to leave it at home?
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Old 03-03-2009, 03:25 AM   #53
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if u dont think u will loose or breack it then take it.
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Old 03-03-2009, 11:08 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by cjernigan View Post
Got my ticket today. $474 roundtrip Nashville, TN to Frankfurt. Locked in now.
Congrats!
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjernigan View Post
I also plan to bring my SLR camera, I hate point and shoots and feel that I will be really disappointed if I don't bring the SLR. Any blatant reason to leave it at home?
Theft, esp. if you are in a hostel or most hotels. BTW, I always made use of the pay lockers at the train station when I was day-tripping around a town. Cheap, secure, and usually pretty darn convenient. I hated lugging all of my **** around. I felt like I was a target for pickpockets and thugs when I was loaded down with too much crap. And it would wear your *** out.
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Old 03-03-2009, 11:30 PM   #55
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Congrats!

Theft, esp. if you are in a hostel or most hotels. BTW, I always made use of the pay lockers at the train station when I was day-tripping around a town. Cheap, secure, and usually pretty darn convenient. I hated lugging all of my **** around. I felt like I was a target for pickpockets and thugs when I was loaded down with too much crap. And it would wear your *** out.
That's the plan, I don't want to leave my junk anywhere that I can't lock it up. I'll utilize the train station lockers as often as possible.
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Old 03-20-2009, 08:37 PM   #56
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What do you guys do for bedding when you travel? I see most hostels offer sheets/bedding for rent though that could add up over a period of a month. I'm considering a light sleeping bag with compression sack to put in the bottom of my bag. Indoors it would be plenty.

I'm also checking this out: CouchSurfing - Participate in Creating a Better World, One Couch At A Time
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Old 03-20-2009, 08:47 PM   #57
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That sounds good.

BTW, shooter's advice on taking a locker at the train station is a win!
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Old 03-20-2009, 09:16 PM   #58
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What do you guys do for bedding when you travel? I see most hostels offer sheets/bedding for rent though that could add up over a period of a month. I'm considering a light sleeping bag with compression sack to put in the bottom of my bag. Indoors it would be plenty.

I'm also checking this out: CouchSurfing - Participate in Creating a Better World, One Couch At A Time
You should search/ask on "Backpacker's Ultimate Guide Europe" about both of those questions. Those people would know more than anyone here. It is a good forum.Backpackers Ultimate Guide - Powered by vBulletin

Specifically, the hostel forum - Hostels - Backpackers Ultimate Guide
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Old 03-20-2009, 09:38 PM   #59
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Too bad I won't be there yet. I'm working on getting a position in Frankfurt doing fiber optic (freakin lasers) network systems.
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Old 03-21-2009, 03:05 AM   #60
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I've done couchsurfing. Its mildly creepy sometimes.
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