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Old 3rd October 2018, 13:38   #586
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Originally Posted by adimicra View Post
Need some help to finalize by Europe itinerary

In Italy, I am interested in Rome/Vatican, Tuscany and Venice if possible.

Any suggestions welcome.
I am not an expert but will try to give my opinion on some of your queries. It is good that you are planning your itinerary very much in advance which gives you sufficient time to research and tweak your trip if required. Both Italy and Switzerland have a lot to explore so you will have to decide which things interest you and your family the most.

- 3 days in Rome is good and you will be able to cover almost all the important places. Bear in mind that Vatican/Rome is mostly about history, culture and architecture so you will have to decide how interested your family will be in these things. For example, a visit to the St. Peter Basilica will take around 1-2 hours. The visit to Vatican museum can take 2-3 hours. A tour of the Colosseum will take 1-2 hours. In my opinion, you should do guided tours of these places so that you can appreciate the history behind them. I came back from Italy just this week and I had travelled with my wife. We are both not art lovers but we enjoyed the guided tours of these museums/monuments. However, if you feel that your family will not be interested in such things, feel free to omit Florence from your itinerary.

- Florence is the city where renaissance art flourished and produced artists like Michelangelo. People who visit this city usually have two museums on their itinerary (Uffizi and Accademia) as well as various religious monuments. Apart from this, people take day trips to city of Pisa (which has the leaning tower of Pisa) and various villages in the Tuscany region (Siena, San Gimignano etc.)

- We visited Amalfi coast from Naples which was our base for 3 nights. Naples is around 70 minutes away from Rome by a train ride. If you are not interested in Florence, you can keep Rome/Naples/Venice as your base locations in Italy. If Naples is not appealing, many people stay in Sorrento which is closer to the Amalfi coast. I personally find driving around Amalfi coast to be stressful. The roads are not wide and you have to drive very carefully as it involves several hairpin turns (the only example I can think to compare is with roads which go to Matheran from Neral station in Maharashtra). If not a car, people usually take public buses which are crowded or walk which can be exhausting.

I am not sure but maybe you can research exploring North Italy only?
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Old 28th October 2018, 11:20   #587
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Default Amsterdam and nearby places to visit- travel query

Hi Guys!

My firm has a yearly Managers' meet in Amsterdam for all the newly promoted managers. This year I got promoted and yoo-hoo I am going to visit this wonderful city in the month of November. I had a few queries from people who have visited AMS or other parts of Europe.

I will be going there for a total of 7 days. However, I am going with my school bestie who doesn't work with me in the same firm. The itinerary is as follows:

- Reach Amsterdam on the 11th of Nov around afternoon. So we have an entire evening to explore.
- The Managers'meet and training starts from 12-14 Nov. So I will be booked entire day but my friend will have to explore alone.
- Post 14th evening i will be free and our return tickets are booked for the 17th.

I have a few queries.

- Do we get the Amsterdam city pass ?
- Is there a chance that we book a self drive car and go out of town or maybe a nearby country for one day and come back in the same evening. If yes, what's the international driving license situation like?
- what are the must-visit places in Amsterdam?

Any other suggestions are most welcome.

Last edited by Pancham : 28th October 2018 at 11:22.
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Old 28th October 2018, 11:33   #588
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Default Re: Amsterdam and nearby places to visit- travel query

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Originally Posted by Pancham View Post
- what are the must-visit places in Amsterdam?
Depending on your interests:

1) Heineken Experience
2) Anne Frank Museum: book this online well in advance; when I checked while I was there (January 2017), this had a week/two long waiting
3) Rijks museum
4) Van Gough museum

When I visited, I was staying with a friend in Nijmegen so we did some country-side travel and it was peak winter so didn't get to explore Amsterdam as much I would have wanted to.

Quote:
Any other suggestions are most welcome.
Walk, walk, walk around! As is with any European city.

For the hidden/lesser-known gems, Jeroen should be able to pitch in.
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Old 28th October 2018, 11:57   #589
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Default Re: Amsterdam and nearby places to visit- travel query

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Originally Posted by Pancham View Post
- Do we get the Amsterdam city pass ?
- Is there a chance that we book a self drive car and go out of town or maybe a nearby country for one day and come back in the same evening. If yes, what's the international driving license situation like?
- what are the must-visit places in Amsterdam?
If you intend to do a lot of travel in the centre of Amsterdam these city passes make sense. Public transportation is excellent, with trams, busses, metroís and taxi. Regular taxiís are hugely expensive in the Netherlands, so make sure you have Uber up and running on your phone. Trams, busses and metro have a system with pre-paid cards as well. Check with the tourist info. Or when you arrive at Amsterdam Schiphol airport there is an excellent tourist/public transport outlet that can help you.

Here a good website with some interesting stuff:

https://www.amsterdamoldtown.com

A tour on one of the canal boat is always nice and you get to see the Amsterdam canals from a different point of view. The other thing I highly recommend is renting a bicycle and making your way through Amsterdam by bicycle. You can rent bicycles in many places. They will provide you with a little map and some provide maps with nice routes too.

The Dutch love their bicycles and it is the quickest way to see the whole centre and get a really good feel for it.

You can rent a car of course, but it really depends on what you would like to see/do. There are lots of coaches/tours that will take you to the real touristy places in the vicinity of Amsterdam. E.g. Zaanse Schans (wind mills, very nice), Volendam (old fishing village on the IJsselmeer).

Here a link:

https://www.tours-tickets.com/en/ams...e-beaten-path/

Lots of other stuff on this website too.

If you want to do something petrolhead like, you could go to the Hague (45km south of Amsterdam) and visit the fantastic Louwman car museum.

https://www.louwmanmuseum.nl/?sc_lang=en

Let me know your interests / what you would like to see / do and Iíll see if I can come up with anything more specific

Enjoy

Jeroen
PS: Bring warm cloths, November is real autumn here and it could be cold, wet and miserable weather. If you are lucky you will have nice crips weather, but it is unlikely to be much above 5-8oC
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Old 28th October 2018, 12:30   #590
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The Rijkmuseum and Van Gogh Museum are a must see for Art enthusiasts! What a Collection!

Nijmegen - of “ A Bridge too Far” fame. Evocative.

Quote:
Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
Depending on your interests:

3) Rijks museum
4) Van Gough museum

When I visited, I was staying with a friend in Nijmegen so we did some country-side travel and it was peak winter so didn't get to explore Amsterdam as much I would have wanted to.



Walk, walk, walk around! As is with any European city.

For the hidden/lesser-known gems, Jeroen should be able to pitch in.
I wish I had seen this earlier - could have helped you with some ideas.

We spent a couple weeks in Italy this year - I hadn’t been there in years and then pull to go back was great because we love Art and Great Food and Wine etc.

Tuscany is a region. Florence is in Tuscany, as is Pisa. Milan which isn’t too far off is in Lombardia.

For me a couple of highlights of this trip were that we spent a lot of time in the Uffizi and a lot of time also looking at the most beautiful sculptures in the World - Michelangelo’s David and the Pieta Maria. And the beautiful Painting of Da Vinci - The Last Supper.

Other highlights were the superb Enzo Ferrari Museum in Modena and the Ferrari Museum in Maranello as well as the absolutely gorgeous Alfa Romeo Museum just a little outside of Milan.

Driving on the Italian Autostrade is a breeze. Mostly Manual Transmission LHD cars. Great fun. I had rented a powerful little Alfa Romeo Giulietta. Delicious car. And those head turning Italian looks!

But if you dont wish to drive, simply take Trenitalia. Very comfortable and efficient overall. Connects you to anywhere more or less, in Italy.




Quote:
Originally Posted by adimicra View Post
Some questions I have are -
Is it okay to stay in Tuscany and visit Florence/Pisa on a day trip?
How did you travel fro Venice to Grindelwald? What are the places to cover around Grindelwald?
Zurich did not seem very interesting to me from whatever I have learnt so far. Anything in particular which is recommended?
Did you fly into Rome and fly out of Zurich?
I have never driven in Europe. I am not sure if I should venture into that. Suggestions?
If I don't drive myself, what is the recommended mode of travel for Amalfi and Tuscany?
Where to stay in Amalfi?
End Sep-Early Oct, my wife and I decided to spend 12 days exploring Paris, Marseille, Provence, the Alpes-Maritimes and the Cote D’Azur in Southern France.

This time we rented a little Jeep Renegade 2WD top spec. And thoroughly enjoyed the trip. Driving on the Autoroute Du Soleil is a lovely, orderly experience in my book!

Those beautiful “perched villages” in the Luberon, the wonderful towns of Aix-en-Provence, Arles and Avignon, the historical detail of Marseille, the symmetry of Paris and so on.

It’s a great part of the world to spend some time in, especially if you like the Arts - Cezanne, Emile Zola, Paul Gauguin, Van Gogh and many others.

The region was also made more famous by first class authors writing in English, like Peter Mayle, M L Longworth etc.

And of course, the Food, the Wine, the landscape and the sheer quietude.

Thoroughly enjoyable as a holiday destination.

Last edited by Aditya : 29th October 2018 at 07:35. Reason: Back to back posts merged; quoted text trimmed
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Old 28th October 2018, 14:18   #591
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pancham View Post
Hi Guys!

- what are the must-visit places in Amsterdam?

Any other suggestions are most welcome.
You can plan to visit the nearby areas like Volendam, Zans Schans (to see the windmills), Giethorn (to check the venice of Netherlands).
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Old 28th October 2018, 23:53   #592
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

Since most of your questions are already answered, I would just add couple of items -

- There was a Van Gough gallery at Schipol airport few years back, not sure if it was a permanent one. However, do enquire about that since it was good.
- I would suggest you avoid renting car, parking in Amsterdam from what I saw was bit of a hassle and public transport is efficient.
- You can take a walk through RLD areas too, it gives a different perspective to the topic. There are guided walking tours conducted, however you can may be head here after canal tour suggested in earlier posts. Many of canal tours start from area around Amsterdam Central.
- If you are headed to Amsterdam Central, you can visit Saint Nicholas church which is almost opposite to Amsterdam Central.
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Old 29th October 2018, 22:19   #593
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

Thank you so much for your quick replies !!

Quote:
Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
Depending on your interests:
1) Heineken Experience
2) Anne Frank Museum: book this online well in advance; when I checked while I was there (January 2017), this had a week/two long waiting
3) Rijks museum
4) Van Gough museum
About Anne Frank Museum. Would you believe they had only one ticket available for the entire month of November and guess who grabbed it. ME!
This is for the ticket + option which comes with the introductory session.
So last night there were around 18 tickets left and I got lazy and slept off. Today morning when I checked they had only one ticket left. BAAM! Booked it at the light of speed.

They are sold out for November (for the tickets with the intro).


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
If you intend to do a lot of travel in the centre of Amsterdam these city passes make sense. Public transportation is excellent, with trams, busses, metro’s and taxi. Regular taxi’s are hugely expensive in the Netherlands, so make sure you have Uber up and running on your phone. Trams, busses and metro have a system with pre-paid cards as well. Check with the tourist info. Or when you arrive at Amsterdam Schiphol airport there is an excellent tourist/public transport outlet that can help you.
Hi Jereon!

I might bug you a little bit more with this. So these city passes, what all modes of transports do they cover? Do these have specific routes.

Preference wise I am more incline towards exploring the country side and the windmills.

Also, suggestions for nice local beer breweries would be great!

Quote:
Originally Posted by adi_gt View Post
You can plan to visit the nearby areas like Volendam, Zans Schans (to see the windmills), Giethorn (to check the venice of Netherlands).
Noted. Shall check out.
Quote:
Originally Posted by mpksuhas View Post
Since most of your questions are already answered, I would just add couple of items -
Thanks a lot! Will definitely check out if the airport still has the gallery.

Last edited by ampere : 29th October 2018 at 23:33. Reason: compacted quoted posts
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Old 30th October 2018, 00:02   #594
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pancham View Post
Would you believe they had only one ticket available for the entire month of November and guess who grabbed it. ME!

. So these city passes, what all modes of transports do they cover? Do these have specific routes.

Preference wise I am more incline towards exploring the country side and the windmills.

Also, suggestions for nice local beer breweries would be great!
As with most touristy large cities, it is usually a good idea to buy your tickets online. You tend to get better deals, also for many museums you might be able to jump the queu. For instance the van Gogh and Stedelijk Museum give out specific time slots per day. If you buy those online you are guaranteed to get in, without having to wait.

On the day pass, see here

https://www.tiqets.com/en/amsterdam-...BoCZHYQAvD_BwE

It gets you on all busses and trams in all of Amsterdam.

Depending on what you might want to do and see you could consider one of these I love Amsterdam City Card too.

https://www.iamsterdam.com/en/i-am/i...rdam-city-card

There are only a few local breweries in the Netherlands and they are all far from Amsterdam. But of course you have the Heineken brewery in Amsterdam you can visit and tour.

Enjoy

Jeroen
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Old 30th October 2018, 00:15   #595
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Originally Posted by Pancham View Post
Also, suggestions for nice local beer breweries would be great!
If it's beer you're looking for, then head over to Belgium. There are over 2000 beers available in the market
You can find bars where they serve 500+ different beers, which for a guy like me is heaven on earth

Cheers
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Old 30th October 2018, 02:59   #596
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If you have the time and if you love driving, you might want to make a day trip to the Nurburgring. Its a 3- 4 hour drive and you can rent one of the race tuned cars at the track or hop on the nurburgring taxi. Just driving up and down the hill at the 'ring(public road) is a lot of fun. Oh and not to mention, you get to drive on the Autobahns as well.
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Old 31st October 2018, 20:34   #597
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
On the day pass, see here

https://www.tiqets.com/en/amsterdam-...BoCZHYQAvD_BwE

It gets you on all busses and trams in all of Amsterdam.

Depending on what you might want to do and see you could consider one of these I love Amsterdam City Card too.

https://www.iamsterdam.com/en/i-am/i...rdam-city-card


There are only a few local breweries in the Netherlands and they are all far from Amsterdam. But of course you have the Heineken brewery in Amsterdam you can visit and tour.

Enjoy

Jeroen
Jeroen, thank you for your quick replies. I have a few specific queries. My hotel for the first 3 days will be in Noordwijkerhout which I believe is quite far from AMS Central. Could you suggest a way to get in and out of the city for the first 3 days? Will these passes work for my commute from Noordwijkerhout to AMS Central.

Also, if we want to go to Brugge from AMS for a day trip, is it feasible and is it worth it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joxster View Post
heaven on earth

Cheers
I know

Quote:
Originally Posted by HKap View Post
If you have the time and if you love driving, you might want to make a day trip to the Nurburgring. Its a 3- 4 hour drive and you can rent one of the race tuned cars at the track or hop on the nurburgring taxi. Just driving up and down the hill at the 'ring(public road) is a lot of fun. Oh and not to mention, you get to drive on the Autobahns as well.
Could you please elaborate a little more as in how to get there. That will be a dream come true.
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Old 31st October 2018, 20:48   #598
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pancham View Post
Jeroen, thank you for your quick replies. I have a few specific queries. My hotel for the first 3 days will be in Noordwijkerhout which I believe is quite far from AMS Central. Could you suggest a way to get in and out of the city for the first 3 days? Will these passes work for my commute from Noordwijkerhout to AMS Central.

Also, if we want to go to Brugge from AMS for a day trip, is it feasible and is it worth it?
.
No, those day passes are specific for Amsterdam public transport.

You will need a combination of busses and trains to get to/from Noordwijkerhout to Amsterdam. Check out google maps. It will give you pretty good insights:

https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Amst...52.2601939!3e3

You can buy so called OV card (openbaarvervoer = public transport). You can get them at Amsterdam airport. These will work on the trains and the regional busses. And also on all trams/busses/metro in Amsterdam.

Brugge is a very nice little Belgium town. But even by car it is going to take you the better part of 3.5 hours as it is well over 250 km, mostly motorways, but you will get caught out in rush hour and you will be travelling on some of the most congested motorways in Belgium and the Netherlands.

Although it is a very nice little town, I would not spend all that time and money to visit. Stay in or near Amsterdam. Plenty of quirky little tows/villages to see within half an hour from Amsterdam

Nurburgring is about 350 km, almost all motorways, except the last 20-30 km where you find yourself driving on a very nice provincial road. Again, traffic during the week can be a pain with lots of congestion. Unless you are particularly eager to see the ring I would not bother.

Jeroen
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Old 31st October 2018, 23:52   #599
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Could you please elaborate a little more as in how to get there. That will be a dream come true.
The easiest way to get there is drive. You can rent a nice car to drive on the Autobahns. Like Jeroen mentioned, there can be traffic during the day but if you manage to leave really early in the morning, then you should be fine. The first thing you should do is check the schedule at the ring to ensure there are public days when you plan to be there. A lot of companies tend to block out days for testing and then there are events too.

You will most likely need to leave very early in the morning to make it to the ring on time so you should be fine with traffic. Also, if you're doing a day trip then maybe leave late in the evening to avoid the evening traffic. You do want to enjoy pedal to the metal stuff on the Autobahn too..
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Old 1st November 2018, 09:32   #600
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pancham View Post
Today morning when I checked they had only one ticket left. BAAM! Booked it at the light of speed.
Light of speed, good one

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
As with most touristy large cities, it is usually a good idea to buy your tickets online. You tend to get better deals, also for many museums you might be able to jump the queu. For instance the van Gogh and Stedelijk Museum give out specific time slots per day. If you buy those online you are guaranteed to get in, without having to wait.

There are only a few local breweries in the Netherlands and they are all far from Amsterdam. But of course you have the Heineken brewery in Amsterdam you can visit and tour.
The suggestion about the museum tickets is fantastic. It saves up a lot of time that we can use elsewhere. Also once we have tickets booked, we can plan the remainder of the day accordingly. Ideally I prefer to have early times of the day, to ensure we dont laze around in the mornings.

What I always found interesting in Europe and the UK is the different food options in the breweries. Also the accompaniments for french fries (or chips in the UK). Fresh, hot fried potatoes with a unique accompaniment/ dip every other place you go

Maybe someone should start off an advice thread on street food in Europe.
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