Sunday, April 16, 2017

Trip to Amsterdam , Spain & Greece in May end 2016

From Western to Southeastern Europe ; traveling by plane , bus, train , metro , tram , cycle , ferry , ship ; total travel distance of approx 15,000 KM;walking of 1.3 Lacs Steps & 89 Km ;it was a fun filled and adventurous holiday for 6 and half of us. (half here is the stroller without which this trip could not have been possible).

From sleeping overnight at Barcelona airport and still near miss flight  ,to almost losing passports in athens airport , to riding cycles in countryside of Amsterdam , to skydiving in Spain ,to scuba and cliff jumping in santorini , to swimming in open sea , tp smoke filled coffee shops in Amsterdam , to loads of beer, wine and sangaria , to driving to Spain border to explore vegas of spain , to caught by Spanish police , to living the Zindagi na Milegi Dobara moment , to watching the most beautiful rainbow of my life , to visiting th all possible non touristy places , this vacation was memorable.

If you like a planned holiday , can't sleep without eating Indian curry in night , like visiting all places which are there in typical tourist map , can't take risks , scared of traveling in local bus/metro , don't like to talk to locals ; this blog might not help you. I have also visited EUROPE in 2012 in Group tour with SOTC and you see a comparison in various places .

10 Travel Tips of traveling in Europe:

1. SIM Card - Buy from local airport
2. Communication in Spain - Learn few basic communicaiton sentence
3. Travel Light
4. Stay in apartement ; local advice (airbnb types)
5. Plan in advance
6. Skip museaums some time and do relaxing afternoon
7. Buy a day pass in Europe for unlimited travel in Metro /Bus
8. Supermarket /Grocery shops are much cheaper to stock breakfast/beer/wines

HOW much should I budget per day?

I will only list out the basic expenditure per day per person as a guideline for you. This guideline will allow you stress free travel with occasion indulging in fine dining or pampering. Feel free to adjust according to your needs.
Food – €20
Public Transportation In the City – €7
Accommodation – €40 per person for twin sharing / €80 for 1 person
Sightseeing – €20
Emergency Use – €8
Therefore it is about €95 per day per person to be comfortable. By budgeting on some meals, around €10 per day, you will be able to enjoy some fine dining as well.
This budget does not include shopping as it is very subjective & intercity transport as it depends what mode of transportation you plan to take & how many places you will be visiting.
Pro Tip for Airlines - Budget airlines - Ryanair and Vueling
Not To Miss - GYROS and Crepes in Fira santorini
Massage in Amsterdam airport (2 Euros)

 The cliffside towns of Oia and Fira are the two main towns on the inner side of the island. Both towns overlook the famous caldera. Both these towns offer great sunset views and angles to get photos of blue-topped churches and blue-rimmed houses. 

Amsterdam – There’s more to the city than just coffee shops and red lights. I love this city so much, I lived here for a short period of time in 2006. Cobblestone and brick streets weave around lovely canals. Amsterdam has a vibrant art and music scene and friendly locals willing to help you out.

Finally, Ryanair’s check in luggage policy, hand carry policy &flight policy are very stringent and stingy. The hand carry luggage is smaller than Easyjet and when you miss your flight, it is all over ( new tickets are very expensive ) where else Easyjet allows u to change flight with some charges. Worst, for Ryanair, you need to check in online, if not a hefty charge is imposed!

And my biggest culture advice is to not expect everyone to speak English to you. Many people do as it is a universal language, but we had a much better experience and response from the locals when we tried to speak in the native language first, no matter how dumb we sounded. It is not only smart, it is respectful.

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