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Honeymoon Planning- November/ December 2021

We are getting married in October 2021 and planning our European Honeymoon over Thanksgiving 2021 through December 2021.

We have booked and committed to a Christmas river cruise on the Danube (Budapest to Nuremberg) starting on Monday November 29, 2021 and planning on doing two days in Salzburg and two days skiing the Austrian alps the week of December 6-12.

Since the river cruise falls the Monday after thanksgiving, and we both are using PTO, our idea is to take Wednesday 11/25 to Sunday 11/28 somewhere in Europe as a “bonus trip”. We have been throwing a couple ideas around but have not had the “ah-ha” moment. So I am looking for suggestions or ideas.

We live in Southern California and we are looking either a direct flight from LAX or only 1 stop. As it is our honeymoon we are willing to spend a little bit for the experience. I have been to 18 countries and an avid travelers, my fiancé has been to five countries but really enjoys traveling.

We were thinking either London, Dublin or Amsterdam but open to ideas.


Posted by
2737 posts

Just to clarify- would the 25th be the day you leave the US, or the day you arrive in Europe? And have you both already exhausted the delights of Budapest on your previous travels?

Posted by
509 posts

You can fly nonstop from LAX to London Heathrow for as low as $548. However, there are no nonstop flights on Thanksgiving Day to Dublin. However, you can fly nonstop to Amsterdam which will cost $760. What’s good about Amsterdam is you don’t need a lot of time there as you do for London.

Posted by
4136 posts

London, Dublin, and Amsterdam aren’t quite giving you “ah-ha” inspiration at the moment? I could certainly argue for any of them, more for London, less so for Dublin in late November.

Vienna came to mind, except I imagine your cruise will be including that wonderful city. So how about a couple notches to the north, for 5 days in Prague? If you’re going to be skiing in the alps later, I suspect you’ll already have clothes to suit you in Prague's temperatures. Czech out a concert, and Christmas markets should be running by then.

Posted by
17872 posts

My first thought was "Budapest". It's a major city with a lot of indoor sights. Possibly colder than London/Amsterdam, but perhaps not as wet? I haven't checked, but the climate-summary charts in the cities' Wikipedia entries will allow you to compare monthly averages for rainfall and days with precipitation. I'm less comfortable with the temperature averages on Wikipedia because they hide extremes; when I want to know how bad it might be, I go to to look at actual, day-by-day, historical weather statistics going back 3 to 5 years.

I'd give serious thought to where I wanted to be when it's chilly, wet and dark (short days at that time of year), because you may well have a lot of that.

Posted by
461 posts

We've done this trip a few times. We LOVE Prague. Also, if you can, add nights to Nuremberg as it's one of our favorites and the market there is one of the BEST. We love to stay in Hotel Victoria there as it's super close to the markets and it includes a great FREE breakfast, it's right next door to the local vendors market, and it's across the street from the train station. We usually take the train from Nuremburg to Munich and then fly home from Munich because you can go straight from Munich to USA (Nuremburg will not let you do this). PM me if you have any questions. I hope your cruise is hitting Vienna and Salzburg (if not, those are options too, they are amazing towns). We take a Xmas Market River Cruise every other year - they are amazing. We had one scheduled this year, but postponed it to 2022 because of the Covid. You will LOVE the markets.

Posted by
12118 posts

If I understand correctly you are starting your cruise in Budapest. I spend a month every year (till COVID) in Budapest and help organize tours from time to time. Three full days is sort of a minimum for the city. Four, Five or more can also be easily filled. The winter is special and is among my favorite time to be there.

Here are some ideas

PM if it interests you and I can help you plan it. Sort of a second home for me.....

Posted by
686 posts

Corona allowing I’d say Prague 25-28 Nov 21. Do some homework before you visit. Trams are your hop on hop off etc. Avoid the scams and look for the local’s favorites. There’s a lot of info on the NET.

Posted by
4449 posts

I'd vote for Budapest, a wonderful city, simplifying your logistics. Lufthansa flies there from LAX via Frankfurt. James E is the go-to Budapest expert on this forum.

KLM/Delta also flies there via Amsterdam, which of course is worth seeing, but you'll pay more for a three-day stopover than a simple connection.

Posted by
12118 posts

More often than not I do Turkish Air through Istanbul. The airport in Istanbul does the PCR tests too..