So I will preface the entirety of this post by providing some background information. This trip was with myself and my wife, 36 year olds from Vancouver Canada. This is both our 5th time to Europe in the last 12 years, each trip before this was 3 weeks or more.
**Frankfurt - Wurzburg - Nuremberg - Munich/Oktoberfest - Drogheda Ireland - Slane Ireland - Dubrovnik - Kotor - Mostar - Hvar - Plitvice national park - Opatija - Labin/Pula - Ljubljana - Venice - Sorrento - Capri - Positano - Naples - Rome - Lyon - Barcelona - Lagos - Leiria - Lamego - Porto - Lisboa
We had been planning a trip like this for a bit of time (probably even before our previous trip to Ireland and the UK in 2019) However, Covid kind of accelerated the planning and you never know what the future holds, so we expedited our plans which included attending a wedding in Ireland at the beginning of October.
If I may, I’d like to start this trip report off by some advice I’ve gained over my travels, experiences, and advice I’ve got throughout the years.
Firstly, which may rub people wrong, but don’t take it personally… don’t necessarily listen to peoples criticism of your itinerary. People from Europe and elsewhere abroad have VERY different views of travel and time. Ie. when building my Ireland itinerary I was basically told by some, if you’re going to be driving 5-6 hours in a day “Why bother even coming” coming from the west coast of Canada it’s a common occurrence to spend 3-8 hours driving for a weekend away. Having a car and being willing to drive 3/4/6 hours in a day can have a hugely positive impact on a trip. It can also save you money and enable you to see and do much more than you would otherwise.
With that out of the way I’d also like to give some advice I’ve found over the years:
Always segregate cards and money, carrying enough cards and cash to keep 3 separate stashes is invaluable. On you, in luggage, stored in your hotel/Airbnb etc.
Leave a contact number, email, WhatsApp in wallet, written on a card etc.
For good coffee look for a place that can do latte art in the reviews/google pictures
For varied , fresh food, look for açai bowls. Might be weird but it almost always holds true.
Download pre-loaded google maps, or favourite places in the general Google maps in lists before hand
Comfortable shoes without an air bubble. Personally I highly recommend Adidas Ultraboost.
For restaurants do the walk by/go back. Especially in touristy areas. Have a look at multiple restaurants and then loop back to one you want. Never go to the first one you see.
Anddddd.. onto the trip.. I really wish you could post pictures here..
So I travel with a 65L Arc’teryx Altera backpack. My wife recently switched from a backpack to a mid-sized rolling suitcase from Monos, a local Vancouver company. Highly recommended. We also both have day-bag backpacks which fit every carry-on requirement.
Imo, an extended trip like this can be accomplished with a carry on only, but it wouldn’t be fun. I think I could pair down my gear about 1/3 of what I currently have but you’d definitely be giving up some creature comforts which make a long trip like this much more enjoyable.
On Sept 19th we departed Vancouver, flying with Condor, to Frankfurt. Condor then proceeded to steal over $700 CAD from us for a business class upgrade I never received, and we still have not got a refund almost 2 months later.. good start lol
So we flew into Frankfurt and spent a night there by the train station. I’d say to this point the area around the Frankfurt train station is probably the sketchiest/worst part of any city we’ve been. Wouldn’t recommend spending much time through there other than transiting but we did spend a night at a great hotel though “Hotel Azimut” near the train station, was very nice and I can recommend it. From there we made our way to Wurzburg.