Monthly Archives: June 2008

Travel Guide Review – 3 Rick Steves Books

So I have been amassing quite a collection of travel books (and reading even more). Some of my favourites had to be the Rick Steves series. I’ve read three of them, pretty much cover to cover.

Rick Steves Europe Through the Backdoor – I felt like this was a must-read for a first time Europe traveller (especially if you’re going on your own). It was mostly full of travel tips and hints, and less about specific places. This is a book to borrow from the library, rather than buy. And it’s not really the most appropriate book to take with you.

Rick Steves Europe 101: History and Art for the Traveller – Art aficionados or historians seem to dislike this book, as it simplifies a pretty complex history, but I thought it was fantastic! A lot of the history I was already aware of, but the part I loved was how the history related to the different periods of art and architecture. I also just borrowed this book from the library, but I ended up making a big list of where some of the most famous (or at least some of my favourite) art pieces are.

Rick Steves Best of Europe (2007) – This one is a very personal, opinionated look at several places. It is definitely not all-encompassing: it only focuses on certain cities or areas that they chose as the “best”. Within those cities though, it goes into great detail about what they really think is the best. My favourite part of this book had to be all the walking tours and simplified maps. It is also a nice read. I will definitely be taking this book (at least the chapters on the places I’m heading).

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Backpacking Europe…and itinerary as of now

Well hello!

In case you don’t know me, I’m a Canadian 20-something, and a recent university graduate. I hope to someday see… well… the world! I’m starting with Europe, and I’m backpacking solo this Fall 2008. I plan to update this blog at least twice a week in the times leading to the trip, and during the trip as well.

To start, here’s my basic itinerary. (I know it’s quite planned out, but I can always change things once I get there. It’s my first time in Europe, and I want to make sure I’ll be able to see everything I hope to). The dates I have listed are actually where I’ll be spending the nights – some of the days I’ll be travelling between cities.

August 27: Fly into London from Toronto (arrive on the 28th)

August 28-31: Bath (with a trip out to Stonehenge)

Sept 1-4: London

Sept 5-8: Amsterdam (with stop for lunch & a museum in Brussels en route, and possible sidetrips to Haarlem, The Hague, Delft)

Sept 9-10: Visiting family in Hannover & Kropp, Germany? (still have to talk to them)

Sept 11-14: Berlin

Sept 15-16: Prague

Sept 17-20: Vienna (with a stop in Salzburg)

Sept 21-24: Munich (for Oktoberfest! With possible sidetrips to Dachau & Neuschwanstein Castle)

Sept 25-27: Venice

Sept 28-30: Cinque Terre (probably in Manarola)

Oct 1-4: Rome

Oct 5: Naples (sidetrips to Pompeii & Herculaneum)

Oct 6-9: Barcelona (fly from Rome)

Oct 10-11: Carcassonne, France (with a stop at Figuerues, Spain to see the Dali Teatro-Museo)

Oct 12-15: Provence region, probably staying in Aix, but possibly visiting Avignon, Arles, Marseille, Isle-sur-la-soruge, or Loumarin

OCt 16-19: Paris (also go to Versailles)

Oct 20: Dublin (fly from Paris)

Oct 21-22: Visiting family in Bunclody, Ireland? (still have to talk to them1)

Oct 23: Dublin again

Oct 24-28: Ireland tour with Paddy Wagon Tours

Oct 29: Dublin once more

Oct 30: Fly out of Dublin for Toronto

– Jess

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