A First-Time Trip to Europe

Creating itineraries for people who don’t travel very extensively can be exciting. It also can be a bit challenging in it's own way. Whereas you can have some clients who know exactly what they like and what they want to do, the flip-side is having clients who don’t know too much about what they might enjoy while traveling. Case in point- I just had a honeymoon couple return from an absolutely amazing trip in Europe that had never been, yet wanted a fully customized, off the beaten path trip that was all their own.

The hard part at the beginning though, was being able to uncover what the experience was they were after. Our literal starting point was: “We want to spend about three weeks in Europe.” No specific countries, no specific type of trip… just Europe.  A whole entire continent of goodness.

What followed was months of planning and tweaking, until the trip that evolved seemed to speak directly to them. They ended up making four stops: 

Rome - Amalfi Coast - Barcelona - Paris

Would I suggest this itinerary if someone randomly asked me how they should spend three weeks in Europe? Maybe not. I might say they really didn’t need to leave Italy. But the whole point was, it was their trip. They wanted to see Barcelona. They wanted to experience Paris. So my goal was to make all that happen.The following is a general breakdown of their trip and the things they did at each stop:

Rome:

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For Rome, they decided to stick to the basics and really appreciate the must-see attractions in the Eternal City.  Since they weren’t going to spend time in Florence, they did do a day trip by train, and had the opportunity to at least wet their appetite. 

Highlights

  • Small group tour of Ancient Rome
  • Small group tour of the Vatican and St. Peter’s Basilica
  • Day trip to Florence by train
  • A day of shopping and walking around some of Rome’s most famous piazza’s.

Amalfi Coast:

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A stay in Positano afforded them the opportunity to spend a few days relaxing, and soaking in the beautiful coastline. If you are going to get in some beach time while in Italy, there is no better place to do it than the Amalfi Coast. There was no real schedule to adhere to here, except a rundown of the different type of beaches they could visit, and some great restaurant recommendations.

Barcelona:

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Their time in Barcelona was what they enjoyed most. Here they were able to soak in both culture and some exciting nightlife. This was the place that most closely aligned to their personalities.  

Highlights:

  • -A traditional flamenco show
  • -A day spent in Barcelona’s historic center, wandering the maze of streets and sipping sangria
  • -A tour of La Sagrada Familia and Park Guell
  • -Beach day at Barcelona’s famous beaches
  • -Experiencing the very best of Barcelona’s nightlife

Paris:

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Paris is known as the city of love, and as such, a fitting ending to a honeymoon trip for these two lovebirds. They opted to get the Paris Pass to allow them to see and do the things they were most interested in at their leisure, and experience Paris on their own terms.

Highlights:

  • -A visit to the Eiffel tower at Sunset
  • -Cruise down the Seine river
  • -Visit to Paris most famous museums- The Lourve and Musee D’ Orsay
  • -A stroll through the Montmartre area
  • -Guided tour of Versailles

The most important aspect of their trip is that it was theirs. What they might not have known at the onset of planning, they were able to better articulate and make decisions on as the planning process got underway.  It was also very important for them to have someone to contact and reach out to throughout their trip whenever they had questions or needed additional assistance. Traveling abroad may come naturally to some after years of doing it, but we forget how intimidating and uncertain things can seem when you venture out at the beginning. The emails and texts while they were on their trip allowed me to continue offering valuable support throughout their trip. 

I plan travel for season veterans and those just beginning their journey. My number one goal is to always help you have the trip you desire. Wherever you're at, I would love to partner with you on your next trip. Contact me to discuss it.