Thursday, May 03, 2012

Eurotrip 2012 is quickly approaching

Time is marching on.
I am waiting the night that the plane leaves Atlanta, GA.

Really – I am waiting on the plane to touch down in Paris, France.

Things I have checked off my planning list:

Passport – Check

Airline tickets - Check

Rail Pass – Check (Rail Europe)

Reservations for TGV and Night Trains – Check

Hostel reservations – Check

Paris -

Switzerland -

Prague -

Amsterdam -

Credit Cards and ATM authorized for international use – Check

Basic understanding of Paris metro – Check

Hiking route planned in Switzerland (Gimmelwald to Interlaken) – Check

ATV location for rental in the Swiss Alps – Check

Basic understanding of Prague metro – Check

Paris by Train

Tour Reservation for Prague Castle – Check

Museums in Amsterdam planned – Check

Items identified to carry in backpack – Check

Things left to do:

Gather items and pack (preplanning pack weight = 8lbs)

Obtain landing money in Euro’s (Atlanta Airport upon leaving)

Making ATV reservations (upon arriving in Interlaken, Switzerland)

Say goodbye to family …..

What eurotrip ever be planned without first checking Rick Steves

I hope some of these link help you in planning. They have been very helpful to me.

Hostelworld - a big thanks to them for helping me plan where to stay.

Monday, April 09, 2012

#eurotrip - 6 Weeks out

Time is crawling.

6 weeks is suppose to be the sweet spot for booking air travel.
Tuesday is suppose to be the sweet spot day for booking air travel.

Tomorrow is that sweet spot. We will see.

The airline ticket is the last puzzle piece to be acquired.

I have mentally prepared. I have scheduled & reviewed.

Paris will be the landing spot. As I have reviewed the process, I figure I will be in Paris about almost 2 hours before I see anything outside of a building or train.

However, when I do - it is on after that.

You see - they tell you not to plan too much - not to schedule too much.
I am sorry - that's just me. I have lots to do and see. I don't have time to figure out how to travel around Paris while I am in Paris. I have studied the maps.

The best Paris website: Paris by Train
Take a few moments and name the sites you want to visit. Spend the rest of the time on how to get to those sites from every angle.

Paris will rush by me in a flash.

TGV & Night train - Reservations - the only crack in my plan. I can't reserve until I get to Europe. Not happy - but hey - it will be loose ends that will make it feel gutsy.
The best train schedule website: Bahn

Interlaken - Scheduled fun. Hiking / Shopping / ATV rides
How else would you enjoy the Swiss Alps?

Websites: Daniel's fun rentals


Prague - Architecture history on steroids.
Romanesque - Gothic - Baroque - WOW!

I hope I don't trip in Prague due to constantly looking up at all the great Architecture.

Booked a tour through and around Prague Castle with Markete.

Art Gallery central.
Van Gogh
any man who cuts off his ear for a woman has my interest. :-)

His use of light (or lack of use) draws me in. What's he hiding?

Rake is thinking of leaving the country

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Time to cut - too much to see in Europe

The truth is out there.

I have found that I too must search and find the truth. I found the truth that I didn't have several years to spend travelling around Europe. Thus, I couldn't see all the great places that danced in my head.

Budapest would have been great. London is worth a whole visit itself.
Ireland would absolutely be a joy. Slovakia would be quiet interesting.
Sweden could show me all of its beauty. on and on....

The places are identified. The major attractions marked.
The general travel between have been sketched out.

I was a bummed that so many great places couldn't make the list.

The list was slimmed down to only four locations.

Land in Paris. Spend 3 days around Paris.
Travel to Interlaken - three days in Beautiful Switzerland.
A full travel day to Prague. 3 great days in a wonderful city.
Another full travel day - reaching Amsterdam. 3 days in Amsterdam.
A plane ride home will end my 2 week swift journey

That's the plan. Time to get documents in order.
Reservations on the books. Then only time will stand in between me and the journey.

Rake has entered a dream.

Friday, January 20, 2012

The Planning Begins

I have sketched out about 15 day trip to Europe.
The trip moves me through both Western and Eastern Europe via Eurail.

I did find this photo of Lauterbrunnen Valley, Switzerland.


Starts in Paris for a couple of days. (Maybe Plug In Hostel)

Moves over to Lauterbrunnen Valley, Switzerland for a few days in the mountains. (maybe Valley Hostel)

Next is to travel south to Venice. (looking at hostels: Venice Fish or Venice Museum)

North is the next direction all the way to Amsterdam. (Hostel: Durty Nellys or Flying Pig Downtown)

After a few days in Amsterdam the plan is to travel to Prague in the Czech Republic. (Hostels: Old Prague Hostel or Hostel Elf are on the list)

Leaving Prague moving on to Budapest, Hungary. (Hostels:Big Fish or Downtown Oasis)

Moving back east to Cinque Terre, Italy. (Hostels: Le Sirene or AltraVista Culturale)

Ending the trip in Rome, Italy. (Hostels: Eurorooms or Funny Place hostel)

Please comment if you have suggestions or advise. This is subject to all kind of changes based on my preference.

Do tell of your European travels. Point me to interesting sites. Useful sites.
Teach me to read a Eurail train schedule.

Looking forward to European Culture.

Oh by the way, I received a preliminary ok today from Boss. (yeah!)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Backpacking Europe - 2012

I have the okay from the wife.
Next up - scheduling and get approval from work (should be okay).

Since this will be a solo trip, I am leaning towards making this an Eastern Europe trip. I find the culture and places of Eastern Europe more attractive than those of Western Europe. Also, it leaves the newness of going to Western Europe if the wife and daughter ever want to go.

I have long desired to visit Prague. That is a definite on my list. Combine that with limited time - tells me I need to stick to Eastern Europe.

My first pass at a possible route with more cities/places than I can visit is:

Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Berlin, Prague, Vienna, Zuric, Bratislave, Belgrade, Budapest, Venice, Rome. I would need 30+ days to slowly enjoy those places. I will probably be limited to 16 days. So, that list will probably be limit in a big way.

I need suggestions people......

Good Hostels (clean)
Excellent small pubs/diners
local spots that shows off the areas culture

Soon.... Rakethetable will leave the continent.

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Hello, from the back side of another weekend.

Here we sit at the tail end of yet another weekend. My beautiful wife is in the kitchen cooking us some Sunday chicken. Little One is off doing her thing somewhere in the house. She comes by every few moments whining about wanting to go to the pool. Maybe we can go after lunch. It is a beautiful day today and pretty dog-gone warm!

So, here dad sits hammering out another blog for the world (or family and few friends). I was teasing the family on the way home form church today that we are going to have so much fun on our getaway to the mountains. I still haven't told them where we are going. My wife would know if she ever read my blog. But, that doesn't hardly ever happen.

Saturday night. We did go see friends and had a wonderful time with them and their baby. Cloe is 8 months old and has the biggest and brightest eyes. We arrived late afternoon. Cloe's dad had not yet returned from his hunting camp cleaning day. He arrived later. As my wife and child played with Cloe in the floor, I watched Oregon whoop up on Michigan. I couldn't be happier. There are some schools that carry an arrogance about them - they no humility. Well, Michigan is learning some humility these days. Next up - Southern California. I watches the whole game. It was awesome. Dixon is a real threat. He has some talent around him. We will see how far the ducks can go this year.

I was embarrassed by the bulldogs play. I am really re-thinking this Bobo calling the plays thing that Coach Richt established this year. Bobo wasn't all that great of a quarterback while playing at Georgia. I don't think he can handle the pressures of the SEC competition. Good game South Carolina. You played well on defense.

The dinner was a success. We had Bacon, Sausage, eggs, biscuits, gravy and hash browns. That is a good meal. After dinner, Little One and I headed across the street to a small park. There was a geocache over there I wanted to try. However, it was getting dark and showed over 400 feet from the trail. We skipped it and headed over to the play ground.

I will leave you with a few pictures of the family with Cloe. Have a great week.

Little One with Cloe:

Cloe and her mom:

My amazing wife:

Me smiling at the camera:

Cloe and her dad:

Little One being all crazy with a scoobie doo mask:

Little One stiking a pose:

Little One showing off her flipping skills: