Visiting Europe

Discussion in 'Europe - Other Areas' started by anjana, Mar 30, 2006.

  1. anjana

    anjana Bronze IL'ite

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    Hi IL's from Europe,
    I just joined the group and has been very informative. We have been thinking about visiting Europe for a long time.I have a two year old.Is it feasible to visit Rome,Paris,Greece with this age group? Are these places kid friendly? What about Indian food? Can somebody shed light on this.Planning sometime in June.
    Thanks.
    Anjana.
     
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  2. sudhavnarasimhan

    sudhavnarasimhan Silver IL'ite

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    Hi Anjana,

    Are you guys travelling on your own or with the tour operators. With them, the indian food etc will be organised. On your own it could be difficult , there are not many indian restaurants like London. The ones there will also be in places not so easily reachable and pretty expensive also. Paris is okay, there is a lane with indian , srilankan and pakistani restaurants. And with a 2 year old, i really don't know, how much of site seeing you can do. It could be tiring. But if u plan to take it easyand slow,then it could be okay. Have to be very careful with your possessions in PARIS AND ROME, lots of bag snatching and pckpockets, u will not even realise, within seconds you can lose things. Also language is a big problem in all thses countries, no one speaks english also. You can take conducted tours in all the places which is the best way!

    Don't think i am discouraging you, but forewarned is better than crying later.
    Do you have contacts in all these places ? Feel free to ask any details....will be glad to help.
     
  3. anjana

    anjana Bronze IL'ite

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    Regarding trip

    Hi Sudha,
    Let me first say that I was not discouraged by your comments. We have been thinking about this for a while that is why kept postponing. We are planning to travel alone. I have two kids but first one is old enough. I know these are good places to visit,but the rest may be a hassle. What are your suggestions? It never struck to us we could use a guided tour.
    May be I will look into to that. In the meantime if you can think of something just let me know.
    Thanks a lot for the response,
    Hope to hear more,
    bye,
    Anjana.
     
  4. Vidya24

    Vidya24 Gold IL'ite

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    Holiday in Europe

    Hi Anjana,

    I am glad that u r planning to visit Europe in June. It will be the start of summer at this time, so weather should be reasonably good.

    I am not sure if it is better to use a tour operator or plan by yourself.

    Greece is a bit further away then the other two countries in your list. Maybe u could try three, four countries that are very near. Like Paris, Germany, Holland and Belgium- travelling in between will be easier.

    Indian food is rather expensive in Amsterdam. Last year my cousins toured Europe. Their 5 yr old has colon problem and can eat only freshly cooked rice. So they took the smallest size rice electric rice cooker with them and made fresh rice in the hotels (after telling the management, since u cannot use electric cooker in the room). They all could manage with that rice for food along with some readymade pickles, super market yogurt, salads etc.

    Otherwise, general facilities are okay in Europe. If u want to use a stroller etc, there are ramps. Have fun. If u want more details, pls ask.

    cheers
    Vidya
     
  5. Kamla

    Kamla IL Hall of Fame

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    Hi Anjana,

    You have received valuable advise from both Vidya and Sudha.

    First of all, plan your tour thoroughly well in advance as you are travelling with two small kids. Check out with your travel agent about what countries are conducive to travel in one trip. Rome and Paris are manageable if you take a flight that makes a break at Europe's capital cities, Athens in Greece may not be included in such a trip as it is a bit out of the way. Maybe you should include some other capital city like Munich in Germany for example or Amsterdam. But if you are planning to cover Europe by road, then plan countries which are easily accessible by car or Euro-rail.

    Once you decide on that, you must as next reserve hotels at all the cities you plan to visit. That is important and don't decide on booking hotels upon arrival in that country. This way, you can get to your hotel and unwind. In all these hotels, they will have plenty of brochures giving you idea of what to see and how and also about tours for sight seeing. These tours can also be booked from US itself and then you MUST specify your food requirements and mention that you are travelling with two small kids. Even if they can't provide you with indian meals, they will atleast make a note of your special requirements if any like vegetarian meals etc. If you are very particular about indian food, then you MUST carry a small rice cooker and also a small water kettle which is extremely useful to make coffee/tea/hot beverage for kids. Naturally, carry handy packs of coffe, tea, sugar etc and a flask, paper plates, cups and spoons since you are with kids. A small packet of rice and some practical gun powder(!) and pickle should atleast provide you with one sumptuous meal along with locally bought fruit, yoghurt and salad. Both Sudha and Vidhya too have mentioned that to you. If you are discreet, you don't really need to ask for extra permission to use these articles in the room. Besides, most rooms in Europe these days provide facility to make your own tea and coffee.

    The first thing you do upon arriving at your hotel rooms, go through the brochures and pick a city sightseeing tour which gives you an idea of all the important spots there so you can select a few if you want to explore in detail. Also, visit the local tourist information centres which are conveniently situated in every european city and you can collect further info there about the various things to do and what trips to take.

    Sudha gave a very valuable advise about theft and pickpockets. Even I was robbed in Italy! Gypsy groups are rampant there and these innocent looking women sandwich you between them in subways or crowded places and before you realise, your purse is gone. This happened inspite of my being very careful. Glad to say they only got my emergency medical bag from my big handbag! So travel with convenient backpacks and ofcourse comfortable clothes and shoes:)

    Once you have done all the basic planning and preperation, your trip in Europe should be an extremely pleasant one. Europe has many wondeful and historical places to see. Paris and Rome are like gems on earth. Athens too is rich with its past history. You will simply enjoy. No worry on that aspect. As for them being friendly with children, generally they are. It is up to us not to take them to places that may be too crowded for the little ones. So do decide what you want to see and do keeping that in mind. Even a walk in the heart of Paris is so beautiful that you will remember it for a long time.

    I am presently a bit 'homesick' for Europe!! Hence got a bit carried away with my post. Hope it is of help to you:) If any questions pop up, don't hesitate to ask. If I know, I will let you know.

    L, Kamla.




     
  6. anjana

    anjana Bronze IL'ite

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    Thanks a million

    HI Kamala & Vidya,
    Kamala that was a detailed response. I did not mean to re-kindle your memories. Sorry Vidya could not reply sooner. After reading your experiences I am considering if we should really visit right now. Will it even be a good vacation, since I've heard wonderful things about Europe[sightseeing].
    We should come up with some decision soon enough,so will keep you all posted one way or the other. THANKS to Sudha also.
    Love and regards,
    Anjana.
     
  7. Vidya24

    Vidya24 Gold IL'ite

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    Hi Anjana & Ami,

    Some info, though u may already be aware of this.

    When u tour Europe, try to book an apartment instead of a hotel room. There are many types and rates to choose from. The best part is u can cook safely with no hassles. Even in hotel rooms, u can only sneakily make rice. In the apartment, u can cook full meals. Also washing machine, dish washer etc are all available.

    We have booked one for 6 days now and it works out much, much cheaper than good hotel rooms. Added benefit, can travel lighter since fewer clothes can be carried.
     
  8. Ami

    Ami Silver IL'ite

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    No, I dont...

    Thanks a lot, vidhya..will remember the points for sure..

    Rgds.
     
  9. anjana

    anjana Bronze IL'ite

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    Thanks Vidya

    Dear Vidya,

    Thanks for the tip. Will remember once we decide what we are going to do. Still debating if we should go now or wait for few years till my little one grows up. :confused:

    Love,
    Anjana
     
  10. safa

    safa Bronze IL'ite

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    europe!

    hello,
    can anybody tell how much will be the expense for the europe trip from india for one person?
    if any one have experience pls share ..........
    love, safa.
     

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