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Some Optionals Advice!

21 Jul 2008 CubanQueen said

CubanQueen
Hey everyone... so I got back from my euro magic trip a few weeks ago and I thought I'd help you all out with some optionals! I went on the European Magic tour, however I know these optionals are available to other tours as well so I hope this helps some people out!

In AMSTERDAM
-Canal Cruise: you gotta do this! We took this at the beginning of the tour and it was a great way to meet everyone and it has endless drinks, so basically as much wine or beer as you can drink in 1 hour. there are some little salty snacks, the views are great. And there is some music, not too much room to dance! Oh and *warning* I managed to drink myself about 6 glasses of wine (oh yeah I'm made the most of the unlimited drinks!) and there is a small toilet on the boat however the whole time I was too into getting to know the people than use the toilet. Right when the boat docked everyone made a dash to the toilet however the man in charge said we were out of luck, well he literally said "You had your time, get off the boat". So use the toilet ahead of time or else you'll be regretting it later!!
-Sex Show: This is recommended for anyone who is not a prude, can look at something a bit awkward and not laugh out loud, and someone who is comfortable with their bodies. I didn't go on this tour however some people on my trip told me about it and it sounds like a riot! It is definitely exactly how it sounds. It's a SEX SHOW. So yes, there will be sex. LIVE sex. On a rotating stage. And there will be time for volunteers... but don't volunteer if you are not willing to participate in some way! (one guy got pulled up and had to wear a dildo hat... you can only imagine what he had to do with that!)

ST. GOAR
-Wine tasting: it's a very small town, one street. It's beautiful however there's not much to do. The wine tasting was a great way to pass the time, and the wine was surprisingly good. The first wine was my least favorite.. it seemed to get better as the samples came. And you got to taste it in these little shot glasses that said "St. Goar" on them and you get to keep it! So cute! There is bread and cheese to taste the wine with however there was a previous post on here about a girl getting sick and she thinks it was because of the cheese and not being pasturized... I ate the cheese and I was fine, but a word of caution!

MUNICH
-City Bike Tour: These guys are extremely funny! Mad perverts, but hilarious! It's a good way to see the city however you are RUSHED. No chance to really stop and take pictures because you would lose the group. We biked around the main square then through some beautiful gardens then to a HUGE beer garden, we had about 45 minutes to stop, eat, drink a pint and then back on the bike!

VENICE
-Gondola Ride: I didn't go on this, I had previously went to Venice and went on a gondola ride but everyone who went liked it! They thought it was a little rushed, you were able to bring some drinks (BELLINIS ARE A MUST!) and drink a little bit if you wish.
-Venetian restaurant: It was OK. The food was mediocre. There was a lot of food though: pastas, vegetables, a meat platter, bread, there was a sort of seafood ceviche however the seafood was disappointingly rubbery. For some reason I found the food to be a bit salty as well. However, each table (there are 2 tables pushed together 4 people per half table, 8 people in total) recieves a bottle of red wine and sparkling white wine. Our whole table only had 6 people at it and one person didn't drink alcohol so I got a whole bottle of wine to myself. it was great Smiler I don't really remember the dessert... which is unfortunate because I LOVE dessert. It must not have been very good.

LUCERNE:
-Mt. Stanserhorn: I'm afraid of heights. However I went on this cause I heard the sights were beautiful. Bummer is... I wore shorts and a tank top that whole day cause it was extremely hot, we arrive at the top of the mountain to find out that it's RAINING! Needless to say I missed the sights because I was under the awning the entire time.But if I had been prepared it would have been fabulous! On top of the mountain there's this restaurant/cafeteria/gift shop and I bought a coffee with schnapps in it... umm ya it didn't taste so good.
-Lake Lucerne Cruise: Gorgeous! Amazing views! I highly recommend this because the sunset is to die for. You get one free drink and the rest of the drinks are only 2 SF, which is amazingly priced for the area. The drinks are either beer or wine, I suggest the beer.

PARIS:
-Group Photo: Didn't pay for this one... I took many photos of the group throughout the trip so I didn't find this necessary however it would have been nice to have the photo. Next time I will!
-Moulin Rouge- I didn't go, the price would have been way too much for me (Almost 300 dollars!) however everyone who went loved it. Next time I go I'll make sure to save up enough money for it.


Hope this helped some people! If you have any more questions don't hesitate to ask! And here's some extra advice, free of charge Wink, make sure you go on this trip and think to yourself "No Regrets". It is only one time that you will be in that area with those people in that situation, have fun! Be yourself! Be open, and don't go back home thinking "I wish I would have done that differently"
  • 21 Jul 2008 TravellingLiz said

    TravellingLiz

    Thanks for the feedback. It’s good to know.

  • 12 Aug 2008 Chillibg said

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    I’m doing the Euro Magic Sept 17-25, totally exciting!
    So you say I should keep a umbrella in my bag for the Alps?
    I also heard the Venetian supper wasn’t all that good, I would love to go to the Moulin rouge, so I might skip Venetian to save for the Moulin Rouge supper. Its definitely once in a lifetime!
    CubanaQueen…How was the hotels? Is there anything you forget to take or wished you left behind?
    Was there enough time to wash clothing & dry them?

    Thanks for the info it helps a lot!!!

  • 13 Aug 2008 CubanQueen said

    CubanQueen

    Hey Chillibg! Here’s a boatload of advice for you… lol

    Yeah you should definitely take an umbrella when you go up the mountain! When you are at the bottom it may seem unlikely that you’ll need it, but once you start going up then you’ll understand!

    I wish i would have brought: bug spray, extra extra batteries, a zip up jacket (or jumper), another pair of pants, another pair of dress up shoes, a hair dryer (many hotels didn’t have them, and if they did you had to make a deposit), a hat to wear on the mornings i didn’t have time to do my hair Roll Eyes<!--graemlin::rolleyes:-->

    I’m so gladdd i brought a travel neck pillow (definitely comes in handy on the bus!), a sleep eye mask, ear plugs, socks for the bus (it gets cold), a little pack of tissues, some snacks from home (i brought a bag of pretzels and granola bars, they definitely came in handy when i was hungry and there was no food to be found), a long skirt to wear when in italy… it’s friggin hott and you have to wear something to go past your knees if you want to enter the churches. and last but not least… an alarm clock!!!! a must have!!!

    there was nothing really that i wish i would have left behind. maybe not pack so many shirts that i didn’t end up wearing, or my tennis shoes. i ended up just wearing flip flops.

    I would also recommend skipping out on the venetian dinner and going to moulin rouge. Dinner was just a mediocre dinner, nothing special at all. Unlike the moulin rouge which is world wide known and supposed to be really good!

    The hotels weren’t bad at all. I had heard on some of the posts that some hotels were awful, however we never encountered a bad hotel. They were all actually pleasantly surprising. I’ll try and remember some of them…

    London: Royal national. Stayed here before tour started, and this was probably the worst looking hotel and it wasn’t even that bad. However there are very thin walls… you could hear a lot of what the rooms around you were doing… yikes! And the Imperial was a little upscale nicer version of the royal national.

    Amsterdam: the hotel was really nice, but olddd! there was one TINY elevator, I’m talking about 3 people capacity at the most. right by the lake, good breakfast! The amenities here were actually pretty modern. I’m an interior designer so I noticed this kind of stuff everywhere hehe

    Rhine Valley: deserted hotel! be prepared to rest from your night out in amsterdam this night at the rhine valley. i think my partner and i got lucky and received a large room and we were also lucky that we didn’t have to carry our luggage down the steep hill! (this hotel was separated, there was a different building down the road with rooms that some people had to walk to) we did however have to carry our luggage up the stairs (no elevator), which was quite a challenge. other than that it was nice and comfortable.

    Munich: I remember the name of this hotel very clearly, cause that night we had some trouble getting the taxi to find it! The park inn east! this was a very nice hotel, the breakfast was the best of the entire trip (from what i heard, i didn’t get to make it… too late!). good sized beds, clean, modern, very nice.

    Venice: we stayed at the holiday inn express. it was a good hotel, average for the trip. however it was out of the way and all there was to do at night was walk around the neighborhood (i suggest doing that with bug spray on… i almost got eaten alive!). there’s a bar downstairs… dont really remember it… good breakfast.

    Lucerne: the hotel was good. I think at the last minute we got switched to a different hotel, but it was nice. food there was pretty good and they had a bar as well. this hotel you have to have a key to get inside the building after a certain hour or else you have to ring the bell outside and wait for someone to let you in… this also occured in amsterdam and paris. small tiny elevator, plan on carrying your luggage up the stairs at most of the hotels due to small cramped elevators and everyone trying to get to their room.

    paris: nice hotel. the walls in the hallway were bright green… and inside the room was green and gray. interesting. but comfortable! a little cramped but it had a flat screen tv and a good variety of breakfast items. also had a bar. this hotel was right by port d’italie and was about 20 minutes from the eiffel tower thru the metro.


    here’s some more advice… remember to take something from the hotel with the hotels name on it when you go out at night! even write the name of the hotel on your hand, i cannot explain how many times people forgot the name and had to ask around for a while.

    for washing clothes, you’ll have time when you stay at the hotel for 2 nights. I think the only time you do this is in venice and paris. other than that you won’t have time, cause when you arrive to the hotel you literally have 10-20 minutes to throw down your luggage and get ready for dinner then after dinner you go out. if you want to skip the dinner then you have more time, prolly about a little more than an hour or so. then when you come back that night im sure you won’t want to stay up and do laundry, cause you gotta wake up at like 6 or 7 in the morning! i think the park inn east in munich had laundry service (you give them your clothes and money and they wash it for you), but im not too sure how long it takes or the cost.

    you’re going to have so much fun! you’ll be wishing the tour was longer, but I like to think of it as a little taste-test of the countries.

  • 13 Aug 2008 Nyclizzo said

    Nyclizzo

    CubanQueen, thanks for all the advice…I’m going on the European Magic on Sept 19th and I have a million things going on in my head…Did you do any tours through London while there? I’m looking to do something that hits up all the big things (Westminister, Buckingham Palace, St Pauls cathedral)…thanks for any input Smiler<!--graemlin::)--> Also, were there alot of people alone on the tour?

  • 13 Aug 2008 Jess-ade said

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    quote:
    Originally posted by CubanQueen:

    I wish i would have brought: bug spray, extra extra batteries, a zip up jacket (or jumper), another pair of pants, another pair of dress up shoes, a hair dryer (many hotels didn’t have them, and if they did you had to make a deposit), a hat to wear on the mornings i didn’t have time to do my hair Roll Eyes<!--graemlin::rolleyes:-->



    Hi CubanQueen!

    When you say you wish you’d brought another pair of jeans and another pair of dress up shoes, how many did you actually take?

    Thanks!
    Jess

  • 13 Aug 2008 CubanQueen said

    CubanQueen

    Nyclizzo: I didn’t do any tours, however I got a tube pass and i took the tube everywhere. I went to buckingham palace, westminster abbey, several gardens, soho, parliament, etc. all in a day! they have these GREAT bus tours, its a big double decker red bus that will take you around to see all these places. you can get off at, for example, buckingham palace, and then you can get on the tour again when the next bus stops by. like a “hop on hop off” sort of thing. if you go to royal national they have information on it at concierge. i didn’t to it cause it was around 30 euro and cheaper just to get a tube pass Smiler<!--graemlin::)-->

    Jess-ade: i brought 2 pairs of pants. however it was a little chilly (i get cold easily) in some areas, such as germany and lucerne. my pants ended up getting stretched out and loose! i brought one pair of dress up shoes and they weren’t even that dressy, more like a nice pair of platform thongs. nothing special! next time im planning on taking 2 pairs.

  • 14 Aug 2008 Nyclizzo said

    Nyclizzo

    I’ll probably wind up doing a bus tour ( I get lost driving into New Jersey LoL ) thanks for your input CubanQueen Smiler<!--graemlin::)-->

  • 14 Aug 2008 lady_o said

    lady_o

    Going on Road to Ahens next wednesday!can’t wait! going a day early to have a little more time in London. Booked a Shakespeare City Walk Tour through the website www.LondonTown.com and also plan on doing the Hop on hop off bus. getting SO excited!

  • 14 Aug 2008 Chillibg said

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    One more thing, how was the night life?

    Thanks a lot for all the info, its helps so much guys!
    I’m planning on doing the London eye and topless bus… 90stops and free Thames river cruise!! Oh yes and Stonehenge.

    Euro Magic here we come.

  • 15 Aug 2008 Nyclizzo said

    Nyclizzo

    Chilibug, are you doing the topless bus through
    Contiki or your own?

  • 17 Aug 2008 Chillibg said

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    I’m doing the topless bus on my own, I heard that I can book at the Royal National hotel for the topless bus & apparently the bus has a stop right there…will check all these out when I get there!
    I’m doing the tour before contiki starts, because I arrive in London on the 15th…Euro magic starts the 17th!!!

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