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Did Euro Escapade summer 07 - want any advise?

14 Mar 2008 *nikki_adelaide* asked

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Hey people
I did this tour June/July 07 so if anyones wanting to ask questions let me know!

I travelled from Adelaide to Singapore for a stop over then London, then did the Escapade, then London a bit more, then Hong Kong on the way home.

Would be glad to answer anything as i know when i went some of the simplest things were hard to find out.
  • 15 Mar 2008 keels said

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    hi!!!
    i am doing mine in june!! i can’t wait!!! the main thing i am wanting to know is, what are the MUST in the extra options and which ones can be missed!!
    how long did you stay in london after?? what is there to don in london after?? which obvioulsy isn’t in the contiki!!
    thanks!! Smiler<!--graemlin::)-->

  • 15 Mar 2008 *nikki_adelaide* said

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    my friend and i stayed in london for 5 days before tour, this worked out well because you are SO tired after the Escapade that you wouldnt think of sightseeing. we got the london pass, check it out…you get your moneys worth by just doing a few things. we spent 5 days running around – literally running, to see all there is to see. we also spotted all the shopping we wanted to buy and did that in our 2 days in london after tour so as to not make our luggage heavier for contiki. do the london eye, see big ben, the london bridge etc etc. so much to see in London.

    i did every single optional apart from the paris dinner and caberet show. my friend and i instead, booked the 9pm moulin rouge show, you just go to their website and email them , then you pay the full fee once you arrive. we found this awesome aussie pub neary and ate, i wouldnt have done this any other way, the moulin rouge was great. the people who did go to the dinner and show said it was good but no one really raved about it.

    Do all of the optionals i think, even the mozart concert, i kinda thought i;m here in Vienna this is the only time i’ll care to see this type of music.

    None of the meals are that good, apart from the final night in amsterdam (but ive just seen they have changed that now to a different dinner) but do them all as its more about spending time with the group than having a great meal, if most of the group decides not to do the meals then stay with them, you wont be missing out on anything by not eating the food they serve :P

    if you want any detail about any of the optionals in particular let me know =D

    the white water rafting was very tame and the rapids were boring as hell, i say this because ive done it before in bali and it was alot tougher…people who had never done it before thought it was amazing, alas the views are worth the money and even though the ride is boring, you make your own fun by jumping into the freezing water (yep even tho its summer the water itself is soooo bloody cold ‘they give you wetsuits’)

    Paragliding and Jungfrau Mountain are must do’s, paragliding is so amazing, beautiful view…plus they take photos of you up there too they have a camera on a rod…pretty cool you pay a bit more if you want to the roll of film – worth it.

    Mountain Biking is TOUGH work, especially as by this time half the tour will be sick as dogs with the dredded contiki cough, there is a short cut they give you if you cant make it, i took it haha. and the BBQ at the end is good!

  • 16 Mar 2008 Andrew said

    Andrew

    Did you get sick? I am woried about getting sick. I only get about 2 colds a year though. Did you take anything to help you stay healthy?

    Cheers

  • 17 Mar 2008 *nikki_adelaide* said

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    yeah youre pretty much bound to get sick no matter what you do…sitting on an aircon bus breathing in eachothers germs, going from hot to cold all the time…its a pretty horrible cough (the type when you have coughing fits that amost result in you vomitting) but you almost dont have time to dramatise it enough coz your always so busy. lots of people ended up bed ridden from it but i had to keep pushing as your only in each place for a small amount of time.

    towards the end of the tour myself and a few others had to end up going to see a doctor which was really expensive so we could get drugged up on antibiotics, i tried about 4 different types from on tour to the few months after i got back, i’m still not right from it all haha and its getting close to a year later!

    to be honest, the people who drank heaps stayed healthier, pretty sure they killed all the bugs off with the booze =D

  • 17 Mar 2008 Andrew said

    Andrew

    Sounds promising.

    Shots of scotch will be needed by the sounds of it.

    Thanks Nikki from Adelaide.

  • 17 Mar 2008 keels said

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    is it fairly easy to organise for the moulin rouge?? how early do you have to book it?? i have read that the cabaret show was just alright.. was it easy to get to.. if everyone else is going to that how do you get there and back
    i am def going to be doing the paragliding.. think i will miss the white water rafting.. i am pretty sure from what you are saying that they won’t compare to NZ (queenstown)
    did you stay on for long after the tour was over

  • 17 Mar 2008 Erin said

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    Hi Nikki, I believe we spoke last year about this tour! thanks again for offering advice!
    I noticed you said you are travelling back via Hong Kong. Did you have any issues regarding your luggage coming thru HK? I have heard that HK only allows one piece of luggage per person!? I’m intending on buying lots of souvenoirs so i’m worried about paying huge extra amounts due to too much luggage. Any advice? Is it easier to post everything back from London? I am in Adelaide too! Do you have the opportunity to post stuff home during Contiki?
    cheers Erin

  • 17 Mar 2008 *nikki_adelaide* said

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    quote:
    Originally posted by keels:
    is it fairly easy to organise for the moulin rouge?? how early do you have to book it?? i have read that the cabaret show was just alright.. was it easy to get to.. if everyone else is going to that how do you get there and back
    i am def going to be doing the paragliding.. think i will miss the white water rafting.. i am pretty sure from what you are saying that they won’t compare to NZ (queenstown)
    did you stay on for long after the tour was over



    the moulin rouge is very easy to organise,
    book it on thier website and pay in full there. i booked it a few months before i went but you can do it any time or just rock up and hope for a seat, you can choose to have dinner there or just the show, i’d just go to the show as there are plenty places to eat on the same street. because the rest of the tour is going for their dinner and the other show you can go in with them on the bus at the same time and you’ll probably be able to organise to go back with them as the moulin rouge finishes around the same time as their caberet show. otherwise the public transport is easy. your tour manager will help you out…so my friend and i did our own dinner and the 9pm moulin rouge show but some other girls on my tour went to dinner with the group then the 11pm moulin rouge, but i’d definately do it the way i did.

    yeah if you have done white water raftin in NZ you’ll find the one is Austria boring as hell, but still the views are great.

    i went to singapore for a day, london for 5 days, contiki tour, london for 2 days, hong kong for 3 days.

  • 17 Mar 2008 *nikki_adelaide* said

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    quote:
    Originally posted by Erin:
    Hi Nikki, I believe we spoke last year about this tour! thanks again for offering advice!
    I noticed you said you are travelling back via Hong Kong. Did you have any issues regarding your luggage coming thru HK? I have heard that HK only allows one piece of luggage per person!? I’m intending on buying lots of souvenoirs so i’m worried about paying huge extra amounts due to too much luggage. Any advice? Is it easier to post everything back from London? I am in Adelaide too! Do you have the opportunity to post stuff home during Contiki?
    cheers Erin



    This is what you need to take with you –
    one suitcase (the size that contiki allows)
    one handbag/day bag/backpack – this will be your hand luggage for the plane and bus and what you’ll carry around during the day time.

    dont take any more than this, you have to drag your luggage at every stop over gravel and rocks and crazy stuff so just take that.

    dont take heaps of clothes, you will buy heaps of clothes there, there are lots of good cheap shops, eg H&M. happy to help with you packing lists if you are unsure about what you’ll really need.

    i went to a post office in Amsterdam and shipped back a box to Australia, its not extremely cheap but it works out a crapload cheaper than what you would have to pay per kg from the airlines. Do it in Amsterdam, its cheaper than London. they have all different sizes.

    where in adelaide are you?

  • 19 Mar 2008 Anthony1987 said

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    hi nikki!!

    first of all thanks alot for doing this your great!!
    ok i’ve heard about these dress up partys they have on the tour…i was wondering if you could confirm that and what type of dress up parties?

  • 19 Mar 2008 *nikki_adelaide* said

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    i was worried about the dress up parties before i went thinking i’d have to bring along stuff especially for them.

    we had 3 on my tour:

    at the Château – black and white night…this is easy as black and white is common, so easy enough

    Rome – we had a revenge of the nerds night…super easy, used eye liner to draw glasses, just mixed and match clothes to look nerdy, undies on the outside etc etc

    Austria – retro night…easy, just bright clothes and stuff. also at the time Europe was crazy with retro stuff so we all bought clothes especially for it

    i wouldnt worry about the dress up nights too much, they try to make them something easy, my group was really good because we pretty much all got in to it. from memory our tour manager told us we were having a dress up nights on the morning of the day.

  • 24 Mar 2008 Erin said

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    Hi Nikki,
    Thanks for the advice. We live down south in Kangarilla. How about you? I’m not going to take much clothing at all – used to that from past travelling. My worry is all the souveniours i will buy! but i think i’ll take your advice and send it via Amsterdam!
    We’re going to the US first (LA, LV and NY) then in London about 2 days before and 9 days after contiki, so it’ll be a big trip but can’t wait. Did you head out of London to sightsee much? Any places you recommend seeing?
    Do you have the internet address for the moulin rouge tickets you went with for me to check out? Sounds like your way is the way to go!
    thanks again, Erin.

  • 25 Mar 2008 *nikki_adelaide* said

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    im in Golden Grove, bout 10 mins away from Modbury.
    stayed in London for sightseeing, we didnt have a moment spare there! but if you have the time definately head out somewhere.

    the moulin rouge site is www.moulinrouge.fr, so easy…dont need to pay a deposit or anything

  • 25 Mar 2008 vic. said

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    Hey there! im doing the same contiki in a month and was wondering how much money you need. Pounds? Im planning on doing all the optional things like you I think. It’s so hard to know how much money coz I dont wana miss out on stuff coz Ive run out of money.
    Ta.

  • 25 Mar 2008 *nikki_adelaide* said

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    for my entire trip singapore, london, europem hong kong (just under 6 weeks) i had 6 thousand aussie dollars. this included optionals on contiki (almost a grand as i remember), food (that wasnt included in the food fund), sightseeing, drinking, etc etc etc.
    i came back with 1 grand aussie. i didnt once stress about money at all. so now i look back, i spent about a grand per week i was away.

    im not a crazy spender, but definately bought my share of clothes, shoes etc etc.

  • 2 Apr 2008 Danni said

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    Hi Nikki, thanks for heaps of your advice on this post, its really useful. Just wondering how much the food fund is? i’ve searched the site and cant find it

    Also what is the approximate ratio of people going out drinking each night vs people staying in? i know this might sound random but i have some more touring in other countries after Contiki and want to avoid getting sick as much as possible or it not be as severe, so chances are i will try and get a proper sleep some of the nights

    Thanks

  • 3 Apr 2008 *nikki_adelaide* said

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    from memory the food fund was about $500

    re the drinking, every group is different, on mine about 3/4 of the group were full on every night.

    either way you’ll have people to stay in with or have people to go out with! so dont stress

    plus on this tour, alot of the drinking is done at the campsite/hotels etc bar…they are really good and its great that you can have a drink or 2 then go to bed.

  • 2 May 2008 *nikki_adelaide* said

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    still here to answer any q’s

    Smiler<!--graemlin::)-->

  • 2 May 2008 Sylveeuh said

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    HOw about safety? Did you have to worry about pickpocketers? Also, as far as room mates, did you get to choose or were they assigned?

  • 2 May 2008 *nikki_adelaide* said

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    i wasnt worried about pickpocketers at all…
    i had a large hand bag, so it was always under my arm and no one could get in, i definately would have felt unsafe with a backpack, everyone who took backpacks for the day time had to wear them on their stomachs for safety.

    one guy had his wallet in his back pocket and it got stolen without him even noticing.


    as for roommates you choose yourself, we always got a sheet come around before each new stop and you fill it out. sometimes there are 4 to a room, sometimes 2.

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