European Vista

Tour Length
22 days

European Vista » Review by j3st3r999

  • j3st3r999
  • j3st3r999
  • Level 2 Traveler
  • 2 Contikis
  • 11 Countries
European Vista
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

The best sights Europe has to offer!

16 Jun 2012 - 08 Jul 2012

Ok, this trip was awesome and I am so glad that I went. I am writing this review though with the idea of helping you to make your trip a little bit better. So I may come across a little negative at times but it is with the idea of helping out future travelers.
One gripe I have is that on our trip the focus seemed to be on partying at night. Ok, I get it, that can be fun. If your looking at going to Europe for culture or sights thsi can get a little bit lost when the focus turns to pub crawls. Anyway, the key for us was to plan our "free time" which is very limited to see one or two things very well. One key to this is looking at your tour dates and checking the days of the week to the cities you are visiting. Many museums are closed on odd days (i.e. the Louvre on Monday). Check this ahead of time before going to see something and only have it be closed. Check out guide books like Rick Steves to help you find ticket short cuts as well.Stay healthy. We got sick due to being on the bus with sick people. Take vitamins and wash your hands!
Optional Excursions-Unless you are really bad at planning or are going with a big group of friends most of these can be skipped without too much regret. the dinners especially are very expensive unless you are really picky about food. Take your money and go to a small cafe and enjoy the local life and better food. The one dinner we did do, the Tuscan dinner, was good fun due to the live entertainment. Most of the boat tours can be found for cheaper but may not be done by locals. We did the Lake Lucerne cruise excursion but had more fun on our paddleboat ride so, make your own chocies there.
The contiki hotel in Haupfgarten will offer to do your laundry for 15 euros for a small bucket. or you can go down the street to the laundromat and do 3 or four loads for that price and again enjoy the locals or hop over to the awesome cafe next door.I only did the mountain biuke excursion which was great. It is the equivalant of a blue in ski runs so it is not for the faint of heart but is only hard for about 30 mintues or so. the lunch after was ok.
Be prepared for some less than awesome rooms and wifi is available only about half of the time.
The Mozart concert in Vienna was amazing and should not be skipped by anyone ever!
The tour of the Vatican was ok. Our guide was kind of long winded and focussed on weird stuff. I turned off the audio guide and had a great time.
If you do not do some of the excursions be prepared to be treated as second class. We didn't do the Schnapps tour and basically just had to twiddle our thumbs in front of the museum as they wouldn't even let us shop inside?!
DId the Mike's bike tour in Munich and was very dissapointed, but I think it was more the guide we ended up with than the company as a whole. There is a very long stop in the middle at a beer garden so keep this in mind as well.
Try lots of food. eat lots of gelato and have a great time! there is so much great stuff to see, this is a good way to get a quick taste of the best Europe has to offrer.
Don't drink Chino unless you love robitussin!

Review written Jul 2012

My Contiki was: Fast, Lots of Sights, Fun

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