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54 replies
Expectations vs. reality
kleine-myrtje
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Im just wondering what your expectations were when you went on your first eurotrip. Did you have any prejudices about certain countries/cultures? What countries were in reality better than you had thought, what place was worse? Just tell whatever surprised you.

auher
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I like this topic…….

Prague lived up to everything for me. I was there pre-2000, so it was a LITTLE less crowded than the chaos it is today, but it was the consumite "European" city as us Americans imagine it……. Wonderful.

To me, London & Paris were a huge dissapointment….. Just too big and modern. I know it’s stupid, because they are both large modern cities, but I had a different impression of LON esp. I think mine was more of the Charles Dicken’s era London…. Smile

Amsterdam is place that was "better than I thought." What a charming, walkable, beautiful and clean city…….

Istanbul was SO much more European than I would have ever imagined. While some of the inland of Turkey did feel middle-eastern, Istanbul reminded me of Sarajevo on Steroids Smile

I knew I would like Sarajevo, but I had no idea how much. I also wasn’t in any way prepared for the feeling of life & excitment that the city is filled with. It’s truly my favorite place in the all of Europe……

-A

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London is crap, getting a laugh farting on a packed tube train is as good as it gets.

Amsterdam, red light district… what a joke…. more like a Albanian Gangster convention….more likely to get stabbed or shot than shagged! save your cash and go to a real working red light area that’s super seedy like in Madrid or Hamburg… not this plastic toothless Vegas gaff!

Prague, it’s about as Eastern Bloc as Monaco (and more expensive too)… get yourself out to Trans-Dniester for a truely wonderful Post Soviet civil war experience where you can only buy anti personnel souvenirs for everyone back home… if you don’t get kidnapped !!!

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Hello all,
This is a good topic indeed.
I agree with Auher on Prague, London, and Paris. Though London is huge and very modern, the second time I was there I was in a completly differnt area and found some charm there.

Cities that were disappointing or not up to my expectations:
Hamburg, Germany— did I miss something?
Vienna, Austria— grant it, there are BEAUTIFULLY crafted ornate buildings and a great park, but also, it seemed much more modernized than I expected.
Bergen, Norway— I really enjoyed my stay there and I am not going to knock it at all because I would defitnley go back, but when I read about it, it was promoted in a very different light than I saw it. The way it was promoted made me think I needed a week there, but I soon found out at 3 days was too long.

In many cities I wasn’t sure what to expect, so I think I was pretty impressed everywhere else. Hmmmmmmmmm, I’ll have to think more.

Happy Travels everyone

bbano
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Hmmm…from the sounds of it, I might be the only one who likes London Smile Thinking back though, I did hate it the first time I visited..it seemed huge, unfriendly, and impersonal…it didn’t help that it rained the whole time either. However, I’ve been back numerous times and it’s become one of my favorite cities. Maybe places grow on you, or after you get past the touristy sights you see a bit more of the actual city and culture. But I agree, London usually does rub you the wrong way on your first visit.

dwop
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Tirana and Durres in my country are just as wonderful as you imagine them to be. The wide boulevards of the capital, Tirana, are graciously accented by Skanderberg square.

I suggest if you come to Albania, maybe it is possible for you to sail across the Adriatic from the Italian port city of Bari. Yes, you will see this is a very disgusting city, but it is worth it to get to the wonder that is this Albania.

Maybe you will take a trip to the north of my country near Skodra, near lake that Montenegrians call Skadar Lake. This lake is very nice lake. You see many types of things that live on it, and you can see on day that has clear, across to the shores of Montenegro.

I welcome anyone who come to Albania into my home, you will be offical guest of state

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hey all

bbano—
yeah, I agree about London, that is what i was implying. The first time I went there I felt the same way, but after that, i started to like it. In fact, I am stopping there again this summer to explore more of it.
Hey, mabye you can reccomend some nightlife info?

Happy Travels

Nimiety
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I actually didn’t mind London… I walked around the core for a bit and stopped in at a pub for lunch, immersing myself more then I normally do and enjoyed it.

Paris, too, was interesting, but I found it much more difficult to "immerse myself" compared to other French towns and villages. In fact, the villages are easiest, I found, to sit and join in on the local culture. Definately, though, the sights themselves met with my expectations.

Brussels, is hated by my wife, but I didn’t mind living there for a few months. I had no expectations going into it so wasn’t disappointed (in fact surprised at all the family owned chocolate shops in the suburbs).

Pamplona didn’t really meet my expectations on the town itself, but the celebrations far exceeded what I imagined.

I guess traveling partners have an effect – my last trip with my brothers made it easy to interact with locals wherever we went and that helped to have a great time.

N…

bbano
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quote:
hey all

Hey, mabye you can reccomend some nightlife info?

Happy Travels

My last time to London (actually last week), we stayed in Shepherd’s Bush so we went to the WalkAbout almost everynight. Australian bar…has live bands and good dancing, but gets very crowded. The Temple WalkAbout is suppose to be good as well, plus it stays open later. Depends what you are into, but I had a really good time. Otherwise, there are quite a few clubs over in the Picadilly Circus area. There are so many different places to go out, just depends on whether you feel like going to a club or just a local pub. Most of the bars and pubs close early, so if you’re up for stayig out you’ll have to check out a club. Let me know if you want more info! Smile

Dark Angel
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London needed time to grow on me too. First time I found it grey, concrete, depressing – it didn’t help that it was raining. Went back a few times, met cool people, got shown the interesting bits, and ended up living there for a year. I still like to go back every once in a while.

A city I had no image of at all and really enjoyed was Lisbon. I sailed into it so saw it from its best side, really enjoyed my time there.

dwop
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No one mentions my hometown, Tirana in the country of Albania.

I think many do not have an impression that is on the positive of this town, you read in your western papers that we have lots of guns, mafiosos, and not enough cheese for our people. But this isn’t true at all, and those of you who have came into my land know this.

What immpression do you think when you think of Tirana? Is it of what I have said?

If you have visited, you would come again, no? I think the answer is plain to see

outofAtlanta
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Paris – Amazing. I didn’t even want to go but once I did…? I have never seen so much traffic! I have driven in Atlanta, Washington, L.A., SF, Frankfurt, London, etc. and I have never seen so much traffic! Paris at 2:00 in the morning makes L.A. at rush hour look like a drive through countryside. Better than Costa Rica but worse than everywhere else. Park at Versailles and take the train in. The architecture, food, art, incredible. Esp the food Smile Villages are great, and I typically love out of the way, never before seen places to big cities, but Paris is Paris. Did I mention the food?

Amsterdam – Much better than I expected. Beautiful, narrow canal houses and more bikes than you have ever seen (unless you have been to China). I expected more seediness—I could probably find it if I looked harder Wink Great Indonesian food.

Frankfurt – Why oh why go to frankfurt? Huge dissappointment. Lots of people, cars, and tall building. Reminded me of hte US.

London – About what I expected.

Basel – Larger than I expected and not as pretty.

Lindau – Beautiful and calm.

Arbon – My wife and I got married there. Wonderful people, great small, Swiss town on the Bodensee/Lake Constance. It is a beautiful little town, but I am probably somewhat biased.

Otherwise I typically try and stay off the beaten path. Sometimes it is beaten for a reason, and sometimes it is just beaten.

My favorite places have been found on the way from one place to the other. See something and stop.

outofatlanta

I am leaving from ATL/BHM and traveling for 24 days
Requesting help with Transport, Budget, Itinerary, Food, Sights
luisfc1972
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i was surprised at how pretty amsterdam was. the canals, side streets, shops, people. liked it more than venice.

luisfc1972
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oh and another thing. i knew that people there stay out late. i had no idea that practically everyone is out at 3, 4, 5am, especially in Spain.

luv_the_beach
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quote:
oh and another thing. i knew that people there stay out late. i had no idea that practically everyone is out at 3, 4, 5am, especially in Spain.

Yes everyone. I love Southern Europe.


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kleine-myrtje
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quote:
i was surprised at how pretty amsterdam was. the canals, side streets, shops, people. liked it more than venice.

people only go to venice because of the bridges and water. amsterdam has more bridges. it does always bother me that most people just visit my country to get stoned in amsterdam, and forget about the rest.

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miss_bridget_jones
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Hey guys nice post.

London-I really hated it. Heaps expenive, always grey, ppl generally rude.

Paris-Loved it, but its such a shame that everyone speaks English now, as soon as they recognise you as a tourist. I imagined myself trying (very badly) to speak French to people in France. As it happened I didnt need to try.(I wanted to)

Barcelona-Amazing partying, I didnt expect much but Barcelona was one of the highlights of my trip.

Venice-everything I’d hoped for, however more crowded than expected. It doesn’t smell as bad as most ppl claim.

Pisa-terrible. A giant tourist trap.

Florence- enchanting.

Rome-Hot and sweaty tourist packed. Prepare to fight ur way into the Vatican. The Colloseum looks nothing like it does in pictures. With all this said i still loved Rome.

Athens-did I miss something? The Acropolis was great but not much else exciting going on there.

Istanbull- I thought it would be really dirty with dirty men staring and following you. As it turned out Istanbull was wonderful. You do get some unwanted male attention, but the city was amazing.

Munich-As mad as I had imagined it to be. The beerfest rocked. The Glockenspiel (spelling?) was a giant let down.

Cheers,
Bridget

Dark Angel
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I keep hearing about those supposedly rude Londoners, but in a year living and studying there I never met one. On day I was going home for a few weeks with my big suitcase/trolley (christmas gifts to take home..) and I was struggling in the tube system with all the stairs in the hallways. But every time I would come to a flight of stairs someone who was passing by would just grab the other end of the case, help me haul it up the stairs, wave off my thanks with a "no problem!" and disappear again. I doubt I would have received the same kind of help in my own country.

FromNorway
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quote:
Bergen, Norway— I really enjoyed my stay there and I am not going to knock it at all because I would defitnley go back, but when I read about it, it was promoted in a very different light than I saw it. The way it was promoted made me think I needed a week there, but I soon found out at 3 days was too long.

That is too bad. It rains a lot in Bergen, which is no big plus you might say. The Bryggen erea is interesting, Fløi-banen also, the museums there, the art galleries. They have nice arcitecture there. Torgallmenningen offers a lot of sea food delicacies fresh from the sea.

I suppose you’d have to go see something else than just Bergen to stay in Norway for a week or more. Take Trondheim, with both an old and new section, Nidarosdomen (built in 997 I believe) and a lot of culture.
There’s Kristiansand, with its coast, small wooden buildings, cafes (same thing with smaller Arendal, my home town). Oslo has the Vigeland Park, the museums and art galleries, cafes, the castle and the parliament. You can see Hardanger in the west, with its spectacular fjord, or Rondane, or perhaps tavel to the North Cape. You can see the unique ancient stav churches of Norway, the ancient stabburs. see the rivers, the hills, the fjords, the mountains. A good way of getting a little bit of everything is by by taking the Hurtigruten cruise. On the cruise, you not only travel from Bergen to the north of Norway, stoping and taking in different impressions, but you also get served dishes that express our culture.

You are warmly welcome (back) to my country.

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I try not to go with expectations, but they are sooooo hard to get rid of if you’ve heard anything about the places.

London – I was also thinking about things out of Dickens, but I knew it wasn’t going to be like that. I had a wonderful time, met fantastic people (most of them were my fiance’s friends), and really enjoyed the sights and the nigthlife. What I didn’t enjoy was the flack I got for being American and that was after they asked me if I was Canadian b/c they couldn’t place my accent.
In fact that was the only problem I had with Europe; the personal attacks about being American. I don’t mind attacks on the politics, etc. But I definitely don’t like it when it gets personal.

Scotland – exactly what I had imagined! But I had never imagined that I would have such a hard time with a true Scottish brogue… "can you please repeat that in English?"

Prague – was better than I had imagined and I was surprised by how many people spoke English. I was under the impression that it would be mostly Czech, Slovak, German and Russian spoken… oops!

China – I had pictued something more like Tokyo. I couldn’t have been more wrong.

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I need to book our flight to Denmark tonight and my girlfriend and I are trying to figure out where we are going to stop on the way back for a couple of days. I have been to Amsterdam before but my girlfriend has not been to there at all and we’re trying to decide if we should go to Prague or Amsterdam. Many of you have commented on both and I was looking for some support, what do you guys think!!! HELP WE DON’T HAVE MUCH TIME.

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I agree, I like this topic.

Paris was much better than expected. People had told me that the French are rude, that Paris is a huge disappointment, that I’d hate it… but when I arrived, it was love at first sight.

Barcelona was a big disappointment. Perhaps because it was a let-down after Paris. The weather was hazy when I was there, the sights weren’t as fascinating as I’d built them up to be in my mind, etcetera.

Italy was a big disappointment for me… but it’s not the country’s fault. Basically, I was there during a horrible heat wave, I got sick, and I missed a lot of touring while lying in bed with 102 fever. Not fun. But I was legitimately disappointed by Venice, especially since the canals look so beautiful and it turns out they are so dirty and polluted. Also, in Rome, the Sistene Chapel in the Vatican was a let-down. Maybe I’d built it up too much.

Greece was a real pleasant surprise. I fell in love with the Greek islands – I hadn’t known what to expect, but it was great.

Austria was a country I had been expecting to hate, because of history and context. In fact, I went to Austria and Germany with extremely negative preconceptions. As it turned out, I wasn’t impressed by the parts of Germany I saw (Bavaria and the Rhine) but I was pleasantly surprised by Austria. Vienna was one of my favourite cities, and the Tyrol region was every bit as beautiful as the Swiss Alps but at half the price. Despite myself, I loved Austria.

That’s just a few examples. A lot of other places fit my expectations, or else I’d been there before and knew what to expect (e.g. London – the first time I was there, I was too young to really have formed any expectations).

Now I try to travel with as few preconceptions and expectations as possible. It’s more fun to be surprised.

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I try not to expect anything out of most places, so I provide these with no explanation:

Better – Barcelona, Slovenia, Prague, most small towns
Not as good – Budapest, Madrid, Split, Nice

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So what I’ve learned from this post is…

Everywhere might suck or be amazing depending on your own personal tastes. The only two cities that I’ve only read good things about are Amsterdam and Florence. At least I know I’ll love two places on my itinerary!

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hieme2, I bet you’ll love Amsterdam and Florence, but I have heard negative things about both. Florence can get really, really crowded (I was there around New Year’s) and the scooters will zoom past you with scarcely a glance. I haven’t been in summer, but I’ve heard it can get terribly hot with lots of mosquitoes. But that said, I think Florence is wonderful.

As for Amsterdam, a friend was robbed there (at Central Station). I’ve read of people who have suffered violence for trying to take pictures in the Red Light District (a stupid thing, of course). But I’m going this summer and expect to have a great time.

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Expectations of a place are formed by individual personal experiences. We haven’t all read the same books, seen the same movies, heard the same stories from friends and family, or had the same frames of reference before departure.

Similarly, once we get to a place, our individual experiences are framed by a zillion factors: who we’re with (and how we’re getting along that day), who we meet, what the weather is like, if something’s on strike, whether we’re walking around with a cold, whether we get robbed or accosted, whatever.

No two people are alike. That’s why everyone should do what they want and take advice with a grain of salt… or a whole shakerful!

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Yeah I agree with segacs that expectations of a certain foreign country are shaped by one’s personal experiences (books, film, friends/relatives) but I also believe that one’s culture strongly influences the expectations that he/she has of certain countries, and the way he/she sees the outside world (before traveling abroad). It’s funny because different societies will have different stereotypes and expectations. For example, Americans may have different stereotypes of the French than the Japanese do. I know for a fact that the way the Greeks view the British is vastly different from the stereotypes that Americans have for the British. They’re complete opposites; Americans see Britons as conservative and proper, while Greeks see them as very rowdy.

It goes beyond culture; people expect a country to look a certain way. Some North Americans who visit France are surprised that all of France doesn’t resemble Paris. The architecture in southern France is similar to much of Italy and northern Spain, while Alsace has a strong German influence, and Britanny bears a resmblance to Britain. Within countries there are regional differences and often times, tourists don’t grasp that concept until they actually visit [two or more regions of] that country. (The United States is also a good example of regional differences, despite the fact that the 20th century has given all major US cities identical downtowns.) Pick up a "Greek islands calendar" and you’re given the impression that all of Greece looks a certain way, when in fact all those pictures represent a very specific part of the coutnry, often times the same 2 or 3 islands (out of a total of 169 inhabited islands, and no photos of the mainland). Add to this the fact that many tourists have overromanticized images in their heads of what a certain country is supposed to look like, failing to take into consideration that any given country will have a permanent population with economic and political activity, industry, roads, traffic, pollution, urban sprawl, and its own set of social problems, as well as cultural differences that sometimes cause tension and misunderstanding.


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Edinburgh – I expected to love it, but it didn’t do much for me. Wasn’t impressed by the black, sooty buildings. By the time I got there, I’d already seen better castles elsewhere in Scotland (castle Campbell in Dollar and Stirling Castle) – not so modernized. Agree with Redkat about the Scottish brogue. Felt like I was listening to a foreign language.

Cotswalds – A wonderful surprise! Didn’t expect them to be nearly as quaint and small. We got an ordinance map, asked the locals for their favorite villages and went wandering. It was absolutely fabulous. Favorite villages – Lower Slaughter, Snowshill and Stanton.

I’m heading for Paris, Rome and Venice (along with other smaller places) in less than a month. I’ve done so much research, I hope I won’t be disappointed with the reality.

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Paris, Venice, Nuremburg, Salzburg, Milan, and Edinburgh exceeded my expectations.

Vienna and Dublin were somewhat disappointing.

London is great, but a little hard to navigate because it has grown so haphazardly.

Prague and Krakow are both beautiful, traditionally "European" cities, and I liked both of them more after the fact than while I was actually there.

Munich and Berlin were exactly what I thought they would be.

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Keep an open mind and drink a lot. Learn to appreciate moments as diverse as stealing a quiet breath in a cathedral to enjoying the racous laughter and flashing lights in a seedy club. If you’re open-minded, energetic and personable, every city will delight you. As said before, it’s about timing, mindset and luck 80% of the time. I know some miserable fuckers who hated every moment of Europe. I also know some totally fun people who had a ball in every town and every large city. See the glass half full and you’re set (esp if it’s full of liquor).

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I thought Germany would be boring and it was.

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Any thoughts on Copenhagen and Stockholm?

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quote: I thought Germany would be boring and it was.

Where did you go in Germany and what did you do? I’ve been there many times and found it anything but boring.

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Better – Paris, Barcelona, Madrid, Brussels, Berlin

Expected- Amsterdam , Italy, London, Frankfurt

Worse- Dublin

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Paris, Athens & Vienna didnt meet my expectations

Prague, Budapest & Warsaw exceeded my expectations

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quote:Amsterdam, red light district… what a joke…

Anyone who equates Amsterdam with the small part of it that is the red light district is encouraged to stay the fuck away. Christ, it ticks me off when people think that’s all there is.

Please just skip the Netherlands if you can think of nothing else of interest but softdrugs and the RLD. Amsterdam’s population will be grateful.

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The first two times I went to London I loathed it- however since then my other few stays have been great!

Rome hated it- but I want to go back and see if I change my opinion.

Athens was horrid ! The city looked like what I imagines a bombed out part of the west bank would look like and the men were not just hissing at us theywere touchy too! But this past yearwhen I went with my husband it was wonderful- still dirty but no hissing or ass pinching/ slapping.

Other than that I have loved everywhere I have been- or atleast expected them to be like they were…Sofia was a bit of let down but I didn’t expect it to me anything more than it was. Usually if I had a rough day it was my fault not the city I was in.

cgirl

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I just returned from Stockholm a couple of weeks ago. It’s just a beautiful place to walk around, and enjoy the scenery, and enjoy the old town.

The weather was quite nice as well, not perfect, but it exceeded my expectations.

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Mine too- I was there last august and I really love it despite not being able to aford it !

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My expectations were so low when I first came to Europe… but it also made me more open and delighted by what I saw. Nowadays I feel nausea rather than excitement at the thought of going to Switzerland. I also am less forgiving and don’t concentrate so much on the beauty… the ugliness and monotony attract my attention too. I guess this is a more realistic view, but I miss the days when a trip to Europe was special!

Probably my most cynical and unforgiving experience was Mallorca… it was gorgeous but it was an embodiment of the worst aspects of tourism in Europe. There were so many tourists that it felt more like an empty shell—more dishonest than Disneyworld—for people to dump money into.

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Since someone asked…

Copenhagen is neat. It’s a very "quaint" little European city. I have the benefit of having several friends who live there, so they take me to all the neat, non-touristic places, but I think if you just went to see the "sights" you might be dissapointed.

That said, I think Tivoli is great. Imagine DisneyWorld divided by 1,000, right in the middle of a city. So charming. And it’s open late in the summers when the sun stays out till almost 11PM. Just a great experience.

-A

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quote:
quote:Amsterdam, red light district… what a joke…

Anyone who equates Amsterdam with the small part of it that is the red light district is encouraged to stay the fuck away. Christ, it ticks me off when people think that’s all there is.

Please just skip the Netherlands if you can think of nothing else of interest but softdrugs and the RLD. Amsterdam’s population will be grateful.

No worries, Dark Angel. They do stay away, kinda…those are the people that stay in Vondelpark shroomed out of their minds, or get run over by bikes or trams.

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London…Loved London…I had a strange time understanding their slang but they were some of the most polite people. Got a few stares b/c I look Asian but other than that, very nice people. The tube is the easiest thing to navigate. Got me everywhere. Streets were a little confusing but what do you expect. Loved their fashion. The only thing that annoyed me was the daily rains…Oh and stopped at the Whitechapel area (which I’m assuming is the dodgey part of London)for a tour. It was a bit intimidating b/c I kinda stood out but didn’t bother me much.

Paris…Trumped my expectations. I thought they were going to be a bunch of snobby people (per everyone’s opinons) but instead they were the friendliest and funniest. Even the waiters..Haha. Obviously beautiful city. All the buildings are so symmetrical. But watch out for the dog poop. Metro easy to navigate also.

Rome….disappointed me. I thought they were going to be a friendly people but they seemed kind of snobby. Chaotic, dirty, smoggy, and crowded.

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Just got back:

Paris was absolutely wonderful. Way exceeding my expectations. My daughters proclaimed it their favorite city of our trip. We spent 4 days there to begin with and even came back for another couple of days at the end.

Rome: I agree with Eurotripster. It was a disappointment – dirty and crowded with horrendous traffic. Got my butt pinched by a young punk on the first night (I’m 46, so that hit me kind of the wrong way) and one of them lunged at my 17-year-old daughter – scaring her. Plus, two of us were sick in Rome. That may have taken some of the rosy tint out of my glasses. Also, I have changed my mind and believe that hotel location may very well determine how well you like a place. We stayed in an apartment near Termini – a bit scary at dark. In fact, one daughter refused to go out after dark after the first-night incident.

Cinque Terre: Although I had high expectations – reality far exceeded them! It was one of the most beautiful, charming places I’ve ever been. Wish we’d had more than 2 1/2 days there.

Nice: It was nice, but we preferred our day a few miles away in Villefranche Sur Mer better.

Venice: We really enjoyed Venice, although we only had one evening and one full day there. It was charming and picturesque and we enjoyed the little shops and street vendors.

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Budapest was not what I was hoping for. I had fun there, thanks to the people I met and all, but it was not what I expected. Madrid was a dissapointment at first, but then I sort of got a little something for that city.

Dublin… I can’t say enough about Dublin, I just hated it, and plan to go back only to step off the plane and take a train to anywhere.

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quote:
I keep hearing about those supposedly rude Londoners, but in a year living and studying there I never met one.
I’ve lived there for a year as well and I’d be more inclined to call them distant than rude.
That said, I grew up in Ams where, like in most of holland actually, being direct is often prefered over being diplomatically correct so i’m hard pressed to find somebody who i consider to be rude anyway.

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quote:
Keep an open mind and drink a lot. Learn to appreciate moments as diverse as stealing a quiet breath in a cathedral to enjoying the racous laughter and flashing lights in a seedy club. If you’re open-minded, energetic and personable, every city will delight you. As said before, it’s about timing, mindset and luck 80% of the time. I know some miserable fuckers who hated every moment of Europe. I also know some totally fun people who had a ball in every town and every large city. See the glass half full and you’re set (esp if it’s full of liquor).

Amen

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i dont know, man, it seems europe is losing its charm. freaking mcdonalds, stabucks are invading. enjoy it while you can. im sure it wont be so quaint for the next generation.

by the way, Spain is my favorite country in the whole world, jesus h christ it is awesome there. no other country has the night life vibe like Spain. i leave in 2 weeks so im pretty fucking excited.

landing in amsterdam on June 30. i dont smoke weed nor need a prostitute. this is my second time there. that should tell you something about Amsterdam.

for those of you going to the san fermin (running of the bulls) meetup, see you there.

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Hope——

You are the only one making to much sense in this post. You sound traveled. many people who don’t get enough travel time, forget about exactly what you just said. travelling is all about the little moments, if you loose sight of those, a church is just a church, no matter what city it is in.

All others,

you guys have to get off the beaten path. London, is a great city, a fabulous city in comparison to the metropolis destinations of the world, but no, it isn’t all of europe either. I think the most common travel destinations are by far, london, munich, paris, amsterdam, rome, venice, prague. these places are just "rotating disneylands" with no ticket booth. try krakow, calabria, crete, salamanca, mt blanc area, the abruzzi, the coast of croatia, positano, there are so many better places to go in europe.

most of all, the little moments are what make for good travelling and the glass is always half full, hopefully of good czech beer!!!!

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Never on any place i wanted to go. Sometimes, i get dragged to places i dont think i will like that my wife does, and sometimes they are not so bad. Just keep moving on until you find a place you love and stop. My daughter from the US – a real backpacker – has done this several times with good success. She’ll have 8-10 places on a list and will end up spending the majority of her time at one place that often wasn’t on her list.