We have been home now for three weeks. Well, back to the uk. Here is a summary as promised to many friends of our trip.
The trip was amazing, we had a great time and are already looking forward to going back to most of the countries.
The group was 31 people plus our tour guide and driver. Mostly Australians, some Kiwi’s, 3 Koreans and 1 English girl. We had a great group and all got along really well which made things a lot better.
We started in London and bussed down to Dover to get the ferry over to Calais. From Calais we were driven in our coach to Paris where we stayed two nights. We saw the Eiffel Tower, Place de la Concorde, Arc de Triomphe, Montmarte, the Lovre and a few other less well known places.
From Paris we went to Switzerland in the Swiss Alps, a little town called Lauterbrunnen. We didn’t have very good conditions on the mountains there so our trip up to the tallest Alp (Jungfrau) was a bit of a waste…After Switzerland we had two nights in Nice on the French Rivera. I did some shopping there and we did a night trip out to Monte Carlo (Monaco).
Next stop was Florence in Italy which was beautiful. On the way we stopped at the Leaning Tower of Pisa. We had a walking tour around the city and took photos of the Ponte Vecchio (a very famous bridge that I didn’t know anything of!).
After Florence we moved on to Rome via Orvieto which is a city built on top of a volcano. It has amazing views. In Rome we had another walking tour which started at the Spanish Steps and finished at the Colliseum. (Saw the Trevi Fountain, Pantheon, Roman Forum). The next day we visited the Vatican City and did a tour through their museum and the Sistine Chapel.
After Rome we went to Venice with a stop-off in Verona which is the home of the balcony from Romeo and Juliet. It also has a love wall and a statue of Juliet. In Venice we had a toga party and a gondola ride aswell as getting lost in the city of alleys!!!
After that we headed off to Tyrol in Austria for one night where Dave and I went Paragliding.
Next stop was Prague. On our way to Prague we stopped at Mathausen which is an old Concentration camp. It was the worst one and was the last to be liberated. The stories there are pretty chilling. At the bottom of a camp was a stone quarry and leading down there are some treacherous stairs named the stairs of death. We had to walk down these to get back to the bus. It was a very different experience seeing it compared to reading about it.
In Prague we had a night walking tour and saw heaps of the old buildings there, Dave had his birthday on the Saturday (we arrived late Friday) and luckily there was nothing planned for Saturday so he got a lovely sleep in! Once we went out we went to visit the Castle and had a traditional Cezch lunch of beef goulash and dumplings (very nice) and bought Dave some sun glasses with some money the group had put together for him.
With only a couple of cities left we headed off to Berlin where we saw the East Berlin Gallery (A part of the Berlin wall which has been turned into an art gallery). We had a walking tour the next morning with a great guide who knew so much about Berlin, history, buildings, events etc. We really enjoyed it.
After Berlin we went to our last stop which was Amsterdam. Most of the group headed off to a sex show while 6 of us decided to pass and get dinner and visit a coffee shop. Dave and I went home reasonably early because at this stage he had a cold and wasn’t really feeling very well at all. We did a biking tour of Amsterdam and bought costumes for our final night together which was spent at a dinner, a canal cruise and then out to a bar (called Pirates). It was a really fun night and we all had a great time making the most of seeing each other.
On our last day we drove home from Amsterdam, through Belgium (briefly stopping off in Brugge where we bought some chocolates), through France to Calais and onto the Ferry back to London.
About half of the group will be staying on in London so we will be keeping in touch with them and have a special group page on Facebook to help that.
The lovely boys and girls from our trip