How to plan the perfect European vacation

by | Jul 1, 2023 | Travel and Leisure

Planning your ideal holiday in Europe can be an exciting task, but with so many countries, cultures and attractions to choose from, it can be challenging to figure out where to begin.

Here are some tips to get started from Chris Mark, the European destination expert with Canadian booking agency Hosted Villas.

  1. Money matters
    Before you start planning your trip, you need to determine how much you can afford to spend and when you can travel. Keep in mind that some countries are more expensive than others (especially in northern Europe), that cities are more expensive than the countryside and that peak season travel (July and August) is always costlier.
  2. Where to go
    Once you have your budget and travel dates, you can start researching specific destinations. Europe has a diverse range of cultures, landscapes and attractions, so consider what interests you the most. Do you want to explore historic cities, hike in the mountains or relax on the beach? Don’t be too ambitious. Instead, focus on going deeper into a smaller number of regions, and try to avoid the big city crowds.
  3. What to do
    After you’ve chosen your destinations, it’s time to plan your itinerary. For those who prefer to do all their own planning, you can use travel guides, blogs and online forums to get an idea of the must-see attractions and activities in each location. For those who prefer to rely on an expert, contact a European tour specialist or travel agent for advice. Don’t forget to build some down time into the plan so that you can savour the experience.
  4. Where to stay and how to get around
    With your itinerary in hand, you can start booking your accommodation and transportation. For help, you can always contact a travel agent – their fees are generally covered by the suppliers. Try to avoid the big chain hotels in favour of small boutique properties and stay within walking distance of local attractions. Also, consider the most convenient and affordable transportation between destinations, such as trains, buses or flights.
  5. Stay flexible
    Despite your best efforts, unexpected things can happen during your trip. It’s essential to be flexible and adaptable to changes in your itinerary or plans. This can include weather-related cancellations, transportation delays or unexpectedly closed attractions. Try to stay positive and embrace the unexpected, as it may lead to some of the most memorable moments of your trip – and don’t forget to buy travel insurance.

Finally, take the time to enjoy the sights, sounds and tastes of each place. Try local foods, meet new people and immerse yourself in the culture. It’s these experiences that will create lasting memories and make your trip unforgettable.

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