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  #26  
Old April 17, 2013, 02:00 AM
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Enjoy yourself boss. And please for your sake stay away from the coffeeshops... dont want you to have too much caffeine
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  #27  
Old April 17, 2013, 02:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bujhee kom
Bengali Pagol ki Pagol naki?
Ami o tik jani na. Manush e name tike personality bolar jai? Bujhee Kom bhai onik kom bujtese :P
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  #28  
Old April 17, 2013, 02:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zunaid
I just did - and the answer is neither
Lol, I meant there are some good suggestions in that thread as well, not just Geneva/Zurich. Also on the 2nd page, good list of things to do in Amsterdam.
Even if you were there before, will probably refresh your memory and ease things a little on planning upfront.
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  #29  
Old April 17, 2013, 06:55 AM
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Italy ?
London ?
Greece ?
Switzerland

Europe beshi thanda. Kun dukhkhey Europe aitasen ? Middle East jan
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  #30  
Old April 17, 2013, 09:15 AM
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Doc Z ... you need to go to Germany. I was there this time last year. My favourite place in Europe. My dad was stationed in Heidelberg for a bit.. beautiful city - from the oldest University in Europe to the bridge to the Philosophenswag (Philosopher's walk) to the ruins of the castle to the Alte Brucke to the trip to the top of the nearby mountain which was the location of the eerie Thingstatte where the Nazis held rallies.

THEN you can go to the Schwarzwald.. where I'm sure all fairytales are set. Taste the original recipe Black Forest cake in Triberg (enjoy the picturesque train ride there) though the Kirsch was way strong for me. You can go to the edge of Germany to quaint little Freiburg with it's Munster and even onto the border of Switzerland at Basel or Lake Konstanz (didn't get to go to either)

Onto Munich and Bavaria (my favvvvvv), and you can see Neuschwanstein castle and just generally the beautiful Bavarian Alps. Will never forget the Dachau concentration camp. Hard to believe such horrors were carried out in such quiet little beautiful setting. We then went to Vienna and Prague and came back to Berlin which must be the most awesome city in Europe and the only place that I was sad at not being able to go out because I was with my parents (?maybe let your daughter one night on the town or you can be super cool parents and go to a jazz club with her). My parents are super cool too, in their way. We had a short visit to Koln and then to Bonn and surrounds. Bonn is Beethoven's birthplace with a great museum. Even Frankfurt has Goethe's birthplace.

Places I didn't get to go - Oberammergau and Rothenburg (typical Bavaria), Berchtesgarten - one of Hitler's headquarters plus where the Eagle's Nest (the a$$hat's 50th birthday present, beautiful views apparently but the delightful irony is that he was afraid of heights) is, Dresden, Nuremburg, The Rhine Frickin Valley!

So ummm... why would you want to go to anywhere else. To top it all off, the people are the nicest in Europe (out of the parts I've been to), only people to offer to help out of their own goodwill. Had great weather too. I love Germany!
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  #31  
Old April 17, 2013, 10:14 AM
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wow this thread is becoming a treasure chest of travel information! gotta find some time off in September
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  #32  
Old April 17, 2013, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mona
Doc Z ... you need to go to Germany. I was there this time last year. My favourite place in Europe. My dad was stationed in Heidelberg for a bit.. beautiful city - from the oldest University in Europe to the bridge to the Philosophenswag (Philosopher's walk) to the ruins of the castle to the Alte Brucke to the trip to the top of the nearby mountain which was the location of the eerie Thingstatte where the Nazis held rallies.

THEN you can go to the Schwarzwald.. where I'm sure all fairytales are set. Taste the original recipe Black Forest cake in Triberg (enjoy the picturesque train ride there) though the Kirsch was way strong for me. You can go to the edge of Germany to quaint little Freiburg with it's Munster and even onto the border of Switzerland at Basel or Lake Konstanz (didn't get to go to either)

Onto Munich and Bavaria (my favvvvvv), and you can see Neuschwanstein castle and just generally the beautiful Bavarian Alps. Will never forget the Dachau concentration camp. Hard to believe such horrors were carried out in such quiet little beautiful setting. We then went to Vienna and Prague and came back to Berlin which must be the most awesome city in Europe and the only place that I was sad at not being able to go out because I was with my parents (?maybe let your daughter one night on the town or you can be super cool parents and go to a jazz club with her). My parents are super cool too, in their way. We had a short visit to Koln and then to Bonn and surrounds. Bonn is Beethoven's birthplace with a great museum. Even Frankfurt has Goethe's birthplace.

Places I didn't get to go - Oberammergau and Rothenburg (typical Bavaria), Berchtesgarten - one of Hitler's headquarters plus where the Eagle's Nest (the a$$hat's 50th birthday present, beautiful views apparently but the delightful irony is that he was afraid of heights) is, Dresden, Nuremburg, The Rhine Frickin Valley!

So ummm... why would you want to go to anywhere else. To top it all off, the people are the nicest in Europe (out of the parts I've been to), only people to offer to help out of their own goodwill. Had great weather too. I love Germany!

This is really helpful, I actually got Plans to visit munich next month (11th May)!! Me and my friends are really interested in hiking and exploring in general... I was wondering if you could recommend what's the best way to explore the Alps. We are planning on renting a car and than do some hiking. I am told that they accept Canadian drivers licence, can you confirm?
To save on time and part of hotel expenses, we are planning to take Euro rails and visit surrounding countries using over night rail. Do you think that is a good idea? Me and all my friends are recent grads and we are working full time for no longer than 3 years, so not much saving to be honest, so any tips and tricks on money saving would be highly appreciated.
Thanks to the mod for opening the thread...
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  #33  
Old April 17, 2013, 01:34 PM
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See what I mean Boss? Germany is a seriously great place to visit. If you're into cycling, hiking, and any other outdoor activities, I'd definitely recommend visiting in the summer.

Heidelberg was the first German city I properly visited, back in March 2009, and I'll never forget the Philosophenweg and the University. The view of Heidelberg from the walk is stunning:

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  #34  
Old April 17, 2013, 02:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HereWeGo
This is really helpful, I actually got Plans to visit munich next month (11th May)!! Me and my friends are really interested in hiking and exploring in general... I was wondering if you could recommend what's the best way to explore the Alps. We are planning on renting a car and than do some hiking. I am told that they accept Canadian drivers licence, can you confirm?
To save on time and part of hotel expenses, we are planning to take Euro rails and visit surrounding countries using over night rail. Do you think that is a good idea? Me and all my friends are recent grads and we are working full time for no longer than 3 years, so not much saving to be honest, so any tips and tricks on money saving would be highly appreciated.
Thanks to the mod for opening the thread...
Saving money

Getting around in Germany

If you really want to save money, I'd recommend hitch-hiking! Germany is a country that is great for hitch-hiking - despite the Eurotrip stereotype - as it's commonly practiced and generally doesn't have any 'incidents'. Provided you have some time on your hands, you'll not only get to see out-of-the-way parts of the country, you'll also get to meet some very interesting people.

In fact this practice of hitch-hiking/sharing car fuel/car pooling etc. is so common, it even has a website where you can find out where people are leaving from, where they're going, any expenses required, etc.! (http://www.mitfahrgelegenheit.de/) Therefore, if you're planning on mostly being within Germany, then I'd seriously recommend this travel option. I've used it, my friends have used it

Deutsche Bahn (DB), the main railways of Germany, is a more obvious alternative, when you're looking to travel inter-city, however the prices vary considerably and can be really steep during the peak season. However, on weekends, there are very cheap group tickets for local trains that cross the entire country (~40 euros for a group of 5!) You could consider this as well. Euro-rail covers this, but again, the extent of your travels determines whether the cost of the card is worth it. Are you planning on going to many places on your trip?

You asked about renting cars. As many will tell you, Germany is a great place to drive (If you like driving, I don't), the cost of renting is low if you return it in the same country you rented from, and the fuel prices are not as bad as in other parts of Europe, like Italy, but it takes some time to get adjusted to driving on the other side, going at a certain speed, navigating certain terrain, etc. I went through a portion of the Alps last December, when I crossed over from Italy to Austria, and it's not an easy drive; with many winding, narrow roads. Choosing this option depends on how confident you or your friends are about your/their skills as a driver, among other things. On the plus side, my uncle and his family went from Bangladesh to Southern Europe last year and rented a car and they were able to adjust very quickly. So, it's your call really. There are many affordable car rentals you can choose from, starting with Europcar. If you have a Canadian license, you might need this though: http://travel.gc.ca/travelling/docum...driving-permit

Cheap Accommodation

You won't always be able to get night trains AND you'll find such journeys to be more tiring than you think - especially after spending several hours of each day standing, walking and running! So you'll need to find yourself a hostel. Hostels in Prague and further East are significantly cheaper than those in Western Europe, but that does not mean there aren't affordable, clean options there either. (I'm assuming that's what you'd be looking for?) If you have a valid student card, you'll be able to get discounts at certain hostels, like the YMCA, so see if you can avail that.

However, as you're into hiking and other outdoor-sy activities, I'd recommend pitching a tent and spending the night in the camping sites that line the outskirts (and sometimes centres) of many European towns and cities. They usually have good security and permanent toilets and showers (:p). If you're in a group, the cost will be minimal. Obviously check the weather forecasts before doing so, but May should be alright.

The other cheap alternative is couch surfing, but there's always the chance of meeting weirdos through that as well :/

Food

Tasting local food is very important to me, so even if I'm skint and the local cuisine is expensive, I try to budget so that I can have at least one 'nice' meal. The rest of the time, particularly when you're sightseeing, you could make sandwiches. You can make a delicious, inexpensive sandwich out of local cheeses - which are reasonably priced when you purchase them from supermarkets - freshly baked bread and - if you aren't too fussed by halal or haram meat - local salami or bresaola (salted beef).

I'll warn you though, Munich is definitely one of the more expensive cities in Germany....
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  #35  
Old April 18, 2013, 01:52 PM
HereWeGo HereWeGo is offline
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Thanks Navo, Really appreciate the feedback. This is extremely helpful. Would have loved to camp, but girls in the group are not interested and carrying all the camping gear to Germany is another headache. But your other recommendations would really help us on the trip. Thank you again.

And sorry to the thread opener for hijacking his thread
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  #36  
Old April 21, 2013, 07:43 AM
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^ No issues HerwWeGo - BC is our own version of TripAdvisor.

UPDATE

We tried to work out different itineraries - parts of France or Germany or Italy, we decided to keep it simple this trip. We will do the more intensive regional trips later; Europe isn't going away anytime soon. Plus we had to accommodate the wishes of the teenage daughter who really wanted to hit London. She was too young to remember the last time we were there. I also have a sneaky suspicion that she secretly is hoping to run into 1D in London. Now - if any BC member can make it happen for my daughter, I will owe you.

I had alnmmost worked out a nice France in 2 weeks itinerary - AMS->Paris and then a few days in Brittany via Loire valley, then south to Bordeaux and the Dordognes and ending up in Provence (Avgnon, Marseilles, Nice, maybe Monaco etc) before heading back. While it looked good on paper - the time spent in each place was not going to be sufficient to enjoy each region.

Neither my wife nor I are Box checker travellers. We do not have to see every 'tourist' marker in each place and we prefer something more historical, cultural and culinary. If we like a place we might stay longer. If we don't, out we go.

Anyway - cutting a long story short and referring back to the daughter, we decided to do a 'publishers' tour. You know - in the 'olden' days, you would see in books the name of the publisher followed by names of their key cities and they usually happened to be NY, London, Paris and Amsterdam or a combination of the above. Yes, we gave up on rest of France and decided to stick to the large cities in 2 weeks.

From JFK (Hence NY) we will land in Schiphol (your Amsterdam). We will then take the Thalys train to Paris the same day. 5 days there and we take the chunnel train to London. 5 days in London and then we head back to Amsterdam via Eurostar (the overnight ferry) to give us another flavor of travel. And back to JFK and recover for work.

Miraz - so I am now changing my answer to your question. We will be in London and I will share my dates and locations with you once plans are firmed up. We have all the transportation booked and are now in the process of locking down lodging.
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  #37  
Old April 21, 2013, 07:36 PM
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TL;DR

BC Londonites - what's new and worthwhile since 2000? Tried to get a ticket for a day at Lord's but I will just miss the Ashes Test there and all sold out anyway.
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  #38  
Old April 22, 2013, 01:55 AM
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You can probably walk into an HMV in London and steal whatever you want... the staff just don't give a damn anymore...
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  #39  
Old April 22, 2013, 02:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goru
You can probably walk into an HMV in London and steal whatever you want... the staff just don't give a damn anymore...
So what did you walk out with?
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  #40  
Old April 22, 2013, 02:13 AM
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Quote:
what's new and worthwhile since 2000?
The panoramic view from the Shard might be the ideal trip for your daughter. This is the tallest building in Western Europe at the moment.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesi...on-interactive
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  #41  
Old April 22, 2013, 02:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HereWeGo
To save on time and part of hotel expenses, we are planning to take Euro rails and visit surrounding countries using over night rail. Do you think that is a good idea?
I used the same strategy to save up on hotel expenses using Euro Rails. I used overnight trains between Italy-Switzerland, Switzerland-France, France-Spain. My wife and I booked a cabin to ourselves for the journey and I had a pleasant experience. I used Frecciarosa and TGV trains for some those trips. Buying the train tickets and finding the platforms in Italy was a bit tricky as nothing was in English but i think you can buy them all at once at the beginning of the trip where ever you start from.The downside is you miss the view of the countryside and feel a bit wobbly once you get off from the train lol!

I paid about $582 each for Select Euro Rail Pass (4 Countries) if my memory serves me right.
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  #42  
Old April 22, 2013, 02:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reverse_swing
The panoramic view from the Shard might be the ideal trip for your daughter. This is the tallest building in Western Europe at the moment.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesi...on-interactive
Noted. Thanks. Didn't know of the Shard.

Like last time, we're planning to go to Bricklane and eat some deshi food. The missus (that Britishism is like nails on a chalkboard to Dillu) and the daughter both love deshi fair. We went to two last trip - one was in Bricklane proper - was called Shampan methinks. And the other was at the other end of town - in West End. Forgot the name. We had a late dinner after catching a show.

We would like to catch a show again. Another place I would like to revisit would be the British Museum. We have done most of the touristy stuff on and off - the only thing I have not done is do the Eye and watch a match at Lords - too bad I get in AFTER the ashes Test ends.
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  #43  
Old April 22, 2013, 02:37 AM
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England will thrash the Aussies in Ashes Z bhai... I don't think you would be missing any competitive cricket
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  #44  
Old April 22, 2013, 06:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zunaid
^
Miraz - so I am now changing my answer to your question. We will be in London and I will share my dates and locations with you once plans are firmed up. We have all the transportation booked and are now in the process of locking down lodging.
Great!!

Please send me your itinerary at least couple of weeks in advance so that I can try to make your London stay memorable. Shard is just next to my research office at Guy's campus and it offers a fantastic view of London.

If you can keep 2 days free, I will make an efficient plan to roam around London and visit the major attractions of your choice.
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  #45  
Old April 22, 2013, 07:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Miraz
Great!!

Please send me your itinerary at least couple of weeks in advance so that I can try to make your London stay memorable. Shard is just next to my research office at Guy's campus and it offers a fantastic view of London.

If you can keep 2 days free, I will make an efficient plan to roam around London and visit the major attractions of your choice.
Not sure I can stand two days with you.

More seriously - do I have your current email and phone? Please email me to my gmail address.

Thanks!
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  #46  
Old April 22, 2013, 09:19 PM
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Heard London is jam packed with Bangalis. Might as well visit Bangladesh if that is the case.
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  #47  
Old April 22, 2013, 10:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BengaliPagol
Heard London is jam packed with Bangalis. Might as well visit Bangladesh if that is the case.
Only if you go to Bricklane or thereabouts and stay there. Just like if you visit NY and just loiter around Jackson Heights and Astoria.

London is a fascinating city and under-rated as a tourist destination.
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  #48  
Old April 23, 2013, 01:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zunaid
Only if you go to Bricklane or thereabouts and stay there. Just like if you visit NY and just loiter around Jackson Heights and Astoria.

London is a fascinating city and under-rated as a tourist destination.
Gosh Bangalis are everywhere now. Slowly taking over the world bit by bit.
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