Well, folks, it appears we are off to an in-auspicious start for this European adventure.
But before I dive into the gory details of our extended stay at Atlanta’s Hartsfield Airport yesterday, I should mention that I am joined on this trip by my good friend Dena Everman. Followers of my travels may remember Dena from our trip to Greece last summer. That trip was so much fun that we decided to repeat it again this year, including a stop in Rome on the way over.
With not much going on in the month of August this year, I thought, “why not stick around for a while and see more of Europe?” So, I made plans to stay on for another few weeks after Dena goes home and travel through Central Europe and Scandinavia.
Our original schedule had us departing Atlanta at 4:20pm on Wednesday on a direct flight to Munich arriving at 7:50am Thursday morning. We had planned on a full day of sightseeing in Munich before departing Friday morning for Rome.
Sounds almost too easy, right? Well, here’s how the day actually unfolded…Read More
While it’s true that Rome wasn’t built in a day, I’m a firm believer that its best sights can be seen in a day. So Rome in 48 hours? Piece of cake.
Of course, if you have the time, Rome is a wonderful city in which to linger over exquisite meals, wander amidst ancient ruins and while away the day people-watching in a piazza. However, Dena and I are girls on a tight schedule and there is much to be seen during our brief two nights in the Eternal City.
We arrived in Rome after our first stop in Munich late Friday afternoon and joined the masses on a hot and mostly miserable train ride into the city (welcome to Europe in August).
We arrived at the charming Hotel Parlamento around 6pm and were pleased to find the room clean and spacious – by European standards – and the staff very friendly. The location between the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps was ideal and, once again, the Trip Advisor reviews were spot on. A great find at 100 euro/night in high season.Read More
After a less than glamorous night in the Athens airport on the way from Rome, we landed on the beautiful island of Mykonos Greece a little after 7am. We were greeted at the airport by Marietta, owner of the same building where we rented a room last year. Unfortunately, our room was occupied the night before so we’d have to wait until 10:30am to get in and finally get a little rest. So, we decided to put on our “photographer hats” and make the most of the time by getting some early morning shots at the harbor (I mean, it’s not like we’re gonna be up this early again while we’re here).
Now, Mykonos Greece is known for its high-octane nightlife and, not surprisingly, lots of people were still out and about wandering the streets from the night before. I don’t understand these people. It’s 8am for goodness sake. I’ve been known to stay out dancing until the wee hours but I draw the line at sunrise. If the sun is coming up…it’s time for bed – I don’t care what time zone you’re in.Read More
Over the years, many of you said to me, “I would love to know what it’s like to travel with you on one of your crazy, whirlwind trips.” Well, folks, it’s not easy…but it sure can be fun! To give you an inside look at what it’s really like to travel with me, I thought it might be fun to have my traveling buddy, Dena, write a “guest post” for the website to give her side of the story.
In the past year, Dena has been on two international trips with me visiting 5 different countries along the way. This past week, I subjected her to a “Week in the Life” of one of my month-long trips by creating an itinerary for HER vacation time that involved 4 countries in 10 days. Though I suspect she was secretly hoping for a relaxing week on the beach in Greece, she was – as always – a trooper and gamely tagged along for an itinerary that included crazy ideas like purposely spending a night in the Athens airport (who knew we would also spend most of a night in the Atlanta airport?).
The ground rules for this “guest commentary”? None, really. I told Dena she could write as long as she wanted and on whatever subjects she wanted. The good, the bad and the ugly of our travels. I also promised not to edit her words (which involves a lot of trust in our friendship) so what you will read below is exactly as she sent it to me. I am thankful to have Dena as a friend and she is always welcome on any of my trips. I truly hope we will still be friends after I read what she has to say about me. Kidding, of course.Read More
Upon leaving Mykonos Thursday evening, we had an Easy Jet flight to Berlin for an overnight (i.e. 6 hour) layover until our Friday morning flight to Zurich. Instead of sleeping in the airport this time, we opted for a reasonably-priced hotel near the airport. It was definitely a good call if for no other reason than being able to start our morning with showers and fresh clothes.
The Zurich plan was to meet up with my friend and travel buddy for Week #2, Shannon, at the airport. Dena and I were scheduled to land at 7:40am; Shannon was coming in on a Delta flight from Atlanta landing 10 minutes later. Since none of us had ever been to the Zurich airport before, we had no idea whether it would be difficult to find each other.
It turned out to be super easy. Our flights both landed a little early and we easily found Shannon at baggage claim…hooray!Read More
After saying goodbye to Dena at the airport in Zurich early this morning, Shannon and I boarded our flight for Vienna. The plan was to rent a car at the airport and drive to Salzburg Austria for Saturday night before returning to Vienna to spend Sunday night. Unfortunately, sometimes things don’t work out quite like you planned.
When we landed in Vienna around 10am, every rental car place was sold out and the airport was a madhouse. So, we went to Plan B – take the airport train into Vienna and try to find an available rental car there. (Plan C was just take the darn train to Salzburg.)
We had hoped to rent a car because between the two of us, round trip train tickets would be about $200 and we knew we could split the cost of a car for half that. We never thought availability would be such an issue, who knew?
By the time we got the train into town and took the metro to the main train station, it was almost noon. There were two rental car counters in the train station but they were both closed for the weekend. Out of options, we went to Plan C and bought train tickets.Read More