PARIS

So… I’ve been saving up money & airplane miles for a 2 or 3 week trip to Europe next autumn. I’m planning to spend half the time visiting a friend in Italy (Tuscany). But the other half is up in the air. I’d like to go to one other place. The nominees are: 1) Go up to Genoa & the Liguria coast (never been but would be fairly easy), 2) Paris (been many times but love, love, love it), 3) Barcelona (never been, love tapas, love Spanish men if you haven’t noticed), or 4) Lisbon (never been and very intrigued). I considered Amsterdam (went when I was a kid so that doesn’t count), London (had fun the few times I’ve been but I don’t know, kind of tame), and Prague. Greece is #1 on my “bucket list” but that’s for a longer trip some other time. Any opinions, suggestions, or alternatives in western Europe?

8 thoughts on “PARIS

  1. Well Paris is always good…was just in Barcelona last December and it is a fun place…..also was just in Venice…also good………anyplace smaller? Madrid south has some great places to visit………….or for sex maybe Berlin?

    • Thanks for your advice. I’d really love to go to Barcelona, wasn’t sure about Madrid. And I may (or may not) go with a friend and they were recently in Berlin so not considering that.

  2. Dear Matt, Lombardy is landlocked. Perhaps you meant Liguria (the Italian Riviera); Cinque Terre (a 2-day walk is worth the effort); if you’re a hiker, the Alpi Apuane are a challenge; I’d suggest taking time for visiting Lucca rather than Genoa, unless you like post-industrial port cities. Mid-late September is the ideal time for visiting this part of Italy. And we’ll see how it works for when I take my folks down to Sicily.

    • Yes, I did mean coastal Liguria. Lucca sounds nice – I’m just thinking about a coastal Italian place as I’ve been to the Italian alps, all over non-coastal Tuscany, Rome, and Sicily. No interest in Venice. Milano? The Lake Region?

      • Dear Matt, as your photos often show, the lakes are beautiful. If you enjoy driving narrow winding roads and have the time to do it, then you can tour and stop for a break at any of the tiny towns along the way. Or you may want to take a boat ride and enjoy the scenary (without the hassle of driving). This will take some planning to get back to where you left your car (round trip) or get the train at another station from where you started. Lake destinations are fairly accessible by train from Milan. It would be a full day’s outing. The earlier in September you go, the longer the daylight hours you have. Milan has Leonardo’s Last Supper but you have to reserve a visit. There is the Pinacoteca di Brera if you want to send a day in an art museum. Otherwise I’ve not found anything worth recommending for time-stretched visitors.

  3. Characterizing Genoa as a “post-industrial city” is a ridiculous and misleading generalization. Wonderful place. Start there and head up the coast, hitting Santa Margherita Ligure (with a side jaunt from there, on foot if you like, to Portofino–and then head on to Cinque Terre (stay in Manarola and use the spectacular trails or the trains to connect with the other towns). Barcelona, nice– but go in the late spring or early summer. Lisbon–ok, nothing spectacular. Prague, good, get out your walking shoes. Amsterdam, good almost any time. Greece, my specialty; 30 visits, 40 islands; do your research before you go, a lot of it.

    • Thanks for all your information & input. Liguria coast of Italy or Barcelona are the two top contenders. I will definitely go to Greece someday but I want to go when I have the time and money to go for a month or more. This trip next year is just for a couple of weeks. I’ll be going next Fall – you mentioned Barcelona is best in Spring. But what about October?

      • Barcelona is good in the fall, but if you want to hit the beach and survey some of the eye candy mid to late spring is best. Also a good time to explore the nearby Costa Brava, its great little towns and coves and the eccentric casa of Salvador Dali. And yes, very wise to reserve a month or more for Greece and well worth the time. Happy travels.

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