More pictures from my Euro trip in 2008 with my school and EF Tours. While on this trip we visited France, we drove to France via bus from Italy. On our way to Nice, France we made a stop in Eze where we visited a parfumerie which I wouldn’t recommend if you had allergies but it was defiantly neat to see and I bought a perfume there! From there we had about a 30 minute bus ride to our hotel. The next day we took our bus to Monaco where we had free time to walk around. It was beautiful there but very ritzy. After that we came back to Nice where we went to the beach and went swimming but although the beach was beautiful and the water was super blue, the beach itself was super rocky and hard to walk on. After the beach we climbed a bunch of steps that were along the side of the beach up a mountain-type thing where there was a beautiful waterfall at the top with an awesome view!! Overall Nice and Monaco were beautiful! They aren’t the typical places in France you think to travel but they defiantly should be!!
On my trip to Europe in 2008 on a class trip with a group of students we visited Venice, Italy. Venice was one of my favourite places to visit while in Italy and being back in Italy again since then it still remains on of my favourites. Perhaps it is because when you think of Italy you think of Venice and the gondola rides!! We spent a full day in Venice and stayed in a hostel that was more on the mainland. Fortunately I kept a journal on my travels and I will include below an exert from it…
"Then we went on gondola rides. Our drive was the best one and he kept singing and talking to us and he sand "Candyshop" by 50 Cent. It was so funny! Then we had amazing pizza for lunch and went on a walking tour with a tour guide around Venice."
While also in Venice one of my teachers that was on the trip with us dared me that I wouldn’t get up at 5:30am and go for a polar bear dip in the ocean with some of the other students. He told me he would give me 5 euros if I woke up at 5:30am and was the first one ready to go down in the lobby of our hotel. The night before this we had all gone out to a disco so you can imagine we didn’t get much more then 3 hours of sleep before. The ocean was freezing, I had never felt water that cold ever!!! We couldn’t even feel our legs and feet running back out of the ocean but it defiantly woke us up and was a fun thing to say we did!
I’ve decided to slowly transfer some of my posts from my old travel blog from 2010. I thought the entries may be interesting for people to read about my trip to Spain to work in 2010 and then my travels afterwards to Barcelona and Greece. Enjoy!
"Today a friend of mine that I’m traveling with this summer (Jocelyn) and I spent almost the entire day planning and booking everything for our summer adventure. It took us about 9 hours to decide where exactly we wanted to travel, how we were going to do so, what days we wanted to go everywhere etc. We finally agreed on Greece and Barcelona. We originally were also going to go to Italy but we decided that was going to be to much crammed into 11 days.
After we agreed on where we were going to travel to, we researched! We both got on our computers and Googled everywhere we wanted to go, the quickest/cheapest way to get there and how to go about booking everything. It’s amazing what you can find on Google! They have the answers to everything, including peoples reviews and questions/answers other travelers and locals have posted online, which made it super easy to get our questions answered.
We then started to book! We wanted to book as much as possible so we didn’t have to worry about finding an internet cafe while we were in Europe and having to book things last minute while were over there.
We first booked our flight from Madrid to Barcelona.. after searching buses and trains we discovered a flight was going to be cheaper and take up less of our time. (A bus is about 6 hours and a flight is about 1 hour) We managed to get a flight for about 60 euros through www.edreams.com (a site that searches all low budget airlines to find the best prices). We are going to only spend one night in Barcelona as Jocelyn has already been there and I’d rather spend more time in Greece. We booked our hostel using wwww.hostelworld.com (an amazing site with hostels all over the world). I LOVE this site, it includes customer reviews and ratings so it helps you find the best possible option for you and your budget. We settled for a hostel called Equity Point Sea.. which is right on the ocean and close to the main attractions. It was also super cheap (25 euros per person/per night).
Our next flight we needed to book was our flight from Barcelona to Athens. This took us a long time to figure out the cheapest flight. Traveling to Greece is one of the most expensive places to travel to in Europe. We searched about 6 different airlines and the cheapest flights we could come up with that departed not in the middle of the night came to about just under $300 (Canadian). We also booked this flight through www.edreams.com. We decided we are going to spend 2 nights in Athens, Greece as after talking to several people we know who have traveled there they said that is all we will need. We booked a hostel through the same website as Barcelona (HostelWorld). They had several different options for Athens, Greece. So many neat sounding hostels!! We originally wanted a hostel called Athenstyle but after continuing to look at the other hostels we found one for about 10 euros cheaper a night that is connected to Athenstyle and has access to Athenstyle and everything it has to offer. Our hostel is called Soph & Chris Northern Backpackers. It offers free internet, 24 hour reception etc. but what appealed to us most is the roof terrace bar that overlooks the Acropolis. We have the rest of the day we arrive in Athens & the night and then the following day we have booked a half day tour through www.viator.com which brings us to the major sightseeing places in Athens and the Acropolis Museum. The tour was about $80.00 (Cdn) each but includes hotel pickup, a full tour to all major sites & entry to all museums.
The Greek Islands
Our next big part of our trip is visiting the Greek islands. We allowed about 6 days for us to do so. We decided to only travel 2 islands because we didn’t want to be rushed and have to be on transit/ferries more then being on the islands themselves. We choose Santorini & Rhodes. We booked our ferries online at www.greekferries.gr and managed to book all our tickets together in a round trip which was cheaper then buying tickets separately for each island. Our tickets came to about 276 euros all together for the both of us and that includes a ferry from Athens to Santorini to Rhodes to Athens. First stop Santorini, we depart Athens bright and early in the morning at about 7:00am. And arrive in Santorini mid afternoon. We booked a hostel called Youth Hostel Anna which is located walking distance from the black sand beach and also offers all the necessary services as well as alot of help with planning day trips and renting scooters, cars etc. This hostel worked out to be about $65 (cdn) all together, for both of us, for 2 nights. We are contimplating booking a tour of Santorini going to the volcano, Oias etc. using ViaTor again.
We then have a 5:00am ferry that brings us from Santorini to Rhodes. We are in Rhodes for about 3 days and had a big issue trying to find a hostel in our budget. We didn’t realize that this was an expensive island until after we booked it but in the end we ended up finding a hotel called the Parthenon Hotel which is located near the beach and medieval city as well as has a pool, balconies, private rooms etc.
I have yet to book my flight back from Athens to Madrid but from what I’ve researched it will be around $300 (cdn) again. I’m excited that everything is booked, it took a long time but it will be worth it in the end since I won’t have to worry about it!”