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Dorset - London - Paris - Amsterdam

JurixeJurixe Where you least expect itMember Posts: 1,549 @@ - Legendary Achaean
edited March 9 in The Wander Inn
Hi all,

So I'm going to be doing an Euro trip this year from end July to mid August (yay!) but the conversion rates are really high for me right now (boo) so I have to be quite selective with where I go and what I do. I'd really appreciate some tips from Achaeans on what attractions/places you think are best worth the cost or are must-see things (in your opinion). Also food recommendations (not necessarily actual restaurants, just type of food, but if you have restaurants those are good too) would be much appreciated!

I'm going to be in Dorset (Symondsbury) for 4 days, London for 4, Paris for 3 and Amsterdam for 3. London I'll be staying at the Royale Chulan near Hyde Park (that's because of a connection), and Airbnb for the rest. Paris I'll be in Place d'Italie - Quartier Chinois (does this make sense to anyone?) and Amsterdam we were going for this place near the stadium but she didn't get back to us, so now it might be a private room east of Amsterdam Centraal. Prices are pretty high for me in Amsterdam...

Also, if anyone has a rough estimate of how much I'll probably need (is 500 pounds enough for the UK, for example, if most of our tourist things will only be in the 4 days in London?) that would be super helpful too, though I know it's probably hard.

Thanks in advance!

Jovolo

Comments

  • KlendathuKlendathu Eye of the StormMember Posts: 2,319 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Dorset:
    You're close to Bridport, so plenty of touristy stuff around there. As it's part of the Jurassic Coast, there's loads of dinosaur related stuff to do.

    London:
    Some of the really big museums in London, eg Natural History Museum, are free entry (except for special exhibitions). The Science Museum and Victoria and Albert Museum are a 2 minute wak from NHM too, so you could potentially do all three in one day, although I took my sons to NHM last year and we didn't have enough time to look at everything properly in 6 hours!

    Buckingham Palace is about a 40 minute walk or 5 minute tube ride from the museums above, again free to wander around outside and take pictures like all the other tourists, 23 GBP for entry if you want to look at the inside, and then you're a twenty minute walk from the Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament) and Westminster Abbey.

    When I was in London with my kids last summer, it was around 12 GBP for all day travel card on the Tube, might have gone up since then buy I don't pay for them when I go with work :D

    Can't help you with Paris, not been there for 25 years, or Amsterdam, never been there.

    Tharos, the Announcer of Delos shouts, "It's near the end of the egghunt and I still haven't figured out how to pronounce Clean-dat-hoo."

    Jurixe
  • CoamenelCoamenel Member Posts: 185 ✭✭✭ - Distinguished
    While I get Amsterdam == the Netherlands for most of you, I'd like to point out it's also why it's so expensive, you only focus on A'dam. 

    I assume you're flying schiphol airport. There's a good connection by train going from a'dam to Leiden, which I think is worth looking at. Same canals and stuff but probably less expensive and only 15 mins away from schiphol by train. 

    Also, please besr in mind that the area around the stadium (bijlmer/zuid) isn't exactly a posh environment, it's not really that dsngerous either but I'd still recommend against it. I have a mate in west who used to airbnb his apartment I can poke if you like, though I think he charges fairly high, not sure. 

    Also, on phone so spelling :(
    Jurixe
  • JurixeJurixe Where you least expect itMember Posts: 1,549 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Coamenel said:
    I assume you're flying schiphol airport. 
    We're not actually, we're planning to come by train from Paris, but the train tickets haven't opened for sale yet because it's still too early. And we were originally thinking of living around there, but probably won't now because the Airbnb host never got back to us (and + your recommendation, guess it's just as well). We're looking at other options nearer to the city centre, they're just private rooms instead of whole units like we preferred. Thanks for the offer though!

    Will there be any tulips to see in early August? I know the season is usually May, but obviously if possible I'd still like to see a few! Also what else should I see/do there?

  • CoamenelCoamenel Member Posts: 185 ✭✭✭ - Distinguished
    Jurixe said:
    Coamenel said:
    I assume you're flying schiphol airport. 
    We're not actually, we're planning to come by train from Paris, but the train tickets haven't opened for sale yet because it's still too early. And we were originally thinking of living around there, but probably won't now because the Airbnb host never got back to us (and + your recommendation, guess it's just as well). We're looking at other options nearer to the city centre, they're just private rooms instead of whole units like we preferred. Thanks for the offer though!

    Will there be any tulips to see in early August? I know the season is usually May, but obviously if possible I'd still like to see a few! Also what else should I see/do there?
    Hrm, I'm trying to find out if there will be any flowers in August. From what I seem to recall they grow from March to May, after that they turn brown pretty quickly. I'm looking at the websites of the villages in the bulb area (de bollenstreek) but they haven't announced their programs yet, but the parades are in late April.

    I have to admit that I avoid Amsterdam like the plague (pretty much, nobody in the Netherlands likes a'dam except the people in a'dam), so I actually don't know a whole lot about what there is to see from my own experience. The few times I've been there I visited the VOC vessel they rebuilt and moored next to the maritime museum, that was pretty impressive if you realize they actually went across the world on these ships: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amsterdam_(VOC_ship)

    I also don't know what you'd like, but to sum up just a few (assuming you'd like to stay in Amsterdam)
    - the Albert Cuypmarkt
    - het Singel, prinsengracht, herengracht, keizersgracht area (canals)
    - Rijksmuseum holds the big artists' pieces, you'll find lots of museums around the museumplein too
    - het Anne Frank huis (She actually hid from the nazis here during WWII)
    - de Wallen / coffeeshop area - redlight district. Very crowded, lots of stuff happening. I got lost here during my brother-in-law's stag night and got jumped by polish hookers four times before I rejoined my party. The whole prostitution thing made me feel uncomfortable, but it certainly is a special place and probably the area that is the most famous on a global scale.

    Oh, one thing I may have to point as I've seen it gone wrong before. Weed. Yes, you can buy it and carry it legally here. But if you ARE going to try it, be aware that dutch weed is strong, seriously stronger than anything you have ever experienced so take it easy.


    Oh, and Paris. I've been to Paris quite a few times. What I strongly recommend is getting a metro-ticket that allows you to travel with the metro the entire day unlimited. You'll be using it quite a lot as you go from spot to spot. The tours Eifel is the one where you'll have to walk the longest distance from a station, probably between 10-15 minute walk. All the other attraction basically will have a station next to them. Places I really liked were:
    - Sacre coeur (the entire quartier is very nice to wander about in)
    - Arce de triomphe and the Champs Elysees (very posh shopping area)
    - Notre Dame
    - Pont-Neuf

    You're staying in china town (chinois is chinese, but you probably worked that out already), which from my memory is fine. You'll be close to the center and have access to the metro-network getting you to places quickly.

    One piece of advise on Paris: stay out of the suburbs. When my wife and I went to Paris, we were staying in Chantily which is an hour from Paris by train. We wandered around in Paris until 11pm before we decided to go back to Chantily. But apparently, the inhabitants of the suburbs get drunk and harrass people in the trains from a certain railwaystation outside of the city centre. I've see them harrass a lot of french people for an hour long. Very aggresive, they never saw us (being obvious tourists and an easy target) which was our luck. When we rolled into Chantily my wife and I jumped of the train and just as the doors closed we heard them scream and bang the doors, they'd spotted us and tried to get to us. Seriously scariest moment in my life. tl;dr - don't go into the suburbs, especially not after 9pm!

    Jurixe
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