We are a couple from Mumbai, India who will be visiting Europe for the first time in July, 2016. We fly in and and out of Madrid thanks to some super cheap tickets from Saudi Airlines but are not too keen on Spain in July because of the summer heat.
Can you please suggest an itinerary for 12 days that will help us see the most stunning mountain scenery of europe? We are keen on natural beauty and would prefer to skip the cities and crowds. We are on a low budget and would also prefer to skip Switzerland as we've heard it's expensive.
What interests us - stunning views of mountains, peaceful lakes, countryside that is accessible (we won't have a car and will have to rely on public transport).
We land in Madrid on 3rd July and fly back to Mumbai on 17th July, 2016.
We will be travelling with a backpack and minimal luggage so happy to walk around and soak in the sights!
Thanks and regards,
Charles and Fallan Carvalho
The Alps are definitely the king of mountain scenery in Europe, but all of the countries that they enter are fairly expensive. I would think that the least expensive area of the Alps would be on the Italy side. The least expensive way to access the Italian Alps from Barcelona would be to first fly via budget airline such as Air Ryan to Milan. Acutally, Air Ryan's "Milan" airport is actually in Bergamo which is a charming smaller city that lies pretty close to the mountains.
You're itinerary could look something like this:
Day 1: Fly to Barcelona.
Day 2: Sight-see in Barcelona.
Day 3: Fly to Bergamo.
Day 4: Two hour train to Comer See (Lake Como). This is a great place to experience the mountains! The train should cost around 10 Euros or less.
Day 5: Enjoy Como.
Day 6: Enjoy Como.
Day 8: Enjoy Verona.
Day 9: One hour train to Trento, costing around 15 Euros. Trento is the gateway to the incredible Dolomite Mountains and has several opportunities and ways to enjoy them.
Day 10: Enjoy Trento and the Dolomites.
Day 11: Train 2 hours to Padua, around 20 Euros. This is a small city and filled with history.
Day 12: Train to Mestre or Venice, around 20 minutes and 10 Euros. Venice is definitely a bit pricey, but one of the top rated cities in the world for visitors. It is actually much easier than people think to get off the beaten path here and ferry to other nearby islands with very few tourists.
Day 13: Enjoy Mestre/Venice.
Day 14: Fly to Barcelona.
Day 15: Fly home.
While this is a good option, there are places in Europe that will be much kinder on you budget. If you are really trying to save money, consider flying to Eastern Europe and checking out the mountains and rural areas of Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, and Poland.
Let me know if you would like more help planning: email@example.com.
Crystal, Traveler's Toast
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