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Christian asked

Hi! I'm planning a 15 day trip from South America to Europe.

Hi, I'm planning a special trip by myself with my two kids (15 and 13, girl and boy) in March. The idea is to get to know Paris and Amsterdam (both cities are "dream cities" for my daughter); I think that I could fit in one or tops two more cities in this trip. Which cities would you recommend? Thanks! 

Paris (France)   Amsterdam (Netherlands)

7 Answers
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answered by
Andy

Personally, I wouldn't try to fit in more cities. You can easily spend a week in each of these cities, with little day trips around them if you want to get out of town. It obviously depends on your interests. For example, if you're interested in art, from Paris you can get to Auvers-sur-Oise, where Van Gogh lived the last two months of his life and is buried, or to Giverny to see Monet's house and gardens with lily ponds. Both charming French villages easily accessible by train in about an hour. Tons to do around Amsterdam too. What type of accommodation do you have? We rented a houseboat in Amsterdam on Airbnb - way more fun than a hotel and right downtown. We've rented apartments in Paris - again, that means you can enjoy shopping in the markets and at least have some meals at home. The best advice I could give you is to do lots of research around your areas of interest, and then find accommodation close by. Public transit is great in both cities, but nothing beats walking. Have fun!


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answered by
Marie-France from Toronto

I'd suggest spending some days in Belgium. It's a highly underrated country in my opinion. Bruges has a fairytale look with its medieval architecture, cobblestones, and canals. It's touristy but should be quieter in March, especially if you visit on weekdays. Brussels is an interesting city with a beautiful square (Grand Place), street murals, and fun museums like the Musical Instruments Museum, Belgian Comic Strip Center, Toy Museum, and Belgian Chocolate Village. Great food and beer too! You can easily move between these cities, Paris, and Amsterdam by train. 

Here's how I spent two days in Brussels.


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Christian
Awesome details! Thanks!!
 
 
 

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answered first by
Karin from Meerssen

Brussels and/or Antwerp is fun to do in between them. Cause you can take the train. Also Utrecht in the netherlands is really cool to see. Or cologne


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Christian
Will check those out! Thanks!
 
 
 

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answered by
Steve from Honolulu, Hawaii

You Bruges and Brussels without spending a lot of time traveling. Both are on the to Amsterdamand train would be easy


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answered by
Tracy

I have been to both Paris and Amsterdam and they are equally beautiful and interesting cities. Amsterdam is an easily walkable city. You can take the kids to the Anne Frank House (get tickets online first!) You can take a half day trip (tours available, we loved it!) to visit windmills in Zaanse Schans, wooden shoes museum in Marken and gouda cheese museum (samples to munch on) in the beautiful harbor town of Volendam. Between Amsterdam and Paris you can stop in Madurodam(The Hague) to walk amongst miniature versions of many landmarks and cities nearby. It is an interesting side stop. Bruges is a fantastic stop. it is a medieval  city, stop for french fries,(created in Belgium) waffles and chocolate. These will keep any teenager happy! In Paris there is so much to see it all depends on what you are hoping to see. You can definitely go up to the top of the Eiffel Tower, to be forewarned, it generally is a long wait. The louvre if you are interested in seeing a museum. I would go up to Sacré-Cœur Basilica even if seeing a church is not something you want to do as it takes you up through Montmartre a quaint area with artists creating portraits in the square and you can look over city at the top. Île de la Cité is also a nice place to walk around and visit  Notre Dame. Enjoy your trip!


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answered by
Janelle from Charleston

Stopping off in Bruges, AntwerpThe Hague and/or Leiden  would be great stops on the way from Paris to Amsterdam.  Bruges, with its mediaeval centre and cobbled streets, is especially kid/teen friendly.


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answered by
Marnie from Conflans-sur-Anille

What are your main interests? Museums? Art? Architecture? Cities or also some country visits? Can you self drive, which will allow country visits. What is your approximate budget for this trip? There is a lot you could fit in in 15 days


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Christian
Hi, Thanks! Well, they are teens so more like architecture, nature, museums.... not gonna drive, rather move by train!
 

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Marnie
Then I would visit Amsterdam by bicycle, of course Anne Franks' house (purchase tickets online ahead of time) Rembrandts house, the Rujksmuseum and VanGogh Museum. And if your budget permits it, take a private lunch cruise on a river yacht. Then take a one day private tour outside Amsterdam to visit some of the castles, the Edam farm etc. Castle Muiderslot, a fortress dating back to 1285. Travel mainly on small scenic country roads and dikes to the Waterland, situated 10 feet below sealevel. Begin visiting Broek, drive through Volendam, take a 20 minutes walk across the quaint isle of Marken, a former fishing settlement, and discover the houseboat village. Stop for a cup of coffee at De Waar, an ancient Auberge with antique maps of Holland and pictures bringing you back in time. Drive along the dikes of the Zuider Sea up Edam for lunch at the Auberge Le Dam Hotel. Then visit historic Monnickendam (1350), known for its well preserved homes and infrastructure. See Holland's most famous historic windmill site at Zaandijk and even go inside a windmill and see it in action! You will be surrounded by beautiful villages, farms, animals, and Dennis will remain most of the time on small roads away from other tourists. Before returning back to Amsterdam, visit the open air museum of Zuidersee. Then take the Thalys train down to Paris, spending at least 4 nights here. On one day, you will want to go to Versailles. Here book online ahead of time a semi private tour to the private Kings appartments. These are smaller, so all the tourists don't fit in. These tours in English take place usually in the morning around 10am. Aim for a Tuesday or Thursday visit, so you can see the fountains on display. Buy your Eiffel tower tickets online, at least 2 months prior. Likewise your Louvre tickets, although for this museum, I definitely recommend a private guide. Take the fast speed train from Paris to the Loire Valley, to spend a further 4 days visiting the many majestic Loire Valley castles.
 
 
 
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